Posted by: RasmaSandra | August 25, 2018

West Virginia Off the Beaten Path

WV grave creek

Grave Creek Mound State ParkLocated in Moundsvill. At present it is listed as a historical site. Grave Creek Mound is the largest, conical mound in the Americas. It rises to a height of 62 feet from a base 240 feet in diameter. This mound contains an estimated 57,000 tons of earth. It was built about 2,000 years ago by Indians of the Adena culture.

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The structure was discovered in the early 1800s by white settlers. In 1838 the first excavation revealed two burial chambers, containing human remains, ornaments, tools made of bone, stone and shell, and a small tablet of sandstone inscribed with signs that have been interpreted as a kind of pre-Colombian writing. One can climb a spiral path to the top of the mound and see the Ohio River and the surrounding hills. Next to the mound is the Delf Norona Museum and Cultural Center which contains artifacts and other displays dealing with the mound, the Adena and associated cultures in the vicinity.

wv wild

West Virginia State Wildlife Center in French Creek is a park-like zoo one can see wild animals and birds mostly native to West Virginia. This 329-acre farm was started in 1923 to protect diminishing wildlife and to pen-raise animals and game birds for release into the countryside. In recent years this place has been devoted to education and recreation.

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Native wildlife wanders freely in the fenced natural habitats arranged along a mile-long loop walk. The most spectacular creatures to be seen are a mountain lion of formidable size, a very large black bear, elks and bison. There are also white-tailed deer, coyotes, raccoons, and ring-necked pheasants as well as wild turkeys, foxes, timber wolves, and opossums. There is also a stocked trout pond open to fishermen and a spacious picnic area.

wv cranberry

Cranberry Glades Botanical Area – In the four bogs that make up the glades are species of cranberries, bog rosemary, mosses, lichens and deep layers of peat that are native to the Canadian muskeg some 800 miles to the north. The botanical area encompasses 750 acres. There is a half-mile long boardwalk with interpretive signs which gives one a close view of two of the bogs with their cranberry vines, thickets of swamp rose and speckled alder, spongy mosses, grasses, sedges and flowers. Flowers seen here are showy swamp candle, orchids, trilliums, lady’s slippers, hepatica, jewelweed, and the carnivorous sundew. The adjacent 35,600 acre Cranberry Wilderness Area offers more than 70 miles of trails varying in length and there are primitive campsites for backpackers. Adjoining the wilderness area is the Cranberry Black Country whose 20,000 acres are laced with trails and abandoned roads suitable for hiking, riding and cross-country skiing.

wv twin

Twin Falls Resort State ParkHere you can find woodland streams, two waterfalls, a beautiful gorge, forests carpeted with ferns and mosses, rhododendron thickets, old fields, a rustic pioneer farmhouse and a small museum.  There are a number of trails and park roads. Along the Falls Trail you will find the Cabin Creek Falls which is about 20 feet high and tumbles down overhanging ledges to a green pool rimmed by rhododendrons.

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The path continues along Marsh Fork stream through a lightly wooded valley and then follows a climbing course above Black Fork stream to Black Fork Falls. The Twin Oaks Braille Trail offers a three-eighths-mile loop around a clearing in woodland of oak and beech. Blind people guide themselves by holding on to a cable guide rail along which they encounter plaques in Braille describing the environment. The Pioneer Farm has a restored log and chink farmhouse with outbuildings and small fields enclosed with split-rail fences. The park also has a restaurant, tennis courts, a golf course, a pool, a playground, camping areas and picnic spots. For relaxation and comfort there is the Twin Falls Lodge with 47 rooms available, indoor guest pool, fitness center and hot tub.

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  1. Omg that cranberry field looks out of the world!

    • That is why for each state I write about i also include the things most tourists can miss because they are well worth seeing

  2. Beautiful, Beautiful Photos. I can’t say anymore than that.

    • Thank you, Crystal. Glad you enjoyed the tour.

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