Buckeye Trail - Old Man's Cave

Old Man's Cave Section

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Trail Description

Cedar Falls.
Roseann Zuehl

Supervisor: Byron and Jamie Guy
• 614-306-6603

51.4 Total Miles / 18.3 Off Road Miles (35.6%)
Map Publication Date: October 2014

This section begins northeast of Logan at SR 664 and Walnut Dawler Road. The trail meanders southwest through Enterprise and skirts the SE side of SR-33 were it enters Lake Logan State Park at the levee. Near here, we honor one of the Buckeye Trail's founders, William (Bill) Miller, by naming a short section after him. Cross Duck Creek on a new narrow foot bridge and continue south on back country roads, through the hemlocks in Hocking State Forest. The trail crosses Big Pine Creek on a large-elevated steel bridge and continues into the Old Man's Cave area. Here you will find primitive and class "A" camping after hiking a steep paved road. The main attractions in this area are: Conkles Hollow, Old Man's Cave, Cedar Falls and Ash Cave. Old Man's Cave area offers, parking, tables, toilets, water, and dining lodge. Here too, we honor a famous founder, Grandma Gatewood, by naming a portion of the trail in her name. Stop, rest and view 350 million years of geology and thousands of years of human history. We leave this area at Ash Cave by crossing SR 56 and entering TWP 254. Hiking back country roads and steep hills we leave the Old Man's Cave section and enter the Scioto Trail section at SR 327 and Clark Hollow Road.

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Map Updates

  • (11/14/16)

    The official opening of the Buckeye Trail through Boch Hollow State Nature Preserve took place on Saturday, November 12, 2016. This action affects the trail in both the New Straitsville and the Old Mans Cave Sections. For reference, the most recent map for the New Straitsville Section is the Edition of August 2014 and for the Old Mans Cave Section, October 2014.

    The new route through the Boch Hollow Preserve is shown on the accompanying map from ODNR. From Point 33, the trail turns S on Bremen Road rather than NW and enters the Boch Hollow Preserve at the East Trailhead (Point L) for the Preserve. Note: The trail is in a State Nature Preserve. No pets! Open from dawn until dusk. It then meanders generally WNW as shown and undulates over three ridges. The trail exits the Preserve at the West Trailhead (Point A) on SR 664 and heads N. It rejoins the old route at the intersection of SR 664 and Zwickle Road.

    The trail no longer reaches the intersection of Beach Camp Road and SR 664, Point 34 in the New Straitsville Section or Point 1 in the Old Mans Cave Section. The New Straitsville Section now ends at the West Trailhead on SR 664 where the Old Mans Cave Section now begins.

    This route change increases the length of trail off road in the New Straitsville Section by about 4.2 miles and reduces the length of trail on road by about 2.1 miles. The new trail length is 60.2 miles (59.1% off road).

    The route change increases the length of trail in the Old Mans Cave Section a tad, slightly less than 0.2 miles, all of which is on road.

    CW CCW Pt
    A. West Trailhead, Boch Hollow State Nature Preserve on SR 664
    OLD MAN'S CAVE SECTION begins here. The trail just CCW (E) is described in the NEW STRAITSVILLE SECTION. Go N on SR 664. After 0.24 mi, turn W onto Zwickle Rd (C72) that turns gradually S through farm country.

  • (10/05/14)

    These Trail Changes have been created for a number of reasons. BT has been granted entry into Boch Hollow State Nature Preserve. To take advantage of this opportunity, west end of the New Straitsville Section and the east end of the Old Mans Cave Section have been moved. In addition, trail changes were announced earlier within Hocking Hills State Park (HHSP). Both reconstruction and relocation of SR 374/664 and acts of Nature near Cedar Falls Unit of HHSP required trail changes.
    For now, Point 1 has been moved a few miles N on SR 664 near the Boch Hollow Preserve. And Point 2 is approached from the west rather than the east. Several new points have been added between the new Points 1 and 2.
    The intersection of SR 374/664 with Culp Road had been used as Point 19. BT crossed SR 374/664 here. The changes made to this highway made this intersection a very poor location at which to cross SR 374/664. HHSP Management suggested that the trail follow the old Horseman’s Bypass Trail to the Archery Range Entrance and cross there. In addition, a new Park Office and entrance to the camping facility within the Park had been built a few years earlier. That building is very obvious and quite easy to find so we chose that site as Point 19.
    For years, BT had passed within feet of Cedar Falls itself. However, the access route that the trail had followed had deteriorated some due to the work of time and the site geology. The final blow came when the trail from Cedar Falls up to the upper parking area for the Cedar Falls Unit of the Park was destroyed by a flash flood. HHSP Management decided the best approach would be to improve another access route that went to the lower parking area of the Cedar Falls Unit of the Park. And that is the route we now follow. Unfortunately, the trail no longer goes close by Cedar Falls, which had been identified as Point 20. After much consideration, Point 20 has been moved to the Information Kiosk near the only Picnic Shelter in the Cedar Falls Picnic Area.
    The changes posted below update your Old Mans Cave Section map edition of November 2010. As it turns out, the trail described in the November 2010 edition did not enter the BTA’s Pretty Run property nor pass the cabin that is now also BTA property. Since it does at this time, the trail to and from the cabin at Point D is described in the change below.
    While the complete text from all points within any route change is shown below, generally, only the top line from other points is shown. However, where a point is approached from a different direction with no other change, the second line is also posted. The current accumulative distances are always given. Those numbers are always followed by the point number. However, unless the point has some important changed detail, only that portion of the point description, which is shown on the first line from each point, is included.

