West Virginia camping

West Virginia Camping | Ultimate Guide To The Best West Virginia Campgrounds

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With more than 1,500 campsites at 27 different parks West Virginia Camping is easy. Renowned for its hot springs, natural beauty, Civil War history and grand resorts. But it is often considered one of the more scenic states in the nation, and several of the most beloved sights in the Mountain State center around its natural beauty. The state has an extensive number of famous Civil War sites, waterfalls, rivers, bridges and caverns. West Virginia is also, surprisingly, home to some of the top conspiracy theories in the county, including the infamous “mothman” appearance in 1967 in Point Pleasant, and the most widely known photo of Bigfoot in a West Virginia forest.

West Virginia Camping

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Mothman Prophecies

The Mothman was a humanoid like creature that appeared off and on in Point Pleasant, WV in the late 60s. It appeared near The Silver Bridge, which connected Point Pleasant with Gallipolis, Ohio, shortly before the bridge collapsed on Dec. 15, 1967 during rush hour traffic. The collapse killed 46 people. An investigation found that the bridge was carrying much more weight than it was designed for and that it was poorly maintained. Some people believe the collapse was caused by the Mothman, a humanoid moth-like creature that was seen in the area before the collapse. The events of the time were turned into a bestselling book called The Mothman Prophecies, and then later, in 2010 into a movie by the same name. Point Pleasant keeps the mothman legend alive with a museum, a statue in the town square, and the annual Mothman Festival every third September.

 

Bigfoot

West Virginia Camping

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West Virginia is 16th in the country for reported Bigfoot sightings —about 100 a year experts say. The Monongahela National Forest, Greenbrier and Pendleton counties have the highest numbers of encounters, but reports come from all over the state.

There are so many sightings that Animal Planet did a show there.

Their film crews came up with enough scary evidence to claim Bigfoot or Sasquatch, may indeed be living in the mountains of West Virginia. The state is home to a variety of bigfoot sightings by everyone from hunters and campers, to professionals and law enforcement.  A West Virginia medical professional claims he has encountered and seen Bigfoot in the wild and has even written a book on his experiences. He’s appeared on Animal Planet with his evidence and stories.

Where to Go Camping in West Virginia 

If you’re not quite sure where to camp in West Virginia, the West Virginia Department of Tourism offers a variety of choices, from luxurious resorts to campgrounds. They have a list of specialty camping accommodations in all regions, including a 1900s caboose in Durbin, WV, a teepee at Seneca Rocks, and even facilities that cater to riders of the Hatfield-McCoy Trails. 

West Virginia Camping – New River Gorge

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Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Phone: (304) 465-0508

The New River is actually one of the oldest rivers on the continent, and one of the most popular attractions and destinations for millions of campers, hikers, and rafters. As it flows into West Virginia, the New River cuts through the Appalachian Plateau, forming the New River Gorge. Recreational opportunities are all around it: hiking, zip-lining, hunting, fishing, bird watching, camping, biking, and rock climbing.

One of the state’s most photographed sights is the soaring New River Bridge, the longest steel span in the hemisphere and the nation’s third highest, 876 feet above the canyon floor. The National Park Service maintains 70,000 acres of parklands along the river, and at Hawk’s Nest State Park, you can ride an aerial tramway into the bottom of the New River Gorge, a prime spot for whitewater rafting. South of New River Gorge National River at Bluestone State Park there is hiking, fishing, camping, and boating on the large lake behind the Bluestone Dam. There are eight campgrounds in the New River Gorge:

  • Stone Cliff Beach
  • Army Camp
  • Grandview Sandbar
  • Glade Creek
  • War Ridge/Backus Mountain
  • Brooklyn
  • Thayer
  • Gauley Tailwaters

West Virginia Camping – Stone Cliff Beach

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McKendree Road

Oak Hill, WV 25901

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Stone Cliff Beach Campground is a primitive, free, first come first served campground adjacent to the New River. There are 6 walk-in and one drive in campsite available. Easy access to the river for fishing and swimming. Located off Route 25 near Thurmond. Follow the Stone Cliff signs. There are toilets available, but no water.

