Four of the Best Locations to Photograph CVSR

Four of the Best Locations to Photograph CVSR

Cuyahoga Valley National Park is filled with many beautiful locations that photographers everywhere delight in. From the Virginia Kendall Ledges to Blue Hen Falls there’s much to see and explore. Whether you use your cell phone camera or professional equipment you’ll be guaranteed to get a great picture of the train.

From Cleveland to Akron here are great locations to snap a photo of the train in action.

Canal Exploration Center

At the Canal Exploration Center (CEC) you’ll often find families and park visitors bustling in and around the area. The center is located two miles south of Rockside Station and has easy access to the towpath trail.

train seen from across the river

Photo by Robert George

The spot: On the bridge that connects the parking area to the CEC train station. Looking Southwest from the bridge you can get great shots of the train as it passes by the River. It’s one of the best places to see the Cuyahoga River winding through the area.

lock at canal exploration center

Photo by Instagram user the1outdoorsman

Tip: CEC is a popular location for photographers because Lock 38, which is adjacent to the CEC, is the only working lock in CVNP. Stay up to date on their events as they hold historical reenactments throughout the year.

Station Road Bridge

Station Road Bridge in Brecksville is noted for the many animals scurrying around and beautiful view of the Cuyahoga River down in the valley.

The spot: Stand on the bridge to get stunning photos of the train heading south under the route 82 bridge. Its reflection on the river and overwhelming presence makes for magazine worthy photos.

Tip: The best time of day is just after sunrise and in the evening. You’ll even find many photographers here discovering, shooting and sharing their photos.

The Village of Peninsula

train passengers deboarding in peninsula

Photo by Robert George

Located in the Village of Peninsula the main train depot overlooks the Cuyahoga River. In the busier months you’ll see many park visitors taking advantage of walking the shaded towpath trail.

The spot: Standing on the overlook that connects lock 15 parking lot to the towpath trail. A small dam in the turn of the river provides dramatic shots of rushing white water over rocks.

wide shot of the train in peninsula with river in view

Photo by Robert George

Tip: Nighttime shots turn out stunning in this location but can be tricky. Don’t be afraid to try a more challenging shot or change up the perspective.

Indigo Lake

The area surrounding Indigo Lake is versatile and often you’ll find families milling about, fisherman, and even paddle boarders on a nice day.

steam engine number 765 chugging past indigo lake with reflection on water

Photo by Instagram user toledo_rails

The spot: On the western side of the lake. As you crest the top of the path veer to the left where you’ll find a fantastic overlook of the lake and with the train in the background. When the train passes its reflection is repeated in the waters and makes for great photographs.

sunset behind indigo lake with reflection of sky on the lake

Photo by Instagram user aenimatic

Tip: Wait until the light hits just right to bring out a striking deep color of blue in the lake. If shooting from this perspective, take a wide angle and/or a zoom. If you have a DSLR or even a cell phone with time-lapse try this feature out when clouds pass over.

Katie Brewer

Katie Brewer