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Ohio Road Trip – The Hocking Hills, part 3.

December 15, 2012

Hocking Hills State Park

Cedar Falls

Here’s the third and final part of a recent family Hocking Hills getaway weekend.  Make sure you see part one and part two which will fill in some of the background about this interesting location in southeast Ohio.

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We visited Cedar Falls, another area of the park:

The name Cedar Falls is a misnomer — the result of mistaken identity. Early settlers to the area misidentified the stately hemlock trees as cedar trees; consequently, this park was incorrectly named. Despite the mistake, the name Cedar Falls has been used ever since.

The beauty of Cedar falls began drawing visitors right away. The scenic gorge was, and is, an added bonus. In the early 1800’s, a trading post was built just a short distance downstream from the falls. It served the Indians and early settlers alike. There is a cave in the gorge where the Indians and early settlers obtained saltpeter, which was used in the curing of meat.

The water plunges 50 feet over the falls. Cedar Falls has the greatest volume of water of all the falls in Hocking County and is easily the most photographed of waterfalls in Ohio. It has been featured in magazines, newspapers, film and calendars and is at its glorious best during the rainy season, since its feeder stream is little more than a roadside gully.

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The high trees effectively filtered the suns rays

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Cedar Falls gorge was down this steep slope

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Taking the winding stairs was the best way down

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Down in the gorge, finally

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The sandstone cliff was impressive

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The gorge floor had a rugged beauty, accentuated by the morning sunlight

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The stream still had minnows in it swimming around in the chilly water

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The falls area

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These stairs led back up by a more direct but quite rugged route

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The cliff face had fractured, making this part of the route very tricky

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Sliding down a tilted boulder and walking through some tight spaces were required

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Back up onto some easy steps!

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A very scenic place, though it took some effort to see- we slept well that night

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Our last day was off to a sunny start

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These Turkey Vultures roosted in a couple of trees- back home, they are more scarce this time of year

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A Red-Breasted Nuthatch searches a tree for hidden goodies

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You don’t see many of these anymore!  The cabins had no phones and cell reception was not the best

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On our way to check out, we had a close encounter with deer

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The welcome center had some hot coffee and a drive-through check in & out window

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We bought some souvenirs inside

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On the road again

One last adventure occurred.  On the way back, we stopped by an old house where my mother spent some time while growing up.  My brother’s dog found a dead opossum alongside the road and rolled on it!  I was quick with the camera and got a shot of the action:

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Oh no!

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The odor was rather skunk-like and not pleasant…wiping fur down with stream water only helped a little

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That’s one odorous and unhappy dog!  We weren’t so happy either!

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Never underestimate a few strawberry air fresheners!  They helped, anyways!

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A pancake treat helped distract him until he got to a dog power-wash at a car wash

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The road home- that was a great weekend getaway, even if the end wasn’t as fragrant as it could have been 🙂

19 Comments leave one →
  1. December 16, 2012 7:50 am

    Such a beautiful place! Must have been a fun ride back home with Stinky – a beautiful dog, by the way!

  2. December 16, 2012 9:57 am

    Wonderful shots as always, anxious to visit. LOL at the air freshener tied to the dog’s collar!

    • December 16, 2012 2:12 pm

      Haha! We had 3 air fresheners as a temporary aid in fighting the smell- it helped somewhat…the car smelled of strawberry opossum 😉

  3. December 16, 2012 1:00 pm

    Nice area, but looks like you had a smelly trip home 😉

  4. December 16, 2012 7:10 pm

    I’d have a hard time leaving there until I had crawled over every inch. It Looks like a great place to explore. I’ve always wondered what dogs got out of rolling on dead things.

    • December 16, 2012 11:00 pm

      It was an explorer’s paradise in those gorges!

      I’ve read various explanations for dogs rolling in gross stuff (which seems instinctual), ranging from it camouflages their scent for hunting, it marks the gross stuff as theirs, it tells other dogs they’ve found gross stuff!

  5. December 16, 2012 11:47 pm

    I laughed about the dog. My brother brought his dog over to visit last summer and he also found something smelly to roll in. Fortunately, he was in a good position to get a bath with the garden hose!

  6. December 17, 2012 2:17 am

    The only thing left to say other than I want to go there someday, is what’s the story behind the odd photo in part 1?

    • December 19, 2012 4:14 pm

      Aha! 🙂 There was this little tourist trap place along the main road going to the Hocking Hills…it had lots of wooden carvings of birds, and had some kind of interesting name. The next time I go I may stop there and get better pictures- that one picture I took was rushed and so it wasn’t quite centered. Somebody mistook it for a Red-Tailed Hawk, because how many wooden hawk sculptures do you see out there?

  7. December 17, 2012 7:23 am

    Hi. The rock formations are so interesting and I love the little thready waterfall down the rock face. Jane

    • December 19, 2012 4:15 pm

      It was a very interesting place, Jane- in the spring that little waterfall apparently gets quite big!

  8. December 17, 2012 4:39 pm

    Can’t imagine the wonderful aroma the dog so lovingly shared with you all in the car. lol The area is beautiful. Your photos are wonderful. What a great place to visit. Thanks for sharing it with us. 🙂

    • December 19, 2012 4:16 pm

      Thanks, E.C.! That blend of strawberry air freshener and opossum will be forever engraved in my mind 🙂

Trackbacks

  1. Ohio Road Trip – The Hocking Hills, part 4. | Seasons Flow
  2. Ohio Road Trip – The Hocking Hills, part 5. | Seasons Flow

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