Hocking Hills is tucked away about an hour from downtown Columbus, Ohio, on the northern rim of the Appalachian area. Logan, Ohio, is the realm’s municipal middle, and the expansive Hocking Hills State Park is the outside journey epicenter. On a current press journey organized by Discover Hocking Hills, I acquired to see year-round actions like ziplining and repelling to fishing and kayaking.
The state park has miles of trails and the area is full of cabins and lodges to remain and sit by a fireplace or take pleasure in a spa remedy. Even in case you are not an outside fanatic, I discovered this attractive area is filled with festivals all yr which might be linked to attention-grabbing locations to take pleasure in together with wine and moonshine, glass blowing, and stargazing.
1. Hocking Hills State Park
Greater than a single park, this advanced of pure lands is surrounded by three state forests and one nationwide forest. It makes all the area a naturalist haven for outside actions. Inside Hocking Hills State Park, you possibly can stroll over two dozen miles on 11 completely different trails.
There are picnic areas at most of those trailheads, and two of them — Ash Cave and Conkles Hole — are designated as accessible with paved trails as effectively. Essentially the most well-known path is at Previous Man’s Cave. This 2-mile path descends into an space that’s flanked by a big open-air cave carved out of a rock shelf on one facet. There’s a waterfall that cascades from a number of ranges larger up on the path and empties into a beautiful pool slightly below the cave.
To descend after which ascend out of this space, there are various stairs constructed into the path. Be cautious on this moist surroundings as these steps may be slippery. It’s no surprise this can be a favourite mountain climbing spot for all ages due to its colourful historical past. The legend is that an outdated hermit lived within the cave and died whereas attempting to poke a gap by the ice on the pond in winter, by accident discharging his rifle.
The gorgeous rock formations and water options are a deal with. There are different caves to see within the park and trails that mean you can journey mountain bikes or rappel over rock partitions. Fishing and tenting choices can be found as effectively. Cease by the John Glenn Astronomy Park for a guided stargazing program, climate allowing.
There are many outside journey firms that present enjoyable within the park and out of doors the park on their very own property. Excessive Rock Adventures gives all of the gear, has skilled guides, and can lead you on a rappel right into a sandstone canyon.
2. Festivals All through The Yr
If outside journey isn’t your first desire, you’ll nonetheless discover lots to do on this hilly, forested space. Logan is a small city that hosts many enjoyable occasions all year long on its historic Foremost Road. Based in 1816, this place is a slice of Americana with loads of eating places, leisure, antiquing, and walkability to venues from the Washboard Museum to the Hocking Hills Moonshine Distillery.
3. City Air Airstream Competition
Every Might, practically 100 Airstream trailers are parked on Foremost Road for the City Air Weekend in downtown Logan. As an Airstream proprietor and fanatic, I totally loved visiting with the organizers and individuals. The trailer house owners “camp” alongside Foremost Road and supply excursions of most of the classic and new trailers they bring about.
Airstream house owners rally at occasions across the nation, and that is one of some city locations the place they collect. They park bumper to bumper, and when their awnings unfurl, they put out their finest patio decorations and benefit from the enjoyable of tenting. I talked to first-timers and long-timers who have been having fun with the enjoyable and video games in the course of the day, dwell music at evening, and meals truck distributors that supplied quite a lot of treats.
On the primary day of the rally, the native highschool band got here out and marched down Foremost Road to welcome the Airstream visitors as they performed quite a lot of tunes recognizable to the principally retiree crowd. Folks visiting and dwelling within the space got here out to see these aluminum beauties and take part within the festivities. The City Air Competition raises cash by donations and rally occasions for 2 charities on the town — the native meals pantry and the renovation efforts for the historic Logan Theater constructing downtown.
This competition is a superb instance of the hometown spirit that Logan gives. The historic buildings in addition to the newly renovated city sq. protect the previous in addition to present a congenial, walkable expertise. Come again typically to benefit from the different festivals and particular occasions hosted in and round Logan.
4. Washboard Music Competition
This free competition is sponsored by the Columbus Washboard Firm in Logan each Father’s Day. That is the final working U.S. washboard firm. They make their boards by hand in all sizes and configurations. You possibly can tour the manufacturing unit and buy merchandise on web site.
