Posted in Hiking

49th Annual Hocking Hills Winter Hike, January 2014

We participated in the 49th Annual Hocking Hills Winter Hike yesterday. This was our fifth time participating in this winter hike that runs from Old Man’s Cave to Rose Lake, Cedar Falls, and ends at Ash Cave for a total distance of 6 miles. A bus returns participants to the starting point.

Ash Cave, near the end of the hike

The weather for this hike was grey skies with snow flurries in the morning. Temperatures for nearby Logan, OH were as follows:

7 AM 10 AM 1 PM
11° F (-12° C) 15° F (-9° C) 19° F (-7° C)

Over 3,000 people participated in this year’s hike. Turn-out was down from prior years, perhaps some people were put off by the low temperatures. Nevertheless Hocking State Park was decked out with a festive blanket of snow, many decorative icicles, and ice crusted waterfalls.

Near the beginning of the hike an ODNR naturalist introduced hikers to the screech-owl below. The following photos are in the order in which they were seen during the hike.

Screech owl
Devil’s Bathtub
Hikers passing under the A-frame bridge
Icicles hanging from cliff face
Going through first tunnel
The Sphinx head
Old Man’s Cave
Going through tunnel to get into Old Man’s Cave
Hiker taking in the vista from Old Man’s Cave
Looking out from Old Man’s Cave
Back on top, hikers warm themselves by a campfire
Now hikers cross to the other side of the gorge via the A-frame bridge. This trail will lead to Rose Lake.
Almost at Rose Lake
Winter view of Rose Lake
Iron bridge with sphinx head emblem; the sphinx head is a rock formation pictured previously in this post.
View from iron bridge; this creek eventually pours over Cedar Falls.
The Fire Tower is between Cedar Falls and Ash Cave.
Smokey the Bear was posing with hikers near the Fire Tower.
Cedar Falls

As usual, the half-way point at Cedar Falls featured corn bread and hot navy bean soup. The hardy hikers and their dogs (there were many dogs taking part this year) all seemed to be enjoying themselves.

Although we saw many dogs engaged in recreational hiking, this one is on duty. The dog’s handler provided it with a mat to protect it from the cold ground.
Leaving Cedar Falls
Arriving at Ash Cave
Hikers at Ash Cave
Between Ash Cave and the bus stop; the bus will take us back to the parking lot by the Visitor’s Center near Old Man’s Cave.

Once again our thanks to the staff of ODNR and the many volunteers that worked hard in cold conditions to make this year’s hike a success.

Additional information

More on the Annual Hocking Hills Winter Hike

© Deborah Platt, Robert Platt and 2012 to 2021

8 thoughts on “49th Annual Hocking Hills Winter Hike, January 2014

    1. Thanks so much, Cathie. 🙂 All the photos in this post were taken with a point-and-shoot: a Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20. However I’ve done some post-processing on all of these photos as well. I don’t think the auto white balance works as well in winter. The white snow tends to make everything else look too dark. So after I’ve loaded the photo onto my computer I adjust the white balance, and I also do what’s called “tone mapping” to bring out some of the detail that was hidden in shadow originally. People can do this sort of thing with Photoshop, but I use a free, open-source program called, Gimp. I really like the free part, but it took me awhile to get a handle on using it.

    1. Karen, I think that I was just lucky. My husband’s camera just plain up and died. Although we were sad to see it go, at least it was an older point-and-shoot that had served us for a few years.

Leave a Reply

You have to agree to the comment policy.

Complete the following sentence by typing either real or spam:
My comment is ...