Blackwater Falls State Park is one of the most photographed areas around the state. The falls are part of the Blackwater River, which has amber colored water plunging five stories and twisting through an 8-mile-long gorge. There are numerous lookout points to view not only the river and the falls, but also the half mile wide canyon. [45-minute drive] • Web site

Blackwater Falls

Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge The Nation's 500th Fish & Wildlife Refuge offers more than 20 miles of public-use trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing. [30-minute drive] • Web site

Canaan Valley Resort & Conference Center Located high in the Allegheny Mountains in nearby Tucker County, Canaan Valley is 14 miles long, five miles wide and is the highest valley of its size east of the Rocky Mountains. The valley is comprised primarily of a large wet land area, home to a wide variety of flora and fauna. The resort has a lodge with all the amenities, a golf course and a network of trails for hiking and biking. Wintertime offers downhill skiing, cross country skiing, ice skating, tubing, sleigh rides and snowboarding. [30-minute drive] • Web site

Cass Scenic Railroad State Park features old logging trains pulled by antique Shay engines. Part of the town of Cass has been restored as a living museum of railroading and lumbering. The trains operate from Memorial Day through Labor Day and on fall foliage weekends in October. [1-hour drive] • CASS Scenic Railroad State Park (304) 456-4300 • Web site

Cass Scenic Railroad

Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad Ride the rails of Cheat Mountain featuring the Durbin Rocket, the Salamander and Tygart Flyer Railroads. The train trip provides a round trip on a reconstructed stretch of C&O track between Durbin and Cass. The Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad (D&GV RR) (304) 456-4935) [45-minute drive] • Web site

Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad The Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad offers views and wildlife sightings along the shores of the South Branch of the Potomac and through The Trough. It is a diesel-powered, open-window coach train. The 3.5-hour round trip goes through the South Branch Trough, where many have sighted eagles. Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad 1-800-22-EAGLE [1-hour drive] • Web site

Dolly Sods Wilderness Area Located on the Allegheny Plateau, part of the Allegheny mountain range, Dolly Sods has a climate and environment characteristic of Canada and northern states. At the highest levels there are windswept heath barrens, grassy sods, sphagnum bogs and gnarled red spruce and yellow birch. At the lower elevations there are lush forests with an abundance of mountain laurel, wild azeleas and rhododendrons. Open year round Dolly Sods has breathtaking views, scenic overlooks, hiking trails, and a picnic and camping area. [30-minute drive] • Web site

Dolly Sods

Seneca Rocks is a magnificent rock formation that rises almost 900 feet above the North Fork of the South Branch River. Seneca Rocks Discovery Center for vistors to the area is at the base. Take rock climbing lessons and scale the mountain or reach the top of the rocks by taking a 1.3 mile trail up the west side of the mountain. There is evidence that several Indian tribes inhabited the area including the Algonquin, Tuscarora and Seneca, and the first European settlers, who began to arrive around the mid 1700s. Seneca Rocks is popular with rock climbers — both expert and beginner. [10-minute drive] • Web site

Seneca Rocks

Smoke Hole Canyon This area consists of steep forested mountain slopes, spectacular rock formations and caves. Listed in National Geographic as one of America's Hideaways, it is an area that offers excellent opportunities for paddling and fishing. The Smoke Hole kpack. The North Fork Mountain trail is 24 miles long: to the east is Smoke Hole, and to the west is Seneca Rocks. The terrain is rugged and steep, and the views are awesome. Because Smoke Hole is cut off from neighboring valleys, an atmosphere of remoarea also offers opportunities to camp, hike and bacte isolation permeates the area. [15-minute drive] • Web site

Smoke Hole Caverns Tours offered year round. Magnificent formations are the results of millions of years of intricate processes and trillions of drops of mineral laden water seeping through the limestone bedrock which leaves trace mineral deposits that over millions of years creates spetacular stalactites, stalagmites, helectites, flowstone, columns and dazzling multi-colored formations that you will see in the WV Underground. [15-minute drive] • Web site

Seneca Caverns
Located in the scenic Germany Valley, Seneca Cavers offers two guided tours. The first is through Seneca Cavern itself and is a one-mile tour with light. The other tour is through the Stratosphere Balloon Cavern. Portions of the path require use of a rope to navigate several steep slopes. Do some gemstone mining, play miniature golf, or have lunch in the dining room or porch overlooking the valley. Picnic areas and shaded pavailion available. Group discounts welcome for 10 or more guest. [15-minute drive] • Web site

Seneca Caverns

Spruce Knob-Spruce Knob Lake Spruce Knob is West Virginia's highest point towering at 4,861 feet. At the top, there is an observation tower that allows you to view the alpine landscape from one point. The terrain is not particularly steep, and the area offers excellent opportunities to hike and bike. Spruce Knob is also home to a 25 acre lake that is the highest lake in West Virginia. The Seneca Creek Backcountry can also be accessed from Spruce Knob, offering many miles of great hiking trails. [1-hour drive] • Web site

Spruce Knob

Spruce Knob Lake