West Virginia Off-Roading Adventures | Men’s Journal
This post was made in partnership with West Virginia Section of Tourism.
The wild and rugged landscapes of West Virginia have long served as a playground for ultimate thrill-seekers of each selection. From its rolling hills and rushing rapids to its pristine lakes and rambling forests, it’s no wonder this spot is identified as “Almost Heaven.” There’s no denying the Mountain Condition is a dream desired destination for everyone pursuing a comprehensive-throttle getaway—but a person of its most epic adventures is also a person of its most effective-held techniques.
Not several tourists notice it, but West Virginia is an incredible ATV and off-roading desired destination. The mountainous terrain produces best problems for unlimited backcountry escapades and a person-of-a-sort excursions. But the genuine jewel is the legendary Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program, a person of the major off-freeway car techniques in the globe.
one,000+ miles to investigate
The Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program consists of ten distinctive trailheads that encompass more than one,000 miles well worth of globe-course trails. Some even interlock, developing hundreds of miles of uninterrupted routes. The trails zigzag by way of stunning mountain landscapes, loaded with thrilling elevation variations, dramatic twists and turns, and jaw-dropping overlooks at each flip. It’s all undeniably extraordinary, but not just due to the fact of the network’s impressive size. The way the trails are marked, managed, and maintained make them a genuine do the job of all-natural artwork. These days, they are revered as the blueprint and benchmark for other trail techniques. And it’s also a person of the most effective approaches to investigate West Virginia’s raw magnificence and historic heritage.
Wondering exactly where the identify will come from? The moniker was derived from the famous feuding among the Hatfield and McCoy family members, which unfolded across West Virginia adhering to the Civil War. The Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program officially launched in October 2000, with three hundred miles of trails, and has expanded many periods given that its inception.
So, if you are looking for an autumnal escape with some horsepower, glimpse no even more than West Virginia. This off-road paradise is packed with spellbinding web-sites and coronary heart-racing routes for riders of each skill amount.
ten Trails in Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program You Need to Know
Opened in 2000, Bearwallow holds the honor of being a person of the unique 3 techniques of the Hatfield-McCoy Trails. And it’s even now as popular as at any time, thanks to its abundance of single-observe trails. Bearwallow accommodates adventurers of all encounter levels and presents a mix of uncomplicated using and more tough trails. It’s also the only trail open up to ORVs in addition to ATVs, UTVs, and off-road motorbikes, so it routinely appeals to a various established.
two. Buffalo Mountain
The most historic of the bunch is Buffalo Mountain, with its trails crossing by way of many web-sites exactly where the globe-famous Hatfield and McCoy feuds took spot. It also offers a bevy of single-observe trails, luring grime biking daredevils all 12 months long. The system conveniently connects to 3 ATV-welcoming towns in West Virginia: Matewan, Williamson, and Delbarton. From Buffalo Mountain, riders can also investigate interconnected trails like Satan Anse and Rockhouse—so the options are unlimited.
3. Satan Anse
Satan Anse links up with Rockhouse and Buffalo Mountain, earning it uncomplicated to explore more than three hundred miles of using possible. The majority of these trails skew on the more tough side, but it’s nicely well worth the problem. With immediate access to fuel, food items, and right away accommodations, Satan Anse is a good beginning place for any long-haul off-road adventure.
Another a person of the 3 unique Hatfield-McCoy trails, Rockhouse truly delivers the major single trail system, with more than one hundred miles in complete. Rockhouse isn’t the most effective for newbies and tends to draw the most excessive riders in search of a coronary heart-pounding encounter. In addition, it presents immediate access into the towns of Man and Gilbert, the two identified for their warm feeling of Southern hospitality.
five. Indian Ridge
In the marketplace for a multi-working day expedition? Then look at looking into Indian Ridge. It occurs to be a person of the major ongoing locations of the Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program network, connecting with the Pocahontas, Pinnacle Creek, and Warrior trails. Positioned in McDowell County in close proximity to the town of Ashland, this system presents a selection of trail sorts and is best for all trouble levels.
