Thursday, September 6, 2012

Hocking Hills State Park Part 2

Conkles Hollow is a rugged, rocky gorge supposedly one of the deepest in Ohio. This is actually a state nature preserve but most people consider it a part of Hocking Hills. If you want to get away from the crowds at Old Mans Cave this is the place for you. There are two main trails. The rim trail is on the plateau above and takes you around the border of the gorge but we only have time to do the gorge trail.
The trail leading up the narrow half-mile gorge is surrounded by vertical sandstone cliffs rising over 200 feet.

  Site of a seasonal waterfall.

The forest floor is covered with a profusion of ferns and spring wildflowers.

 Even in the heat of summer Conkles Hollow remains shady and cool.

More recess caves in Conkles Hollow.

The gorge trail ends at a small waterfall surrounded by hugh boulders.

I saved the best for last. We almost didn't stop here because it was getting late but decided since we made the trip we should try to see as much as possible. This place is called the Rock House and of all the places we were at I think this ended up being the most unique. It is also the only real cave in the area.

The outside of the Rock House.

An entrance into the Rock House.

The Rock House is a tunnel-like corridor situated mid-way up a 150 foot cliff of Blackhand Sandstone.
The main corridor is 200 feet long and 20-30 feet wide.

There are seven window openings like this that let sunlight into the cave.

Looking out through one of the windows.

Several sandstone columns help support the Rock House roof.

Recesses like this were used by the Native American Indians as baking ovens when staying in the cave.
The Rock House was also used by bandits, bootleggers and thieves in the 1800s which lead the local residents to call this place Robbers Roost.

Springs of water permeate through the porous sandstone and collect in these man made troughs. In this way they were able to keep a supply of water in the Rock House.

This trail is only 1/2 mile long and I'm so glad we took the time to stop. Someday we want to come back and hike some of the rim trails.


  1. Oh Pearl, Conkles Hollow was my favorite part of Hocking Hills. We LOVED that area. Felt like I was walking in Paradise with all of the ferns and greenery in that area. We were disappointed that there was no water at either waterfall...WELL--there was a tiny bit at the waterfall inside the cave, but not much!!!!! BUT--we loved that area.

    Speaking of Hocking Hills, how far are you from there? We are going to be there with some friends (also bloggers) on Oct. 16-17.... Want to join us????


    1. Hope the area gets some rain before you visit. It's been extremely dry in Ohio this summer. Did you visit the Rock House?
      We are about 3 hours from there. Oct is our busiest month at the restaurant where I work. I'll let you know if anything would work out.
      I bet it's beautiful in the fall.

  2. I was going to ask the same thing Betsy did about how far you are from there. Hocking Hills has been on my bucket list for some time and you've enticed me to move it high up on the priority list. I may make a solo trip there this fall to do some hiking & biking. Impossible for hubs to come with me in the fall. Can't wait to see this Rock House and hike the trail. The rim trails make me curious as well. Beautiful pictures!

  3. Some great photos you caught. The rocks are gorgeous.

    Cher Sunray Gardens

  4. Awesome pics of Conkles! We have been there too and agree it's just as beautiful as hocking hills area.