West Virginia Camping – Army Camp

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Mailing Address

PO Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Email: neri_interpretation@nps.gov

Camp Prince, or Army Camp as it’s known locally, lies in the middle of New River Gorge National River. Along this section of the river, the New flows west, north, and east, all within a half mile. It was first used as farmland, but around 1950 the U.S. Army established a training and testing ground for the quick assembly of floating bridges, operated by the 1428th Engineer Float Bridge Company. These bridges were used for stream crossings of military equipment and personnel. There were usually between 100 to 150 soldiers stationed here at any one time. The temporary bridge building came to an end in 1957, and the camp closed for good in the early 1960s.

The land was turned over to the National Park Service and included in New River Gorge National River and is now used as a campground and a day-use area. Along the riverbank, the only remains of Army Camp are the foundations and concrete floors of the eleven buildings and a concrete water tank that were utilized by the soldiers.

Located on an unmarked dirt road, off Route 41 near Prince. Coming from Beckley, it is the first left after crossing the New River. There are 11 drive-in tent and RV sites, some with partial shade. There are picnic tables, fire rings, and a level pad at each site.

Grandview Sandbar 

West Virginia Camping – Glade Creek Road Campground

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PO Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Campsite: Beaver, WV 25813

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Email: neri_interpretation@nps.gov

The campground is less than a mile from a paved road down a gravel road. Located on Glade Creek Road, off Route 41 near Prince. Coming from Beckley, Glade Creek Road is a well-marked right hand turn just before crossing the New River. Follow the gravel Glade Creek for one mile, then turn let down a short winding road to the campground.

There are 10 wooded sites for tents and small-medium sized RVs (no larger than 25 feet), 6 walk-in tents sites, and 2 accessible sites (with handicapped permit displayed) by the river. A latrine is present but no running water. There is also a beach. Grandview Sandbar is for smaller rigs only. First, the campsites don’t have pull-thrus. Second, the last bit of road into the campsite is steep gravel and has a hairpin turn. You may stay 14 days at Grandview Sandbar. There is boating and fishing in the river.

Amenities:

  • Fire Ring
  • Near Water
  • Picnic Tables

West Virginia Camping – Glade Creek

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PO Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Email: neri_interpretation@nps.gov

Glade Creek is located at the end of Glade Creek Road, off Route 41 near Prince. Coming from Beckley, Glade Creek Road is a well-marked right hand turn before crossing the New River. Follow Glade Creek Road for six miles to the campground. There are six walk-in tent sites and five drive-in sites for tents or small-medium RVs. There is one accessible site (with handicapped permit displayed).

Nearby is Glade Creek Trail. This 5.6 mile trail follows an abandoned narrow-gauge railroad along Glade Creek. The trail offers an enjoyable stroll at a very moderate grade, and is popular with hikers of all ages and abilities, as well as being a favorite destination for those in search of swimming holes. A number of cascades and small waterfalls add to the trail’s attraction, and provide a challenge for the whitewater kayaker. The lower part of Glade Creek is also a WV Catch & Release trout stream, so bring your fly rod or fishing pole along with you. A footbridge crosses Glade Creek three miles up from the New River.

West Virginia Camping – War Ridge/Backus Mountain

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PO Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Email: neri_interpretation@nps.gov

From Beckley, take Highway 41 to McCreery, cross the river, and continue towards Danese. Turn right onto Backus Mountain Road, drive approximately 1 1/2 miles and turn right at the gravel road (SR 22/7). The campground is on your right approximately 1/2 mile off Backus Road. Open year round, there are eight drive-in sites for tents or small RVs. RVs are 20 ft maximum length. There are grills, toilets, and it’s pet friendly.

