Ohio River Water Trail

Parkersburg, WV

Thomas Jefferson once stated, " the Ohio is the most beautiful river on earth."

Established as a national water trail in October 2020, The Ohio River Water Trail encompasses several creeks and islands.
The river offers a sense of remoteness and natural beauty for paddlers.

The water trail meanders through several habitat types offering an abundance of wildlife to enjoy. Over 200 species of birds visit the river, and 100 species of fish live in the Ohio River. Both West Virginia and residential Ohio fishing licenses are honored on the Ohio River and the various backwaters, and on the Little Kanawha west of the Leachtown Lane access site.

There are more than 25 mammal species along the Ohio River and the Little Kanawha and 40 species of freshwater mussels add to the astonishing biodiversity of these rivers.

Three of the islands on the trail are part of the Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). We welcome visitors to pull their canoes and kayaks up to the shore and explore these islands on foot during the day. The Ohio River Islands NWR is working to protect, conserve, and restore the forest habitat on these islands. Water trail users can get more involved in conserving and restoring natural habitats along the trail by contacting the Friends of the Ohio River Island National Wildlife Refuge.

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