CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) — With this Thanksgiving week’s warm temperatures, you may be tempted to spend some of your time off outdoors.
Here are some places to hike in West Virginia that have evergreen trees, so they should make for some gorgeous views this time of year:
Blackwater Falls State Park
You can see the amber waters of Blackwater Falls during November in Tucker County. The park’s 20 miles of hiking trails take visitors to some of the state’s most photographed spots: Elakala Falls, Lindy Point and Pendleton Point Overlook.
The falls’ color comes from the acids in the hemlock and red spruce needles that surround the area.
Lost River State Park
This park is known for its Cranny Crow overlook on top of Big Ridge Mountain, which offers a commanding view of five counties according. It’s located in Hardy County in the Eastern Panhandle.
The park doubles as a historical site, housing the site of the French and Indian War’s 1756 Battle of Lost River and the restored cabin of Henry “Lighthorse Harry” Lee, a Revolutionary War general and father of Civil War General Robert E. Lee.
Click here for a trail map.
Stop by central West Virginia for the Cranberry Glades Botanical Area, which protects one of the largest area of bogs in West Virginia. There’s a half-mile boardwalk through two of them so that visitors can enjoy the area without disturbing the unique ecosystem.
According to the West Virginia Department of Tourism, several species end their migration in the Cranberry Glades, making them the southernmost point in North America where they are found. The trail also takes you to an observation tower.
You can also check out the Honeycomb Rocks Trail for its namesake holey rocks.
New River Gorge
The Endless Wall Trail was named “America’s #1 National Park Hike” by USA Today according to the West Virginia Department of Tourism. It includes old-growth forests on a very easy-to-follow trail with plenty of tree cover to provide a bit of a shield from the elements.
You can also visit the ghost town of Kaymoor while you’re there for a hike through the old coal camp. A large part of the town was destroyed in a fire in 1960 and only a few years later, the mine was shut down.
Cathedral State Park
Head out to Preston County for a hike through an ancient hemlock forest. The trees there have grown up to 90 feet tall and up to 16 feet in circumference according to the West Virginia Department of Tourism.
The Giant Hemlock Traill will take visitors right through the old-growth forest. Click here for a trail map.
Of note: The park’s bathrooms close for the season in late October.