HOCKING HILLS: TREES! TREES! (& MANIFOLD MAJESTY)

As faithful readers know Virginia (the person) loves trees of all shapes and sizes. Visiting our older brother Dean in Lancaster, Ohio (@ 20 minutes from Columbus) he took Dwight and me to Hocking Hills, a series of state parks and forests that totally wowed this tree groupie.

Our hike to Old Man’s Cave off to a colorful start..

On a damp, chilly day (gloomy clouds abounding) the colors popped as we made our way down to the massive edifice of Old Man’s Cave.

Massive = understatement (note people for perspective)

The view looking out from inside Old Man’s Cave impressed us with some serious beauty.

Old Man’s Cave ravine, Hocking Hills (OH)

It didn’t take too long to reach Old Man’s Cave, but the circuitous path continued downward (and upward) along slippery steps and pathways. With her rickety knees (one dislocated out dancing years ago, the other a surgery survivor) Virginia wasn’t sure she could make it much further, but then Dean said: “There’s a waterfall at the bottom!”

Instant motivation, rickety knees or no!

Steep, slippery stairs vs. WATERFALL motivator!

Virginia loves trees, but she is also serious waterfall groupie. On she plodded (a bit more energetically) with big brother Dean lending a helping hand along the way.

After reaching the bottom of (many) steep steps we encountered this lovely bridge that reminded me of Rivendell in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings.

Old Man’s Cave, Bridge to Lower Falls

Old Man’s Cave, Lower Falls

Sigh, this place is SERIOUSLY BEAUTIFUL! It took us over two hours for the round trip (with Virginia stopping every few minutes to take pics) but what grandeur…

…and what glorious TREES!

Trees of every shape and size growing out of rocks sideways, crisscrossed, and straight up.

Crisscrossed roots, Hocking Hills

Such amazing tree roots, finding a way to grow in and around rocks.

“Learn character from trees, values from roots, and change from leaves.” Tasneem Hameed

All in all a gloomy day turned upside down with an unforgettable hike in the woods of Hocking Hills. If you find yourself passing through eastern Ohio, a place not to be missed (thank you, big brother Dean!)

My favorite pic of the day…

grace, peace & manifold majesty

Virginia : )

“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.” T.S. Eliot

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32 Responses to HOCKING HILLS: TREES! TREES! (& MANIFOLD MAJESTY)

  1. Mark Kranich says:

    Very cool!

    • Virginia says:

      Mark, this place is SO COOL! Dean had planned to take us for a walk around bluffs in Lancaster (after lunch @ his fav Mexican restaurant) but as an afterthought took us to Hocking Hills instead – and blew our socks off (figuratively speaking.) The pics are just a taste of the amazing grandeur. Hugs!!! πŸ’¦πŸŒ³πŸ’¦

  2. Beautiful pics of a fantastic spot!!

    • Virginia says:

      Steve, Hocking Hills is an amazing series of parks – we just visited one (Old Man’s Cave) & now I look forward to visiting my brother again so we can see the other parks (and see him again, too!!) Blessings!! πŸπŸ’¦πŸŒ³πŸ’¦πŸ

  3. mitchteemley says:

    Yes! Our favorite place to visit in Ohio (we live 2 hrs. away in Cincinnati).

    • Virginia says:

      Mitch, the Hocking Hills parks are seriously AMAZING! With all your films I thought you were based in LA, what a blessing you’re so close to a place of such grandeur with God’s heavenly paintbrushes busy, busy!! Blessings! πŸ’¦πŸπŸ’¦πŸŒŸπŸŒ³πŸŒŸ

  4. TMH says:

    Love the T.S. Eliot quote!

    • Virginia says:

      Tim, that quote was particularly appropriate for me. I’m SO glad I kept on going to see the waterfall. The pics hardly do the majestic setting justice, but memory shots will stay with me for a long time. (And yes, I am a long time T.S. Eliot groupie β€œThe Hollowed Men” a fav since high school…) Hugs! πŸ’¦πŸπŸŒŸπŸπŸ’¦

  5. arlene says:

    What a lovely place Virginia. I love this kind of adventure πŸ™‚

  6. brother craig says:

    So beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

    • Virginia says:

      Thank you, Hocking Hills β€œrocked” with majestic grandeur and beauty. Walking there was like being inside a Masterpiece with God’s heavenly paintbrushes busy at work! Blessings! πŸπŸŒŸπŸ™πŸŒŸπŸ

  7. peggyjoan42 says:

    What a great post. I loved your photos. The country you visited was beautiful. Those tree roots above ground that climbed over the rocks were spectacular. Such a nice post. Thanks for sharing this.

  8. JOY journal says:

    πŸ™‚ My husband keeps wanting to hike here. Maybe in the next few weeks.

