Go Waterfall Hunting in the New River – Greenbrier Valley

Exploring the West Virginia Waterfall Trail

Celebrate West Virginias wildlife by discovering the natural waterfalls in the New River-Greenbrier Valley. This area is known for the New River Gorge Bridge, River, and National Park and Preserve, but this challenge digs even further into the regions historic mysteries. The challenge features nine stops, each highlighting some of the states most unique and breathtaking waterfalls. Experience this adventurous road trip that’s perfect for discovering hidden gems like abandoned corn mills, stunning outlooks or even the Kaymoor Mines.

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Dunloup Falls

Dunloup Falls

Thurmond, WV   ●   37.9381, -81.09773

Start your adventure in Thurmond, the heart of the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. Just five miles off US-19 you can already catch a glimpse of the breathtaking creek on Thurmond Road. After parking your car, make your way to the creek bed for a flawless view of the rippling 20 feet of Dunloup Falls. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, you can explore the Rend Trail, a smooth three-mile hike that never fails to deliver several stunning overlooks.

Finn’s Falls

Finn’s Falls

Oak Hill, WV   ●   37.97516168890902, -81.09748218633902

Once you’ve fully explored Thurmond, buckle up for the 10-mile drive to Oak Hill. Once you’ve entered ACE Adventure Resort, follow the road signs to Arbuckle Trail. You’ll come to a split about a mile into your scenic trek that leads to Finn’s Falls. The picnic tables and gorgeous views make it a perfect place to relax and enjoy a quick snack before your next 20-minute drive. 

Butcher Branch Falls

Butcher Branch Falls

Fayetteville, WV   ●   38.04581, -81.06818

Eight miles on Gatewood Road will bring you to Butcher Branch Trail where you’ll park your car in the Kaymoor area. Make a right labeled ‘climbers access’ when the trail forks. Slowly tread your way down the steep rocky path to experience the beauty of this hidden gem: Butcher Branch Falls. After your hike, drive back on US-19 N and turn left on Ames Heights Road to make your way towards Hawks Nest.

Mill Creek Falls of Hawks Nest

Mill Creek Falls of Hawks Nest

Ansted, WV   ●   38.12495, -81.10076

When you arrive on Hawks Nest Road, you’ll then explore the one-mile trail, Hawks Nest Rail Trail. The end of your hike leads to the remarkable 20-foot waterfall, the largest of the few on this route. The amazing view is enjoyable year-round and is picture-perfect for anyone’s social media page. On the hike back, you can view an old trestle bridge, an old mine on a side trail or even take a gander at the famous Hawks Nest overlook.

Turkey Creek Falls

Turkey Creek Falls

Ansted, WV   ●   38.12167, -81.11884

After settling back into your car, drive eight minutes towards Turkey Creek Falls. Take a breather as you watch the falls stumble 8 feet of staircase rocks, but don’t get too close as the area is known to be slippery. Once you’re finished, you can wander the Hawks Nest Gift shop or even take a stroll on the Cliffside Trail before your next drive. The trip to your next nature walk is a 13-minute drive through Gualey Bridge.

Cathedral Falls

Cathedral Falls

Gauley Bridge, WV   ●   38.15444, -81.1788

Cathedral Falls is one of the tallest waterfalls in the state and could be argued to be the most scenic. This waterfall is a staggering 60 feet where waters plummet over sandstone and shale cliffs. This particular falls is not only a sight to see, but is also easily accessible.

Kanawha Falls

Kanawha Falls

Glen Ferris, WV   ●   38.1512185, -81.2123302

To discover the next waterfall on your road trip, take Route 60 and you’ll already be able to see the outstanding hills of rolling water that make up Kanawha Falls. These falls are known for its small rolls that blend into the Kanawha River, which makes this destination perfect for fishing, canoeing, or even swimming.

Glade Creek Grist Mill Falls

Glade Creek Grist Mill Falls

Danese, WV   ●   37.9794629, -80.9468428

You’ll drive an hour towards Babcock State Park to discover the next stunning waterfall. Beneath the gristmill at Babcock State Park, water rushes to form Glade Creek Grist Mill Falls. You can also explore one of the most photographed mills in the United States and learn about the process that grinds corn into cornmeal.

Glade Creek Falls

Glade Creek Falls

Glade Creek, WV ● 38.1105599, -80.9281619

After you visit Glade Creek, you’ll drive from Danese towards Nallen, West Virginia. After the 20-minute car ride, you’ll venture out to the Glade Creek Trail found within the New River Gorge National Park. The waterfall’s spectacular views and plunging mountain waters make it a local favorite to visit. It’s located just 1 mile upstream of Glade Creek Campground, where camping and bonfires are never-ending.

If you would like to follow along this road trip, you can access the map here.

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This post was last updated on July 6, 2022