Museum & Museum Trails:
Open daily March 15 – November 15, 9:30 am – 4:30 pm
All Other Sanctuary Trails:
Open Daily Sunrise to Sunset
Highlands Nature Sanctuary
7660 Cave Road
Bainbridge, OH 45612
SEASONAL TRAIL CLOSURES: Parking lots are not winter maintained and trail hiking in the perilous cliff country of the Sanctuary should never be attempted during snowy or icy weather for safety reasons. Many of the Sanctuary’s trails are closed during our annual Deer Management Hunt which take place annually on 1) the Monday through Sunday following Thanksgiving, and 2) the Saturday and Sunday before Christmas.
Directions to the Appalachian Forest Museum
Address for GPS: 7660 Cave Road, Bainbridge, OH 45612
The Highlands Nature Sanctuary is located in Highland County in south central Ohio, approximately 25 miles west of Chillicothe, and 17 miles east of Hillsboro. It lies just off Highway 50, four miles west of Bainbridge, and four miles east of Rainsboro, on Cave Road. Cave Road is located immediately east of the bridge over the Rocky Fork Creek. Look for the brown highway sign for the Highlands Nature Sanctuary. Turn south on Cave Road (there is only one way to turn) and follow for one mile until you reach the Appalachian Forest Museum, which you will see on your right. Parking is on the left hand side. Follow the signs up the hill to the parking area. If you have a large vehicle, or are coming from the south of Cave Road, you may park in the level, lower parking lot, which is less than 1/8 of a mile south of the Forest Museum.
Directions From the North or East through Columbus to the Appalachian Forest Museum:
Distance: 70 miles from downtown Columbus, an hour and twenty minute drive. Exit off the Columbus 270 outerbelt at OH-23 SOUTH. Follow 23 south through Circleville. As you get close to Chillicothe, turn north on SR 207. Follow the signs on SR 207 to SR 104, and turn SOUTH on SR 104. Look for the Veteran’s Hospital on your right and Hopewell Culture National Historic Park on your left. You will then see prison buildings on both sides of the road, and shortly thereafter a large electrical substation on your right. Turn right at the station on Moundsville Road. It may or may not be signed. You will pass schools on both sides of the road to a stop sign. Turn right on Pleasant Valley Road. It will turn into Veteran’s Highway, a four-lane highway. Continue until it dead-ends on US-50 at a light. Turn right on US-50 and follow it into Bainbridge. Set your odometer in Bainbridge at the Dairy Queen as you come into town. Cave Rd is exactly 4.3 miles from the Dairy Queen. Watch for the Highlands Nature Sanctuary highway signs on US-50 and Rapid Forge Rd. coming in on your right. Shortly thereafter, turn left on Cave Rd. (If you cross over the Rocky Fork Creek or reach the village of Rainsboro, you have gone too far). The Appalachian Forest Museum will be at the one mile mark on your right. Parking is on your left.
Directions from the West through Cincinnati to the Appalachian Forest Museum
Distance: 70 miles from Cincinnati’s 275 outerbelt, an hour and twenty minute drive. To Begin: Exit off the 275 outerbelt on US-50 east. Follow 50 east approximately 40 miles to the town of Hillsboro (Cave Rd is approximately 15 miles east of downtown Hillsboro on US-50.). As you begin to enter the Highlands region, you will drive through the small village of Rainsboro. Another 1.8 miles past Rainsboro you will see Browning Road coming in from your right. Two and one half miles past the Browning Road intersection you will see a sign identifying Rocky Fork Creek just before a bridge crossing. Cave Rd is immediately on the right after crossing the bridge. (If you come to Rapid Forge Rd or the Rest Area, you have gone too far). After turning right on Cave Rd. The Appalachian Forest Museum will be at the one mile mark on your right. Parking is on your left.
From the Northwest through Dayton.
Distance: 72 miles, approximately a one hour and forty minute drive. To begin, from Dayton take OH-35 east to Washington Courthouse. At Washington Courthouse, turn south on OH-753 and take it to Greenfield. Follow the signs through town, and continue on OH-753 south to US-50 at Rainsboro. Turn left on US-50 East. Pass Browning Rd. on your right (1.8 miles). You will also pass Cole’s Bait and Tackle on the left. 2.5 miles past Browning Road look for sign marking the Rocky Fork Creek bridge. Cave Rd is immediately on the right after crossing the bridge. (If you come to Rapid Forge Rd or the Rest Area, you have gone too far). After turning right on Cave Rd. The Appalachian Forest Museum will be at the one mile mark on your right. Parking is on your left.