5 State Parks You Should Explore this Winter

Spark some life in your soul during the long winter months: Get out and fill your lungs with crisp, clean mountain air and discover the beauty of Almost Heaven, West Virginia. Explore nature under the barren canopies of a still, quiet forest. Clear your mind and re-energize in winter’s crystalline glow at these cold-weather-approved state parks.

1. Cathedral State Park

As the state’s largest old-growth forest, Cathedral State Park will make you feel like you’ve traveled back in time. Amble along densely wooded paths under the shelter of towering virgin hemlocks. Breathe in the freshness in the air and saunter to the symphony of cracking twigs and leaves beneath your feet. Set high in Mountaineer Country, this park is the ultimate meditative escape for anyone looking to find peace and serenity this winter.

2. Pinnacle Rock State Park

Rising 2,700 feet above sea level in southern West Virginia, the stunning rock formation that gives Pinnacle Rock State Park its name is made even more remarkable when the leaves are off the trees and the scale of this massive natural structure becomes more apparent. This peaceful roadside park near the southern border is host to many hiking trails, and the overlook atop the rock offers spectacular mountain views.

3. North Bend State Park

Tucked among the rolling hills, lakes and streams of the Mid-Ohio Valley, North Bend State Park is a tranquil escape from the gray winter of the city. Spend a quiet winter day exploring over 26 miles of hiking and biking trails that wind through the park. After a brisk day of exercise in the cold air, retreat to your own cozy cabin atop a secluded ridge in a white pine forest. Curl up by a warm, stone fireplace and let your cares melt away.

4. Cedar Creek State Park

Cedar Creek State Park is nestled in a quiet valley in the rolling hills of central West Virginia. Wander alongside the babbling creek and refresh your spirit with the smell of damp winter earth, pine, and cool air. Take a hike or bike ride, or explore historic attractions like a one-room schoolhouse and fully restored log cabin. Let your mind travel back to a simpler time where students followed the stream and trekked through freshly fallen snow to go learn the day’s lesson.

5. Cabwaylingo State Forest

One of the first parks established in West Virginia, Cabwaylingo State Forest is a densely forested wonderland in the southwestern part of the state. This secluded haven is a favorite hunting retreat during the winter seasons. Before your hunt, make sure you have a license. Enjoy some winter solitude and stay at one of the Vacation Cabins. Each cabin comes with a fireplace and modern amenities—perfect for a relaxing escape.

Almost Heaven offers four seasons of beauty. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to explore one of these unique state parks during the winter months!

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