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  • At-A-Glance
  • What to Look For
  • Noteworthy Rarities
  • Natural Features
  • Local Resources
  • 13 - Mentor Lagoons Preserve

    City of Mentor
    8365 Harbor Drive
    Mentor, OH 44060


    Public Access

    Open daily, dawn until dusk


    Hiking Trails, Restrooms, Picnic Area, Handicap Accessible Trails, Outdoor Feeders

    GPS Coordinates

    N 41° 43'31.36"; W 81° 20'19.60"

    Driving Directions

    From the west take State Route 2 or I-90 to State Route 615 (Center Street). Turn left and continue north until the road ends at Lake Shore Boulevard. Turn right and then an immediate left at Harbor Drive. At the stop sign turn right and follow the road to the trail head.

    What to Look For

    This 450-acre site lies at the western end of Mentor Marsh State Nature Preserve, and some of its more than three miles of trails link to the state nature preserve. The centerpiece is 1.5 miles of completely undeveloped beach. Swimming is not permitted and the wild beach offers a glimpse into the past and what many of Lake Erie's beaches once resembled.

    Marshy areas along the east and south side of the preserve can be excellent for sparrows and other marsh birds in migration. The trail that leads from the parking lot to the beach bisects mature woods that can be full of songbirds in migration, and also supports a diversity of breeding birds. The bluffs above the beach offer commanding views, and can be an excellent area to scan the lake for waterbirds.

    Noteworthy Rarities

    Clay-colored Le Conte's and Nelson's sparrows have turned up in migration. The waters of Lake Erie, offshore from the beach, have produced King Eider and Pomarine Jaeger.

    Natural Features

    A rare Ohio tree, the pumpkin ash (Fraxinus profunda) grows along the main trail from the parking area to the beach. In late summer and fall, lots of dragonflies of many species can gather in vegetation behind the beach, and this is a good locale to watch for rare species such as striped saddlebags (Tramea calverti).

    Local Resources

    City of Mentor
    Lake County Visitors Bureau & Welcome Center
    Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society

    Nearby Lake Access Site

    Mentor Beach State Park. This state park lies between Mentor Lagoons and Headlands Dunes State Nature Preserve. The dominant feature is a sand beach that stretches for over ½ mile—the longest public access beach in Ohio's portion of Lake Erie. It is heavily used by people during the warmer months, to the point of eliminating birding opportunities. During colder months the beach is worth checking for gulls, shorebirds, etc.