Celebrate National Trails Day with a hike at these state parks

Public invited to participate in guided hikes on June 1

The first Saturday in June is National Trails Day — an occasion designated by the American Hiking Society to draw attention to the many way hiking trails benefit the community. Trails connect us with nature. Hiking is great exercise. And studies have shown that time spent in the woods helps calm us and lift our spirits.

With that in mind, West Virginia State Parks and Forests have scheduled a series of guided hikes June 1 to encourage people to discover their local trails and share their excitement for the outdoors. Remember to bring water and wear comfortable, closed-toe shoes suitable for hiking or walking. You might also want to bring your camera or a pair of binoculars to capture some great nature scenes.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the hikes we have planned for National Trails Day. Come explore the trails with us!

Cass Scenic Railroad

Cass Scenic Railroad State Park‘s interpreter will lead a hike departing from the Company Store complex at 6:00 p.m. Questions may be directed to Kailey.J.Gibson@wv.gov.

Beech Fork State Park

Meet Beech Fork State Park naturalist at 1 p.m. at the campfire circle for a hike celebrating National Trails Day.

North Bend State Park

Family Trails Weekend at North Bend includes a National Trails Day Hike on Saturday and additional activities on Friday and Sunday, including guided hikes and walks, paddles on the lake and bike rides on the North Bend Rail Trail. Contact Naturalist and Environmental Educator Ken Zebo at kenneth.t.zebo@wv.gov or 304-643-2931.

Chief Logan State Park

Meet at 9 a.m. at the Activities Building to join Chief Logan State Park Naturalist Lauren Cole for a hike on the Rattlesnake/Coal Mine Trail. The hike is about 2.5 miles but the trails are not difficult. Hikers completing the event will receive a patch and certificate of accomplishment.

Tygart Lake State Park

Park Naturalist Jacob Jackson will lead Tygart Lake State Park‘s 2-mile hike from the campground beginning at 2 p.m. A hiking commemorative patch will be presented to each hiker at the conclusion of the activity. For details, call Tygart Lake State Park at 304-265-6148 or email jacob.a.jackson@wv.gov.

Kanawha State Forest

Meet Kanawha State Forest naturalist and interpreter Dave Dendler and volunteers at 9 a.m. in the Nature Center parking lot for your choice of hikes: The CCC Snipe Trail hike will take about an hour and a half; the Spotted Salamander Trail hike will take about 45 minutes and is an accessible trail.

Hiking and other activities

Of course, every day is trails day at West Virginia State Parks and Forests! If you’re not able to join a guided hike, stop by the park office and pick up a trail map. Our park staff is happy to answer any questions you may have about hiking or other activities.

We have hundreds of miles of trails for you to explore. Start planning your Almost Heaven getaway today!

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