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Call me naive - I did not realize what a tourist destination Old Man's Cave is for so many different families! Families of all shapes and sizes and colors flocked to Old Man's Cave this Labor Day weekend to spend quality time together outside. And by quality time I mean shouting loudly at one another and dragging the kids through the gorge. In fact, I would suggest avoiding Old Man's Cave during any major holiday weekend - too many children to properly enjoy the peace and quite that Old Man's Cave can hold.
And talk about peace and quiet! Once you're out of the main viewing area after the many stair climb down into the gorge, you're left to yourself as you choose to either hike to Ash Cave or Cedar Falls. The terrain never gets too dangerous and the trails are clearly marked - but it can be quite a hike if you're not used to it! If you're interested in seeing the waterfalls that the area has to offer, I would suggest going after a week or two of rain. The waterfalls were not in bloom and we were left looking at the face of the cliff full of rocks, and while they are interesting they are not stunning on their own.
There are no bathrooms or water fountains along the trail so plan accordingly. Also dress in light layers - as it can be very chilly down in the gorge - but if you hit a patch of sunlight you will warm up fast!
I rented one of their cabins, it was an excellent experience. The only issue was not having cell reception around the area, till you get back on the highway. Also, they have a mini kitchen in their cabins and each cabin has a private Jacuzzi which was neat. They do not really have any food around there, so its better to pack ahead and also better to go full tank on gas, since you cant really find anything close by for food or gas, unless you drive around 8-10 miles of country road, but other than that, it was beautiful place to spend a weekend.
The scenery is incredible, we just happened to go on an extremely, over-crowded day ... but what can one expect on a late October Saturday afternoon when the sun is shining and it's about 70 degrees! We will return and hopefully can take in the true beauty, without someone stepping on my foot or yelling.
Lots. Of. Stairs. Good for a workout, bad if you're out of shape. Well worth it though. Beautiful place to hike.
The hiking trails here easy to walk except for the stairs and more stairs around every turn and almost always going up no matter which direction you're going in. But the trails are wide and flat, well marked, and not hard to walk (again except for the stairs). The scenery is beautiful, among the better places I've been and I used to go hiking every weekend all my life growing up in Connecticut.
There were three waterfalls that I saw. The upper falls, lower falls, and a small unmarked falls at the entrance. The waterfalls and stream are just a trickle and I have to wonder if it flows deeper and thus the waterfalls more spectacular in winter and early spring.
The facilities here are top notch for a state park. There's bathrooms that are disgusting but more than the usual park bathrooms that are more than a portopotty but not a real bathroom. But there's a snack bar with all kinds of food and ice cream, a gift shop that would probably be cool if it was open. There's a nature center too but it's hardly worth your time.
You might want to bring a swimsuit and splash around in the water under the falls if that's allowed. The trails are exhausting with all the climbing and we didn't even walk the gorge trail. So pace yourself and don't try to do the whole thing in one day unless you're in shape. Don't run, it's dangerous with lots of places to fall to your death or dismemberment. Pack a lunch and eat it by the falls and bring water, and bring a first aid kit because you always should when you're in the woods and because out here in the middle of nowhere an ambulance wouldn't get there until the next day (and that's after you hiked out to get help because there's no cell phone reception).
This place is way out in the middle of nowhere and there's no cell phone reception. So don't rely on GPS on your phone to get you there. It won't. And make sure you have plenty of gas and your car is in good shape. If you break down out here, you're hitchhiking. There aren't even many houses to knock on doors to use a phone to call for help. When I was growing up we didn't even have cell phones. They were play things of the rich in those days. I loved being out in nature away from contact. Now I hate being off the grid. I get nervous with no contact with the outside world and no way to call for help, no way to find my way if I get lost. It's one of those things I always lived without and was fine but now that I have it I can't live without it. Life is full of those things. But this one could actually be life or death important.
This place is awesome! We stayed at the laurel wood chalet it's really secluded and there is only one other place you can see in the distant but there was no one that can bother you it was nice and clean there is a gas fire place and a hot tub fully functioning kitchen with all the utensils for grilling and cooking and there is a wine bottle opener plates cups and pizza cutter there was a lot included oh and a full functioning fridge there are no out door sir lights so at night it's pitch dark but it's really cool cuz you can see the stars. There are steep stairs that go up to the second bed but I don't advise doing it while your drunk lol overall it was awesome but there is a weird smell when you first walk in and the short head sucks. Oh and you need to bring more showering soap I would definitely come back again it's two miles down the road from old mans cave and about 15 min from town where they have really good food if you don't plan on cooking.
Been there a number of times, this park has only gotten better (and more popular) with time. Yesterday, we had to circle the lot twice to find a parking spot!
Tons of facilities, trails, shelter houses, camping, cabins, picnic tables, grills and the beautiful Hocking Hills scenery, including forest, streams, water, stone/rock formations, and of course, caves. The "main" trail is elderly/kid friendly with man made steps and bridges, but their are plenty of true hiking trails for the more outgoing, and even some adventuress ones for the expert trekker. There is even a large asphalt bike/walking path.
Wildlife, while not domesticated, are people friendly and abundant. We saw rabbits, squirrels, racoons, deer, and a slew of different birds.
Lots of canoe liveries and commercial cabins in the area as well, so you can make fun long weekend out of it.
And your only about 10 miles from shopping/restaurants (Logan) if your not the die-hard camping type.
One of Ohio's best state parks.
Really Beautiful - this is a must see! We also really enjoyed Ash Cave and many of the other areas in the Hocking Hills Area - but this was our favorite - our entire family from the age of 3 to 68 enjoyed the views and hiking. Keep your little ones close in some areas, but really can me done by all in your family.
We stayed at the Old Man Cave Chalet's over Labor Day weekend 2012. The front desk was very friendly and helpful. The chalet itself is fairly easy to get to. The roads were paved getting to it. Each chalet has a two car "driveway." They are small A-frame houses. The bedroom downstairs was a decent size. The bathroom was a very good size. The "kitchen" had a dorm size refrigerator, and a hot plate looking type stove. The living room had a chair and a love seat. There was a four seat table to eat at. The loft was fine. All of the beds were VERY comfortable! The deck was very quaint and the hotub was nice. It was not very big. They have someone check the hotub daily and fill it when necessary. Small TV in the living room with Directv.
This is definitely in the cut though. Cell phone reception was spotty at best and you need (if you can believe they still exist) phone cards if you want to make long distance calls on the phone. The swimming pool was nice but cold. It was probably in the high 70's temperature wise, but that was because we were the last weekend of the year. It is about a 5-7 minute ride to the Old Man Caves from the chalet.
Overall, the chalets were very clean, and VERY relaxing. I would definitely return
My sorority would rent out one of these cabins for a night of bonding once a year or so, and I totally loved it. What a great time and great memories. Definitely visit if you are in the area, and Ohio U students, request that your organization hosts a get-together there! Wonderful, wonderful time in one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to.
A wonderful place. Lovely to walk around and take pictures. The paths were well maintained and the bridges were as well. If I lived in the area I would be visiting this place all the time. Nature can be more fun than anything man made..and of course it's free, which is a plus! The visitor center was interesting too (although not air conditioned).
Gorgeous. Beautiful. It truly is nature porn!! We went in the winter (middle of February) and although cold, snowy, and a tad icy, it was MORE than completely worth it. You cannot beat the sight of 100 foot icicles and waterfalls completely frozen in place. It's unreal and breathtaking.