Whitlam Woods is a tranquil 187-acre forest, part of which is leased from the Geauga County
Board of Commissioners. The park is bisected by deep ravines of two streams that flow into Big Creek. It is Geauga Park District's intent to protect this natural area in
In 1959, Fred Whitlam sold property in Hunting Valley, specifying that proceeds be used to purchase wooded land in Geauga County. This land was to be held by the Geauga County Board of Commissioners as a "Memorial Forest in commemoration of the memory of Fred Whitlam, his parents,
William and Mary Whitlam, and other pioneers of Geauga County and the Western Reserve."
Years later, an agreement was drawn up with the county commissioners for Geauga Park District to
manage the land and operate a 100-acre park, which opened in 1976.
Additional land was purchased by the Park District in subsequent years to further protect wildlife and better provide outdoor enjoyment for the citizens of Geauga County.
Nearly 1.5 miles of hiking trails have been established in Whitlam Woods. Download the
trail map here.
The Overlook Trail travels along a ridge to a scenic vista of the ravine and forest. The Bridge Trail works its way into the ravine to a bridge that spans one of the streams. A wooden staircase climbs the steep slope to the opposite ridge.
Two loop trails offer a choice of hiking distances. The Sugarbush Trail passes the remains of an old sugarhouse as it travels through the mature forest and along the edge of two ravines. The Titmouse Trail circles through the young red-maple woods and connects with the SugarBush Trail to make a shorter loop.
Benches along the trails provide for peaceful periods of relaxation amid the soothing woodland sounds and scenery.
Hemlock trees provide year-round greenery in ravines surrounded by a mature beech-maple forest, which cloaks most of the park. Lush growths of spring wildflowers carpet the woods, and a variety of birds and animals can be found each season. Along the woodland margins, dense thickets and grapevine tangles provide cover to a variety of wildlife, including ruffed grouse, deer, turkey and fox. An old field is now covered with a second-growth red maple woods, and soft mosses and club mosses cover the ground.
In the shrubby meadow at the front of the park, towhees, indigo buntings and goldfinches nest, and woodcocks return each spring to perform their aerial courtship flights.
Click the map below to see Whitlam Woods plotted by Google Maps and get directions.
From I-90: Exit I-90 at Route 44. Travel south approximately 3.2 miles to Clark Road. Turn east onto Clark Road, and travel 1.8 miles. Turn south onto Robinson Road. Travel 0.5 mile to Pearl Road. Turn east and travel 0.6
mile to park entrance.
From I-422: Exit I-422 at Route 44. Travel north approximately 14 miles to Chardon Square. Continue around Chardon Square to North Street. Travel north 1.4 miles to Woodin Road. Turn east onto Woodin
Road; travel .8 mile to Robinson Road. Turn north and travel 1.5 miles to Pearl Road. Turn east and travel 0.6
mile to park entrance.