Summery activities in va/wva mountains?
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pagamony - DCSki Supporter
July 30, 2005
Member since 02/23/2005
830 posts
Hi guys. I'm looking for some ideas/advice on summer activity in the va/wva highlands. Here's the info. I've got an extra week of vacation coming up in a couple of weeks, a wife and kids 11, 9, and 4. (the 11 and 9 year olds ski with me!), coming north from Durham. We'll spend a few days in DC, and then I want to go over to the highlands. We'd like a little river rafting, some biking and hiking, maybe a horse trail ride, and of course a train ride for the 4 year old (and me). Wintergreen area would be convienent travel-wise but been there/done that and it's pricey. What about over in the alleghanies? Davis area? Good places to rent bikes or river guides? How about Fayetteville (new river area)? Got a favorite train ride (seems there are serveral? Any help appreciated.

ps: will be at t-line in january (scouts trip), maybe see some one there?
bawalker
July 30, 2005
Member since 12/1/2003
1,547 posts
Speaking of train rides, you can get a ride through Hardy/Hampshire county seeing senic views including bald eagles in one canyon like area. I forget the train ride name at the moment but it's VERY popular in this area.
jonjon
July 31, 2005
Member since 04/2/2004
70 posts
I think that you are right on track when you mention going to the Davis area for all of the activities to mention (and I'm not just saying that because I live here). There is Blackwater Bikes in Davis which can direct you to any biking adventure you wish, and Highland Scene Tours in Thomas, which also can help you with biking, and can also take you rafting/kayaking. As far as kayaking, you can choose the calm waters of the upper Blackwater River, to the more adventurous currents of the Cheat River.
Furthermore, the area has attractions such as Blackwater Falls, MNF, etc., and Davis has a couple of restaurants and wonderful bed and breakfasts to chose from (Meyer House), and Thomas is filled with many unique shops and is only three miles away. There are many other outdoor activities to chose from (including horseback riding), and I would advise that you should stop at the information center in Davis for more ideas. Besides, the weather up here this time of year is tough to beat (highest temperature so far this summer is 83 degrees). That is my take on where to go, but have fun wherever you chose!
jimmy
July 31, 2005
Member since 03/5/2004
2,650 posts
For horseback riding if you end up in canaan valley, try Mountain Trail Rides, Freeland Road, ask for Spot.
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pagamony - DCSki Supporter
August 3, 2005
Member since 02/23/2005
830 posts
Thanks guys so far.

what about at the ski areas - are they good spots for biking or are there better ones in the same area? other actiivities there worth the visit?

how about the state parks - seneca rocks, what else? got a favorite?

places to stay for a loud family of 5, not a romatic getaway for 2?
Murphy
August 3, 2005
Member since 09/13/2004
618 posts
I've never been to Nelson Rocks but the place looks cool. At the very least, the disclaimer at the bottom of their web page is worth the read.
jimmy
August 3, 2005
Member since 03/5/2004
2,650 posts
pagamony, ur starting your trip in DC? You might consider going to Harpers Ferry, fun if you're into history, civil war etc. down to petersburg. From there you can head to canaan or keep going south to snowshoe/cass, greenbank and the greenbrier are must see. For something different, you can tour an underground coal mine that's been turned into a museum in Beckley.
bawalker
August 3, 2005
Member since 12/1/2003
1,547 posts
Lost River State Park is located 3 miles west of Mathias and has horseback riding, picnicking, swimming, pretty much all the basic sports and trail hiking. Click here. If you goto the state park, slow down so you pass our signs that I painted: See the signs.
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
August 3, 2005
Member since 03/5/2004
3,060 posts
bawalker,
Are you in any of the pictures?
The Colonel
bawalker
August 3, 2005
Member since 12/1/2003
1,547 posts
No, I was the one working the camera after I painted the signs and everyone else was helping to hang them. Actually if you do goto picture #10, you will see a reflection of me in the sliding glass door taking the pic. It's barely enough to see me, but enough to keep the mysterious aura of who I am continuing on.
Murphy
August 4, 2005
Member since 09/13/2004
618 posts
Quote:

No, I was the one working the camera after I painted the signs and everyone else was helping to hang them. Actually if you do goto picture #10, you will see a reflection of me in the sliding glass door taking the pic. It's barely enough to see me, but enough to keep the mysterious aura of who I am continuing on




Is it just me or does it look like that guy from Scream is standing behind you in the reflections?
Roger Z
August 4, 2005
Member since 01/16/2004
2,181 posts
Wow did you pick a beautiful day to take those pictures Brad. After looking at the scenery, I don't even want to see the grass cut out there.

