Exploring the Mountain StateBy David Finley | September 13th, 2012 | Category: Features | No Comments »
Exploring the Mountain State
With the return of a chill to the evenings, and the leaves preparing to fall, I am reminded again of the natural beauty of West Virginia. From the mountain tops to the valley bottoms, this state offers some of the most beautiful scenery in America with Glenville sitting in the heart of it all.
For those unfamiliar with the local changes of the seasons, fall, then winter will soon be upon us. With the drop in temperature compared with previous weeks, and the days getting shorter, now is the time to go out and explore the world around you.
Approximately eight miles south of Glenville on U.S. Route 33, is Cedar Creek State Park. They offer a variety of things for the outdoor enthusiast to pursue, with three lakes well stocked with bass and miles of biking and hiking trails for those who would like to see the local wildlife and scenery. Picnic tables and pavilions are available for those who want to do some grilling, with tent and R.V. sites available for camping.
If you enjoy boating or canoeing, then you should plan a trip to the local lakes in the Burnsville and Sutton areas. In both of these towns, dams have been built across rivers creating large man-made lakes offering miles of secluded waterways for exploring. While the weather is still warm you might consider skiing or swimming in these beautiful waters. Along with the water activities offer here, these two dams also have miles of hiking and biking trails, as well as areas for camping and picnicking.
For those interested in historical (and even creepy) places in West Virginia, I would encourage you to travel to Weston, located approximately twenty miles north of Glenville on U.S. Route 33, and check out the Trans-Alleghany Lunatic Asylum. Originally built in 1861, the asylum continued to expand and was in constant use for over a hundred years. When it was closed years later, there were stories of ghostly sightings and strange hauntings taking place in the building. They now offer tours of the impressive brick structure daily with night time ghost hunting events taking place every October before Halloween. This is a fascinating tour through this historical building with asylum and local history combined to produce a memorable walk back through time. For more information on public and private tours, you can visit their website at www.trans-alleghenylunaticasylum.com
When the leaves start to drop in autumn, many local communities in West Virginia hold fall festivals. At these events you can experience how life was like during the early history of this state. The Burnsville Harvest Festival is beginning on September 13 through the 16 in Burnsville, West Virginia hosting a variety of events from a car show to pie eating contests. Some other festivals occurring this fall that offer this rare glimpse into the state’s past are the Annual Apple Butter Festival in Flatwoods and the West Virginia Molasses Festival in Arnoldsburg. From basket making to blacksmithing these events offer a variety of hands on activities to enjoy, as well as live music and a variety of foods to enjoy.
With the days growing shorter and the nights getting cooler, winter and cabin fever will soon be upon us. So I would encourage you to take that drive through the falling autumn leaves and check out some of these localareas and activities. West Virginia is a beautiful state with many local flavors to enjoy. So before the snow starts to fly, and we are all forced back indoors, take the time and explore this mountain state.