6. Pinnacle Creek
Acknowledged for its jaw-dropping scenery and scenic outlooks, Pinnacle Creek is image-excellent in the slide. It’s linked with 3 other techniques (Indian Ridge, Pocahontas, and Warrior), so it’s best for extended off-road escapes. Pinnacle Creek is also in an hour’s drive from other globe-course West Virginia adventures like hiking, whitewater rafting, and snowboarding in the course of the wintertime months.
Pocahontas is an additional perennial favorite. The trailhead can be tracked down in Coaldale, and architecture geeks flock to nearby Bramwell to witness the charming town’s selection of grand Victorian mansions dating back to the twentieth century. This solution tends to provide more durable trails, but there is also a fair share of much easier using options.
The aptly named Warrior trail system originates in the town of War—the southernmost town in West Virginia. Put together with the 3 former trails, it (along with Indian Ridge, Pinnacle Creek, and Pocahontas) produces the most considerable ongoing trail system east of the Mississippi. Jam-packed with scenic views, Warrior also accesses the ATV-concentrated town of Gary.
This freshly minted Cabwaylingo trail opened to riders in March 2021 and marks the to start with in Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program to be positioned in a state forest. Cabwaylingo Condition Forest sprawls more than about 8,three hundred acres in southern West Virginia. The identify is a mix of the 4 closest encompassing counties: Cabell, Wayne, Lincoln, and Mingo. Below, riders can investigate practically one hundred miles of pristine trails.
ten. Ivy Branch
Positioned just 20 minutes from West Virginia’s capitol town of Charleston, Ivy Branch is an additional newcomer to the trail system. Its good mix of demanding trails presents a genuine feeling of adventure for riders of comprehensive-sized, off-road vehicles like Jeeps and land cruisers along with ATVs, UTVs, and grime bikes.
What to Know In advance of You Go
It all appears rather epic, suitable? Well, just before you pack up your luggage and head off on your off-road quest, there are a number of more items to hold in thoughts. You can obtain the comprehensive checklist of procedures and laws on the web, but below are some starter strategies and tricks that’ll assistance make your excursion a full large amount more fulfilling.
Pack Your Protective Equipment
When it will come to any daring pursuit, safety normally will come to start with. These hoping to hit the trails ought to use a DOT- or Snell-authorized helmet, along with good eye safety. It also can help to bring along water-resistant apparel, more than-the-ankle footwear, gloves, and a good deal of h2o, sunscreen, and insect repellant.
Never Ignore Your Allow
User permits are needed for all motorists and passengers on the trails. You can purchase a seasonal person allow on the web ($fifty for non-citizens), or in-individual at select trailheads, at the Hatfield-McCoy Trails Welcome Middle, and at more than one hundred authorized retail destinations in the course of West Virginia. Check the Trails Heaven web site for all the specifics.
Regard the Age Limits
Any operator or passenger more youthful than 16 ought to be below the immediate supervision (and in eyesight) of their guardian or guardian at all periods while on the trails. No young children more youthful than six decades old are allowed on the trails.
Stick to the Principles
Positive, it can be fun to problem the procedures at times, but not on the trails. Obey all indicators, gates, limitations, and hold to the marked trails (they are only open up in the course of daylight several hours). You are going to also be expected to avoid littering and lights fires, and you need to go away your glass containers at residence.
Generally Function Responsibly
There’s a large amount of liberty on the trails, but don’t split that rely on. Riders are expected to run at reasonable speeds and continue being in control of their car at all periods. And be absolutely sure to hold your eyes peeled for oncoming site visitors, in particular when it will come to blind curves and hills. No alcoholic beverages can be eaten or possessed by everyone accessing the trails. It goes without the need of stating, but don’t consume and drive—you’ll only produce a dangerous natural environment for yourself, your passengers, and other riders.
Seize a Trail Map
No issue how fantastic you are with instructions, we suggest picking up a trail map when you snag your allow. You can also obtain maps stashed at the trailheads. All the trails are nicely-maintained and evidently marked, but you’ll want to have a map on-hand, just in situation. You can also obtain electronic trail maps, if you prefer.
