Wild and Wonderful
Being raised in West Virginia has allowed me the opportunity to experience nature in such a pure and untouched manner. The hills and mountains surrounding nearly every mile of the Mountain State make it such a unique place to live, work, and play. It provides challenges, peace, and boasts some of the most incredible flora and fauna in the world. I hope you enjoy this list of five destinations that I find to be some of my favorites. Let me know your favorite places to explore in West Virginia in the comments below!
1. Seneca Rocks
Jutting out 900+ feet from the Earth like the spine on the back of a dinosaur, this rock formation awes all that come to see it. Nestled in the Germany Valley, little to no cell service, and the friendliest people around make this a great place to visit!
2. Spruce Knob
Being the highest point in West Virginia and the Allegheny Mountains at 4,863 feet above sea level, you can see for miles aided by a tower atop the mountain. This is actually located fairly close to Seneca Rocks, just Southwest about 40 minutes.
3. Dolly Sods
This location hosts some of the most diverse landscapes in the state, and honestly maybe countrywide. These wild lands are located on the other side of Seneca, opposite Spruce Knob, should take you about 50 minutes to drive. I think it is awesome to have the first three all in one valley and within an hour or so of each other!
Unusual plant communities are one of the attractions of the Sods. Sphagnum bogs, groves of wind-stunted, one-sided red spruce and twisted yellow birch, heath barrens, grassy sods, rhododendron and laurel thickets, and rocky barren plains invite exploration and provide an endless variety of vistas.-USDA
4. New River Gorge National Recreation Area
As I showcased last week, this place is probably the most well-known in the state. With heavy traffic using the interstate that runs across the New River Gorge Bridge, most people on the Eastern side of the country have seen it. With a mighty river running underneath and rock formations covering the valley wall, the sights and sounds are incredible! Fun Fact: This is the view you can see on the ‘State Series’ quarters for the West Virginia coin that were released over the last 15 years.
5. Summersville Lake
Commonly referred to as the ‘Bahamas of West Virginia’, the clear waters and cliff lined lake bring boaters, adventurers, scuba divers and all sorts of outdoors lovers to its majesty. With 2,700 acres of water and over 60 miles of shoreline, it has plenty of room to roam, climb, wakeboard or whatever else your heart may desire.
This is honestly just the tip of the iceberg for what West Virginia has to offer. If you would, please comment with your favorite places to explore in the state and share with your friends in family that have never visited these locations in Wild, and Wonderful, West Virginia. Have a great weekend!
Until Next time 🙂
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