10 Almost Heaven Trails to Trek Before Summer Ends
Every turn you make in Almost Heaven reveals an unmatched experience that you must see to believe. Whether you’re on the quest for a quick trek or a multi-mile adventure, plenty of trails in the rolling hills compliment your desired pace. Let these 10 country trails take you to new heights before the summer days start to fall.
1. Raven Rock Trail
Coopers Rock State Forest
If you’re looking for the perfect adventure, give this scenic, moderately challenging 2.6-mile trail a try. Located near Morgantown, Raven Rock Trail is very popular for hiking and boasts stunning views. The terrain surface is a combination of rock and mud, which can vary in difficulty depending on the amount of rainfall. Catching a sunset on this trail guarantees an even more stunning experience.
Hiking tip: Wear your best hiking footwear as steep inclines with rocky terrain can make your journey a bit more challenging.
2. Allegheny Trail Loop
Hambleton, West Virginia
Are you up for a challenge? The Allegheny Trail Loop in the Monongahela National Forest will certainly deliver with its 6.5-mile length. Traversing this serene, yet well-marked trail will bring you closer to Almost Heaven. Changes in elevation and scenery make for an interesting view of the surrounding forrest. Expect the first three miles to be more woodsy with several scenic water crossings as the remainder of the trail provides more of an open, airy feel. You can even spot the Olson Fire Tower on your hike, which is one of the few remaining fire towers in the Monongahela National Forest.
3. Seneca Rocks Trail
Spruce Knob – Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area, West Virginia
You will enjoy Seneca Rocks Trail if you’re seeking a moderately challenging trek to the end. This trail measures at 3.5 miles out-and-back, and this location is also a goldmine for avid rock climbers. The trail is well-maintained and is known for being a great spot to view the Potomac River. To stop for a break, there are plenty of benches along the trail. Your canine companion is welcome too as long as it is on a leash. Get a feel for the Spruce Knob – Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area as there are picnic areas and a visitor center at the trailhead.
4. Sunrise Carriage Trail
Charleston, West Virginia
Want to hike somewhere that’s not too far from the city? Sunrise Carriage Trail is the perfect hiking trail for that. This 1.4 mile trail features a gravel steady incline looping around large rocks and steep drop-offs, providing great views of Charleston as you work your way higher up the trail. With trees everywhere, the trail is mostly shaded and maintains a relatively cool temperature in the summer. You will know you have reached the top as you’ll see a lookout that captures the city. Parking access is made easy with a lot at the bottom as well as one at the top of the trail.
Hiking tip: There are side trails with steps that intersect the main trail. For quicker, but more challenging hike, give these a try.
Fun fact: You may bump into the Sunrise Carriage Trail cat while you’re there. Be sure to give your new feline friend a pet!
5. White Oak to Big Ridge Loop
Mathias, West Virginia
This 5.8-mile loop near Mathias, West Virginia, is a longer route for trail adventurers. White Oak to Big Ridge Loop is considered a moderately challenging route, taking just over three hours to finish. The trail provides beautiful views of the rolling hills of Lost River State Park. Other avid hikers, runners and dog walkers will likely make an appearance on your journey.
6. Beaver Dam Trail
Cabins, West Virginia
Dolly Sods Wilderness has an array of trails ranging in difficulty across its 17,000+ acres, but Beaver Dam Trail is the perfect choice for hikers who desire extreme views with less extreme time commitment. At just 1.4 miles out-and-back, Beaver Dam Trail takes about 40 minutes to complete. The rocky and muddy terrain makes for a challenging, yet rewarding experience once you reach some of the most scenic points on the trail. To get the most memories out of your hike, bring your friends, leash your dog and snap some pictures!
7. Cranberry Bog Boardwalk
Hillsboro, West Virginia
Cranberry Bog Boardwalk near Hillsboro is a great place for visitors looking for an easy hike. The boardwalk loop provides a nine-foot elevation gain and measures at 0.6 miles long. Visitors can also enjoy reading the educational signage to learn more about the ecosystem of the bog. Your furry friends will have to sit out on this hike as they are not allowed on the boardwalk. You will also encounter some small creeks on your walk, adding some natural white noise to your bond with Almost Heaven.
Hiking Tip: Make a trip here during the spring. April and May will reveal some of the state’s most beautiful wildflowers.
8. Spotted Salamander Trail
Charleston, West Virginia
Just six miles outside of Charleston in the Kanawha State Forest, the Spotted Salamander Trail is the perfect spot for hikers to complete a quick stroll. This paved loop measures at about 0.6 miles out-and-back and is open year-round. This is wheelchair accessible and makes a great starting point for beginner hikers. Enjoy taking in the naturally beauty of the forest, wildflowers, wildlife and the occasional spotted salamander.
9. Greenbrier River Trail
Frankford, West Virginia
The longest trail of its kind in the Mountain State, the Greenbrier River Trail provides a variety of terrain and scenery for you to embrace. The trail, which starts in Caldwell, used to be part of the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway, which was used to transport timber and other goods to businesses in the Greenbrier Valley. This is why hikers, bicyclists and horseback riders have a whopping 78 miles of trail to enjoy. You can spot hints of the former railway as the trail crosses 35 bridges, goes through two tunnels and passes several charming towns. The hiking surface is generally hard-packed and makes for an easy journey, no matter where you start or finish.
Hiking tip: Part of the Greenbrier River Trail runs through a National Radio Quiet Zone, so plan your trip accordingly if you plan to use your devices heavily on your hike.
10. Long Point Trail
Fayetteville, West Virginia
In Fayette County near Fayetteville, Long Point Trail is a must-hike for avid adventurers. The three-mile trail starts the Long Point Trail lot just off Newton Road and takes you through a thick, serene forest. The trail is well-maintained and allows for an easy hike. Along the way, you may come across other hikers and their leashed dogs as this trail is a local favorite. The stunning view of the famous New River Gorge Bridge at the end of this trail makes this hike a rewarding experience.
Hiking tip: The trail has some muddy sections that may be more difficult to avoid after heavy rainfall. Wear your best hiking footwear for an even better hiking experience!
Looking to hit up more trails? Get more inspiration from our free West Virginia Vacation Guide!
This post was last updated on September 6, 2023