Journey into Town
Whilst it’s tempting to stick to the trails all working day long, you’d be cheating yourself if you don’t acquire some time to investigate the encompassing towns. Basically all the towns all over the trail system are historic, so be absolutely sure to carve out some time to verify out the regional web-sites, grab some food items, and store for the excellent souvenir. You are going to be glad you did.
Prepare a Slide Getaway
The trails are incredible all 12 months long, but they acquire on a certainly unforgettable ambiance in the slide. From the trails themselves to the encompassing towns, it all bursts to everyday living with stunning slide foliage and storybook charm in the autumn months. Want to time your excursion completely? Check out the West Virginia Slide Color Map.
Extra Off Roading Destinations
Yes, the Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program gets a large amount of (substantially-deserved) hoopla, but the off-road adventures don’t quit there. If you are browsing for an additional way to set the pedal to the metallic, then you are in luck, due to the fact West Virginia presents a good deal of other alternatives to get off the beaten path and investigate. We have rounded up a number of suggestions underneath that are well worth introducing to your checklist.
Burning Rock Off-Street Park
Positioned just a number of miles from the town of Sophia, Burning Rock Off-Street Park encompasses ten,000 acres with more than one hundred miles of trails suited for each kind of rider. Problem spans the spectrum from family-welcoming operates like Tams Loop to the “enter-at-your-individual-risk” solution, The Amazon. Bring your bicycle, ATV, UTV, or Jeep to see it all for yourself. Or you can choose to vacation light-weight and acquire edge of their on-website rentals. Right after, spend the evening at a person of their rustic rental cabins, just a stone’s toss from all the motion. They also provide glamping accommodations, platform tents, RV web-sites, and more.
New River ATV
Positive, the New River Gorge region is famous for its whitewater rafting, but this slice of Practically Heaven is also a kick-ass desired destination for off-road fanatics. New River ATV is an knowledgeable clothes shop with major-of-the-line equipment that’ll assistance any rider investigate the area’s most effective hidden gems. From novice to professional, there is some thing for every person to explore.
The Greenbrier Off-Street Adventures
The Greenbrier (identified affectionately as “America’s Resort”) has a sparkling name, boasting a guestlist brimming with presidents, royals, and celebrities alike. But in spite of its refined legacy, they also know how to get down and soiled. White Sulphur Springs is a hub for outdoor adventure, and their private 11,000-acre vacation resort presents the excellent playground for off-road fanatics. Hire tricked-out Jeep Wranglers or Polaris RZRs to cruise across creeks and whip all over towering hills with Greenbrier Off-Street Adventures.
Chaos Off-Street Park
Craving a comprehensive-throttle adventure that you’ll blabber on about for many years to arrive? Then guide it more than to Chaos Off-Street Park, positioned in Capon Bridge. The park handles 400 acres of West Virginian wilderness and has all the makings for the adventure of a life span. Deep mud pits, scattered rock gardens, and miles upon miles of seemingly unlimited mountain trails make this a ought to-see place.
These in search of a more family-oriented encounter need to verify out Mountwood Park. Nestled in the picturesque Mid-Ohio Valley region, this region park opened Mountwood ATV Adventures in 2014. This area consists of around 20 miles of thrilling, nicely-marked trails that vary in grade from uncomplicated to moderate (with a couple of tough alternatives for more seasoned riders). There’s also a spacious ignore that serves up extraordinary panoramas of the mountains ablaze in all their autumnal glory. Right after, investigate the park’s fifty miles of hiking, biking, and horseback using trails splash all over in the fifty-acre lake or spend the evening at a person of the 87 campsites.
In which to Remain
Right after an adrenaline-fueled working day expended navigating the trails, you are likely to want a comfy spot to relaxation your head. Luckily for us, West Virginia has no scarcity of lodging alternatives to look at. From cozy cottages to rugged state park campgrounds, there is some thing to suit no matter what you are browsing for. Below are a number of strategies to get the ball rolling, but don’t ignore to investigate all the other lodging alternatives waiting around for you in Practically Heaven.
