We decided this year to drive from Iowa to West Virginia in mid-December to have an early Christmas with our daughter and her family. They drove from the Washington DC area to meet us in Blackwater Falls State Park. We stopped in Indiana on our way to revisit and hike a state park we enjoyed when we first met in 1980. You can see that story here. After our WV visit, we stopped at a state park in Ohio to hike again. We planned to see that park several years ago. A death in the family prevented that visit. You can see the Ohio hike here.
Winter hiking is new to us. So far, it has been a lot of fun. We are cautious. We don’t hike in deep snow yet. Extreme cold (below about 15°) is not appealing to us. Our hiking poles, waterproof boots, and balaclavas are our main gear. A local outdoor store will rent snowshoes by the day. That way we can tell if we want to buy some.
This post is about four hikes we enjoyed while at Blackwater Falls SP. We had a great time with our daughter, her husband, and our five grandkids. But they aren’t the focus of this post. Sorry.
The lodge had few people staying there mid-week when we arrived. Built in the 1950s, it offers affordable guest rooms, a large room with tables, easy chairs, and fireplace, a game room, a pool and hot tub. The restaurant is excellent and reasonably priced. We arrived early afternoon, after driving one of the most winding roads along route 50. The stretch from Grafton to Aurora was amazing in its twists and turns. We got our room, ate some lunch, and had a nap.
After our nap, the clock said it was a little after 4 pm. Just enough time to drive the short distance to the west and hike a 1/4 mile trail to a popular promontory point overlooking the valley of the Blackwater River. Perhaps we could be there just at sunset. So we set off on the trail.