 

West Virginia Camping – Brooklyn

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PO Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Email: neri_interpretation@nps.gov

Take Gatewood Road to the Cunard turnoff, between Oak Hill and Fayetteville. Turn, then go 1.8 miles, then follow signs to Cunard River Access. Bear right through the boat launch parking lot and continue upstream for a mile. Sites are on the left. There are four shaded walk-in sites and one drive-in site for tents only. Camping is free, and the campground is open all year. No RVs, tents only camp. Tent sites have a grill. There are toilets, and the campground is pet friendly.

West Virginia Camping – Thayer

West Virginia Camping

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PO Box 246, 104 Main Street

Glen Jean, WV 25846

Phone: (304) 465-0508

Email: neri_interpretation@nps.gov

This is a nice open campground underneath mature oak and hardwoods, next to Slater Creek. Take Route 25 from Glen Jean for six miles towards Thurmond. Turn right at the intersection just before the bridge across the river and continue towards Stone Cliff. At Stone Cliff, cross the New River bridge and continue upstream on Route 25 (which becomes unpaved at this point) towards Thayer. At Thayer Church, turn downhill off Route 25 to the bottom. Cross the railroad tracks and turn left towards the campground.

 

West Virginia Camping – Gauley Tailwaters

West Virginia Camping

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Summersville, WV 26651

Phone: (304) 465-0508

The Gauley Tailwaters campground is located at Gauley River National Recreation Area. From Route 19 at Mt. Nebo, take Route 129 west across the dam, then turn left at the river access sign. Bear right through the parking lot to the campsites.

There are 18 drive-in sites for tents and RVs. Camping is allowed throughout the park on federally-owned lands unless otherwise posted. The National Park Service does not own most of the land within the boundaries of the Gauley River National Recreation Area. Be aware of private property and respect the rights of landowners. Unless developed sites are offered, camp sites must be at least 100 feet away from any river access area, developed trail head area, top edge or bottom of any cliff, park structure or historic ruin. The maximum stay is 14 days at the same camping area. There is no camping fee.

Open fires are allowed where campfire receptacles are provided and must be contained in these designated containers. Campfires are prohibited within 100 feet of any river access area, developed trail head area, top edge or bottom of any cliff, park structure or historic ruin. Use only dead and down wood. Be sure your fire is out and cold before leaving. Do not burn tires or drive nails into trees. The use of chain saws is prohibited.

West Virginia Camping – Harpers Ferry

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Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

PO Box 65

Harpers Ferry, WV 25425

Phone: (304) 535-6029

The town of Harpers Ferry, where the Shenandoah River meets the Potomac River, is the site of a famous Civil War–era raid. Surrounded by a national historical park, the town looks as it did in the 19th century, with many of the buildings open to the public as living-history museums. Ranger programs, exhibits, museums, and the Harpers Ferry NHP Visitor Center all make spending a weekend, or even a day in Harpers Ferry a fun and educational experience.

The visitor’s center is located at the main entrance of the park at 171 Shoreline Drive, Harpers Ferry, WV 25425 and is open year-round from 9am to 5pm. It is staffed by park rangers and volunteers. From this location visitors may park their vehicles and take a shuttle bus to the Lower Town district of the park. There are a variety of campgrounds – primarily public – around Harpers Ferry.

 

West Virginia Camping – Harpers Ferry Adventure Center

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37410 Adventure Center Lane

Purcellville, VA 20132

Phone: (540) 668-9007

Email: info@hfadventurecenter.com

If you’re looking for adventure and lots and lots of activities to accompany your camping experience, you can’t find more fun anywhere. Harpers Ferry Adventure Center lives up to its name with river rafting, zip lines, hiking, tubing and rock climbing trips. Oh. And they have a campground on site.

Campers get their choice of mountaintop or riverside sites, or a rental cabin. Each tent site comes complete with a picnic table, fire ring, charcoal grill and a short walk to our new bathhouse and our Bear Mountain Market. No pets allowed and guests must have 4-wheel drive to access camping area with personal vehicles or they may hike a switchback trail down to their site.

Each campsite comes equipped with a picnic table, fire ring and charcoal grill. The riverside tent area does have portable outhouse access and their new bathhouse, the one with hot showers and indoor plumbing, is only a 10 minute hike away. All campsites are located on a private riverfront, secured each evening at the gate, providing access only to campers and cabin guests.

