By Mat Stevens
Setting aside time to escape into nature and feel the earth beneath your feet is essential. Ohio is home to a multitude of trails across nature preserves and forests just waiting to be explored. For a journey that tests your endurance a little more than just a casual hike, check out these five energizing hikes in Ohio!
Blackhand Gorge State Nature Preserves encompasses 956 acres of woodland trails, rivers, and natural rock formations in Lucking County. With over 10 miles of trails winding through the preserve, you can make a whole day of it. Enjoy towering cliffs, riverside views, and a heart-pumping hike.
The Christmas Rocks State Nature Preserve in Lancaster is over 554 acres of beautiful nature. Take a hike up to the Jacob's Ladder rock formation, a Black Hand Sandstone formation towering 250 feet above the valley of Arney Run. The three-mile-long trail has two separate loops of moderate difficultly because of their steepness.
Cedar Falls is one of the most picturesque hiking locations in Hocking Hills. Check out the route that passes through Cedar Falls for a real challenge. This isolated chasm is blooming with hemlock and characterized by steep rock walls, grottos, and waterfalls.
In Monroe County, the Lamping Homestead area offers camping, picnicking, fishing, canoeing, and a scenic hiking trail with two loops, one at 3.5 miles and the other at one and a half mile. A two-acre pond at the site is stocked with bluegill, bass, and catfish.
The Clifton Gorge State Nature Preserve in Yellow Springs is a 268-acre preserve that protects a spectacular dolomite and limestone gorge. It became a landmark in 1968 and encompasses a two-mile stretch of the Little Miami State and National Scenic River.