This is something that really bugs me when I try to make a nice lake surrounded by paths or anything like that it always raises the grounds around it always resulting in weird uneven paths. Does anyone have a tip for working around this?
I would say flatten the area needed. Place the ring path, and ensure the path and the space within is flat. Then use the water tool up against the edge of the path and fill the space. Placing water to the path rather than path to the water usually produces better results. And if you want your path off the edge of the water you can always use the water-delete tool to trim it back, and smooth.