A Guide to Hiking Trails in Hocking Hills

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Welcome to Hocking Hills, Ohio, a paradise for hikers and nature lovers alike! This region is famed for its stunning natural landscapes, characterized by deep gorges, high cliffs, and cascading waterfalls. Whether you're a seasoned hiker or just starting, Hocking Hills offers trails for every skill level. In this guide, we'll explore the best hiking trails in Hocking Hills, offering tips and insights to help you make the most of your outdoor adventure.

Trail 1: Old Man's Cave

  • Distance: 1 mile (round trip)
  • Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
  • Highlights: This iconic trail features stunning waterfalls, deep gorges, and the famous Old Man's Cave. It's perfect for families and offers plenty of photo opportunities.
  • Tips: The trail can be busy during peak season, so consider visiting early in the morning or on weekdays.

Trail 2: Cedar Falls

  • Distance: 0.5 miles (one way)
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Highlights: Cedar Falls is known for its picturesque waterfall, which is among the largest in Hocking Hills. The surrounding hemlock-lined trails provide a serene hiking experience.
  • Tips: The path can be slippery, especially after rain, so wear good hiking shoes.

Trail 3: Ash Cave

  • Distance: 0.5 miles (round trip)
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Highlights: Ash Cave features Ohio's largest recess cave and a small waterfall. This ADA-accessible trail is perfect for all ages and abilities.
  • Tips: Visit during the early morning to enjoy the cave's peaceful ambiance.

Trail 4: Rock House

  • Distance: 1 mile (round trip)
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Highlights: As the only true cave in the park, Rock House boasts natural windows and gothic-like arches. It's a must-visit for geology enthusiasts.
  • Tips: Bring a flashlight to explore the cave's interior.

Trail 5: Cantwell Cliffs

  • Distance: 2 miles (loop)
  • Difficulty: Challenging
  • Highlights: Known for its steep cliffs and deep valleys, Cantwell Cliffs offer a more challenging hike with fewer crowds.
  • Tips: Be cautious of the steep and narrow passages.

Trail 6: Whispering Cave and Hemlock Bridge Trail

  • Distance: 3 miles (round trip)
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Highlights: This newer trail features the second-largest cave in the park, Whispering Cave, and a scenic suspension bridge.
  • Tips: The trail can be muddy in places, so prepare for a rugged hike.

Trail 7: Conkle's Hollow Rim Trail

  • Distance: 2.5 miles (round trip)
  • Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
  • Highlights: This trail offers some of the most breathtaking views of the cliffs and gorges in Hocking Hills.
  • Tips: Stick to the path as the cliffs can be dangerous, and the terrain is rugged.
Hocking Hills is a hiker's dream, offering diverse trails that showcase the beauty of Ohio's natural landscapes. Remember to respect the environment and stay on designated trails for your safety and the preservation of this stunning region. Happy hiking!