|Ash Cave in Hocking Hills, Ohio|
Last week, my family had the best time on vacation in Hocking Hills, Ohio. The weather was perfect for hiking, the scenery was fantastic, the kids were (pretty) good, and we were really able to relax and unwind. It was fabulous!
Here are the highlights, favorites, and tons of pictures from our time in Hocking Hills:
1. We had little to no cell phone reception or internet connection. This made me nervous at first (in case we had an emergency!), but it really turned out to be awesome because...
2. We had a wonderful time together as a family!
With no distractions from technology, we really spent time together talking, laughing, and having fun. We had several campfires, played board games, had tons of picnics, hiked a lot, and stargazed several nights. It was so awesome to have all 4 of us together for so long without work or texts or emails or to do lists.
3. My favorite thing we did all week was hiking the trails. We did 1 or 2 hikes everyday for the whole week. It was so beautiful!
|Bridge over the Devil's Bathtub on the Old Man's Cave trail|
And a little treacherous at times too!
J was such a trooper. Well, actually, she's in that "I want to do it myself" stage, so we went with it. ;) She would still hold our hand (which was a must because of the cliffs!), but she walked nearly every part of all the trails! We were so impressed!
We all really loved that we could do so much exploring on the trails here in Hocking Hills! There were so many places to climb, touch, and really see nature up close.
|Checking out the many tiny caves within Ash Cave|
I think our favorites were all of the little caves we got to explore!
|A fun cave along the Old Man's Cave trail|
While hiking, we'd try to stop and check out nature's beauty from every angle. We saw so many awesome sights just by looking up!
These trails were so amazing...and unique too! There were trails through tunnels. Trails through caves. And streams. And gorges. And behind waterfalls. And over natural bridges of rock. There were stairs made of stone. And roots of trees.
Geek alert: We seriously felt like we were in the Lord of the Rings!
|Watching out for Orcs in the Mines of Moria...AKA hiking through the tunnel along the Old Man's Cave trail ;)|
And we couldn't have made it without our kiddie backpack. It was easily the best thing we brought for this vacation. Buster didn't mind it one bit, and he was contained on the trails, which put Mommy and Daddy's minds at ease.
4. It's really hard to pick one favorite place at Hocking Hills. Each place had something unique about it that I loved. Here are my many favorites:
Old Man's Cave - The trail followed the rim of the gorge and then continued down into the gorge. It had a large cave, a waterfall, and a plethora of bridges and tunnels.
Ash Cave - This one was my favorite for the kids. It was an easy hike, and when you get to the cave, it's a fun place for them to run around and explore. Plus, the sheer magnitude and beauty of the cave just leaves you in awe.
Rock House - This cave was so incredible. Once you climb up inside, there are several spots you can look out over the gorge. Wow.
5. And last but not least, the foliage was spectacular.
In Hocking Hills, they had a severe drought this summer. So every waterfall was more like a water drip. (Bummer. But I guess that means we'll have to come back someday!) But the drought also meant that all the leaves were changing super early. So God's beauty in nature was really showing off while we were there!
|The Upper Falls at Old Man's Cave. The waterfall was dried up, but the changing leaves were beautiful!|
For a whole week, we got to enjoy each other as a family and the beauty of nature with no distractions. This has been one of my favorite vacations! We would highly recommend visiting Hocking Hills!
So where is your family's favorite vacation destination? I'm always looking for fun new places to visit - please share!
Happy Friday, everyone!