GAULEY RIVER FOREST
Neal Roth, 304-667-3794
Gauley River Forest is a great timber investment and recreational value with frontage on the Gauley River and Twentymile Creek in Nicholas County, West Virginia. Timber trails on the property make for great recreational activities. Excellent fishing available on nearby rivers and lakes. Less than a 30 minute drive to the New River Gorge National Park and Gauley River National Recreation Area.
ATTRIBUTES AND HIGHLIGHTS
- 272.59+/- acre multi-use parcel suitable for recreation and timber investment being sold as surface only
- The mineral rights may be purchased for an additional price, either together with the surface or separately
- 4 rivers and two lakes are within a 30-minute drive or less. These include the New River, Gauley River, Elk River, Kanawha River 3,000 acre Summersville Lake and 250 acre Hawks Nest Lake
- Close proximity to National and State Parks, Wildlife Management Areas and National Forest properties
- 4,450 feet of frontage on Turnpike Road, WV39 and Gauley River
- 10 minutes to Gauley Bridge, confluence of the Gauley and New Rives that form the Kanawha River
- Just under an hour’s drive to Charleston, the State Capitol and WV’s largest metro area and jet service
- Amazing resident wildlife population rich in diversity and ever changing
- Fur bearing – deer, black bear, squirrel, rabbit, bobcat, raccoon, fox, chipmunk, opossum
- Area winged wildlife includes Neotropical songbirds, turkey, grouse, eagles, herons, hawks, owls, ravens, king fishers, ravens, crows, and hummingbirds
- Dynamic forest with some old growth trees estimated to be 150-200 years old
- Forest soaks up tons of Carbon Dioxide and produces tons of life-giving oxygen
- Convenient to I-64, I-77, I-79, US-60 and jet airports
- State and County-maintained roads for superior access
- High percentage of commercially – operable ground supporting forestry and outdoor recreation
- Perfect for shooting sports, ATV riding, horseback riding, hiking, camping, hunting and nature viewing
- Elevations range from 695′ to 1750′
- Potential conservation value
- Low population density, little or no light pollution
- Nearby rivers and lakes are ideal for swimming, canoeing, fishing, kayaking, tubing, snorkeling, paddle boarding and windsurfing
- Great fishing is found in the lakes and rivers. Species include small and large mouth bass, crappie, catfish, muskie, walleye, pike and bluegill
Google Coordinates: N 38.232975, W -81.185089
Address: Turnpike Rd (WV39), Belva, WV 26656 (WV does not have 911 address’ for properties without a residence)
Elevation Range: 695′ to 1750′
West Virginia is one of the states in the US that has two separate ownership titles; those being SURFACE RIGHTS and MINERAL RIGHTS. The SURFACE RIGHTS are intact and will convey with the property. MINERAL RIGHTS are NOT conveyed with this listing, but may be purchased for a negotiated purchase, either combined with the Surface Rights or separately.
BOUNDARIES AND SURVEY
The property is being sold by the boundary and not the acre.
The property starts approximately 0.5 mile east of intersection of WV16 and WV39 at Belva, West Virginia on WV Route 39 Turnpike Road. The tract is on north side of WV39 for 0.8 mile with very limited access to roadway.
The Twentymile Creek section of the property may be accessed on County Route (CR) 20/21 (20 Mile Creek Road). The property starts approximately 0.3 mile east of intersection of WV16 and CR16/3 on both sides of CR 20/21. County Route 16/3 starts in Fayette County, after crossing into Nicholas County the route number changes to CR20/21.
Water: Public Water along WV39
Sewer: Private septic tank may be installed
Electricity: Along WV39 and County Route 20/21
Telephone: Along WV39 and County Route 20/21
Internet: Available through telephone and satellite companies
Cellphone Coverage: very good on higher elevations of property, poor to none along lower elevations
Nicholas County has no zoning regulations in effect other than that which is enacted and enforced within the city limits of Summersville and Richwood.
As of April 1994 Nicholas County was reinstated into the National Flood Insurance Program. Therefore, any person undertaking new construction, substantial improvement, the placement of relocation of any structure (including manufactured homes), will need to apply for a permit with the Nicholas County’s Flood Plain Administrator to decide if location is within a flood plain.
A permit is also required from the Nicholas County Health Department for septic systems.
PROPERTY TYPE/USE SUMMARY
The property consists of various ages of forestland. There has been surface mining on the top of the ridge on the property, this area has been naturally reclaimed by Mother Nature. Property primarily used for timbering and recreational activities.
