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Cowan Lake State Park

Cowan Lake State Park is located in Clinton County, 6 miles from Wilmington, an hour drive northeast of Cincinnati. Peaceful Cowan Lake comes alive with color when the water lily blooms. Six miles of nature trails are perfect for relaxing walks or fitness hikes. Picnic areas have tables, grills and reservable shelters. Nature programs provide entertainment all summer.

Housekeeping cottages in a wooded setting by the lake are perfect for getaways year-round. The 2-bedroom cottages have kitchens, bathroom w/shower, living room & screened porch. Several pet-friendly cottages allow dogs. 

The campground offers 233 campsites with electric hookups, along with 17 non-electric sites. Amenities include showers, flush restrooms, laundry facilities, a camp store & beach/launch ramp for campers. Pets are allowed on designated sites.

700-acre Cowan Lake offers swimming & a sand beach. Enjoy laid-back boating or motor boating with a 10 hp limit. The marina (937) 289-2656) offers fuel, supplies & rental. Seasonal dock rental is available. Fishing for muskie, crappie, bass & bluegill is enjoyed from the shore or the lake. Hunting is permitted in designated areas. 

Camping Fees are $23-$28/night (weekends) for non-electric/electric sites. Cottage Fees are $95-115/night, with discounts offered during the winter months. several cottages are pet friendly. Call 1-866-OHIO-PARKS for reservations.

Cowan Lake State Park
1750 Osborn Road

Wilmington, Ohio 45177

Phone Number(s)

Local Number: (937) 289-2105
Fax: (937) 289-3223
Reservations: (866) 644-6727


Sunday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Monday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Tuesday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Wednesday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Thursday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Friday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM
Saturday: 6:00 AM - 11:00 PM

Special Hours:




Camping: 22.00 - 27.00
Cottages: 95.00 - 115.00



Partner Itineraries

  • Close Encounters of the Ghostly Kind
    by Partner Author

    What gets the adrenaline going better than a good ghost story? Well, Snow Hill Country Club has opened its doors to the public to share the unusual phenomena that occurs there regularly. Staff members over the years have experienced rooms that have become disheveled after straightening, cold air moving through the building while doors open and close, the scent of perfume in unoccupied rooms, photos of light "orbs" moving through the rooms, the unexplained filling of a bathtub in an unused portion of the facility whose water suddenly disappeared leaving behind a fine granulated sand, and more.  Professional ghost hunters visited Snow Hill with their scientific paraphernalia, as well as individuals who have a reputation of having psychic abilities. Photos were taken, tape recordings were made, and many walked through the rooms of Snow Hill.  Arrive early evening at Snow Hill for a memorable experience including a dinner buffet at which time the early history of the old inn begins to unfold, to a room by room tour where the inn's history is intertwined with stories of eerie happenings that have occurred in each of them.  Of course, there is always the chance that someone in the group may have their own ghostly experience to leave with. After the haunting evening, travel to Cowan Lake State Park where family size cabins await your group. Located on the lake, the group will feel right at home in these roomy accommodations. The next morning, depart for Waynesville and go on a guided Ghostly Walking tour in Ohio’s most haunted village. Travel to Lebanon and have lunch at the Golden Lamb, Ohio’s oldest continuously-operating inn, nationally known for their Americana fare and hospitality, as well as the antique and Shaker décor.  Rumors have it that the Golden Lamb has a few ghosts of their own. After doing a little shopping in Lebanon, return to Cowan Lake State Park and see the lake from a different perspective, aboard a pontoon.

  • A Sporting You Will Go
    by Partner Author

    Clinton County in Southwest Ohio is home to Cherrybend Pheasant Farm, a nationally known pheasant farm and hunting reserve. Experience a lunch prepared especially for you; succulent pheasant with all the trimmings, all home-cooked and piping hot. Your next destination is Roberts Arena, a regionally acclaimed horse arena. Tour the facility and its indoor and outdoor arenas. If the timing is right, you may get to watch one of the many weekend horse shows that grace the facility year-round. The rest of the day it’s time for outdoor fun with a beautiful lake as your backdrop. Travel to Cowan Lake State Park where your group will take a pontoon tour on the lake, a wonderful peaceful time with great opportunities for the shutterbug. Return to a campfire and a cookout by the park’s staff before heading back to the hotel for a good night’s rest—the prerequisite for the next day’s activities. Enjoy breakfast before traveling to Morgan’s for some rafting down the Little Miami River. Education tours and guided excursions are available. It’s scenic, it’s fun, and it’s an experience you won’t forget.

  • Go Bananas
    by Partner Author

    Pull on your poodle skirt, roll down your bobby socks, and get ready to rock ‘n' roll at the Banana Split Festival in Wilmington. Enjoy this tribute to the Elvis era, complete with vintage cruise-in, games, crafts and collectibles, and great food. Attend free concerts by well-known entertainers. After the concert on Friday evening, check into your deluxe accommodations and rest up for the next fun-filled day. Enjoy breakfast before heading out to the Kings Island Amusement Park. After a day of riding the rides, watching the musical and theatrical shows, or jumping the waves at the Kings Island “wave pool,” head back to Wilmington to resume your rock 'n’ roll adventure at the Banana Split Festival. Before getting situated for the Saturday evening concert, be sure and get the best “banana split” around, and then travel back in time while listening to the music of yesteryear. Your evening accommodations will be waiting for you at the end of the day. Sleep in, or rise early for a continental breakfast before heading out for Cowan Lake State Park, an ideal place for a little relaxation. Your group can take a pontoon tour on the lake and watch the sailboats, take in a little fishing, go on a hike and enjoy the natural resources of this beautiful park, swim at the beach, and have a summer picnic, before heading home. It’s a restful end to a perfect weekend.

  • Down & Dirty
    by Partner Author

    For those who enjoy the outdoors and getting back to nature, your day begins at Culberson State Nature Preserve, a 238 acre preserve that is one of the few examples of the "white swamp forest" which once covered the uplands of southwestern Ohio. The forest grows on poorly drained, "white clay" soil which formed on the glacial materials deposited during the Illinoisan glacial period. The swamp forest is dominated by red maple and pin oak with substantial stands of shagbark hickory, shellbark hickory, swamp white oak, American elm and sweet gum.  Camera buffs, and bird watching are a favorite at Culberson. After leaving Culberson, it’s on to Cowan Lake State Park for a special lunch in the commissary. After a little rest and nourishment, the park’s naturalist will reveal the story about the lake and how it was used for missile testing, and then it’s on foot to discover the beauties of Cowan. The park provides four miles of hiking trails. A Lotus Cove self-guided trail provides a boardwalk view of an American Lotus (water lily) colony while the Emerald Woods Trail meanders through a mature beech forest. Next it’s on to the marina for a Cowan Lake pontoon tour which takes in many of the lake’s coves. It’s time to check in at your hotel and rest up before a dinner at the Spillway Lodge. Get a good night’s sleep because following breakfast the next morning at the hotel, a new day begins with a trip to Collett Woods Nature Preserve, which covers 60 acres. The preserves’ forest is dominated by American Beech, Sugar Maple, White Ash, White Oak, and Black Walnut. Wild Black Cherry, Hackberry, and Shagbark Hickory are also found in limited quantity.  Over 58 species of birds are known to breed within one mile of these woods with at least another 100+ species migrating through the preserve in the fall and spring migration. It’s time for lunch at Young’s Jersey Dairy, with home-style cooking. After lunch it’s on to Yellow Springs and a visit to the Glen Helen Nature Preserve, 1,000 acre nature preserve with hiking, raptor center, and trailside museum.

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