Haunted Hocking: Ghost Stories and Local Haunts

haunted hocking hills

The hills are alive with the sounds of ghosts and goblins. At least that is what local lore would have visitors believe. October is a month for enjoying fall colors, pumpkin spice, and ghost tales. The haunted Hocking Hills offers more scares than people think. Why not check out where to go for some fall festive fun this season in Hocking Hills? 

Hocking Hills, with its lush forests, rugged cliffs, and serene waterfalls, is known for its natural beauty and outdoor adventures. But did you know that this picturesque region is also home to intriguing tales of the supernatural? As night falls and the shadows lengthen, the atmosphere in Hocking Hills takes on an eerie allure, inviting curious souls to explore its haunted past. Join us as we delve into the ghost stories and haunted places that add an extra layer of intrigue to this enchanting destination.

Haunted Moonville Tunnel

Venture into the heart of Hocking Hills’ haunted history with a visit to the Moonville Tunnel. Located in the Zaleski State Forest, this abandoned railway tunnel is said to be haunted by the ghost of a brakeman who tragically lost his life while working on the tracks. Legend has it that his spirit still lingers, manifesting as an apparition walking the tracks or swinging a lantern. Dare to explore this eerie site and experience the chills that the Moonville Tunnel has to offer.

Family Activities

The family will enjoy going to the many activities across Hocking Hills. Don’t pass up the hayrides or trick-or-treating at local events like the Hocking Halloween Campout. Step into spooky Ash Cave to look for unexplained activity. Pumpkin decorating and more are included as part of the fall fun. Stop by a petting farm with camels and other animals to spend time trick-or-treating with. Muddy Boots Farm offers memories and treats to last a lifetime. Stop by Walker Farm for a corn maze, pumpkin picking, and more family fun. 

Spooktacular Fun

Haunted Houses are part of exploring haunted Hocking Hills. Stop by Sleepy Hollow Experience at Haunted Mountain. Scream your heart out by immersing yourself in a nightmare with the Headless Horseman. Danse is macabre with stories of vampires, oddities, and haunted tales of the theater. Enjoy an escape room experience and a haunted trail, open after the performance.

Cave Stories

Prefer a less spooky experience? Good luck finding it in haunted Hocking Hills with tales of ghosts meandering the cliffs and gorges of Hocking Hills State Park. Legends of the dark make people wonder who may still be visiting the hills after dark.

One such story of Dr. S.P. Hildreth explains how he was surveying in 1837 and saw a warning on a beech tree. Carved into it were the words ‘This is the road to Hell, 1782.’ Pressing ever onward, he followed the streams and meandered a few miles to a horseshoe-shaped recess cave first used by Ohio’s first people. The mystery of the message remains a mystery to this day and the cave he visited was named Ash Cave for stories of burning and fires that took place there. Tales of children who fell to their deaths and screams that may be heard from the cave give it a spooky air of hauntedness that folks love to explore in October. 

Rock House

Among the sandstone cliffs and cave-like chambers of Rock House, whispers of spectral beings have been heard. Legend has it that the Rock House was once a hiding place for bandits, and the spirits of those who met their untimely demise still roam the area. Explore the cavernous chambers, and perhaps you’ll sense the ethereal energy that lingers within the rock walls.

Rock House is thought to be haunted by one lady named Mary who was once purported to be found dead. Her body vanished before the police arrived and her spirit lingers to this day. Visitors love to look for her body or see if they can find her lurking amongst the wildflowers and foliage nearby. 

Old Man’s Cave

Just the name alone should give away its secrets. Old Man’s Cave is a popular place to visit any time of year. Around Halloween, visitors come for frights in the night like camping near a baying hound, reported to be Richard Rowe’s wayward pup. Rowe was a trapper who lived on the banks of Ohio in the 18th century. When the War of 1812 began, he sought a peaceful life and headed to a cave, hanging out in what is now Old Man’s Cave with his dogs and rifle. He accidentally shot himself and his body is buried next to his dog on the sandy floor of the cave. Sometimes the pair can be sighted walking along the river or in the forest. 