DEED and TAX INFORMATION
Deed Information: Deed Book 472 Page 620
Acreage: 272.59 acres in two parcels
Nicholas County, West Virginia
Tax Map 25 Parcels 9 (2.3 Ac) & 10 (270.29 Ac)
2023 Real Estate Taxes: $2,154.54
Nicholas County School District
Public Elementary School:
Dixie Elementary School
Public Middle School:
Summersville Middle School
Public High School:
Nicholas County High School
Bridge Valley Community and Technical College
New River Community and Technical College
Fayette Institute of Technology
RECREATION AT GAULEY RIVER FOREST
Gauley River Forest offers many recreational opportunities. Numerous soft recreational activities are anchored by the proximity to the recreation mecca of the Gauley and New Rivers, Gauley River National Recreation Area and New River Gorge National Park & Preserve.
Nature viewing – Attentive wildlife management has been geared not just too game animals. Equal consideration has been extended to increasing the numbers and diversity of species including neo-tropical songbirds, butterflies, turtles, frogs, rabbits, chipmunks, dragonflies, owls, hawks.
Complete to semi-complete darkness can be still be found on most of the property, thereby affording the opportunity to view the night sky in all its brilliant wonder.
Water-sports enthusiasts will find the nearby New River, Gauley River, Kanawha River and Elk River ideal for swimming, canoeing, fishing, kayaking, tubing, snorkeling, paddle boarding and windsurfing. These rivers and the 2700 acre Summersville Lake and 250 acre Hawks Nest Lake are all within an easy one hour’s drive. Great fishing is found in these rivers and lakes. Species include small and large mouth bass, crappie, catfish, muskie, walleye, pike and bluegill.
Shooting-sports devotees find all the land and privacy needed to enjoy:
- Paintball-Airsoft-Laser tag-Archery tag
- Shotgun sport shooting including Skeet, Trap, Double Trap and Sporting Clays
- Rifle & Handgun shooting: bullseye, silhouette, western, bench rest, long-range, fast draw
- Archery and Crossbow competition shooting
- Plain ole’ plinking: Grandpa’s old 22 single shot rifle and a few tin cans make a fun day
All Terrain Motorsports
Gauley River Forest has several forest trails that are perfect for experiencing the property from an ATV or UTV, and Rock Crawlers. These exciting machines handle the wide variety of the forest’s terrain. Dirt bikes can also be a lot of fun and they come in all sizes and horsepower to fit anyone who enjoys being on two wheels.
Mountain Biking and Hiking
Along with ATV riding, existing forest trails may be used for conventional and mountain biking and hiking.
Hunting is a first-class experience. White tail deer, black bear, red/gray fox, bobcat, wild turkey, grouse, duck, squirrel, raccoon, fox and rabbit make up the resident wildlife population. It is hard to find a property that has a better mix of wildlife.
The Property’s timber resource is composed of a mixed size, high quality Appalachian hardwoods. This timber resource can provide a great deal of flexibility to the next ownership in terms of potential harvest revenue and can be managed to provide cash flow opportunities to offset holding cost and long-term asset appreciation.
Species composition: The forest’s predominately well-drained upland terrain has led to a resource dominated by hardwood species. Overall, the species composition is highly desirable and favors Appalachian hardwood types, consisting primarily of:
- Red Oak Group
- White Oak/Chestnut Oak
- As well as a host of other species (birch, beech, black gum, sycamore, hemlock)
Forest-wide, most stands are fully stocked, providing the next ownership with a great deal of flexibility in shaping their own silvicultural legacy. Stem quality forest-wide can be considered excellent with the forest containing an abundant current and future veneer source.
CARBON SEQUESTRATION & CARBON CREDITS
The 272.59+/- acres forest is a tremendous producer of Oxygen and sequester of Carbon Dioxide. Carbon Sequestration is the processing capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide and releasing them into the atmosphere as oxygen. With some 270 acres, the vigorously growing forest is sequestering thousands of tons of Carbon Dioxide each per year and producing tons and tons of life-giving Oxygen.
This natural process allows the owner (and family/friends) the opportunity to potentially enjoy a carbon neutral footprint.
The leasing of “Carbon Credits” to environmental mitigation companies is a rapidly emerging financial opportunity for the property owner to receive income without placing any burden on the land. The leases can be for as little as one year.
