Great veiw of Fall Color in the Valley!!!
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Kris
September 25, 2008
Member since 03/15/2005 🔗
248 posts
If anyone is interested, there is a nice spot to view the fall color of the CV area. Its called Olsen Fire Tower.

You can climb to about 90' or so. I think i counted like 125 steps to the top. The actual observation/ranger station is usually locked but you can get a good view from the platform just below it.

The road is not maintained in the winter months. From Thomas, travel towards the windmills on 219N. Once you pass the windmills, turn right on Forest Road 18. It's marked with a sign but it can be seen better coming downhill. The coords are: N39* 07.613, W079* 35.082 for all you GPS guys. Turn right on Forest Road 18. Turn right at the first Y intersection. This road is called FR 717. Stay on FR 717 for about 1 and half miles to the parking lot below the tower.

The view is amazing, you can see the town of Parsons, Blackwater Canyon, Otter Creek Wilderness, Canaan Mountain, the windmills, and even the ski slopes at Canaan and the Mount Storm power plant.

Look it up on WIKI for a more detailed description.

Ski slopes...



Parsons




EDIT:

Here is the WIKI link if anybody is interested...

Olsen Fire Tower
David
September 25, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
Nice view and nice pics! Thanks for posting that info..
jonjon1
September 25, 2008
Member since 09/11/2006 🔗
186 posts
It is a great view from up there. I believe the proper directions are to go South on 219 from Thomas then take a left on FR 18 just after the high school.
snowglobe
September 25, 2008
Member since 03/12/2007 🔗
150 posts
Look great! Now, when do you guys think is the best time to go up there and in CV area for the best foliage given the current condition and forecast?
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Kris
September 25, 2008
Member since 03/15/2005 🔗
248 posts
Originally Posted By: jonjon1
It is a great view from up there. I believe the proper directions are to go South on 219 from Thomas then take a left on FR 18 just after the high school.


Sorry...directions were from memory...And i usually come in from Parsons...Your directions make much more sense...lol

As far as the best time to go up...I read on another post that CV was starting to get some nice color already...There is a leaf peepers festival up there this weekend...But i'd say anytime between now and next weekend, would be good...Maybe even the 2nd weekend in OCT...

But, I havent been up there in a few months. Im going to try and get up there this weekend sometime...If i make it, i'll give a report and maybe post some pics too...
jonjon1
September 25, 2008
Member since 09/11/2006 🔗
186 posts
Colors are beginning to come in nice -- especially the reds. I'll try to post a pic later.
David
September 25, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
You can definitely start to see some red and yellow poke through all of that green on the Dolly Sods Webcam (atleast while there is daylight):

jonjon1
September 25, 2008
Member since 09/11/2006 🔗
186 posts
Here are a couple pics of the foliage up here from yesterday. They are from the Meyer House balcony looking toward Canaan Heights.

http://s419.photobucket.com/albums/pp274/jrobeson_2008/?action=view&current=100_0955.jpg

http://s419.photobucket.com/albums/pp274/jrobeson_2008/?action=view&current=100_0954.jpg
Kris
September 30, 2008
Member since 03/15/2005 🔗
248 posts
I was up there yesterday and I didnt see anything that looked like that. Only very patchy reds and yellows...Those are some nice colors there...
jonjon1
September 30, 2008
Member since 09/11/2006 🔗
186 posts
Originally Posted By: Kris
I was up there yesterday and I didnt see anything that looked like that. Only very patchy reds and yellows...Those are some nice colors there...


Where did you go yesterday? I just went to Parsons this morning and there is much less color once you pass the high school.
Kris
September 30, 2008
Member since 03/15/2005 🔗
248 posts
That's exactly where I was...lol...I drove up from Elkins to the Olsen Tower then drove the Canaan loop road to big run overlook and then went back home...

No wonder i didnt see any color...
snowglobe
September 30, 2008
Member since 03/12/2007 🔗
150 posts
Any updates from Canaan valley / Blackwater falls area? I am thinking to go up there this weekend but I could cancel the hotel and go next weekend instead since there might not be much color yet?
crunchy
September 30, 2008
Member since 02/22/2007 🔗
596 posts
Originally Posted By: snowglobe
Any updates from Canaan valley / Blackwater falls area? I am thinking to go up there this weekend but I could cancel the hotel and go next weekend instead since there might not be much color yet?


don't cancel anything.. this weekend is the weekend! and the weather looks like its gonna be awesome. go for a hike or bike in dolly sods north and have your mind blown.. seriously. (harman trail is my favorite for the colors i think, and a hike out rocky ridge trail to overlook the valley is great too) then head over to blackwater falls st park and canyon for more sweetness.
David
September 30, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
I will be up there on Sunday afternoon with the lady, to take a look at some foliage. I can't wait. I wish I could make it up into DS North, but she isn't much of a hiker..... Maybe next weekend..

Chip updated today (hopefully he starts doing that daily here soon) and this is the new pic he put up. Looks awesome!!!

snowglobe
September 30, 2008
Member since 03/12/2007 🔗
150 posts
David, do you know where was the photo taken?
David
September 30, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
I wasn't sure but I did find this picture. It looks strikingly similar. Northlake must be just the development's name??? Anyone know?

http://www.landisrealtywv.com/images/northlakenov06-2_psd.jpg
Kris
October 1, 2008
Member since 03/15/2005 🔗
248 posts
Crunchy,
How do you get to that harman trail in DS north? Id like to hike that trail this weekend.
yellowsnow
October 1, 2008
Member since 12/15/2005 🔗
267 posts
Yeah, I'd say definitely Northlake. New housing development and private lake on 32 just north of the Valley.
crunchy
October 1, 2008
Member since 02/22/2007 🔗
596 posts
Originally Posted By: Kris
Crunchy,
How do you get to that harman trail in DS north? Id like to hike that trail this weekend.


well, the best route from canaan is to head down freeland rd which turns into forest road 80 which goes up to the top of cabin mountain and you can park all the way at the top. (where the road changes to ruts) then just follow the double track trail around as it veers left...its about a mile to dolly sods old trailhead up there. when you get to the old dolly sods sign and look to your left you will actually see timberlines salamander trail about 100ft thru the woods.

here is link to a good sods map. large dolly sods PDF map link

then just head out rocky ridge trail which follows the ridgeline on cabin mountain. harmon trail and others are right off that. try to hike all the way to the end of rocky ridge trail if time permits, it turns into a rock scramble for a little bit near the end but it is absolutely amazing up there!

these are from summer, so think of the trees and berry thickets being bright fruit loop colors now. ill be biking up there again this weekend most likely so i shall take a camera!



David
October 1, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
43 degrees right now according to the DS Webcam. Must be cold in the Valley!!
fishnski
October 1, 2008
Member since 03/27/2005 🔗
3,530 posts
It always makes my heart sing with happiness when you all post those awesome pics of the valley & the Alpps!..43 degrees huh? I predicted on the "1st snow" thread that there would be flurries to a dusting way up high for tommorow.
David
October 3, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
Local news says there is a frost advisory for Randolph, Webster, and Pocahontas Counties!!!
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