Bluestone National Scenic River

The Bluestone National Scenic River is a secluded yet majestic gorge, earning its place as a National Wild and Scenic River. This remarkable 10.5-mile section of river is remote, yet worth the journey.

Flowing into West Virginia via Virginia, the lower 10.5-mile section of the Bluestone has been designated a National River, as well as a Wild & Scenic River by the National Parks Service. This free-flowing wonder is a sight to behold, carving through the Appalachian Mountains through southern West Virginia. The Bluestone National Scenic River and its surrounding gorge are diverse in both wildlife and adventure opportunities. This remote gorge has limited road access and is best accessed through nearby Bluestone and Pipestem Resort State Parks.

More National Parks

Your Getaway Starts at a WV State Park

Nestled within the Bluestone River Gorge, two West Virginia state parks provide the ideal basecamp for your river adventures. Explore Bluestone State Park and Pipestem Resort State Park on your next Bluestone National River Getaway.

Bluestone State Park

Named for a lake of the same name, Bluestone State Park is a lakeside retreat perfect for those seeking a camping or cabin getaway.

Bluestone State Park

Pipestem Resort State Park

Pipestem Resort State Park offers endless adventure activities, such as ziplining and horseback lining, all within a serene mountain landscape.

Pipestem Resort State Park

Explore The Bluestone River By Activity

Flatwater Paddling

Journey down the pristine waters of the Bluestone River for unparalleled views of majestic beauty. Access to this remote river is available at Bluestone State Park and via the Pipestem Resort State Park aerial tram, In the height of summer the Bluestone’s water levels are often too low, so be sure to check with Pipestem Resort State Park for current water levels before planning your float. Additionally, rapids can be found in some sections of river, making pre-planning even more important.


No river getaway is complete without some time spent on the other end of a fishing rod. The Bluestone is a true angler’s destination, with smallmouth bass, rock bass and bluegill as the favored game fish. The clear waters of this river are great for fishing and are best enjoyed on the cooler days of the summer and year. Be sure to get your West Virginia fishing license before hitting the river.


In this lush gorge, adventure can also be found off of the water. Set out for a hike, by choosing from a variety of trails, each with different lengths and difficulties. The Bluestone Turnpike Trail is a moderate 9.5-mile option that follows the riverbank and is home to a diverse collection of plants and wildlife. Nearby Bluestone State Park and Pipestem Resort State Park have a variety of trails to choose from as well.


Within this stunning tract of land, you can find a wide variety of big and small game, including deer, turkey, bear, raccoons and squirrel. The portion of the Bluestone National Scenic River that permits hunting is the Bluestone Wildlife Management Area. Explore specific boundary information and guidelines by exploring the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources rules and regulations for WMAs. Don’t forget that hunting is not allowed within the nearby Pipestem Resort and Bluestone State Parks.

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