The most common crops are medicinal herbs and mushrooms. Other crops that can be produced include shade-loving native ornamentals, moss, fruit, nuts, other food crops, and decorative materials for crafts. These crops are often referred to as special forest products. Here are some specific examples of crops:
- Medicinal herbs: Ginseng, goldenseal, black cohosh, bloodroot, passionflower, and mayapple
- Mushrooms: Shiitake and oyster mushrooms • Native ornamentals: Rhododendrons and dogwood
- Moss: Log or sheet moss
- Fruit: Pawpaws, currants, elderberries, and lowbush blueberries
- Nuts: Black walnuts, hazelnuts, hickory nuts, and beechnuts
- Other food crops: Ramps (wild leeks), maple syrup, and honey
- Plants used for decorative purposes, dyes, and crafts: Galax, princess pine, white oak, pussy willow branches in the spring, holly, bittersweet, and bloodroot and ground pine (Lycopodium)
Gauley River, a perennial (blue line) river, flows forms the southern boundary line for 4,450 feet. Twentymile Creek, a perennial (blue line) stream flows beside the property along 20 Mile Creek Road for approximately 370 feet.
NEW RIVER GORGE NATIONAL PARK AND RESERVE
The Newest National Park in America at your back door… Just a short 35 minute drive from the property will take you to the amazing New River National Park. An awe inspiring visit that is sure to bring a new experience each and every time. Once you see it, it’s something you’ll never forget. Rock climbers have long prized the sandstone cliffs of West Virginia’s New River Gorge, which was designated as a national park and preserve in December 2020. New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is known for its 53 miles of free flowing whitewater that cuts through sandstone cliffs towering as high as 1,000 feet in the air. It boasts class III through V rapids and plenty of boulders to keep even the most experienced rafters engaged. The upper part of the river is calmer and more welcoming to new rafters. The area also boasts more than 1,500 climbing routes, as well as a 12.8-mile system of mountain bike trails built by the Boy Scouts. There are moments, as you drift through the deep canyon walls of the New River Gorge, when it feels like you’ve got the whole world to yourself. It’s just you and the river, littered with massive, prehistoric boulders that were here when the coal mining camps were built, and the fur trading posts before them, and the Shawnee and Cherokee villages before those. In a river that geologists say could be one of the world’s oldest, you can lose yourself in time. Then the current picks up, and you’re back to paddling like mad, navigating the chutes and eddies of heart-pounding white water. Since the 1960s, West Virginia’s New River Gorge has drawn adventure seekers to its rapids and rock walls, and those rafters and climbers have long considered it a hidden gem. But the curtain is being drawn back on the canyon, because part of it has become America’s 63rd national park. New River Gorge National River’s 72,186 acres is just like its name “New”. The Newest National Park and Preserve in America.
A rugged, whitewater river flowing northward through deep canyons, the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. The park encompasses over 70,000 acres of land along the New River, is rich in cultural and natural history, and offers an abundance of scenic and recreational opportunities.
Hinton is the southern gateway to New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. A once booming railroad center, the town has a large historic district, railroad museum, antique shops, and restaurants.
The largest waterfall on the New River, Sandstone Falls spans the river where it is 1500 feet wide. Divided by a series of islands, the river drops 10 to 25 feet.
Sandstone Falls marks the transition zone of the New River from a broad river of large bottomlands, to a narrow mountain river roaring through a deep boulder strewn V- shaped gorge. The falls form the dramatic starting line for the New Rivers final rush through the New River Gorge to its confluence with the Gauley River to form the Kanawha River.
GAULEY RIVER NATIONAL RECREATION AREA
The Gauley River was added to the National Park System in 1988. The 25 miles of free-flowing Gauley River and the six miles of the Meadow River pass through scenic gorges and valleys containing a wide variety of natural and cultural features. Dropping 26 feet per mile through a gorge that averages 500 feet in depth, the Gauley is noted for its outstanding whitewater and is one of the most technical rivers in the nation, contains several class V+ rapids. The Meadow River gradient averages 71 feet per mile. The Gauley River and its gorge have been a barrier as well as a corridor for human activity. The area was used for fishing and hunting by Native Americans for 10,000 years and was populated by Europeans in the late 1700s near the mouth of Peters Creek. The confluence of the Gauley and Meadow rivers was the site of an 1861 Civil War battle. Union troops forced Confederate forces from their position overlooking the Gauley. The site is part of Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park. In the late 1800s railroads and lumber companies came to the gorge to harvest its vast supply of timber. Coal and gas development followed shortly after are still economic powers in the area. Vegetation is diverse and abundant. Extremes in topography, elevation and microclimate have caused tremendous variation in plant life. Most of the recreation area is below 2,000 feet and contains the central hardwood forest type. Tree species found in this timber type include the red and white oak, American beech, yellow poplar, hemlock and dogwood. Such vegetation supports a wide variety of wildlife species.
