Falling for some of West Virginia’s lesser-known cascades.
Don’t go chasing waterfalls—or do. Summer is here. Add these waterfalls to your West Virginia bucket list this year for a splashy way to explore Almost Heaven.
Douglas Falls is a hidden gem located just outside Thomas on the North Fork of the Blackwater River. The water cascades into an emerald-hued lagoon and laps against rust-stained boulders. Plan a trip to visit, and find the falls by traveling on Douglas Road from Thomas to Rail Falls Road. Drive about a mile on this dirt road until you reach a bridge, then travel the rest of the well-worn route on foot.
The area offers great shooting opportunities for shutterbugs. Walk a bit downstream from the falls to snap a frame-worthy picture looking back toward them.
The trip to Douglas Falls also offers a history lesson. Alongside its route, Rail Falls Road has several old coke ovens used to convert freshly mined coal to industrial coke in the old days.
The rocks along the river and below the falls are stained from acid mine drainage upstream. Water quality has improved since the last mine in the area was closed in the 1950s.
After your adventure, head back into town for a latte at TipTop and snag a candy apple at Macy Lou’s Gourmet Apple Company.
Twin Falls Resort State Park boasts arguably some of the best waterfalls in the state of West Virginia. The two waterfalls known as Foley Falls and Black Fork Falls make their plunge in Wyoming County. A short one-mile hike on the Falls Trail Loop will get you right to them.
This is Blackwater Falls’ little—but equally beautiful—sister falls. Located near Davis and Blackwater Falls, it’s an easy trip when you’re in the area. You can hike behind Blackwater Falls State Park Lodge to get up close and personal, or see the beauty from across the gorge from the Pendleton Point overlook.
Located just outside of Fairmont, this cascade spanning Glady Creek of the Tygart Valley River is wide rather than high. Visitors enjoy picturesque views from the riverside bank—or if you dare, climb atop a nearby boulder.
Looking for an easy West Virginia waterfall to visit? Head to Cathedral Falls in Gauley Bridge. This waterfall is viewable from your car, although you’ll want a closer look once you get there. Don’t forget your camera. This is on
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This story was originally published in the Summer 2021 issue of WV Living.
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