HONEY BRANCH HOLLOW

Agent Contact:
David Sibray, 304-575-7390

OVERVIEW

In a forested mountain cove on scenic US-60, this woodland tract of more than 85 acres looks west over the New River Gorge near Hawks Nest State Park and the New River Gorge National Park. Its undeveloped acreage, watered by a clear mountain stream, is convenient to many of the region’s principal tourism and outdoor recreation attractions.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Frontage on scenic byway US-60
  • More than 85 woodland acres
  • Proximity to the New River Gorge National Park  (two miles)
  • Proximity to Hawks Nest State Park (two miles)
  • Proximity to The Dries of the New River (0.5 miles)
  • Proximity to Fayetteville, West Virginia (15 min.)

About Honey Branch

Honey Branch is a small mountain stream and tributary of the New River perhaps best known for its waterfalls. It descends steeply from its sources high on Gauley Mountain at more than 2,200 feet above sea level but becomes gentle and meandering as it enters the property. At the lower end, it tumbles into the New River Gorge, cascading over four sets of falls, all of which are downstream of the property but accessible by trail.

About the Midland Trail National Scenic Byway

The property extends more than 1,500 feet along Midland Trail National Scenic Byway, a historic route that connects several of the state’s top tourist destinations. An estimated 1,300 vehicles pass the property daily, including those driven by a significant number of tourists. The route is part of a loop often used by motorists exploring the northern section of the New River Gorge.

LOCATION

Google Coordinates: 38.134605, -81.144843
Address: Midland Trail, Ansted, WV 25812  (No 911 address is assigned to property without structures)
Elevation Range: 1,094 ft. to 1,420 ft. +/-

FOREST/TIMBER RESOURCES

The property is entirely forested. An assessment of value as timber has not been recently conducted; however, the last commercial harvest was completed in about 2005.

 AGRICULTURAL RESOURCES

Though now wooded, more than a dozen acres in the lap of the hollow were farmed into the late 1900s, and the stone foundations of a barn and farmhouse may still be found in the woodland near the stream. The soil is of the Berks-Highsplint-Sharondale complex (BhG), typically stony but in this case, was worked over the years.

WILDLIFE

The property is home to much wildlife, including deer, squirrels, and wild turkeys.

MINERAL RESOURCES

West Virginia is one of the states in the U.S. that has two ownership titles, those being SURFACE RIGHTS and MINERAL RIGHTS. A title search for mineral rights ownership has not been conducted. All rights the owner has will convey with the property. A mineral title search could be conducted by a title attorney at the same time as the surface title search is being conducted.

BOUNDARIES AND SURVEY

The property is being sold by the boundary and not by the acre.

UTILITIES

Water: Public
Sewer: Septic Required
Electricity: At frontage
Telephone: At frontage
Internet: Available
Cellphone Coverage: Several carriers

ACCESS/FRONTAGE

The property is on US-60, which bisects the lower few acres of the tract. A driveway off the route onto the upper property is gated.

ZONING

Fayette County is subject to some zoning and subdivision regulations. All prospective buyers should consult the County Commission and also the Health Department for details regarding zoning, building codes, and installation of septic systems.

PROPERTY TYPE/USE SUMMARY

The property is entirely forested but is zoned residential at its frontage on US-60.

DEED AND TAX INFORMATION

Deed Information: DB 519 Pg. 698; PARCEL NO. 13
Fayette County, West Virginia
Acreage: 85.1 acres +/-

Real Estate Tax ID/Acreage/Taxes:
Fayette County (10), West Virginia
New Haven District (1)
Tax Map 24 Parcel 22; Class 3

2021 Real Estate Taxes: $322.56  

HISTORY

The property straddles one the of most important historic routes over the Appalachian Mountains. Now the Midland Trail National Scenic Byway, it follows prehistoric trails that may be more than 8,000 years old. In the late 1700s, it became one of the chief overland passages that pioneers used to migrate westward. During the Civil War, armies marched along it. Maps of the property from as early as 1887 indicate a house was present. The worked stone foundations of a homestead overlooking the creek remain in place. A small family cemetery also exists on the property near the road but has been consumed by the forest.

HEALTHCARE

Hospitals with emergency units are located nearby at Oak Hill and Montgomery, 30 and 25 minutes from the property respectively. State medical centers at Charleston and Morgantown are an hour’s drive west and two-and-a-half hour drive north. A Veterans Administration Medical Center is located at Beckley, a drive of just less than an hour south. Several medical and emergency care clinics serve the upper Kanawha Valley region, while the area’s moderate climate and access to trails, gymnasiums, and athletic centers support healthy living. The nearest hospital to the property, Montgomery General Hospital, is a drive of approximately 20 miles.

TRANSPORTATION

Motor Vehicle / Interstate expressways 77 and 64 and US-19 join nearby, providing easy access to Richmond, Charlotte, Columbus, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Washington, D.C. Flight / Yeager Airport, at Charleston, is the largest and busiest flight-service center in the region. Rail / The Amtrak passenger station at Montgomery is a 20-minute drive from the property and provides direct access to Charleston, Washington, Chicago, and New York City.