Basin is part of the unglaciated Allegheny Plateau where the age of the rock strata exceeds 300 million years before present. The high knobs and ridges are deeply dissected by young streams that create narrow canyons with steep slopes.
The Gauley River begins in Pocahontas County, West Virginia, at an elevation of about 4,600 feet. Flowing generally west-southwest and draining 1,422 square miles, the Gauley meets the New River at Gauley Bridge and forms the Kanawha River, a major tributary of the Ohio River. The mouth of the Gauley River, 107 miles from its source, is at an elevation of about 600 feet. The resulting average rate of fall is 37.4 feet per mile. Downstream from Summersville Dam where the boundary of the recreation area begins, the river has cut a gorge of up to 500 feet deep in places. The Gauley River flows through the gorge for approximately 25 miles with a stream gradient of 28 feet per mile. Within the gorge, the river is characterized by alternating pools and rapids with torrential water, boulders and exposed bedrock.
Vegetation is diverse and abundant. Extremes in topography, elevation and microclimate have caused tremendous variation in plant life. Most of the recreation area is below 2,000 feet and contains the central hardwood forest type. Tree species found in this timber type include the red and white oak, American beech, yellow poplar, hemlock and dogwood. Such vegetation supports a wide variety of wildlife species.
There are many rare and threatened species within the recreation area. They include one federally threatened plant species, Virginia spiraea, and five category 2 species, Barbara’s buttons, Allegheny woodrat, cerulean warbler, eastern hellbender and finescale saddled darter. Category 2 species may be proposed for threatened or endangered status, but more data is required to confirm the need for such protection. State-listed species of concern found within the recreation area include nine plants, one bird, one butterfly, one fish and two amphibians.
The Elk River is a tributary of the Kanawha River, 172 miles long in central West Virginia in the United States. Via the Kanawha and Ohio rivers, it is part of the watershed of the Mississippi River. The Elk is formed in the Allegheny Mountains in Pocahontas County by the confluence of two short streams, the Big Spring Fork and the Old Field Fork, which join near the community of Slatyfork. It flows above ground for several miles before it sinks into a network of caverns and flows underground for more than five miles. The old riverbed of solid rock, however, remains above ground in this section known as “The Dries.” It follows a generally westward course across the unglaciated Allegheny Plateau, through Randolph, Webster, Braxton, Clay, and Kanawha Counties, past the towns of Webster Springs, Sutton, Gassaway, Clay, Clendenin, and Elkview before joining the Kanawha River at Charleston. At Sutton, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers concrete dam causes the Elk to form Sutton Lake.
The upper portion of the river, above Sutton Lake, is a popular coldwater trout stream. Below Sutton Lake, is a high-gradient warmwater fishery well known for its muskellunge, walleye and smallmouth bass fishing. The Elk River serves as the source of water for 1500 miles of pipeline that carry its water to customers in central and southwestern West Virginia.
Some sources claim the Shawnee called the Elk River “Tis-kel-wah,” meaning “river of fat elk.” The Delaware tribe is said to have called it “Pe-quo-ni,” meaning “the walnut river.”
The Elk River provided the water transportation route needed to float large rafts of logs and crossties, as well as large freight canoes, out of the forests of central and eastern West Virginia in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The Elk lost its importance in this respect after the advent of railroads such the West Virginia Coal & Coke Railroad and the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad.
The Kanawha River (/kəˈnɔːə/ kə-NAW-ə) is a tributary of the Ohio River, approximately 97 miles long. The largest inland waterway in West Virginia, its valley has been a significant industrial region of the state since early in the 19th century.
It is formed at the town of Gauley Bridge in northwestern Fayette County, approximately 35 miles SE of Charleston, by the confluence of the New and Gauley rivers. It flows generally northwest, in a winding course on the unglaciated Allegheny Plateau, through Fayette, Kanawha, Putnam, and Mason counties, past the cities of Charleston and St. Albans, and numerous smaller communities. It joins the Ohio at Point Pleasant.
