HIGH ROCK'S MISSIONJoin us on our ECO-ADVENTURE!
At High Rock Adventures-Hocking Hills Ecotours we engage outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers in Ecotourism, Adventure Challenge Tours, Natural Rock Climbing, Rappelling, and Outdoor Education. Our goal is to have fun while sustainably immersing our guests in the outdoor world and instilling in them a lasting and meaningful respect and appreciation for the natural environment. We do these things while working to protect and conserve the awe inspiring Hocking Hills Region.
High Rock Adventures/Hocking Hills Ecotours cares deeply about our environment and surrounding ecosystem. Protecting our environment is critical to our beliefs and mission. At High Rock we will through education and immersive activities demonstrate environmental stewardship. We will promote low impact policies including staying on designated and approved trails and adventure areas and not climbing or bouldering in unapproved areas or on rocks full of ferns, moss, and other plants. Other ways we at High Rock Adventures and Hocking Hills Ecotours intend to preserve our land, help local communities, educate, and protect include:
- Buy locally and regionally
- Support our local communities
- Protect and donate a percentage of our profits to Eastern Hemlock Preservation in the Hocking Hills region
- Improve and help protect local streams on our property
- Keep our rocks, trees, and local ecosystem free from desecration and pollution
- Recycle everything possible; Reuse items that can be reused; Reduce waste; Repurpose items and buy recycled products when possible.
- Use people power for tours
- Implement Leave No Trace Principles
- Demonstrate and provide education to our guests about forest and environmental stewardship
The Evolution of High Rock House
Welcome to High Rock Adventures and Hocking Hills Ecotours! We had a vision to take one of the most uniquely beautiful private properties we’d ever seen in the Hocking Hills, and making it accessible to the public with expert guides and a mission to protect and preserve its breathtaking beauty. We wanted to share the amazing rock formations by offering heart thrilling climbs, rappels, and rock challenges along with unique nature tours that combine edible and medicinal plant walks, wildflower hikes, local history, and amazing scenery, in a place you will always remember.
Builder extraordinaire, Andy Matyac, owner of Brae Loch Construction originally found the property and realized its uniqueness. Eventually he and his crew would rehab and re-purpose an old home on the property into our amazing new welcome center and office. Plans for an outdoor patio and fire pit for evening programs are in the works.
When Andy decided to acquire the property, he called his friend, fellow nature lover and ecotourism educator, Steve Roley, to come check it out. Steve had been teaching Ecotourism, Sustainability, and Nature & Adventure Tourism for the last 20 plus years at a local college. Andy told Steve he envisioned building unique cabins on the property. After getting less than half way through a hike on the property, Steve turned to Andy and said, “This property is too special and too unique to build cabins on.” We wanted to do something totally different, something that had never been done in the Hocking Hills on private property.
In addition to creating and teaching a college-level Ecotourism program, Steve is a certified interpretive guide and certified guide trainer. His 25 plus years experience in the travel business includes international consulting on ecotourism for several governments, NGO’s, and non profits around the world. Steve’s combined love of nature, education and experience in the tourism industry led to the creation of some of the most unique and amazing Ecotours and Rock Challenge tours offered anywhere in the United States.
Now visitors to the Hocking Hills have the opportunity to experience these one-of-kind eco-nature, adventure, climbing, and rappelling tours all within an hour from the capital city of Columbus, Ohio. High Rock Adventures is at the gateway of the Hocking Hills, just past Clear Creek Metro Park Nature Preserve and only 5 minutes off the State Route 33 bypass around Lancaster. Guests from Columbus have told us they left their home or office and arrived at High Rock in 40 minutes, remarking, “…it’s like stepping into a whole different world so close to home.”