Description - One of the special attractions of Hocking State Forest is the natural vegetation. Plant species commonly found farther north mix with typically southern species to provide an unusual variety of native plant life and associated wildlife.
Copyright: Patty Elton - Interactive Outdoors, Inc.
Hocking Hills State Forest Headquarters provides information kiosk
Virginia and pitch pines, sassafras, and black, scarlet, white and chestnut oaks grow on the generally dry ridge areas. Hemlock, beech, black birch, red and sugar maples, yellow poplar, white ash, red oak, basswood and hickories grow in cool gorges, most coves and on slopes. Flowers, shrubs and ferns commonly associated with these site conditions also abound.
- Three state nature preserves have been established in Hocking State Forest. These preserves -- Conkle's Hollow, Sheick Hollow and Little Rocky Hollow -- have unique and fragile ecological systems.
Conkle's Hollow has hiking trails for the general public. Sheick and Little Rocky Hollows are designated as interpretive and scientific preserves and not open to the public. Admission is allowed with a permit.
Hunting and fishing are permitted on the state forest. Ninety-nine acres of forest land have been set aside for rock climbing and rappelling. Trailblazers are offered 9 miles of trail and will notice the many different colors of paint seen on trees throughout the area. Yellow spots indicate the boundary between state and private land, White and / or red spots indicate boundaries around the three nature preserves, and the blue spots indicate the long-distance Buckeye Trail.
Equestrians are given their own area for camping along with 40 miles of trail.
Recreation - Activities enjoyed at Hocking State Forest include horseback riding, hiking, fishing, rock climbing, rappelling, nature study, berry picking and nut gathering.
Climate - This state has four distinct seasons and a brilliant fall foliage display in it southern woods during mid October. Winter lasts from December through February with average temperatures near 25 degrees F. Low temperatures dip to single digits, but do not often drop below zero. Northern regions of the state receive average snowfall amounts of 55 inches, while the central and southern regions of the state receive lesser amounts with averages near 30 inches. This difference is caused by lake-affect moisture patterns.
Spring temperatures begin to warm the landscapes of Ohio by mid March and are in full swing by April. Temperatures range from 40 through 70 degrees F through the spring months. This season often brings the most rainfall, before the drying heat of summer. Summer can be extremely hot and humid in the interior of Ohio. Temperatures reach above 90 degrees F frequently through July and August. Cooler fall temperatures don't reach the region until mid to late September. This is a pleasant time to visit as the air is crisp with low humidity levels. Ohio's annual precipitation usually reaches slightly above 50 inches.
Hocking State Forest is accessible from State Route 374 off U.S. Highway 33, southeast of Logan, Ohio.