Marion Tallgrass Trail--Decliff Rd. to LaRue-Marseilles Rd.

Marion Tallgrass Trail--Decliff Rd. to LaRue-Marseilles Rd.

New Bloomington, OH 43341

Marion Tallgrass Trail webpage
Marion Tallgrass Trail map

Also, see all the hotspots at:
Marion Tallgrass Trail
Killdeer Plains-Big Island Important Bird Area

About this Location

The Decliff Road Trailhead has parking for this section of the trail. The area is a good place to view waterfowl. Indigo Buntings are usually in the area in the summer.

About Marion Tallgrass Trail

The Marion Tallgrass Trail reached the Hardin County line in late 2017, a distance of 12.44 miles from the eastern trailhead site at 2093 Holland Road West, just west of Marion. The trail follows the former Erie-Lackawanna railroad, which was abandoned in 1976.

In the first mile, visitors can find trumpeter swans, bald eagles, and a beaver lodge as the trail follows the shore of a 53-acre lake. The trail then crosses an open area before crossing OH-203 and entering the beautiful Big Island Wildlife area. After the small village of Espyville, the trail travels west through a peaceful wooded corridor, passing one mile north of the village of New Bloomington and entering the unincorporated village of DeCliff. Continuing west, the trail crosses OH-37. The trail passes through a beautiful tunnel under Riley Road, before continuing an additional 1.4 miles to the county line.

Parking is available at 4 locations:

  • Mile 0: A paved parking area is available at the Holland Road trailhead.
  • Mile 1.75: A grassy ODNR parking lot just south of the trail on OH-203.
  • Mile 3.7: The members of the Espyville Baptist allow trail users to park in their lot as long as the church is not in session, reminding visitors that they are not responsible for vehicles left there.
  • Mile 8.4: A 19-car paved lot in DeCliff, where the trail crosses DeCliff Road.

Well-behaved dogs are permitted but must be on leashes and you must pick up and carry out their waste. The park closes at dusk (30 minutes after sunset). Horses and motor vehicles (except motorized wheelchairs) are not permitted on the trail. Smoking is prohibited on the Tallgrass Trail and all Marion County Parks.

The nature center hosts many interesting programs and includes an outdoor pavilion with 6 picnic tables.  

An observation deck overlooks 53-acre Marion Community Foundation Lake near the midpoint of the first mile, and a playground is available at the Holland Road trailhead.