TN-VA-WV: Stop 3, New River Gorge National Park-Day 1

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

We woke to another beautiful day Monday in Draper, VA.  We had a leisurely breakfast, reviewed our route plan for the day and readied Fred for travel.  We knew it was going to be a short driving day and couldn’t check into our next campground before 1:00 so we were in no hurry.  We headed back to I-81 and had a beautiful drive to Beaver, WV to the Little Beaver State Park.  We weren’t expecting it, but we drove through two tunnels straight though the base of two mountains on I-77.  We have been told that they aren’t mountains because we are on a plateau but they sure look like mountains to us.  Little Beaver SP is about 15 min from the south end of New River Gorge National Park, our newest National Park and the purpose for our visit here.  We got Fred parked and setup quickly.  We have a great fully shaded site that we are enjoying since the temperatures are back in the 80’s. Fred is so much easier to keep cool in the shade.

As soon as we were settled, we headed toward the national park.  Along the way we spotted the Grandview Diner and Grandview Country store. Both required a visit.  We had a BLT and a homemade cheeseburger at the diner.  We will probably go back there again before we leave.  The country store had some great looking produce as well as jelly, jam, candy, furniture, gravel, fertilizer and anything else you might want. Interesting place.  Then we headed to the park’s Grandview Visitors Center. (They have four Visitors Centers.)  First, we got our Park Passport stamped, and picked up some maps, and then we were off to explore the park.  We first went to the main overlook to get our first look at the New River Gorge.  Wow, impressive!  It is grand.  We hiked a short, easy Tunnel trail and then headed out on the more strenuous Grand View Rim Trail. Beautiful hike.  Peaceful, lots of shade and birds singing everywhere.  Surprise! When we made it to the end of the trail at Turkey Spur Rock, we still had to climb 150 steps to the top to enjoy the amazing view.  It was worth it.  Of course, then we had 150 steps back down and the return hike to the truck.  It was all good!   Another wonderful day enjoying God’s creation in places we had never visited and we get to add West Virginia to our map.

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