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Marietta-Washington County

Marietta-Washington county is a place of bold beginnings and new adventures for travelers of all ages. Established in 1788 Marietta is known as the first settlement in the Northwest Territory. This picturesque river town with European ambiance is conveniently located just off Exit 1 on I-77. Named by the Smithsonian Magazine as the #6 best small town to visit in 2014, Marietta is positioned at the confluence of the Muskingum and Ohio Rivers. Its brick streets are lined with lush hardwood trees and opulent Victorian homes. Our city is always alive with activity, modern yet delightfully old.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Wayne National Forest

Loaded with nearly every natural and outdoor recreation sport available, the Wayne National Forest Offers Historic landscapes and structures along its 241,000 acres. The Forest is a patchwork ownership through the Appalachian foothills and features covered bridges, historic Ohio, and Americana. Divided into three units, there are two ranger district offices located in Nelsonville, Ironton, and a field office in Marietta.


Featuring a vast amount of hiking and biking trails, the Marietta Unit hosts West Virginia Mountain Bike Association's The Wayne Ultra. The trails are technical, difficult, beautifully built, and an absolute blast to ride and hike.


The Little Muskingum River runs for miles throughout Washington County and is a spectacular paddle when water levels are right. Paddle from covered bridge to covered bridge for an amazing day in a boat. Marietta Adventure Company offers tours, equipment, shuttles and all the information you will need to have  a great day on the river.


While you are at the Adventure Company, ask about the bouldering opportunities in The Wayne. You can follow the Marietta bouldering scene by visiting the Facebook page "Marietta Bouldering."


The Kinderhook Trails offer about 16 miles of pleasurable riding. The Washington County Ohio Horseman's Council is a good resource for more information on riding in the Wayne and the area in general.


Nestled along the Ohio River, Leith Run is a favorite campground and picnic area (among many). With two viewing decks, one offering a panoramic view of the Ohio River and the other overlooking the backwaters of Leith Run, the beloved camping site boasts several trails ideal for wildlife viewing. For scenic overlooks, be sure to scope out the two climbs to bluffs above the Ohio River-- a place where wildlife, especially birds, seem to congregate.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

"Our Home Away From Home" by Donnie Marie Estep

For the past fifteen years, we have been traveling to Marietta a couple of times a year- embarking on new and unexpected adventures- and enjoying every minute of it!

We stay at the House on Harmar Hill- a beautiful bed and breakfast perched high atop Marietta with a spectacular view of the rivers and downtown below.  Doug and Judy Grize who operate the B&B are like family and we enjoy our visits with them.

For fine dining, we turn to The Galley and Spagna's where we always know we'll have excellent food and service. We absolutely love shopping downtown Marietta, one of our favorites before it closed, was Barking Dog Books and Art.

Initially, we planned an itinerary including museum visits, Valley Gem excursions, carriage rides, July 4th fireworks, ghost walks, and Christmas shopping. These days, we just go with the flow. There is always something interesting happening in Marietta. We check the online calendar for events at Marietta College and the Mid Ohio Valley Players Theatre. But, we reserve plenty of spare time for unexpected discoveries.

In 2005, we happened to be trapped on Harmar Hill when the river flooded. It was a fascination experience, watching the river rise and spill over her banks. We stayed an extra night and had a wonderful and interesting time from our safe and dry vantage point high above it all.

Marietta is our home away from home- partly because of its small town feel, but also because there is something for everyone to do here. We have visited in every season of the year and enjoyed the variety of the atmosphere. Whether we are traveling alone or with another couple, we have found that we stay together and play together the whole time.