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A Visit To Cantwell Cliffs Is Like Taking A Hike Through A Magical Wonderland

I was a pretty massive dork growing up.

I did a lot of daydreaming about escaping suburban Columbus life for somewhere a little more magical, like Narnia or Middle Earth. What I didn’t realize at the time is that Ohio has some pretty darn magical places that are a lot easier to get to.

Hocking Hills is a place with a special kind of magic. The beauty of nature is on full display down there and the great outdoors has never been such a wonderful way to escape everyday life than it has in 2020. If you’re looking for a challenging hike that rewards you with magnificent scenery, then you need to plan a day to visit Cantwell Cliffs.

Located in Rockbridge, Cantwell Cliffs features a deep valley, imposing cliffs, and a stunning rock shelter where you can cool off and enjoy the views. The trail itself is short, just about 1 mile, but the journey is challenging.

A less popular destination than its nearby neighbor Old Man’s Cave, the trail at Cantwell Cliffs truly makes you feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere. The narrow stone staircases and winding passageways transport you to another world, one where Mother Nature is queen.

Jinjian Liang | Flickr

Years of erosion caused the steep cliffs, the rock shelter, and the valley where they reside. The hike isn’t recommended for families with young children as some of the areas are quite narrow, steep, and all-around challenging to navigate, so keep that in mind when you’re planning your visit.

READ MORE: The Best Things To Do In Hocking Hills

Ashish Shetty | Flickr

When heading out for a hike, safety is a priority. Make sure you’re wearing appropriate footwear and feel adequately prepared for hiking. Additionally, if we want places like Cantwell Cliffs to stay magical for every visitor, it’s important to keep the place clean.

That means you should leave no trace of your visit, aka everything you take with you on the trail needs to come back out with you.

Bruce Faling | Flickr

Cantwell Cliffs is located at Hocking Hills State Park, Ohio 374, Rockbridge, OH 43149. The trail typically takes about 40 minutes to hike and you can get more info about visiting right here.

Featured image: Brian Wolfe | Flickr