Simple Living: Discovering Hocking Home
By: Val & Dusty Scott
Being recent transplants to the Hocking Hills but lifelong visitors, it has always been our dream to live out the remainder of this world here, and finally the puzzle was assembled and we now are "home."
We have slowly begun to leave the chaotic world behind and rediscover the simpler pleasures our new life style permits.
Daily we explore the myriad areas and often, with much local assistance, we discover new spacious and wonderful trails along ridges, draws, and hollows of the Hocking Hills.
Studying the geologic history of how these surrounding areas became the most special place in Ohio and beyond, it takes one back hundreds of millions of years to ancient oceans and tropic lands. Glaciers formed and withdrew many times but the last one 15-20 thousand years ago intruded very close to here and formed an ancient ice dammed lake covering much of the wonderment we know today. As this slowly withdrew, the results of glacial melt and the remains of the ice lake etched themselves among the sandstones. The softer middle layers, being most susceptible to this erosive force carved away the hollows and innumerable draws, each flowing into the main stream that continues to erode along the denser sandstone floors we hike today.
Thus our daily lives are influenced by these mighty forces over the eons.
Today, we bear witness to this richness. Often now, hiking along the alluvial streams with lush soils, we are beginning to find Mother Nature’s spring grandeur unfurling themselves. Numerous species of wildflowers, curious by their native reaches, come forth in amazing shapes, forms, colors and textures.
Further up the slopes find more variations of nature's richness in remarkable variety.
The "feel" in the air after a long season of much colder hikes brings life's freshness to the soul. All senses cascade together as birds interact, stream and falls babble and chatter, rich scents blend and vary as the landscape evolves, and the warmth is balm for the soul.
As spring's weather brings frequent rains, now is the perfect time to hike to the myriad of waterfalls and catch their brilliance and wonderment as well. From small dark recesses slowly draining miniature depressions to considerable flows over towering ledges, each speaks to the contemplative nature of mankind.
And so our lives are enriched considerably each day and blessed by the graces of nature. We look forward to each day and have an often difficult time deciding on which wonderment to attend to each day.
As photographers, we initially take no gear with us to permit our inner selves new introductions to each new trail. This allows us to be more mindful and endorses our instincts and senses to gather the true wonderment we seek.
Only after we are imbued with the greater sense of place each habitat conveys do we feel we may try to capture and possibly channel the various essences latent there.
May your visit and experience here by joyful and fulfilling!!