Client: Ohio Department of Natural Resources - Division of Natural Areas & Preserve

Scope: The original 2.5 mile hiking trail had over a dozen wooden bridges that crossed the Jordan Run, a tributary of the Hocking River, were falling into disrepair and would soon become unsafe for use. To allow for a suitable and enjoyable path to experience the diverse landscape of mature trees and variety of ferns and wildflowers, solutions were needed to make the trail more sustainable while being cost effective long term. We designed and built almost two miles of reroutes to manage steep side slopes, sections that were muddy most of the year and to avoid having to rebuild the numerous bridges. The completed trail now features one new bridge and showcases some of the unique sandstone outcroppings and shelters that are highly sought-after in the Allegheny Plateau of the Appalachian Ohio region.


Client: City of Lebanon Parks Department

Scope: After receiving the Clean Ohio Trails Fund grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, the City of Lebanon was able to purchase 55-acres of wooded property adjacent to the established bike park with pump tracks, bike skills area, jump lines and a couple of miles of beginner friendly mountain bike trails. We were contracted to design and build four miles of mountain bike-specific trails with intermediate to difficult riding features peppered throughout the system to encourage newer riders to increase their skills and advanced riders to utilize their expertise. The increased elevation of this property allowed us to build gravity-fueled downhill trails with jumps, big berms and tabletops along with sinuous singletrack incorporating bridges over drainages for a smooth riding experience. The mountain bike trail expansion continues to get rave reviews as users travel from all over the region to experience this multilevel skills bike park that was once a landfill.


Client: Warren County Development Association

Scope: Mountain bikers flock to Jakes Rocks every weekend, filling up the 50-car parking lot at the trailhead of a 30+ mile trail system that we built in the Allegheny National Forest. The construction of this all-new trail system was made possible thanks to a unique public-private partnership between the Warren County Chamber of Business and Industry and the National Forest. At Jakes Rocks, we not only created fun, grin-inducing, natural surface singletrack winding through technically challenging terrain, but we also worked around house-sized rocks, a waterfall, a half dozen springs and two designated wetlands. Features like almost two miles of elevated bridges and a mile of rock armoring create a sustainable trail system that’s rideable year-round, even in wet conditions.

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Clients: Private Property Landowners

Scope: In addition to collaborating with public landowners, we meet the trail needs of private property owners. We’ve designed and built special, customized trails ranging from a simple, economical, natural surface path to connect - without using expensive stairs - a main house and a garage to trail networks in backyards, vacation properties and campuses. (We’ve intentionally withheld specific names and other details about these projects to respect the privacy of these clients.)


Client: City of Covington

Scope: This was the project that started it all for Dirt Artisans. In the process of designing and building 10 miles of world-class trails for activities like hiking, running and off-road cycling, we transformed previously undeveloped, relatively unappealing land into a regional destination for outdoor enthusiasts. We also worked closely with city officials to build natural surface trails connecting adjacent neighborhoods to Devou Park amenities that were previously only accessible via paved roads with no shoulders or sidewalks. Since completion, the project has received numerous local and regional accolades.


Client: Indiana Department of Natural Resources and Southeast Indiana Mountain Bike Association

Scope: We were contracted to build five miles of beginner friendly trails to add to the park’s mountain bike system which already boasts over 20 miles. We built an enticing undulating singletrack that can be enjoyed in either direction while also adhering to the DNR’s approved corridor to protect sensitive plants. This trail lives up to its name, Potato Peeler, as it hugs the winding ridgeline and hillcrests with varying elevations through the woods.


Client: The Nature Conservancy

Scope: We built nine miles of hiking-only singletrack that is part of two national trails - the North Country Trail and the American Discovery Trail - as well as the Buckeye Trail that loops around Ohio. Located in the 20,000-acre Edge of Appalachia Nature Preserve in southern Ohio, we collaborated with the Nature Conservancy to create winding, narrow natural surface trails passing through biologically sensitive areas intended to preserve habitat for species such as rattlesnakes. The North Country Trail is one of just 11 National Scenic Trails within the U.S.

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Client: The Nature Conservancy

Scope: Dirt Artisans teamed up for a second hiking trail project with The Nature Conservancy of Ohio in the 20,000-acre Edge of Appalachia Preserve System located in southern Ohio. This trail is a 1.5 mile natural surface trail that winds along a gorge with 70 foot high cliffs and ends at a 15 foot waterfall named Cedar Falls. To protect a fragile plant community along a section of this trail, we carefully bypassed this area with our machines and equipment and then continued building further down the trail. The Nature Conservancy wanted a platform constructed at the falls for hikers viewing enjoyment and safety. They mandated stamped structural engineering drawings with a geotechnical survey for the platform which we obtained and managed. We brought in the wood, cement and other needed materials and created and installed the concrete piers. We then built the wooden deck structure with a sturdy platform, steps, railings and bench for years of use to view and safely enjoy the beautiful Cedar Falls.

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Client: Oldham County Public Library

Scope: We were contacted by the library to come up with a plan to rebuild a wooden bridge on their hiking trail that was rotting due to drainage issues which caused one side of the handrails to detach and fall from the base. To ensure the bridge would match the other bridge on the trail, we reused the original metal spindles and rebuilt the bridge to the same specifications. We rerouted sections of the existing trail near the bridge and redefined the drainage for better sustainability of the trail and the bridge for years of use by the many families who frequent this valuable community establishment.


Client: City of Covington Parks & Recreation and Rivers Breeze Condominium Community

Scope: Residents of a condominium community wanted a walking path from their property into a nearby park which was up a steep hill that was bordered by the park golf course and a road. They networked with the city to hire us to design and build the path which they wanted wide enough for easy passage of walkers and wheeled carriers. To manage the hillside runoff we elevated the tread two to three feet above the adjacent finished grade by harvesting soil from areas next to the trail and adding culverts to allow water to flow under the trail. The condominium members now enjoy safer access to recreational opportunities in the park including hiking and biking trails, museum, event centers and scenic overlooks of the Greater Cincinnati skyline and Ohio River.

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