Cleveland July 22, 2019
The Little Known Cave Near Cleveland That Everyone Should Explore At Least Once
Ever heard of spelunking? Also known as caving and cave diving, this act of exploration takes adventurous souls into the depths of cave systems in search of excitement and personal discovery. It’s a hobby that takes adventurers off-the-beaten-path, often into tight spaces and over subterranean waterways. This, as you can imagine, can be overwhelming for beginners, so where should one go to ease into this adventurous activity and start exploring the wonders of caving? Here in Cleveland, you can start with one accessible yet hidden cave in the Cleveland Metroparks.
Brecksville Reservation is a splendid place to spend a day.
As the largest of the Cleveland Metroparks, it's truly no wonder locals love Brecksville Reservation. Its campus includes a number of attractions, including seven distinct gorges.
One of its finest attractions is tucked away deep in the woods near the northeast corner of Valley Parkway and Meadows Drive.
As you approach, you'll hear the sound of a trickling spring, the soft crunching of leaves, and the echoes of chirping birds. Sounds bounce off the trees and exposed sandstone ledges in a magical way, and you'll know you’ve discovered a special place as you near the main attraction.
Deer Lick Cave is an impressive sandstone overhang that dwarfs its visitors, and its interior is perfect for aspiring explorers of all ages.
While not a
true cave, the structure of this overhang creates a deep rift in the wall that's worthy of exploration. You'll enjoy a little slice of spelunking without taking the risk of exploring a full-on cave system.
This cave’s unusual name is reflective of Ohio's oceanic history.
Long ago, Ohio's landscape was hidden beneath an ancient ocean, the ocean's sand - and, subsequently, its salt - settled on the sea floor. This formed the sandstone that we see throughout the park today, and it maintains traces of ancient salt. Deer like to lick the sandstone to obtain a bit of salt - hence the name Deer Lick Cave!
The cave is accessible along Deer Lick Cave Loop, a four-mile trail that immerses you in the most beautiful part of the park.
This sandstone overhang can be reached via access trails on both Valley Parkway and Meadows Drive, and it's truly a worthy hike. This incredible landscape beckons to nature lovers, inviting all to dive into vivid trees and lichens in search of adventure.
Think exploring caves is only a summertime activity? Think again.
You won't believe the way that winter changes this landscape. As icicles and frost form, the terraced structure of the landscape collects water to form a frozen waterfall of sorts. The area is equally stunning during the autumn season when the colorful leaves first fall, and in spring as lush life returns to the landscape. This charming pseudo-cave is a treat in every season, and its beauty is worth the hike.
Aspiring cave explorers of all ages will love starting with this local sandstone overhang in the Cleveland Metroparks.
Address: Valley Parkway, Brecksville, OH, 44141
There’s much to see throughout local parks, but this pseudo-cave in the Cleveland Metroparks is a fan favorite. Have you ever explored Deer Lick Cave? Would you recommend this hike?
Can’t get enough of Greater Cleveland? You should definitely add these
12 underrated activities to your bucket list.