As an avid adventure seeker I am always looking for a places to go to get my adrenaline going. I want to find places that challenge my abilities and create a sense of accomplishment when I was finished. Where can you find a place like that in Ohio? Ohio is all corn fields, right? WRONG! Hocking Hills Region in southern Ohio offers many places to hike, play and explore and one location we have went back to time and time again is High Rock Adventures.
This amazing location is right off of US 33 and your GPS will take you right to their location. The parking lot is to the right and the check in location is up a large set of staircases across the street. The owner, Steve, jokingly said upon our arrival, “The stairs up here weed out the ones who have trouble doing the adventures.” He was not kidding. Our time in the registration and orientation area was short and sweet and they get you out on your adventure in a very timely manner. Your guides take you through the safety protocol, fit you for your Petzl helmet, harness and climbing shoes, and before you know it your out on the trail headed to your first repel, climb or challenge.
On this particular trip to Hocking Hills we decided to try our hand at the Climb and Rappel tour. If you have ever read our blog before you know I am a grandma and headed towards 50, so when we decided to try this combo I was a little out of my comfort zone. This tour combines the climbing and rappelling tours so you get the best of both worlds, challenges and experiences! The combo tour is 6 to 6.5 hours, you will climb for the first part of the tour, break for lunch, and return for an afternoon of rappelling.
Climbing here at High Rock Adventures is rated for all skill levels. They have climbs rated for beginners and up. On this trip out the kids did the beginner climbs like champs. They were up to the top of the first rock like Spider man. I was impressed! We quickly moved on to the next climb that was rated around 5-6 and this took the kids a bit more time to figure out the route up. After they had all had a chance to check it out, I leisurely began gathering our gear and cameras to head to the next portion of our tour, rappelling! I was trying to not bring attention to myself and get out of trying the climb. DISCLAIMER; I had a boo boo on my finger and I was not wanting to have the rocks tear it up more than it already was. (That’s my story and I am sticking to it!)
Needless to say, the kids saw right through my feeble attempt of moving on without climbing. The chants of, “come on mom” and “you have to try it”, rang out through the hillside and I could not get away from them. PLUS, they were not going to relent, it was like the song that doesn’t end coming from the back of the car on a long road trip. SOoooo, I got into the harness and decided to show those kids what this woman is made of! This climb is difficult but doable, so I pulled myself up and slowly began my ascent. Can I tell you that as you grab each hold and find footing on the ledges, you become empowered and stronger with each movement. My family as cheering and hollering for me and I found myself standing on an outcropping 3/4 the way up. My dang finger was bleeding, my arms shaking with fatigue and my legs burning from working their way up, I was almost there. I decided that this was good enough for me and I was done. I yelled down, “I think I’ve had enough.” You know what I heard? “MOM, you can do it, you’re almost there, come ON!” Dang kids! I knew I had to finish so I just went for it. I yelled down, “Climbing” and Steve yelled, “Climb on!” and three movements later I was smacking the carabiner at the top of the hill. I had made it! I was so excited I almost forgot to yell out, “Lowering” to begin my decent!
In between each rappel or climb there is a little bit of hiking over the beautiful terrain of Hocking Hills. The towering trees, majestic rock formations and wild flowers peeping up make the time between events breathtaking! The property at High Rock Adventures is stunning and they have kept it pristine, this is one reason we choose to work with them. They are eco-friendly and are looking for ways to educate you about nature while on your tour with them. #leavenotrace
We did 3 rappels on this trip. At High Rock Adventures, their main goal is to get you comfortable and ready for each activity you are doing. Talking you through each step of the adventure and giving you the tools, physically and mentally, to be successful.
Rappelling can be a mentally challenging. You are harnessed in and you decide when you are going to begin your decent to the ground. YOU are in control of the process and there is something about lowering yourself over the side of a cliff, looking up to the sky and letting your hands thread the rope through the ATC device. Thrilling, heart pumping and invigorating would be the words I would use to describe repelling. The kids and I had never rappelled before so we really learned a lot and loved this portion of the tour.
We are always bummed when an amazing tour with High Rock Adventures comes to an end. The adrenaline and excitement are never ready to be turned off. But it was time to head back to the Hocking Hills Logan KOA for a night of camping and sitting by the campfire.
A few things to know before you go:
WHAT SHOULD I BRING?
- CLOSED-TOE SHOES are required on all High Rock tours. Shoes with a good tread are recommended. We prefer to wear hiking shoes, brands like Merrell, La Sportiva or Eddie Bauer.
- CLOTHING: Wear clothes that allow a full range of motion. Long pants help avoid scrapes to the legs from the rock, but wear what is comfortable. NOTE: Clothes can get dirty, snagged or ripped on the natural sandstone rock. Abbie and I prefer to wear leggings and Matt and the boys wear Eddie Bauer pants. These all seem to work really well with the climbing and repelling.
- WATER: Bring water to drink throughout the tour, in a reusable water bottle. I can’t emphasize this enough! Water keeps you hydrated and helps you cool down after a hard climb. Water is LIFE!
- MISC: Bring a hair tie for longer hair, bug repellent, rain gear, and layered clothing depending on the season. We normally bring our Osprey daypacks and use them to carry all the gear and water we need while we are in the woods.
High Rock Adventures offers multiple adventures ranging from beginner to advanced, they have something for everyone to try. You can choose your own adventure here in the beauty of Hocking Hills Region in Ohio and I would highly recommend making High Rock Adventures one of the places that you put on your bucket list.
$5.00 off Discount Code: GFA5 Good until May 31st, 2019
We were hosted by High Rock Adventures for our Climbing and Repelling Tour