Approximate hourly drive times to regional U.S. cities include Charleston, W.Va., 1; Morgantown, W.Va., 2.5; Columbus, Ohio, 2.5; Pittsburgh, Pa., 3.5; Cincinnati, Ohio, 4; Charlottesville, Va., 3.5; Richmond, Va., 4.5; Winston-Salem, N.C., 3.5; Charlotte, N.C.: 4; and Washington, D.C., 5.

CLIMATE

The gorge sustains a microclimate more typical of warmer, southerly latitudes due partly to the sheltering nature of its narrow valley. Though the river may appear as a large mountain stream, it has already traveled more than 300 miles from the summits of the Blue Ridge in North Carolina and has heated over time. The gorge is a preferred location for gardens as its warm microclimate accommodates a longer growing season. It remains relatively free of heavier snows that blanket the surrounding highlands. Mean annual precipitation at the property is estimated at 37 to 47 inches, mean annual air temperature at 50 to 52 degrees F, and its frost-free period at 140 to 170 days.

PUBLIC & PRIVATE SCHOOLS

The area is well-served by public and private schools. Public-school students living in the Chimney Corner area may attend Valley Elementary, Middle, and High Schools at Smithers, located about 10 miles west of US-60.  Students may also attend Oak Hill High School and the Fayette County Institute of Technology.

HIGHER EDUCATION

Chimney Corner is a drive of 15 miles from Bridgeview Community College at Montgomery. Many other institutions of higher education are located nearby. An hour’s drive to the west, the University of Charleston reports a student population of 2,949 in 2014. An hour’s drive to the south, Beckley is the higher-education center of southern West Virginia and is notably the site of the southern campus of West Virginia University, which reported 1,622 students in 2018. Marshall University, at Huntington, a drive of about an hour-and-a-half, is the region’s largest university and reported a student population of 12,862 in 2014.

RECREATION

Residency in the New River Gorge region affords access to a seemingly limitless variety of recreational pursuits. Its parks invite hiking, biking, fishing, hunting, paddling, rock climbing, and whitewater rafting, and the area accommodates a number of walking and field-sports facilities, including stadiums, playgrounds, and walking and biking trails. Skiing and snow-tubing at Winterplace is an hour’s drive south.

DINING & RETAIL

The property is centrally located between the New River Gorge and Kanawha Valley regions and enjoys access to a variety of dining and shopping venues in both directions. Nearby, the Fayetteville area is notably home to more than a dozen noteworthy independent restaurants designed to appeal to visitors to the national park. An hour’s drive west, the Charleston metropolitan area boasts the state’s highest concentration of restaurants and retail centers.

SURROUNDING AREA

Honey Branch Hollow is fewer than two miles from the boundary of the New River Gorge National Park & Preserve, the focus of the southern state’s burgeoning tourism industry. More than two million tourists visit the park annually, and tourism traffic is growing as the region is more widely discovered. The hollow is also some ten miles from the Gauley River National Recreation Area, in which the Gauley River in autumn becomes one of the world’s most popular and challenging whitewater rafting rivers.

New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

The nation’s newest national park, the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve attracts more than 2.6 million visitors annually to the region. Its best-known attraction, the New River Gorge Bridge, is a drive of approximately 15 minutes away at Fayetteville. Hiking, biking, angling, hunting, kayaking, and camping are popular throughout the park. However, it may best be known as a destination for rock climbing and whitewater rafting. Hundreds of thousands of climbers and rafters visit annually.

Hawks Nest State Park

One of the crown jewels of West Virginia’s park system, Hawks Nest is named for its dramatic overlooks of the New River Gorge. It famously features a scenic aerial tramway ride into the gorge and includes a lodge with a gorge-view dining room and convocation center. Its 31 guests rooms all afford views of the gorge. The park is also renowned for its architecture.

The Dries of the New River Gorge

The property adjoins a spectacular section of the New River known to whitewater paddling enthusiasts as “the dries.” Because of the low flow of water through this five-mile section, it was not practically runnable until recently. In 2018, the state entered into an agreement with officials at the hydroelectric plant upstream to limit intake on scheduled dates, which has opened this section of challenging whitewater to paddlers.

Chimney Corner

Chimney Corner is a locale at the junction of WV-16 and the Midland Trail reputedly named for a chimney that stood there. Since US-60 opened in the 1930s, it has been the location of a series of tourist enterprises. These have included a service station, restaurant, and tourist shops. It’s presently home of a popular restaurant and shop catering to tourists.

REGIONAL INFORMATION

  • https://fayettecounty.wv.gov/
  • https://newrivergorgecvb.com/
  • https://visitfayettevillewv.com/
  • https://visitwv.com/our-area/fayette/
  • https://fayettecounty.com/
  • https://wvexplorer.com/communities/counties/fayette-county-west-virginia/
  • https://www.nps.gov/neri/index.htm
  • https://www.nps.gov/neri/planyourvisit/nrgbridge.htm
  • https://www.nationalparks.org/explore-parks/new-river-gorge-national-river
  • https://www.summitbsa.org/about-us/new-river-gorge/
  • https://www.americanwhitewater.org/content/River/detail/id/2418/