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Grandma Gatewood Memorial Trail (Buckeye Trail)

 4.5 (24)
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5.6 Miles 9.0 Kilometers

440' 134 m


-540' -165 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (12°)

1,080' 329 m


732' 223 m


Shared By Laura Priest


Minor Issues 79 days ago
Muddy History

Getting forecast...

A series of gorge and rim trails with waterfalls and stunning rock formations, ranging from easy to challenging.

Laura Priest

Dogs Unknown

Features Cave · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Spring · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Family Friendly There are some steep drops, so be mindful with small children.

Need to Know

When coming up the staircase at mile 2.76 (you exit onto a road loop with a pavilion in front of you and restrooms to your right), the trail continues directly uphill just to the left of the pavilion in the center of the road loop—there is one solitary blaze post in the middle of the picnic area, but otherwise no markings until hiking across the top part of the loop. It is easy to lose the trail here.


Along the Buckeye Trail at Hocking Hills Old Man's Cave State Park, choose from the easy Gorge Overlook Trail with views of the gorge, or opt for the steeper Grandma Gatewood Trail that allows you to explore the Devil's Bathtub and Upper Falls to the north and the stunning "Old Man's Cave" hermit's cave and Lower Falls to the south. The trail rises and falls steeply with the gorge terrain and comes alive with numerous waterfalls and weeping cliff faces after a good rain. The flora of the gorge, lush ferns, mosses, mushrooms and hemlocks, are remnants of an earlier time.

If you have time, from Old Man's Cave, continue southeast along the Buckeye Trail to another worthwhile destination, Cedar Falls, named for the misidentified hemlock trees which hang down over the rim. Going further south along the Buckeye Trail takes you to the massive amphitheater-shaped Ash Cave. It has a sandy floor and domed ceiling high overhead where waterfalls trickle or pour down from above. Nearby is a boulder field left behind by retreating glaciers. You can choose to hike the Gorge Trail or the Rim Trail. Take care with small children as there are no railings along the edge.

These distinct destinations, along with the Rock House, Cantwell Cliffs, and Conkle's Hollow, also in the Hocking Hills area, can all be reached by car and taken individually. The steep terrain of Grandma Gatewood, Cantwell Cliffs, and the Rock House trails are a good cardio workout. The easier hikes at Conkle's Hollow, Ash Cave, and Cedar Falls can accommodate most anyone.

Flora & Fauna

Wildflowers, butterflies, mushrooms, mosses, ferns, hemlocks and deciduous trees line the path.


Land Manager: Ohio State Parks

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Your Check-Ins


Mar 17, 2019
Matthew Fahnestock
Walked about half way to the falls from the back side. 3.5mi
Jan 18, 2019
Shawn Hoyd
Walked only from cedar falls to ash cave as part of winter hike series. Was muddy but weather was pretty with a light sprinkle of rain. 3mi
Jan 5, 2019
Tracey Ziniel
Dec 29, 2018
Nick Simon
Dec 28, 2018
Nick Simon
Dec 16, 2018
Aaron Kozikowski
Nov 4, 2018
Matt Stephens-Rich
Trail was great for fall hiking! 6.5mi
Oct 23, 2018
Jenny Gagne
5mi — 4h 00m

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 24 votes


  4.5 from 24 votes
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