Paleo-Indians, the earliest indigenous peoples, lived in the valley and the heights by 10,000 BC as evidenced by archaeological artifacts such as Clovis points. A succession of prehistoric cultures developed, with the Adena culture beginning the construction of numerous skilled earthwork mounds and enclosures more than 2000 years ago. Some of the villages of the Fort Ancient culture survived into the times of European contact.
The area was a place of competition among historical American Indian nations. Invading from their base in present-day New York, the Iroquois drove out or conquered Fort Ancient culture peoples, as well as such tribes as the Huron and Conoy. By right of conquest, the Iroquois, Lenape (Delaware), and Shawnee reserved the area as a hunting ground. They resisted European-American settlement during the colonial years. Eventually the settlers took over by right of conquest.
The river valley contains significant deposits of coal and natural gas. In colonial times, the wildly fluctuating level of the river prevented its use for transportation. The removal of boulders and snags on the lower river in the 1840s allowed navigation, which was extended upriver after the construction of locks and dams starting in 1875. The river is now navigable to Deepwater, an unincorporated community about 20 miles upriver from Charleston. A thriving chemical industry along its banks provides a significant part of the local economy.
KANAWHA FALLS ON THE KANAWHA RIVER
Kanawha Falls span the entire width of the Kanawha River and is an important natural landmark. The Kanawha River is formed by the confluence of the New and Gauley Rivers near the town of Gauley Bridge. Approximately one mile downstream from the confluence, a sandstone ledge across the river forms the falls. At its highest point, Kanawha Falls drops fifteen feet. A low dam above the falls diverts water into a hydropower facility. The falls are enjoyable to see at any water level. Kanawha it is pronounced Ka-nah. It is derived from the Iroquoian dialect and means “water-way” or “canoe-way.”
SUMMERSVILLE LAKE AND WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA
Superb water quality and sheer sandstone cliffs make Summersville Lake a unique place to visit. West Virginia’s largest lake; Summersville Lake has over 2,700 acres of water and 60 miles of shoreline. Boating, water-skiing, swimming, fishing for large- and smallmouth bass, walleye, panfish, and catfish, (trout are stocked below the dam in the spring and fall) scuba diving, picnicking, hunting, and biking are the favorite activities enjoyed by nearly one million visitors annually. Technical rock climbing and whitewater rafting are available year round, with scheduled whitewater releases below the dam on the world class Gauley River in September and October.
The 5,974-acre Summersville Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) ranges across tableland forests and towering cliffs that famously overlook Summersville Lake. Game traditionally hunted in the management area includes bear, deer, grouse, squirrel, and turkey, though the lake is its principal attraction.
HAWKS NEST STATE PARK AND LAKE
Nestled in the heart of whitewater rafting country near the town of Anstead, Hawks Nest State Park is a 270-acre recreational area with a nature museum, aerial tramway, jetboat rides, hiking trails and one of the most challenging whitewater boating waterways in the nation. Located just 10 miles north of the New River Gorge Bridge, Hawks Nest is known for its scenic overlook, which provides a bird’s eye view of the rugged New River Gorge National Park and Preserve below.
Hawks Nest Lake is located in the New River Gorge. The lake is 250 acres, surrounded by the steep New River Gorge walls. It is possible to paddle a good ways upstream as the backwaters of the lake stretch a few miles into the gorge. The lake provides excellent fishing opportunities for other species, including carp, catfish, hybrid striped bass, sunfish, rock bass, channel catfish, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, and flathead catfish.
WALLBACK WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA
The 12,554 acres – Wildlife Management Area (WMA) ranges across hilly forests and brushlands north of the Elk River. Game traditionally hunted in the management area includes deer and turkey, and access for Class-Q hunting is accommodated. The Elk River, Laurel Creek, and 15-acre Walback Lake accommodate fishing for trout, bluegill, walleye, largemouth bass, muskellunge, and channel catfish. The Elk River and Wallback Lake are stocked with trout from February until May, and the lake is equipped with a boat ramp. A 100-yard shooting range has been developed near the lake. Camping is prohibited in the management area.
From intersection of WV39 and WV16 at the village of Belva, WV:
Property along WV39 – Turnpike Road: Remain on WV39 for approximately 0.5 mile. Property is on both sides of WV39 for approximately 0.8 mile.
Property on CR16/3 - 20 Mile Creek Road: Travel north from intersection 0.8 mile to CR 16.3, 20 Mile Creek Road. Turn right and travel 0.3 mile, property is on both sides of road for approximately 350 feet.
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