"Hiking Ohio" (Falcon Guides, $16.95) aims to assemble the state's best hikes in a concise, 278-page tome that splits Buckeye Country into five quadrants and invites would-be trail walkers to explore routes near their own back yards. Compiled by Athens-based hiking expert Mary Reed and endorsed by the American Hiking Society, the book covers eight Northeast Ohio treks, which range from the relatively tame 2.4-mile walk along the ponds at Tinkers Creek to the more challenging Devil's Icebox Loop at Nelson-Kennedy Ledges State Park. And although Reed's selections cover only jaunts through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Ohio's state parks, her attention to important details and easy-to-reference information on everything from the makeup of a path surface to the closest place to get water make this a useful guide for anyone looking for trails to hit this summer.
First, Patience Cameron Hoskins showed Clevelanders the beauty of seeing the city and surrounding Cuyahoga County parks on foot. Then, the active member of the Cleveland Hiking Club and Buckeye Trail Association turned her spotlight on great hikes through Lake, Geauga, Erie, Portage, Summit, Medina and Lorain counties. Eight years after the printing of that first edition, "Beyond Cleveland On Foot" (Gray & Co., $15.95) is back with 58 updated treks that take readers from the streets of historic Hudson to a 6-mile walk along Headlands Beach State Park and Mentor Marsh. Detailed maps help hikers negotiate the longer routes, but most trails covered in this 349-page book fall between one and three miles, which makes exploring the region's parks an endeavor open to people of all ages and fitness levels. Changes to the new edition, which was co-authored by Rob and Peg Bobel, include six new hikes.