5. Pumpkin Competition With Glass Pumpkins
Plan to attend this annual competition in October in Circleville. Whereas this can be a pretty frequent theme in lots of locations for a fall competition, it’s the glass pumpkins which might be particular. Glass-blown pumpkins are made on the close by Jack Pine Studio. The studio makes a particular version pumpkin yearly they usually make loads of different pumpkin designs in quite a lot of sizes.
Better of all, you possibly can go to the studio to observe the glass gadgets being made and take a category to blow your individual glass pumpkin. The studio is a must-visit cease in Hocking Hills. The artistry, craftsmanship, and good-natured employees will present a day of enjoyable.
6. Moonshine Competition
Logan’s personal Hocking Hills Moonshine distillery participates within the annual Memorial Day weekend Moonshine Competition in close by New Straitsville. Come for the music and moonshine, in addition to household enjoyable occasions on Saturday. There are trails within the space, and you’ll go to Robinson’s Cave, the place mineworkers first met to unionize within the late 1800s. You are able to do tastings and a tour on the distillery in Logan on any day however Sunday.
When you’ve loved your self outdoor or had enjoyable at a competition, it’s time to loosen up. Hocking Hills is full of inns, lodges, and nice eating choices in addition to nighttime leisure.
7. Inn & Spa At Cedar Falls
Whereas there are various locations to remain within the space, the Inn and Spa at Cedar Falls provides some distinctive rooms. You possibly can keep in a yurt or geodome. The geodomes are full with a full tub, mini-kitchen, and air-conditioning. The 14-foot-high glass geodome “wall” provides you an unobstructed view of the forest from the bottom to the treetops from the consolation of your king-size mattress.
Benefit from the lush property that’s surrounded by the state park. They’ve leisure video games on the principle garden, or visitors can sit in a rocking chair and absorb the serenity of the forest on their rooftop porch. There are cottages on the opposite facet of this closely wooded property, every with screened-in again porches, fireplaces, and whirlpool jet tubs.
The Inn has a full spa and rustic-themed eating room on the middle of the property as effectively. Get pleasure from seasonal delicacies together with the scrumptious wild mushroom toast appetizer.
8. Glenlaurel Scottish Nation Inn
Famous as one of the genuine Scottish areas in North America, Glenlaurel is a 140-acre property that replicates a Scottish village. There may be the manor home with a pub, eating room, and parlor adorned in a luxurious fortress fashion. There are particular person highland-styled cottages in a separate space from the standard Inn rooms on the essential constructing.
You possibly can hike all the way down to their non-public Camusfearna Gorge or benefit from the park-like setting from the manor home and inn’s outside patios. Strive your hand at enjoying eight holes on the genuine links-style golf course. Your spherical consists of genuine Scottish golf equipment, tees, and balls that can problem even essentially the most gifted American golfer.
At dinner, you can be handled to an incredible six- or seven-course connoisseur meal. On Saturday nights, a bagpiper will lead you from the pub or parlor into the eating room. In the course of the yr they’ve a number of themed dinners together with a Robert Burns evening full with a poetry studying. The expertise at Glenlaurel is designed to have you ever pampered, feasting on connoisseur meals, and immersed in Scottish tradition. It’s formal eating on the weekend and no kids are allowed on the inn.
For those who crave extra easy settings in your meals, strive The Feed in Logan. They serve elevated consolation meals with a hillbilly twist. The menu highlights regional favorites like Hillbilly Hibachos — nachos with fried rice, barbecue, and yum-yum-inspired sauce. The very snug environment mean you can totally take pleasure in these massive meals.
High off your night at Hocking Hills Vineyard, serving a big selection of regionally grown wines from this family-run winery. They’ve a big coated patio and outside seating with dwell music on the weekends. It’s an ideal place to take pleasure in a wine flight and unwind from a busy day in Hocking Hills.
Professional Tip: Being out within the nation within the hills and hollers means your cell sign is weak to nonexistent till you get right into a city. A number of the inns and lodges have Wi-Fi. Plan forward together with your GPS route because the winding roads may be complicated — however getting misplaced in a fantastic setting isn’t all that dangerous.