West Virginia Camping – Harpers Ferry KOA

West Virginia Camping

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343 Campground Rd

Harpers Ferry, WV 25425

Phone: (304) 535-6895

KOA can always be counted on to provide a variety of campsites, including RV, tent, Popup, and rental Cabins. This one is no different. With both back-in and pull thru sites, full hookups and 50/30 Amp service any camper would be comfortable here. There are a variety of sites from standard to premium that offer extra amenities – including larger pads, and proximity to the store.

The Harpers Ferry KOA also offers a resort amenities bundle with a $10 per night, per site fee. The resort fee allows all campers to enjoy the following amenities without any additional charge: WiFi, Swimming Pool, Mini-Golf, Jumping Pillow, All-you-can-eat pancakes, Bark Zone Dog Park, themed weekends, activities/games, movies, inflatable obstacles, wine tastings.

Amenities:    

  • Gravel Site Pad
  • Cable – Over 20 Channels
  • Pets Allowed($)

West Virginia Camping Around Point Pleasant

West Virginia Camping – Kanawha State Forest

West Virginia Camping

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7500 Kanawha State Forest Drive

Charleston, WV 25314

Phone: (304) 558-3500

Located seven miles south of Charleston, Kanawha State Forest is an outdoor lover’s haven. It is known for its extensive network of hiking and biking trails and has some of the state’s most popular picnic areas. The 9,300-acre forest is noted among naturalists for its diverse wildflower, tree and bird populations. Amenities include picnic shelters, playgrounds and camping.

Kanawha State Forest has a campground which includes 46 sites, 25 of which have electricity and water hookups. Each campsite has a fireplace and picnic table. The campground has two bathhouses and a coin-operated laundry. RVs or trailer/truck units longer than 26 feet are not recommended. West Virginia State Park campground reservations are available from Memorial Day through Labor Day each year. Campgrounds are open on a first-come, first-serve basis after Labor Day.

 

West Virginia Camping – Krodel Park Campground 

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1186 Charleston Rd

Point Pleasant, WV 25550

Phone: (304) 675-1068

Krodel Park is a 44-acre complex owned and operated by the City of Point Pleasant, WV. It includes a 22-acre lake, and full hookups available at 64 sites. Fourteen winter sites are also available. All sites have concrete runners and a patio with picnic table. There’s a private bathhouse in the camping area and limited RV supplies and souvenirs are available at the office. Laundry facilities are available. Caution, high water pressure.

A playground located adjacent to the campground contains an obstacle course, swings, and a wooden climber and activity center. A clubhouse with kitchen and restrooms facilities, and five picnic shelters are also available for rental.

West Virginia Camping Around the State

West Virginia Camping

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West Virginia Camping – Berkeley Springs State Park

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Phone: (304) 258-2711

Located in the center of Berkeley Springs, a small resort town in West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle, Berkeley Springs State Park is home to a historic mineral spa that has been in use since colonial times. The park is renowned for its warm spring water, which flows at a constant temperature of 74.3 degrees. The park’s Roman bathhouse offer many spa services, including massages, saunas, baths and showers.

West Virginia Camping – Pegasus Farm Campground

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480 Arnold Hill Rd, Elkins, WV 26241

Phone: (304) 642-2351

Email: markbonniesue@gmail.com

A popular site for RV rallies, weddings, and meetups, this campground requires reservations for all camping and events and all campers must arrive during daylight hours. There are 16 sites for RVs, with both full and partial hookups. The are both deep and wide and come with 50 amp service. There is a school bus for rent onsite as well.

Tent campers will appreciate the fact that the tenting sites are not all placed in one section, but are at unique sites all over the farm. All tent sites have fire rings and picnic tables. Tent campers also have full use of the hospitality barn with cook stove, all utensils, two refrigerators and WiFi. There is a shower house for campers. To truly appreciate the unique tenting accommodations, check out their website.