What did the "our lives a living hell" sign mean? Was there a part of that sign that was missing? Or was that just a general statement about unemployment in Hardy County?
bawalker
August 4, 2005
Member since 12/1/2003
1,547 posts
You know Murphy, no one has ever really seen me before so who knows, maybe that was me.

Roger - Those were taken on a Sunday afternoon around 5pm with 0 humidity and perfect 75* temps. In the background of signs 1 and 2, you are looking up on the ridge towards Lost River State Park and elevations nearing 2800'+. Seriously though our group of families who are opposing the dams are taking the fight more public. The reason why is that the county commissioners as well as the NRCS and the regional soil conservation service haven't stopped pushing it, refuse to listen to the general population of the Baker-Mathias area (2200+) who oppose the dams. If anything, those corrupted officials are doing it out of spite now. You know, crush the little man because he may make you look bad mentality. Anyway this has been going on since 1968.

Keep tuned in about this, with federal lawsuits in action now, our intiative to stop these dams is causing state senators in Charleston to try and rewrite election laws before our suits void major soil conservation decisions, before our suits oust illegally elected supervisiors, etc. They are scared and we aren't stopping. We are personally going to see heads roll on this, people will goto jail.

We smell blood in the water, and to save everything we have, we are going to attack it till it's dead. The ironic thing, it's enjoyable to be active in this.
Roger Z
August 4, 2005
Member since 01/16/2004
2,181 posts
Whee. I'm just thinking of how much fun it will be to be a planner on the receiving end of one of these citizen initiatives someday.

Wasn't this about summertime activities in WV? Back to the regularly scheduled programming then! Oh, and since we're on that subject: in about two weeks I'm going to be in the Dolly Sods (weather permitting). Although I plan to hike, I'll have my mountain bike with me and might camp at Red Creek instead of backcountry. Where are the good places to mountain bike around CV? I know you can do it on the northern Sods outside the wilderness area, but where else would people recommend?

Take this as a one-off question to the original one, please, not as the primary one on this board...
pagamony - DCSki Supporter
August 4, 2005
Member since 02/23/2005
830 posts
that's cool, the question fits right in. i like to bike too, but will need to rent (not carrying 4 bikes up the highway to DC for 3 days - where the heck would I put them anyway?)

i'm really disappointed the nats wont be in town.
tgd
August 4, 2005
Member since 07/15/2004
585 posts
Pagamony: If you are looking to rent bicycles in DC - I know Spokes ETC in Vienna has rentals (703-281-2004) - probably a few others. In Canaan Valley go to Blackwater Bikes (304-259-5286) for rentals.
tgd
August 4, 2005
Member since 07/15/2004
585 posts
Roger Z - I just posted a trip report from my bike adventures in the valley last weekend with a couple trail recommendations. The biking board has a few good recommendations in older posts from johnfmh and canaanman. Roger Lilly and JR Nolan at Blackwater Bikes are great resources of trail info for the valley. Depending on what you're up for I like Canaan Valley State Park for good fast and not overly technical riding and Blackwater Canyon Rail Grade for remote non-technical downhill cruising. I've done a little riding in the Sods - but access is a little of an issue unless you are staying in Timberline. Also, Timberline resort has trails - but the condition is a little suspect due to ATV and horse traffic. Finally, the wildlife refuge has some great riding off A Frame Road or from within Timberline. I just rode Plantation for the first time last weekend but it is very technical and might not be considered fun by everyone (I liked it though).

Tom
pagamony - DCSki Supporter
August 12, 2005
Member since 02/23/2005
830 posts
update. just returned. wouldn't you know it, my youngest daughter caught some virus in DC and was terribly sick. cancelled the CV plans, stayed an extra day in DC to let her recover, then stayed at big meadows lodge in SNP, which worked out as good as possible. horses, hiking, good food and some entertainment. no biking or rafting, but maybe next time. see you on the lifts.
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