    • Virginia says:

      Nora, this is an AMAZING place. Hiking in Hocking Hills is like taking a walk in an enchanted forest where God’s heavenly paintbrushes are (really) busy at work! We visited Old Man’s Cave park – but there are several others. (My brother said Old Man’s Cave is his fav…) Blessings!πŸ’¦ 🌟🌳🌟🍁

  9. Dewin Nefol says:

    Hey Virginia,

    Truly beautiful: a special place infused with magic and mystery; indeed it could be Rivendell. It has an ancient feel, but yet, somehow retains a sense of timeless freshness. Whether Autumn – when it looks spectacular – or any other season, I get the distinct impression The Hocking Hills would please even the most reluctant heart. Stunning.

    It occurs to me whilst reading your post that there is a similar type of place I once visited in Wales (U.K). Our path also descended the steep side of a valley and culminated in a waterfall, which at that time of year, it was deep winter, had part frozen. To my delight a path had formed behind the waterfall so that one could view the tumbling water from the other side as if stood behind a crystal veil. I was led to believe the site was popular during the summer months when visitors would stay into the wee small hours of the following morning. It was the done thing to put candles in small jars and leave them floating in the large pool beneath the waterfall. I imagine such long warm nights illuminated by fairy lights must have been like living in a dream.

    So pleased you completed the route and shared your ‘walk in the woods’. Your delightful photographs paint a thousand words. Manifold majesty indeed! Thank you.

    Enjoy your week Virginia, take care,

    Namaste,

    DN

    • Virginia says:

      Dewin, as a fellow tree groupie you would be incredibly blessed to experience the majesty of Hocking Hills. The pics hardly do it justice, but you get the idea: Rivendell and Lothlorien vibes all over the place!

      That place in Wales sounds spectacular, especially with candles floating in the base of the waterfall? wow! It must have also been quite beautiful, however, to see the waterfall in the start frozenness of winter still splashing through. Scenes like that and what we experienced @ Hocking Hills are definitely spirit-lifter-uppers, occasions of peace and gratitude.

      Wishing you a week filled with grace & joy,

      pax et bonum – Virginia πŸ’¦πŸπŸŒŸπŸŒ³πŸŒŸπŸ‚πŸ’¦

      • Dewin Nefol says:

        Thank you Virginia πŸ˜€

        Should I ever travel to the States and plan a route I will be sure to take-in The Hocking Hills. Despite the artfulness of your splendid photographs one really needs to be in situ to fully appreciate the atmosphere of a magical forest. Spirit-lifters indeed!

        The frozen waterfalls, streams, and in places small rivers, peppering the Welsh countryside in and around the Brecon Beacons became a popular haunt one very cold winter. I ventured with a professional photographer who specialised in night-photography and would illuminate Nature’s splendid snowy canvas with subtle shades of coloured light. Not only did this emphasise the ethereal quality of our chosen location, but given that we were painting figures and foliage into the frame, only heightened the magic still further. Of course, once the image had been captured and lights were extinguished, the natural beauty of the space returned: for all intents-and-purposes, if not for our footprints in the snow, no-one would ever know of the wisps, witches, warlocks, and flaming dragons made of light who for a short time inhabited the dark forests.

        Most beautiful of all, a memory that returns to me now of a time very late one night when having walked for an hour or more into the forest we happened upon a small glade. It had snowed heavily and the temperature had plummeted to well below freezing, as such the air held within the bounded glade was immensely cold. Above me stars dazzled in a clear onyx sky and lit the glade in soft white/grey light. I recall being mesmerised as looking upwards I watched large snowflakes float to earth so slowly it was as if they had fallen into treacle: the air was so thick and viscous with cold. There was no wind and not one sound, Nature had succumbed to the coldness of night. It was as much the serenity of that moment as it was the unprecedented feeling of total isolation that I remember so vividly: it was as though I had ceased to be; a feeling of utter seamlessness, wholeness and unity with nature, which at once excited but unsettled me. If not for the beat of my heart audible to my ear, I may well have considered myself immersed in a never-ending dream.

        Thank you again for your post Virginia: for the memory it inspired. Enjoy a wonderful week.

        Pax et bonum, Namaste,

        DN

  10. Beautiful place and pics of trees! 😊

    • Virginia says:

      Thank you – Hocking Hills is truly an amazing place for tree groupies, I’ve never seen tree roots with such ingenuity! Blessings! πŸ‚πŸŒŸπŸŒ³πŸŒŸπŸ

  11. My Carmel says:

    Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos, Virginia! Hugs & abundant blessings! ❀

    • Virginia says:

      Patty, this place (even on a drizzly gloomy day) was so busy with God’s heavenly paintbrushes at work, it took my breath away (& not just from the steep stairs!) Awe inspiring- blessings & hugs!πŸ’¦ πŸπŸ€—πŸπŸŒ³

  12. from one tree lover to another . . .stunning!

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