By Gail Marsh
The COVID-19 virus brought us many new and unique experiences: face mask fashion, months-long isolation, work-from-home, social distancing, and even schooling via Zoom! Most of us can hardly wait for these unique experiences to end! However, one good thing the virus brought? A new national park. Within the pages of the latest COVID-19 relief package was a ray of hope that made West Virginia the home to our newest national park. The New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is nothing short of spectacular!
This new national park is big and beautiful!
This park and preserve, located south of Fayetteville, West Virginia, includes 73,000 acres of beautiful Appalachian Mountains land. The national park will include 7,000 acres located in the heart of the river gorge, which includes 53 miles of free-flowing whitewater. So, this place is a whitewater rafter’s dream! The remaining 65,000+ acres are designated as a national preserve.
The New River Gorge National Park has something for everyone
Already a protected National River (since 1978), this park has many well-established amenities in place. You can mountain bike or hike the numerous trails, rock climb towering cliffs, kayak or raft, or cool off in one of many established swimming areas. Furthermore, you can picnic with your family, or expand your photography skills with the stunning landscapes and waterfalls. Or you can just relax and watch the many birds and animals that call this park home.
West Virginia park officials hope that receiving the national park status will increase the number of visitors to the park.
There are no campgrounds within the park. However, several primitive sites and camping areas can be found around the park. For a full list of these sites, click here.
Why not put the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve on your travel destination list for 2021? Perhaps we’ll see you there!