Thursday, April 21, 2011

Birthday Trip to West Virginia

For my birthday, my boyfriend took me camping and exploring in West Virginia. Here was our trip:

  • leave Maryland, drive to Spruce Knob WV (4863 feet [1482 m] and the highest point in the state), decide not to sleep there because it's incredibly windy and cold and a thunderstorm seems to be brewing

  • camp for the night at Spruce Knob Lake Campground

  • Monday
  • check out Seneca Shadows Campground for future use

  • attempt to visit the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center, which contains artifacts from the nearby archeological dig; however, it was closed

  • visit the Green Bank National Radio Astronomy Observatory, view the exhibit, take the tour

  • visit the Cranberry Mountain Nature Center, view the exhibit, buy some wonderful books in the gift shop

  • check out Hawks Nest State Park

  • camp for the night at Babcock State Park

  • Tuesday
  • hear wild turkey gobbling when we wake up

  • visit New River Gorge National River, view the exhibit, walk the walkway to view the bridge, drive down along 82 to go under the bridge, hike the 1.8 mile Kaymoor Trail and view structures from past mining days, watch the coal trains go past, drive over the bridge

  • find the trailhead for the Endless Wall climbing area along the New River

  • have a picnic lunch on the tailgate of the truck

  • visit the Gauley River and reject a bunch of campgrounds nearby

  • visit Cranberry Glades Botanical Area

  • camp for the night at Tea Creek Campground

  • Wednesday
  • hear ruffled grouse drumming when we wake up

  • get lost and discover the wonderful Williams River, check out a campsite for future use (not marked on the map), buy a fishing license with a trout stamp, and fish for several hours

  • having left the campsite at 9:40 am, we now drive past the same campsite at 3:40 pm and head in the correct direction

  • get lost again and spend some time in the George Washington National Forest and the rolling hills of Virginia

  • arrive back home in Maryland
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