    CW CCW Pt
    1 Beach Camp Rd (T79) at SR 664

    OLD MAN'S CAVE SECTION begins here. The trail just CCW (E) is described in the NEW STRAITSVILLE SECTION. Go S on SR 664. After 0.24 mi, turn W onto Zwickle Rd (C72) that turns gradually S through farm country.

    A. Zwickle Rd (C72) at Logan Horn's Mill Rd. C32)

    Join Logan Horn's Mill Rd and go W. After 0.8 mi, reach Rock Stull Rd (T83) at a unique 4-way intersection. Rock Stull Rd enters from the N and exits NW while Logan Horn's Mill Rd enters from the E and exits SW. Go SW past the entrance to Camp Akita (600', exits NW.)

    B. Logan Horn's Mill Rd (C32) at Voris Rd (C31)

    After 0.8 mi, exit Logan Horn's Mill Rd that continues W. Go S on wooded Voris Rd.

    C. Voris Rd (C31) at Bauer Rd (T102)

    After 1.7 mi, exit Voris Rd that here turns SW. Go E on Bauer Rd past Crockett's Run Cabins (0.2 mi, 800-472-8115). After 0.5 mi, exit Bauer Rd that continues N. Go E on Walnut Dowler Rd across Crockett's Run.

    2. Walnut Dowler Rd (T44) at Open Field

    Go S across grassy field across creek past

    3. Vacated Helber Rd at Maintained Helber Rd
    4. Ellinger Rd (T39) at Voris Rd (C31)
    5. Voris Rd (C31) at Enterprise Rd (T31)
    6. Enterprise Rd (T31) at Chieftain Drive
    7. SR 180 at Lake Logan Rd (C3)
    8. Lake Logan Rd (C3) at Evans Rd (T560)
    9. Sharp Bend in Evans Rd (T560) at Entrance to Bill Miller Trail
    10. Murphy Rd (T54) at School Bus Turn-around
    11. Murphy Rd (T54) at Pleasant Valley Rd (C4)
    12. Wildcat Hollow Rd (T215) at Starr Route Rd
    13. Starr Route Rd (C4) at Uckor Rd
    14. Rocky Fork Rd at Hocking State Forest
    15. Footpath at Kreashbaum Rd (C9)
    16. Kreashbaum Rd (C9) at Big Pine Rd (C11)
    17. Big Pine Rd at Entrance to Hocking State Forest Rock Climbing Area
    18. Bridle Trail at Unger Rd (T59A)

    Enter woods on bridle trail that begins S but gradually turns W. After 0.11 mi, turn sharply SE and continue gradual descent. After 0.22 mi, ford stream and ascend W across major ridge. After 0.3 mi, ford stream and begin steep ascent W. Near ridge summit, turn S to SW and begin gradual descent. After 0.5 mi, reach utility line. In the next 400', leave utility line, ford stream and cross Culp Rd. Continue W on bridle path over low hill. Soon (0.1 mi), ford Old Mans Cave Creek. Go E. After 0.1 mi, turn W across SR 374/664 at Entrance to Archery Range Parking Area. Meander generally S on bridle trail to the beginning of the Highlands Trail (0.11 mi). See Log for Highlands Trail elsewhere. Continue W to the the Naturalist Area with cages for common raptors of the region. Continue W into parking area behind Park Office.

