Hocking Hills is located within the Wayne National Forest in southeast Ohio and includes Hocking Hills State Park and several nature preserves. The topography of the region is dominated by Blackhand sandstone and shale, having been deposited more than 350 years ago when most of Ohio was nothing more than a shallow sea. Uplift and erosion over the years led to the creation of several caves, cliffs, rock shelters, and waterfalls.
The area was a well-known scenic attraction by the 1870s, and in 1924, the first land purchase by the state, totaling 146 acres at Old Man’s Cave, was made to preserve the aesthetics of the Hocking Hills region. The park became further developed when a dining lodge and cottages were opened in 1972.
Hocking Hills specifically features numerous waterfalls, hemlock-shaded gorges, and looming cliffs and is comprised of six regions: Ash Cave, Cantwell Cliffs, Cedar Falls, Conkles Hollow, Old Man’s Cave, and Rock House.