Fall Foliage Road Trip: W.Va. 26 to W.Va. 24

Fall Foliage Road Trip: W.Va. 26 to W.Va. 24

Watch in wonder as West Virginia’s mountains come alive before your eyes. A great area to view fall colors this week is along W.Va. 26 and W.Va. 24 in Preston County. This scenic route features the picturesque Cheat River and winds through charming mountain towns.

Begin your road trip in Bruceton Mills at Coopers Rock State Forest. At the main overlook, you can view fall color as far as the eye can see. Or hike the Ravens Rock trail for about 1.5 miles to another overlook with amazing views and where you can snap some vibrant panoramic photos.

If you’re feeling famished after leaf peeping, venture 15 minutes to the city of Morgantown to grab a bite to eat. Try out Mountain State Brewing Company or Morgantown Brewing Company for a relaxed atmosphere with delicious beer and food. Terra Cafe boasts healthier, homemade fare and also offers decadent desserts.

Make your way back to W.Va. 26 and drive to Albright, then follow the Cheat River to the old railroad town of Rowlesburg on W.Va. 72. If history is your jam, you have to make a pit stop at Cannon Hill— a historic Civil War battle site. Spend the night at the River House Lodge and experience true southern hospitality. You’ll be transported back in time to the early 1900’s, when Rowlesburg was a great railroad center.

Continue on your scenic drive by taking W.Va. 72 to U.S. 50 east and follow 50 to W.Va. 24 just past Aurora. Make a stop at Cathedral State Park— an ancient hemlock forest of majestic proportions designated as a National Natural Landmark. Marvel at trees that are up to 90 feet tall and 16 feet in circumference as well as 170 species of trees, ferns and wildflowers.

Most of the brilliant reds, oranges and yellows you will see on this drive are maples. While the dark red to purple is black gum and the red vines are Virginia creeper. Birch and poplar add more yellow to the forested hillsides.

Travelers visiting West Virginia to see fall color are encouraged to check the status of individual businesses before taking a trip. A statewide indoor face covering requirement remains in effect, and visitors are encouraged to maintain a safe social distance when traveling the state.

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This post was last updated on October 12, 2020