The Cedar Falls trail runs for half a mile around this fascinating waterfall at the end of the L-shaped area that includes Old Man’s Cave. It’s a short, but extremely worthwhile hike, for the views alone. Time it right and you can enjoy Hocking Hills in the fall, which is one of the most beautiful natural scenes in existence.
Cedar Falls is the largest waterfall in the Hocking Hills area and draws a lot of visitors. In the spring and summer, if there has been rain, the falls can be quite dramatic and a joy to watch. In the winter, it is possible to see huge icicles on the rim of the falls and a pile of ice at the bottom. It’s a sight to behold!
Despite there being no cedar trees anywhere around Cedar Falls, the name has stuck. The early settlers mistook the huge hemlock trees for cedars and the name has remained ever since.
The Cedar Falls trail forms part of a number of other trails that go from Old Man’s Cave to Ash Cave and round. It also forms part of the Buckeye Trail that goes a lot further. One of the reasons Hocking Hills is so popular is the sheer variety of trails in the area. You could be in deep forest one minute and on a cliff face overlooking a green valley the next. It is truly inspiring, which is why we love living here.
Cedar Falls can be reached by hiking from one of the other attractions, or by car from the SR 374. There is a car park, picnic areas, rest rooms and amenities. It is possible to go straight to Cedar Falls from the car park, or join one of the many trails that passes through the area.
Go in one direction and you circle Cedar Falls and end up at Old Man’s Cave. Go the other and you end up at Ash Cave. It is this trail that is part of the Buckeye Trail. Neither is a long hike and is very much worth the time it takes to walk them both.
The Cedar Falls trail begins easy, with a wide path from the car park. Depending on the season and how much rainfall we have had, the floor will be mainly hard packed soil, but prepare for mud if the rains have been. There are also occasionally blowdowns that can affect the trail, so be prepared to go a little off piste if the need arises!
Cedar Falls trail is an easy but spectacular hike, one of many in Hocking Hills. The accessibility and quality of the trail makes it a firm favorite with locals and visitors, which means it can get busy at times. When the falls come fully into view, you’ll see why!