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© Bud Schrader Photography

Old Man's Cave

The most popular of all the Hocking areas is Old Man's Cave, located on State Route 664. Here at the Upper Falls, the Grandma Gatewood Trail begins its six-mile course connecting three of the park's areas: Old Man's Cave to Cedar Falls to Ash Cave. This same trail has been designated as part of Ohio's Buckeye Trail as well as part of two national systems - the North Country Scenic Trail and America's Discovery Trail.

© Bud Schrader Photography
Lower Falls, Another Winter View - Is it Old Mans Cave, winter, or a waterfalls. Take your pick.

Old Man's Cave derives its name from the hermit Richard Rowe who lived in the large recess cave of the gorge. His family moved to the Ohio River Valley around 1796 from the Cumberland Mountains of Tennessee to establish a trading post. He and his two dogs traveled through Ohio along the Scioto River in search of game. On one side trip up Salt Creek, he found the Hocking Region. Rowe lived out his life in the area and is buried beneath the ledge of the main recess cave. Earlier residents of the cave were two brothers, Nathaniel and Pat Rayon, who came to the area in 1795. They built a permanent cabin 30 feet north of the cave entrance. Both brothers are buried in or near the cave. Their cabin was later dismantled and relocated on the nearby Iles farm to be used as a tobacco drying house.

© hockinghills.com
Devil's Bathtub -

The Old Man's Cave area can be divided into five principal sections found along the valley of Old Man's Creek. In order, they are: Upper Falls, Upper Gorge, Middle Falls, Lower Falls and Lower Gorge. Along the length of the trail the magnificent gorge cuts through the entire 150-foot thickness of the Blackhand sandstone. Carved by the creek, the gorge serves as an avenue for visitors to peer into the earth's subsurface. The full distance of the gorge is approximately one half mile.

© hockinghills.com
View From Bridge Over Gorge -

Whispering Cave Trail Map (new)
Old Man's Cave Hiking Trail Map
Location Map
Old Mans Cave Campground Map
Old Mans Cave Cottage Map
Calendar of Events
Hocking Hills wildlife at the cabin
Thu Oct 18

1:00 pm

As you pass by on your hike today, stop by the

Naturalist Cabin to explore and take a closer look at some of our native residents. Naturalist will be available to explain and answer questions

Cost: free event

Contact: Hocking Hills State Park, Phone: 740-385-6841

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Wildlife,
Share My Campfire
Fri Oct 19

8:00 PM

Meet the naturalist at the community fire pit located in the cabin area to listen to or tell stories and make s’mores. (S’more’s provide, please bring your own drinks).

Cost: free

Contact: Hocking Hills State Park, Phone: 740-385-6841

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented,
The Nature of it All
Sat Oct 20

2:00 pm

Meet the naturalist at the naturalist cabin located by the A frame bridge to play various nature themed games and activities geared toward learning about the wildlife found in the Hocking Hills.

Cost: free event

Contact: Hocking Hills State Park, Phone: 740-385-6841

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Wildlife,
Fireside Chat
Sun Oct 21

1:00 pm

Bundle up and meet the naturalist at the Naturalist Cabin located by the A frame Bridge at Old Man s Cave to talk about the topic of the day. Each visit will bring a different topic ranging from local folklore and history to plants and animals. We might even sneak in a special guest or two. Bring a mug along we will have the kettle on.

Cost: Free Event

Contact: Hocking Hills State Park, Phone: 740-385-6841

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest, Arts/Music/Film, Wildlife, Historical,
The Wonders of Old Man's Cave
Sat Nov 3

10:00 am.

Meet the Naturalist at the Naturalist Cabin for a short hike and discover some facts about the history of the area and the rock formations that are found through the park.

Cost: Free

Contact: Hocking Hills State Park, Phone: 740-385-6841

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest, Historical,
Winter Hike at Hocking Hills
Sat Jan 19

9:00 am - 11:00 am Continuous starts.

Join the Annual Hocking Hills Winter Hike 6-mile trek to view the beauty of the hills and caves and waterfalls in winter. Start at Old Mans Cave on a hike to Ash Cave with a stop at Cedar Falls for refreshments (for a donation).

Transportation is provided back to parking area near Old Mans Cave.

Hocking Hills State Park is located about 55 miles southeast of downtown Columbus on State Route 664 in Hocking County.

Cost: Free

Contact: Hocking Hills State Park, Phone: 740-685-6841

Interest Tags: Outdoor Activity, Family Oriented, Special Interest, Wildlife,
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