About This Park

Found among the Mid-Ohio Valley’s rolling hills, lakes and streams, North Bend State Park offers a multitude of recreational facilities in a beautiful pastoral setting. Named for the horseshoe curve of the North Fork of the Hughes River, this year-round park is lush with fishing streams, hiking trails and abundant wildlife. Located near Cairo and Harrisville, North Bend State Park is best known for the 72-mile North Bend Rail Trail, which follows an abandoned B&O Railroad corridor with several tunnels along the way.

North Bend State Park

Things to Do


859 attraction is located outside of the park.
  • Biking
  • Boating
  • Camping
  • Fishing
  • Geocaching
  • 859
    Golf
  • Hiking
  • Horseback Riding
  • Swimming

History

Development of North Bend State Park began in 1951 when the state Legislature allotted funds to purchase land in Ritchie County. By 1954, the state had purchased 1,405 acres for the park. The park is located in West Virginia’s historic oil and gas fields. About 50 wells, dating from the 19th century, were once active in the present park area, and visitors may still see a few still standing around the park. As the park grew in popularity over the years, the lodge, campgrounds and recreational facilities were added to accommodate the growing number of visitors.

Accommodations

Lodging

North Bend State Park’s Lodge sits atop a breezy ridge and overlooks the woodland river valley below. It has 29 guest rooms, a full-service restaurant, meeting space and conference rooms, and a gift shop stocked with souvenirs.

Cabins

The park offers year-round rentals for its nine deluxe vacation cabins, some of which are pet-friendly. Constructed of solid cedar, the cabins have fireplaces, central heat and air, and are available in two, three and four bedrooms. The cabins are completely equipped for housekeeping with cooking utensils, dishes, linens, blankets, kitchens with modern appliances, and baths with built-in shower/tub units. Cabins must be rented for a minimum of one week during the summer season.

Camping

North Bend has two campground sites that will suit your every need. River Run Campground has 49 sites, 26 of them have electric hookups and is open from mid-April through Thanksgiving (the 4th Thursday in November). Cokeley Campground has 28 sites with electricity and water hookups. It’s open from May 1 and closes for the season on October 31. Each campground has ADA-compliant sites. West Virginia State Park campground reservations are available from Memorial Day through Labor Day each year. Campgrounds are open on a first-come, first-serve basis through October 31.

Dining

Before you leave, make sure you stop by the park’s lodge for some real home cooking! The North Bend Dining Room is open year-round and offers WiFi at no cost.

Trails

Access Trail to North Bend Rail Trail

This road bed provides access for hikers, bikers and horseback riders to the North Bend Rail Trail. Access Trail begins in the recreation area near Shelter #3 and ends at the rail trail. Featuring 11 tunnels and 32 bridges, the North Bend Rail Trail is 72 miles long with North Bend State Park situated at the midpoint. Parking is available.
Distance 0.8 miles

Barton’s Lake Trail

This trail can be accessed from the Overlook Trail, Jughandle Day-Use Area and the Cokeley Recreation Area equestrian trail head. It winds through the woods with varying grades and circles the lake.
Distance 3 miles

Castle Rock Trail

This short spur is located to the left of the dam off the Lake Trail. It features a large rock formation known as the Castle Rock. The trail has a moderate uphill grade with a rocky surface and good sight lines.
Distance 0.3 miles

Extra Mile Trail

This is a self-guided, paved interpretive trail equipped with braille and English interpretive signs. At the end of the trail is a small deck that sits back in the woods along an intermittent stream. From this trail, you may access the Overhanging Rock Trail and the Access Trail.
Distance 0.3 miles

Fisherman Trail

This trail can be used to access fishing along the lake shore. The trail begins by the Cokeley Recreation Area boat dock and runs along the lake shore to the Jughandle Day-Use Area.
Distance 1.3 miles

Giant Pine Trail

This trail begins and ends across from the lodge. It is a beautiful hike through a white pine thicket offering views of birds, deer and other wildlife. It features moderate grades, smooth tread and changing sight lines.
Distance 0.6-mile loop

Giant Tree Trail

This short, flat trail links the picnic area with the playground area. Large oak, beech and poplar trees may be seen. It features moderate grades, smooth tread and good sight lines.
Distance 0.5 miles

Gibbons Nature Trail

This is a short backtrack trail dedicated to the late, natural foods advocate Euell Gibbons, who was featured at early Nature Wonder (Wildfoods) Weekends held annually at the park. The trail begins beside the pond and ends near the swimming pool parking lot. It features a gentle grade with rough tread and good sight lines.
Distance 0.25 miles

Hibbs Cemetery Trail

This trail that begins in the pond area, follows the ridge to the Hibbs Family Cemetery and ends behind the lodge. It features a constant grade with changing tread and good sight lines.
Distance 1 mile

Nature Trail

This is one of the park’s longest trails. It begins and ends near the pond area, circling part of North Bend and its facilities. The trail goes through a variety of habitats and allows viewing of expansive fern beds, fungi and rocky outcrops. It features moderate to strenuous grades, along with changing tread conditions and sight lines.
Distance 4-mile loop

Overhanging Rock Trail

This trail begins at the entrance to the recreation area and ends at the Extra Mile Trail. The main view is a large rock formation in a cool ravine. It features moderate to strenuous grades.
Distance 0.5-mile loop

