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The Hocking Hills at Winter’s End

Like a lot of other people, I'm totally ready to leave winter behind at this point. However Bob convinced me to open myself to winter's beauty once more by hiking in the Hocking Hills this past Friday. It was sunny, but cold (around 20° F, -6.7° C), so we had to bundle up. We visited two attractions in the Hocking Hills State Park: Ash Cave and Cedar Falls. Then we hiked the Gorge Trail in the Conkle's Hollow State Nature Preserve. To make things easier for ourselves, we reduced our hiking by parking Read more ➜
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Clear Creek Metro Park Winter Hike – 2015

Last Saturday we participated in the winter hike at Clear Creek Metro Park. This 5,382-acre Metro Park is located on the border of Hocking and Fairfield Counties; it features 14 miles of hiking trails. The day was cold, near freezing with an overcast sky. We arrived early about 9:20 AM for the 10 AM hikes and were greeted by park staff and volunteers who provided maps and routes for a variety of hikes. There were a variety of hikes available ranging from 1 to 7 miles and of varying Read more ➜
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Shale Hollow Preserve

Shale Hollow is Delaware County's newest park having just opened in December. It is named for a small canyon of 20 to 40 foot shale cliffs rising above a stream named Big Run. We visited Shale Hollow a couple of times in the past month. The park consists of 188 acres encompassing a ravine, forest, and meadowland. A gravel roadway leads to a parking area next to a nature center. The nature center features a small exhibit explaining the natural history of the area including the 375 million Read more ➜
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Alley Park

Charles Alley Nature Park is a 300 acre city park in Lancaster. The park features two lakes, a nature center, and six miles of hiking trails. Currently 20 acres are being developed for use as a primitive campsite. We visited Alley Park on a cold, but sunny day in mid-February. The trail head is to the left of the main parking area. Nearby is a picnic shelter, rest rooms, and an informational kiosk. The trail head leads to Lake Loretta passing a rustic cabin on the way. The lake had Read more ➜
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Winter’s View from Rising Park

This fall Bob and I visited Rising Park in Lancaster, Ohio. The big attraction there is the view from the top of Mount Pleasant. Both of us wanted to see what the view would look like when blanketed in snow, so we went back to take some more photos a week or so ago. If you look at the top photo you'll see that I was standing behind a safety rail. It was disheartening to see that there were tracks in the snow up to the edge of the cliff. Especially considering Read more ➜
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Conkle’s Hollow in Winter

We returned to Conkle's Hollow in early January.  Snow blanketed the hollow while icicles edged the cliff rim.  When the slightest breeze stirred the fir boughs, snow wafted down catching the light as it fell. We stuck to the lower "Gorge Trail" which was covered with snow and ice; it might have been slippery, but we were wearing YakTrax over our shoes, so we didn't slip at all (if you are unfamiliar with this winter gear, we discuss it here). A trickle of water was flowing at the Read more ➜