Appalachian Outpost (Lyburn)
Appreciate the refreshing air and broad-open up areas of Appalachian Outpost. This retreat offers twenty five rustic cabins that are sparkling clean up and geared up with all the modern day comforts of residence (like free of charge high-speed net). Below, privateness is crucial, and just about every cabin presents a furnished kitchen area, 3 independent bedrooms, and two comprehensive bathrooms. But the genuine treat will come when you venture outside of the cabin partitions. The compound overlooks the Guyandotte River along with amazing views of the majestic mountain scenery. It’s positioned in a quarter-mile of the Rockhouse Trail Program, which connects to the Satan Anse and Buffalo Mountain trails.
Chief Logan Condition Park (Logan)
Positioned in the coronary heart of West Virginia’s southern coalfields, Chief Logan Condition Park presents visitors an authentic Mountain Condition escape. Below, it’s all about reconnecting with Mother Mother nature and appreciating the encompassing all-natural magnificence. The campground consists of 26 models in complete, several of which have comprehensive h2o, sewage, and electric hookups. It’s a person of the most frequented services in the West Virginia Condition Parks Program, likely aided by its proximity to the Hatfield-McCoy trails. Other treasures below include a swimming pool, an outdoor amphitheater that hosts seasonal performances, a unique Museum in the Park attraction, quite a few picnic web-sites, and more.
Buffalo Trail Cabins (Bluefield)
Tucked away in Bluefield, Buffalo Trail Cabins is the unofficial headquarters for ATV fanatics. Positioned just 3.five miles from the Pocahontas trailhead, visitors can virtually start out kicking up grime in a issue of minutes. The serene placing consists of 26 cabins (ranging from single-room alternatives to six-bedroom rentals) and six comprehensive-hookup RV web-sites. For an even more Instagram-deserving remain, guide a person of their seasonal rustic treehouse campsites, or snag an ultimate treehouse (complete with all the bells and whistles). When you will need to gasoline up for an additional daring working day ahead, swing by their on-website cafe and brewery.
Twin Falls Vacation resort Condition Park (Mullens)
Established along a charming wooded ridge in the craggy mountains of Wyoming County, Twin Falls Vacation resort Condition Park presents a certainly idyllic getaway that’s also conveniently positioned to the Hatfield-McCoy trailheads. Guests can pick out among paying out the evening at the 47-room lodge, scheduling a person of the fourteen secluded vacation cabins, or placing up camp a person of the fifty web-sites (twenty five of which provide electric hookups). The park also capabilities an eighteen-gap championship golfing class, swimming pool, and the absolutely practical Pioneer Farm, which offers guests a peek at what everyday living definitely appeared like for early frontier settlers.
Cabwaylingo Condition Forest
The Cabwaylingo Condition Forest encompasses around 8,three hundred seriously forested acres in southern West Virginia. Below, guests can get cozy in a person of the 13 legacy cabins, created from stone or wooden frames. For a more modern day remain, there is also a standalone vacation cabin geared up with a fire, tv, absolutely geared up kitchen area, outdoor firepit, and heating and air conditioning. Most cabins are readily available from mid-April by way of the end of October. ATV, UTV, 4×4, and grime bicycle riders will have a blast venturing along practically one hundred miles of unspoiled trails.
So there you have it—everything you will need to know just before you go and embark on the off-road adventure of your desires. The Hatfield-McCoy Trail Program is open up 365 times for every 12 months, so you can approach your excursion when you want (but we remarkably suggest squeezing in a stop by as soon as feasible to catch the unbeatable slide foliage use this map to verify the status). For even more vacation strategies and inspiration, you can get a free of charge West Virginia vacation guideline mailed straight to your doorway, or click on by way of the electronic variation. And for an instantaneous hit of wanderlust, verify out the #AlmostHeaven hashtag on social media to see genuine-time person-created content material from the trails and outside of.
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