Overlook Trail

The trailhead is by the cabin supply building. Highlights include rock formations along the Hughes River and an overlook of the Hughes River Dam. It features moderate to strenuous grades with changing tread surfaces and sight lines.
Distance 1.2-mile loop

Southern Railroad Trail

This trail follows the old Harrisville Southern Railroad Grade that previously went from Cornwallis to Harrisville and now connects River Run Campground to the base of the Hughes River Dam. In the spring, abundant wildflowers may be seen on this trail.
Distance 1.5 miles

Tanker Run Spur Trail

Designed by mountain bikers, this trail provides a more rideable way out from the Nature Trail Loop. The grades change from moderate to flat, the tread is smooth single track and sight lines are good.
Distance 0.8 mile

Ten Acre Trail

This trail was designed by mountain bikers to be ridden in a counterclockwise direction and features one big climb and one descent.
Distance 3 miles

Union Ridge Connector Trail

This trail is a repurposed roadbed that connects the cabin area to Barton’s Lake Trail.
Distance 0.2 miles

Water Edge Trail

This trail connects the Cokeley Recreation Area boat ramp to the canoe launch area. The trial follows the lake below Cokeley Campground.
Distance 1.6 miles
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Additional Information

Nature and Recreation

Get the most out of your time in this beautiful park with various events! A year-round nature and recreation program highlights the park’s natural and cultural history. Programs run daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day, but special programs or tours can be arranged for groups.

North Bend Quest

Are you ready for a great adventure? Unique to North Bend State Park alone is the Quest program, an ala carte outdoor adventure, customized by you to meet your leisure time and interest. Build and package your quest by choosing from backcountry camping, canoe/kayaking, biking, backpacking, hiking, yoga, navigation, nature interpretation and other adventure activities at North Bend State Park.

For more information on the program, call Quest Leaders at 304-643-2931 or check out some of the programs below:

 

  • Rock Climbing or Rappelling Quest
    • Offered in:  April and September
    • Two hours of rock climbing or rappelling designed to introduce and improve skills. Learn about the gear, balance, basics, and safety while exploring the rock formations at North Bend State Park. This particular Quest includes one night of camping, equipment, guided instruction, taxes and fees for two individuals.
    • Package price for two: $175. Call for reservations at (304) 643-2931.

 

  • The Overnight, Self-Contained Cycling Tour
    • Offered in:  May
    • Bring a friend and explore the North Bend Rail Trail via bike! Once a main line for the CSX this scenic trail passes through 10 tunnels and 35 bridges along its 72-mile stretch and is part of the American Discovery Trail. This particular Quest includes one night of camping, a meal, camping equipment, guide, taxes and fees for two. Bike rentals are available for a fee.
    • Package price for two: $175. Call for reservations at (304) 643-2931.

 

  • Kayaking Excursion
  • Offered in:  June 2017 and again October 2017
  • A two-hour kayaking excursion designed to introduce you to and improve basic flat water skills.  Learn about the gear, balance, basic paddle strokes, and safety while paddling on the North Bend Lake. The North Bend Lake is tranquil and brimming with wildlife, birds, and aquatic wonders. This particular Quest includes one night of lodging for two, kayak rentals, instructional guide, taxes, and fees. This program is suitable for youth to adults trying new adventure; couples to kids and grands!
    • Package price for two: $175. Call for reservations at (304) 643-2931.

 

  • Mountain Biking Basics
    • Offered in:  August 2017
    • Two-hour mountain biking basics designed to introduce and build upon your mountain biking skills. Learn about maintenance, bike fits adjustments, paddling cadence, how to get the most out of your gears, controlling your speed, balance, the ready position, and simple obstacles. Great for people who are new to mountain biking. Instructors are patient and enjoy getting folks ready for trails. We are happy to assist with mountain bike rentals with an additional fee. This particular Quest includes one night of lodging, lessons, taxes and fees for two.
    • Package price for two: $175. Call for reservations at (304) 643-2931.

 

  • Backcountry Camping
    • Offered in:  July 2017
    • Spend the night in the wild at North Bend State Park! Hike to your backcountry camp site located in a remote area of North Bend State Park accompanied by a guide. This particular Quest includes backcountry camping dinner and breakfast. Also provided are demonstration and hands-on backcountry camping skill development and the principles of Leave No Trace.
    • Package price for two: $175. Call for reservations at (304) 643-2931.

 

Nearby Attractions

North Bend Rail Trail

Formerly an abandoned spur of the CSX system, the North Bend Rail Trail is part of the coast-to-coast American Discovery Trail. It stretches for 72 miles from I-77 near Parkersburg in Wood County, to Wolf Summit in Harrison County. The trail is easily accessible from North/South Interstates 77 and 79 and nearly parallels US Route 50 East and West.

Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park

Step back in time at this historic mansion filled with stories. The sternwheeler from Parkersburg’s Point Park will shuttle you to the historic island where Irish aristocrats Harman and Margaret Blennerhassett built their magnificent Palladian style mansion in 1800. The Blennerhassett home became a beacon of refined culture, taste and fashion in the wilderness — until events took a tragic turn with ties to American history. Be a guest of Blennerhassett Island and join the likes of George Rogers Clark, King Charles X of France, Johnny Appleseed, Henry Clay and Walt Whitman.

The Blennerhassett Museum of Regional History

The museum in Parkersburg showcases three floors of priceless historical relics and objects of art from the Ohio Valley’s past. The Blennerhassett Museum became the first professionally-operated, publicly-funded museum of regional history in west-central West Virginia.

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