We are planning a short family vacation at Lake Hope State Park, which is only about 45 minutes away from Marsh Hollow. Dave and I decided we wanted to visit first, to make sure we thought it would suit ages 3 to 78. Yes it will! Anyway, the park has lots to offer, from cabins to camping, to a small beach, marina, hiking trails, archery range, truly tasty dining at the lodge, mountain biking trails (I think it might be the no. one place for this in Ohio), a nature center….and lots of chill time. This would also make a nice day trip from Marsh Hollow….so stay here and go there.
The next stop on our drive was the new Hemlock Bridge Trail at the Hocking Hills State Park. If you follow our Facebook page, you might know that I went to the dedication and vowed to hike this trail soon. So here it is mid-June, and I have not. We are planning a creek bridge replacement at Marsh Hollow and wanted to get some ideas from the swinging bridge construction.We hiked part of it, but the park is not wrong to rate this as moderate to difficult. It is not appropriate for small children. We were not prepared so turned back. Wear your hiking boots and bring your walking stick. Even though we only got to the turnoff to Whispering Cave then turned back, this hike is gorgeous.
Our final stop was at Jimbo’s Burgers & Beer, on State Route 56 in South Bloomingville. It is under new management and has been completely remodeled. We sat outside, as it was a beautiful June evening. The outdoor sound system was very nice. They are open Thursdays through Sundays so very much geared to the tourist trade. The mushroom-swiss burger was very tasty and large. You can have it on a pretzel bun or gourmet bun. Fries were also very, very good. The coleslaw was delicious but I generally prefer more cabbage and less dressing on mine.
Although we didn’t spend any time inside (except restrooms which are new and spotless), we could see that it was very nice, a mix of tables and booths and multiple big screen TVs. There is also a jukebox, which hopefully offers up more than boomer music.
It is also family friendly so yes, bring the kids. The menu includes more than burgers and the beer list is good. Hey, they offer Corona and Blue Moon, and all the traditional Bud and Miller stuff plus 1 IPA. We will go back for sure.
Mary at Marsh Hollow
Click on photo for larger view
Last week we stopped by the Marsh Hollow fairy house for a visit. The fairies weren’t home, but the door was wide open and the place was crammed with gifts for the fairies! Or they are starting to hoard things for the winter. We saw a package of crackers, a stick of gum and a bandaid, among some lovely pinecones, pebbles and acorns.
Later in the week we revisited, and all the non-natural things were gone. So somebody appreciated them! We have a lot of squirrels in the woods – bet they had a taste of those crackers.
If you visit Marsh Hollow with a child, be sure to take a hike up into the woods to find the fairy house. Rhea, our resident fairy, often leaves gifts for young ones.
P.S. We wrapped a candy cane striped ribbon on the fairy house. We hope they like it!
Our advice: take a flashlight on this hike. It is incredibly dark. We hiked it two years ago, and had to shuffle along holding hands. While there are luminarias along the trail, it’s just not quite enough light once it gets really dark. However, it’s great to catch glimpses of the bonfire as you get closer. The hike can be started any time, 5 to 7 pm today, December 11. For more info, click the link in the title or go to http://www.thehockinghills.org/Park_Event_Holiday_In_The_Park.htm
Dave and I hiked the Ash Cave to Cedar Falls trail yesterday evening, perfect day for a late afternoon/early evening hike. We saw exactly 2 people on the trail. Well, we saw them twice, once on the way out and once on the way back, but they were still just 2 people. The forest was absolutely lovely in the late day sun, and our tranquility was complete, except for those 2 people! By the way, this trail is 3 miles long, so a total of 6 to get back to the parking area.
We were thrilled to see that the Ash Cave Fire Tower is now open to climb. It’s located on this trail, but also accessible from a parking area at the corner of State Route 374 and Chapel Ridge Road. Built in 1934, the tower is 80 feet tall and you can see far and wide from the top. We were a little concerned about the fragility of some of the platforms at the end of each flight of steps. They appear to be the original wood. While most of the steps have been replaced, it’s obvious some of the platform boards are really, really old. In fact, on the first platform, two boards have fallen or been kicked off. I’ll report to Forestry today.