YMCA community hike to Ophir Falls on Saturday, Jan. 14Free Access

On Saturday morning, January 14, Joe Finch will be leading a community YMCA hike into the Coalton Wildlife Area to visit historic Ophir Falls.

Ophir Falls is an old, abandoned Boy Scout camp that was once a resort and an iron furnace. The site boasts a beautiful waterfall (which is often frozen in the winter) and a pool; if you look closely, you can still see the old foundation blocks of the lodge from long ago. This is a serious hike that mainly follows game trails and will require waterproof boots for the numerous shallow creek crossings. Hikers should bring a small water container and a snack. Wearing extra wool socks is recommended. Participants should plan on hiking three to four rugged miles in winter temperatures.

Expert hikers Dennis Reinhart and Todd Martin will assist Finch; Reinhart is a local nature artist whose photographs and paintings of Ophir Falls are unique and unparalleled. Hikers will gather at the Jackson Area YMCA at 9:30 a.m. and take van transportation to the wildlife area.

Call the YMCA at 740-286-7008 to register (required to participate). Join the community for a refreshing winter hike and a chance to explore a beautiful natural area that is a part of local history.

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