Ash Cave

While Ash Cave is known for its natural beauty and awe-inspiring waterfall, it also holds a mysterious aura. According to local legends, the cave is said to be haunted by the spirit of a Native American woman who tragically lost her life in the area. Visitors have reported hearing whispers, feeling cold spots, and sensing a spiritual presence as they venture into the depths of the cave. Take a guided tour or visit Ash Cave at dusk to experience the enigmatic atmosphere for yourself.

Ghost Tours

A visit to haunted Hocking Hills wouldn’t be complete without an unforgettable night of ghostly tales of murder and horror on a ghost tour. Several options are available to experience this ghastly experience. Visit many locations and experience a mysterious tour as the itineraries are kept a secret until the night of the tour. Includes many historic stops around Columbus. Tickets are available at Columbus Ghost Tours for those who dare venture out for a night of terrifying tales.

Robbins Crossing Cemetery

Step into the past at the Robbins Crossing Cemetery, located within the Hocking College campus. This historic cemetery is the final resting place of early settlers and holds stories of lives long gone. Visitors have reported eerie encounters, including unexplained apparitions and strange sounds. Stroll through the gravestones and immerse yourself in the history of the region, but be prepared for an otherworldly encounter.

Lake Hope State Park Lodge

Lake Hope State Park Lodge, nestled in the heart of Hocking Hills, is not only known for its natural beauty but also for its haunted reputation. Guests and staff have reported unexplained phenomena, such as doors mysteriously opening and closing, disembodied footsteps, and strange voices echoing through the halls. If you’re feeling brave, spend a night at the lodge and see if you can unravel the secrets that lie within its walls.

Hocking Hills State Park Campgrounds

The campgrounds of Hocking Hills State Park hold their own tales of ghostly encounters. Campers have shared stories of hearing inexplicable whispers, feeling an unseen presence, and witnessing apparitions wandering the woods at night. If you’re a fan of the paranormal, consider pitching your tent in these campgrounds and see if you can catch a glimpse of the supernatural.

Exploring the Haunted Side of Hocking Hills

Exploring the haunted side of Hocking Hills adds an extra layer of intrigue to this already enchanting destination. Whether you’re a believer in the supernatural or simply fascinated by the mysteries of the unknown, these ghost stories and haunted places in Hocking Hills offer a glimpse into the region’s rich history and the spirits that may still roam its landscapes.

As you venture into the realm of ghostly tales and haunted sites, remember to approach these stories with respect and an open mind. Engage in guided tours or join local paranormal enthusiasts who can provide deeper insights into the legends and experiences associated with each location. While the paranormal encounters cannot be guaranteed, the thrill of exploring these haunted places in Hocking Hills will undoubtedly create a spine-tingling and memorable experience.

So, whether you’re drawn to the Moonville Tunnel’s spectral brakeman, curious about the otherworldly energy at Ash Cave, or fascinated by the ghostly whispers at the Robbins Crossing Cemetery, embrace the thrill of the unknown and embark on a journey through the haunted history of Hocking Hills. Discover the stories that have been passed down through generations, immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of folklore, and let the mystery and allure of the supernatural weave its spell on your visit to this captivating region.

Pro Tips from Our Blog

Welcome to the Hocking Hills

…and we’re live! Welcome friends and folks to the brand new website for Go Hocking, a local merch and...

Read More

Guide to Hiking the Hocking Hills

People come from all over the world to see the beautiful parks and trails of Hocking Hills. Our little...

Read More

Go Hocking Merch!

As Hocking natives, we’ve been exploring these hills and valleys for years, and it’s no surprise to us that...

Read More

Best Dog-Friendly Trails in Hocking Hills

When hiking in Hocking Hills through miles of beautiful trails, rock formations and waterfalls, you won’t want to leave...

Read More

The Wildlife of Hocking Hills

An abundance of natural wildlife is something that stands out about the Hocking Hills area of Ohio. The Hocking...

Read More

Go Stargazing at the John Glenn Astronomy Park

The John Glenn Astronomy Park (JGAP) is dedicated to sparking an interest in science, learning, and exploration by sharing...

Read More