Coyote Run Trail

Highbanks Metro Park
Columbus Metro Parks

Trail Location

Lewis Center, Franklin County

Access Highbanks Metro Park from Route 23. From I-270, take U.S. 23 north 3 miles. The entrance is on the left. If you get to Powell Road, you have gone too far.

Trail Summary

Length: 3.6 miles
Duration: 2.5 hours
Surface: natural
Type: Loop Trail-Hiking,
Difficulty: easy
Accessibility: The trail is not technically ADA accessible, but is fairly flat and reasonably wide.

Trail Description

Depthford Pink, A non-native, but beautiful flower of open places.
During mid-to late summer, you can see the hot-pink flowers of the Depthford Pink in the meadows along the Coyote Run Trail.

This pleasant walking trail at Highbanks Metro Park is an easy stroll through a rather disturbed forest, which leads you to an open field dominated by grasses. This field is managed as a meadow, both to allow for a diversity of species that would otherwise not find much habitat in central Ohio, and as a side effect, to allow us an unobstructed view of a large Adena mound located near the spot where the trail first pops out of the forest and into the meadow.

The Adena people lived in the Ohio area during approximately 800 B.C.E. to perhaps 100 C.E. For more information check out this web page on Adena Indians and archaeology of the Woodland Period in the Eastern Uniterd States.

The meadows here are home to songbirds, as well as butterflies such as the Monarch. Meadows such as this are also great places to observe small mammals such as rabbits, moles, voles and mice. Because of these small mammals, meadows can also be advantageous spots to observe predators, such as red-shouldered hawks, which may often be heard and seen here, and sometimes, the shy, cautious coyote, which may be seen near the forest edges and trotting through the meadows near dusk.

Plant species you will see include the invasive plant teasel, which is so named because its spiky flower heads were literally used to tease fibers of products in woolen mills. This useful plant has, however spread in open habitats around Ohio and can grow thickly enough to worry some land mangers. To learn more about invasive plants such as teasel, Smooth Brome Grass, another invasive plant found in these meadows, visit the Ohio Invasive Plant Council on the web.

Nearby Trails

Big Meadows Path
Overlook Trail
Scenic River Trail
Dripping Rock Trail