Location and Directions
Sugarcreek MetroPark is about 12.7 miles southeast of downtown Dayton. From the intersection of Third and Main Streets in downtown Dayton, take SR 48 (Main St.) south 8.5 miles to SR 725. Turn left (east) on SR 725 and go 2.4 miles to Wilmington- Dayton Rd. Turn right (south) onto Wilmington-Dayton Rd. and go 1.6 miles to the first 3-way stop. Continue straight across the intersection onto Conference Rd. and go 0.2 miles to the park entrance on the left. For a map showing the location of Sugarcreek MetroPark, see Five Rivers MetroPark Map.
Area Description and Habitat
As metro Dayton continues to expand, this beautiful MetroPark has become increasingly important. About 600 acres in size, the park surrounds a long stretch of Sugar Creek and has preserved both riparian and upland woodlands. A tall grass prairie has been created from what was once farm land. An excellent system of trails crisscrosses the park and leads to "the Three Sisters", three giant 550-year-old oak trees. Sugarcreek MetroPark is also a favorite place for finding wildflowers, both along the creek and in the prairie. Adjacent to the northeast side of Sugarcreek MetroPark is Spring Lakes Park (in Bellbrook), and the lake-side edge habitat there is often worth checking for birds.
Common nesting species are well represented at Sugarcreek, and include Barred Owls and Eastern Screech-Owls, Pileated Woodpeckers, Red-eyed and White-eyed Vireos, Northern Parula, Yellow-throated, Cerulean, and Kentucky Warblers, Louisiana Waterthrush, Yellow-breasted Chat, Common Yellowthroat, and Indigo Bunting. During both spring and fall migration, a large variety of warblers is often found, including unusual species such as Orange-crowned, Canada, Connecticut, and Mourning Warblers. Most rarities seen have been flying over, and include Black Vulture, Bald Eagle, and Red-shouldered Hawk.
Facilities and Other Information
Sugarcreek MetroPark has five miles of well maintained and marked walking/hiking trails through scenic meadows, woodlands, and around the lake and pond. Trails are marked with color-coded posts. All colored trails are loops; follow the same color to arrive back at your starting point. Trails are open year-round for hiking, and in winter for cross-country snow skiing.
The Sugarcreek Riding Center in the park offers guided horseback trail rides and hayrides. Or bring your own horse and enjoy 6.5 miles of scenic bridle trails.
An Archery Center in the park consists of a practice range, hunter course, and woodland target course. Other facilities include picnic tables, restrooms, a drinking fountain, a public telephone, and group camping (a camping permit is required).
Hours are 8 am to dusk daily. Closed Christmas and New Year's Day.
A brochure describing the park features, and containing a map showing trails and points of interest, is available at the bulletin board near the parking lot.