Leo Petroglyphs & Nature Preserve

Explore a scenic gorge and discover centuries-old rock art created by the ancient peoples of Ohio

Leo Petroglyphs & Nature Preserve

400 Park Road, Ray, OH, USA
Monday - Sunday
All daylight hours
All Visitors - $0.00

Masks are no longer required but please practice social distancing whenever possible.


A ½ mile trail leads through a gorge and along unglaciated Mississippian sandstone cliffs that are 20–65 feet high. The trail follows a small intermittent tributary of Sour Run that runs through the gorge, before eventually draining into Little Salt Creek and then into the Scioto River near Richmond Dale. Within the gorge are several small waterfalls and a fairly large rock shelter. The east bank is dominated by Eastern Hemlock (Tsuga Canadensis). In season, wildflowers and birds are abundant. Average visit time: Allow 1+ hours


Perched on a ridge just outside the village of Leo, Leo Petroglyph & Nature Preserve is a legacy of the American Indian peoples of ancient Ohio. Protected beneath the roof of a shelter house, a large flat sandstone slab preserves the traces of some of the most remarkable rock art in Ohio. The panel of petroglyphs includes between 37 figurative drawings of humans, birds, animal and human foot prints, a fish, a snake and other figures carved into the rock outcropping on the gently sloping hillside above a steep gorge. Leo Petroglyph is actually a series of petroglyphs ancient people cut into the sandstone outcrop. The exact age of the carvings is unknown, but based on the degree of weathering of the soft sandstone, the carvings are probably not more than 1,000 years old. The art is likely the work of the Fort Ancient culture.

Leo Petroglyphs and Nature Preserve is managed locally by Friends of Buckeye Furnace, in care of the Jackson Historical Society.

  • Audiences: K-5th Grade Students, 6-8th Grade Students, 9-12th Grade Students, Higher Education Students, Educators, Families, Government, Specialists, Tourists, Community Groups, History Enthusiasts & Sports Fans
  • Historical Topics: American Indian History & Archaeology
  • Regions: Southeast Ohio
  • Site Activities: Self-Guided & Hiking
  • Museum & Site Type: Ohio History Connection Site

Upcoming Events at Leo Petroglyphs & Nature Preserve