Hope everyone had a wonderful week last week. This heat is really starting to get to me but my favorite things about this time of year are the Lightning Bugs (aka Fireflies) and the Thunderstorms. I have always loved thunderstorms and some of my best memories are sitting on our front porch back home with my parents watching them. Oh, the good old days when I had no responsibilities but school. 😦
Before we start today’s topic I would like to wish all the Fathers, men who have stepped in to be Fathers a Happy Fathers Day.
Today’s topic is about one of the state parks in the great state of West Virginia that I love to visit. Blackwater Falls State Park is in Davis, WV in Tucker County. The main fall stands 62 feet and is the largest fall in the state of West Virginia. The name of the parks is for the falls of the Black Water River. The water has an amber color to it and after plunging five stories from the main fall travels through an 8-mile-long gorge. The amber water color the park is known and named after comes from the tannic acids from fallen hemlock and red spruce needles. The park itself protects 2,358 acres of forest. There is a trail to this fall along with a boardwalk and steps down to several landings near the falls.
The park features many nature trails along with wheelchair-accessible trails. One of the main overlooks in the park is Lindy Point located near the park lodge. The park also features several other smaller falls on Falls Run which is a multi-ledge 30-foot drop. Shay Run which features the Elakala Falls which drop 40 feet and are also located near the lodge. The Pendleton Run Falls have a 20-foot drop plus cascades above and below. These falls are accessible by trail. As many times, as I have been to this wonderful park I have only been to the Elakala Falls and the Blackwater Falls.
The park began in the early 1930s with various leases and donations to the state from the West Virginia Power and Transmission Company, which owned most of, the canyon. The first lease began in 1934 and established 446 acres overlook at the head of the canyon which featured the mains falls itself. In 1937 the park was formally established as a State Park, and the rest of the 1, 912 acres were donated in 1953 and 1955 by the power company, the US Forest Services donated 744 acres in 1957 and the last donation of 100 acres from Allegheny Wood Products was received in 2000. The rest of the property was purchased by two state Governors 2000 the West Virginia Governor Cecil Underwood purchases 25 acres and added it to the state park along the second governor Bob Wise buying an additional 500 acres to add to the park in 2002.
Up until the mid-1950s the park was day-use only and in 1955-56 25 cabins were constructed, a fishing/skating lake was built. In 1957 the park lodge which features 55 rooms was opened. By 1960 the park was seeing annual visitor numbers around 240,000 with 18,000 staying overnight. The lodge is still in service today along with 39 cabins, 65 campsites, a restaurant, picnic areas, pavilions, and a Nature Center. Other activities found in the park are mountain biking, cross-country skiing, Hiking, and Fishing in Pendleton Lake and Blackwater River.
The park is a perfect place to capture your fall photos, and if I am ever brave enough I would love to get out to the park in the winter for some snow photos. In the spring you can capture the Mountain Laurel and Rhododendron blooming.
Hope you enjoyed this little history lesson on this state park. I know I enjoyed learning a lot about the park in my research. You never realize what went in to make such a wonderful place to visit and take things for granted. I know I do. Hope you have a wonderful day and would love to hear from you.