    19. S Side of Hocking Hills State Park HHSP) Office

    Park Facilities: C, P, PS, PT, Pr, W, WC; a Visitor's Center is 0.5 mi WSW; a Park Dining Lodge and Cabins are 1.8 miles further W and S off SR 664 (follow signs). The road to Family campground goes nearly S from Office. Camp supplies can be obtained at stores 1.5 miles W and 2.4 miles E on SR 664 as well as from the Office.
    Past Office, cross entrance drive to concrete walk. Go W across bridge over Old Mans Cave Creek. Meander SW on concrete walk along N side of creek past a granite boulder. This boulder displays a plaque dedicating this trail to Emma or "Grandma" Gatewood who was an ardent hiker. She was a founder and strong supporter of BT. She donated $20 to buy the first bucket of paint for BT blue blazes! At the age of 67, she was the first woman to hike the Appalachian Trail end-to-end in one season. Not satisfied, she repeated her feat twice more and added a trek across the United States before hanging up her shoes!
    Cross bridge between waterfalls that spill into gorge. BT crosses bridge over Old Mans Cave Creek. At top of concrete stairs, the Rim Trail departs SW. Descend stairs with view of Upper Falls into the cool dampness of the sandstone gorge. Watch for many relatively unusual plants including some that are rare. Follow scenic gorge and creek downstream. Be sure to climb into Old Mans Cave, a huge rock shelter, named after the hermit rumored to have lived here after the Civil War and for which this park unit is named. Look also for Devil's Bathtub, Sphinx Head and Upper and Lower Falls.
    After 1.3 mi from stairs into gorge, pass a sign which indicates that OMC is 1.0 mile back and Cedar Falls is 1.5 mile ahead. You are near the confluence of Old Mans Cave Creek that you have been following and Queer Creek that you will be following generally E upstream. After 0.8 mi, go beneath an inconspicuous rock shelter from which a trickle of water falls during the summer. In winter, this site hosts a stalagmite-stalactite ice formation, nearly as beautiful as those in Ash Cave. After 0.45 mi just across a bridge, reach sign that says "OMC 2.0 miles" and points back in the direction from which you came. Although BT leaves the gorge here, you should see beautiful Cedar Falls that is only 0.15 mi further upstream. From sign, leave gorge S up moderate slope with steps.

    20. Drive into Cedar Falls Picnic Area near Information Kiosk
    21. Chapel Ridge Rd.
    22. Parking Area for Ash Cave off SR 56
    23. SR 56 at Amerine Rd (T265)
    24. Burgoon Rd (T253) at Goose Creek Rd
    25. Macedonia Rd (C47) at North Branch Rd (T22, exits E)

    Continue SW on Macedonia Rd for 125'. Just across an unnamed fork of N Branch of Pretty Run, exit road onto footpath heading S into a Black Walnut grove. After 300', ford the N Branch, and climbs a steep slope gradually through interesting ravines. After 0.45 mi at top of steep climb, go beneath power line right-of-way. Head generally S in and out of recent shelter-wood timber harvest. This segment ends on a short segment of trail on lawn heading NW.

    D. Log Cabin

    This cabin is in the heart of the Pretty Run Property owned by BTA with assistance from Clean Ohio Funds. Go NE on lawn (450’). Then, turn W across intermittent stream and begin ascent through woods SW that climbs around nose of ridge into recent shelter-wood harvest (0.45 mi). Continue easy ascent N and then across reentrant now heading W and then SW. After 0.1 mi, begin descent generally S. After 0.3 mi, descent is complete. Turn W crossing woods road and small stream (0.12 mi). Emerging from reentrant that carries this stream, pass a scenic rock outcrop and later cross an intermittent stream in rocky reentrant (0.11 mi). Continue generally W to Macedonia Rd (0.22 mi). Join Macedonia Rd heading S.

    26. Macedonia Rd (C47) at T35
    27. Macedonia Rd (C47) at Lady Run Rd (T3)
    28. Riddle Rd (T13B) at Pretty Run Rd (C17)
    29. Eagle Mills Rd (C17) at Albright Rd (T11)
    30. SR 327 at Clark Hollow Rd (T2)
  • (10/19/15) Camping Facilities in the Old Mans Cave Section

    The location of all campsites, known to BTA and within reasonable walking distance of the trail, are shown on the Section Maps. The Buckeye Trail Association does not manage any camping facilities within Old Mans Cave (OMC) Section. Other agencies and/or individuals operate all campsites. The owner/manager regulates each site independently.

    • The Owner (BTA member and former OMC Section Supervisor) graciously allows backpackers to camp overnight in the field immediately W of Pt 5. Carry out all trash. No fires.
    • Hocking River RV Park is 1.75 mi off the trail (measured from intersection of Voris and Enterprise Iles Roads) at 30682 Chieftain Drive towards SR 664. Call 740-331-4840.
    • Lake Logan Campground (fee) is located at 28920 Lake Logan Road between Pt 9 and Pt 10 just off the trail. See www.lakelogancampgrounds.com
    • Campbell Cove Camping (fee) is located at 30775 Lake Logan Road almost at SR 664 about 2.0 mi from the intersection of Lake Logan Road at Evans Road. See http://www.campbellcovecampgrounds.com
    • The Old Mans Cave unit of Hocking Hills State Park manages two campgrounds for family units. Both are located near Pt. 18. See
    • Top O' The Caves Campground (fee) w/Class A and primitive camping (E, G, L, P, PT, S, T, W, WC, 614-385-6566) is 0.5 mile W of Pt 20 on Chapel Ridge Rd.
    • BTA permits tent camping near Pt 24 on its Pretty Run property. Treat the water that is available in nearby stream. Pack it in; pack it out.

    Dispersed camping is not permitted on private or state lands without express permission of the owner/manager. Hikers are expected to comply with all rules in all instances.

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