Information on:

Cowan Lake State Park

1750 Osborn Road

Cowan Lake State Park offers a peaceful setting replete with scenic inlets laden with the American Lotus water lily. Swimming, fishing, sailing and canoeing are popular on the lake. Meandering trails through mature woodlands compliment the natural features of this scenic 1,075-acre park.


The Cowan Lake region was once a stronghold of the Miami and Shawnee Indians. After their defeat at the hands of General Anthony Wayne at the Battle of Fallen Timbers, the Indian threat subsided and settlement began here. In 1797, the first settler in the area, William Smalley, began clearing land for his home along the river which was later dammed to form Cowan Lake. Smalley had been captured by the Indians when he was a small child and was forced to live with them until he was twenty years old. He later fought in General Wayne's army and was recaptured, but luckily escaped with his life.

Cowan Creek was named for the area's first surveyor, John Cowan. A dam was completed across Cowan Creek in 1950, and in 1968, Cowan Lake was dedicated as a state park.


Katie Fleischman

Friday, June 30, 2017
My husband and I love Cowan Lake for kayaking. Our pups love it too! Water is relatively calm so it's a perfect kayaking spot to explore.

Michael Dowden

Thursday, Sep. 8, 2016
It's a place to camp, but for the weekend only half the cost of a nearby hotel. Not much shade so you get pounded with sun for the first half of the day. Restrooms are sparse and in poor repair. The only one in our campground had standing water on the floor all of labor day weekend. Firewood was expensive and low quality (cheaper wood available just outside the park). The park is remote so definitely plan on GPS to get you there. Hiking trails are short, and not well marked. We spent as much time walking around looking for the trail head as we did on the trails. Looks like most people use this park as a place to park their RV or to go out on the lake in their sailboat. It's only 20 minutes from the Ohio Renaissance Festival, rather remote but still had decent cell service.

James Grooms

Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017
Good fishing, good place for family picnics

josh sixner

Tuesday, June 7, 2016
Primitive Camping: I stayed in the far B lot for primitive camping. Gorgeous lake view though, waking up to the water is always nice. B9 is the best plot. Downside : not many trash cans.. people come and park in this lot and then with no trash cans in the immediate area, often left stuff. We watched raccoon's creep out from the woods and rummage. They were pretty bold, but not at all confrontational. The nearest bathroom is down by the lake, could be better kept but at least it's an actual bathroom. Showers up near the main ground [drive there] were okay... on par for big camp grounds. Make sure you've got spare flip-flops!

Thomas Myers

Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018
To be in Ohio, this is a great park.

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