We are back once again on another West Virginia Very Important Park Person (WVVIPP) Road Trip. This road trip will finish out our WVVIPP Cards by taking us to West Virginia’s most Eastern Parks. Our trip this weekend will take us hiking in Lost River, show us breathtaking views at Cacapon, a walk through history at the historic towns of Berkley Springs, Harpers Ferry, and Cass Scenic Railroad, and taking a night drive through the forest of Kumbrabow. There is a lot of ground to cover, so let’s hit the road.
Lost River State Park
Our first stop on our last Road Trip of the year is Lost River State Park. After checking out the park office and getting a map, no cell service, we chose a trail to hike. Lost River is known for its Cranny Crow Overlook on top of Big Ridge Mountain, which offers a commanding view of five counties. We knew the one thing we would like to see in this park is the famous overlook.
While unloading the hiking gear from the vehicle, Leo found a small creek to toss rocks in to. Realizing that we are running out of time and needing to hike 5 miles to the overlook, we told Leo to come on. Leo started getting grouchy because he is enjoying throwing the rocks more than whatever Mom & Dad wants him to do. He refuses to get into the hiking backpack and begins hiking up the hill himself. We realize at this pace; we will spend all day at this one park leaving no time for the other five we already have planned. Quick making a u-turn we, headed back to the vehicle and onto the next park.
Cacapon Resort State Park
When we arrived at Cacapon, it was mid-day, and the park was bustling. After visiting the lodge, we quickly learned why. With lodging, restaurant, horseriding, wobble clay shooting, 18 hole golf course, swimming beach, paddle boat & kayak rentals, hiking trails, part of the George Washington Heritage Trail, and only being 10 miles from Berkley Spring, this place had plenty to keep one busy.
We explored the cabin area and took a short walk around the lake when we decided to head up the George Washington Heritage Trail. Atop the ridge is a beautiful overlook from Cacapon Mountain looking over the park. It is a busy overlook, but a beautiful place to have a picnic.
Berkely Springs State Park
Traveling to Cacapon, we learned that Berkely Springs, the town of Bath was about 10 miles up the road. We both have heard of this town named after Bath, England. George Washington visited here for five weeks, bathed and drank from its water, and saw countless people come and go for its medicinal purposes. This small town quickly became a Spa Resort, a first in the New Nation. Today you can visit full-service spas, the Roman Bathhouse, shop the artisan boutiques, listen to live music in the park and enjoy world-class dining and relaxation at one of their excellent lodging establishments. We will be back to personally experience all this beautiful little town has to offer, as a Parental Escape!
At this point, we decided to break away from our WVVIPP Road Trip and drive toward Harpers Ferry. Spending the night in Martinsburg put us close enough to have an early and wellrested start at Harpers Ferry.
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
At the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah river a historic community of Harpers Ferry resides. Winding through the town, the Appalachian Trail takes you pass Jefferson Rock, the John Brown’s Fort, and below the towering cliffs of Maryland Heights. We have a lot we want to see and do and only one day to do it in. Hopefully, we aren’t too overzealous with our schedule and can finish our WVVIPP Road Trip.
Cass Scenic Railroad State Park
Back on track and heading for Cass. Cass is a one-of-a-kind Park in the hills of West Virginia. This small historic logging town sits in the Valley of the Appalachian Mountains. Smoke billows from the stacks of 100-year-old trains. Miles of breathtaking views climbing to 4700 feet. There is no better way to spend a Fall Day in West Virginia. So, grab those tickets and, “All Aboard!”
Kumbrabow State Forest
Kumbrabow, named after the first early supporters of the Park, is a 9,474-acre forest sitting about 3000 feet. It was late when we passed through this area, but it was a beautiful night, and we took this opportunity to explore the forest.
The forest is lush with eight hiking trails, six cabins, and a 12 primitive campsites. Even though the campsites are rustic, they are well maintained and in a fabulous location. Sitting in the campground, you could hear the sound of a nearby stream and see the silhouette of Rhododendron bushes from the glow of the moon. It is a peaceful place to camp and be one with nature.
Finishing up a night drive through Kumbrabow, we headed over the Highland Scenic Highway to end our journey.
What a fantastic experience this has been, the last of our WVVIPP Road Trips. We have enjoyed so much of what this beautiful State has to offer and have found many new places to stay and explore. We can not wait until next year when we will be back at it again. New parks, new adventures, new memories. Let the journey begin.