MITCHELL FOREST ON SPRING CREEK

Agent Contact:
Richard Grist, 304.645.7674

313 +/- acres, unbroken densely forested, old fields, suitable for multi-use, recreation, and is a superb timber investment. This beautiful mountain property borders Spring Creek for nearly a mile with valuable timber ready for immediate harvest.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • 313 +/- unbroken acres containing old bottomland fields and a mature hardwood forest
  • Valuable timber ready for immediate harvest to help offset the purchase price and long-term holding costs
  • Off grid property accessible only by four-wheel drive vehicles or ATV’s
  • 20’ wide deeded right of way on unimproved road runs about 1 mile through adjoining farms – vehicles must ford Spring Creek to access property
  • 4900’ of direct frontage on Sinking Creek with an additional 2600’ blueline stream, plus 15 ephemeral streams located throughout the property creating a superior and interesting topography
  • Spring Creek is a 25-mile-long tributary of the Greenbrier River
  • Cell phone coverage and 5G service varies from Excellent to None depending on terrain and location
  • Rich and diverse wildlife population – nature viewing at its finest
  • Fur bearing – deer, black bear, squirrel, rabbit, bobcat, raccoon, fox, chipmunk, opossum
  • Creekside: Frogs, turtles, crawdads, fish, ducks, salamanders, butterflies, dragonflies
  • Winged wildlife – eagles, hawks, owls, grouse, ravens, turkey, woodpeckers, songbirds
  • 45 minutes to Lewisburg with jet airport, interstate, hospital, shopping, city amenities
  • Dark skies offer excellent opportunities for star gazing, star-walking & astrophotography
  • 30 minutes to the Greenbrier River and Monongahela National Forest
  • Dynamic forest with some old growth trees estimated to be 200-300 years old
  • Ongoing wildlife program enhances habitat, increases diversity, and promotes health
  • A rewarding permaculture lifestyle can be easily developed
  • Surrounded by large timber tracts & farms in a very private rural neighborhood
  • Located in Greenbrier County, where there are more cattle and sheep than people
  • The forest produces tons of Oxygen and sequesters tons of carbon dioxide
  • Trees species include red oak, white oak, black walnut, poplar, butternut, dogwood, beech, ironwood, black cherry, wahoo, muscle wood, birch, black gum, sourwood, hawthorn, sycamore, sugar maple, red maple, persimmon, basswood, cucumber magnolia, and 4 species of hickories
  • Perfect for recreational activities including area water sports, ATV riding, horseback riding, hiking, camping, stargazing, and nature viewing
  • Low taxes, low population density
  • Nature, scenic beauty, and historic attributes provide exceptional quality of life values

OVERVIEW

Spring Creek runs the eastern property boundary for nearly one mile. This beautiful, densely forested mountain property is a perfect retreat with abundant water, wildlife, and is very private but not totally isolated.

The old fields along Sinking Creek have been partially brush hogged to create a special area. Mountain wildflowers can be enjoyed every spring and summer including daisy’s, milkweed, black-eyed Susan’s, mountain irises to daffodils, joe pie, ironweed, and goldenrod.

Several old woodland trails from the horse and oxen days meanders along the stream and through the forest. In the early spring, morel mushrooms, or “merkels” as they are known locally, can be found growing on the property.

Along the old field edges and among the rock cliffs can be found several ancient “heritage” trees (some are 5 feet in diameter!). There is mountain spring that served the farm and needs some TLC to again be productive. Several rock outcroppings form a frozen water cascade of ice during the winter, creating a wonderland of icicles.

A wide variety of wildlife is very abundant in the area and includes white-tailed deer, turkey, squirrel, rabbit, and many species of winged wildlife. Tree species include white oak, red oak, sugar maple, black walnut, hickory, tulip poplar, and black cherry. There is an abundance of sugar maple trees perfect for tapping and collecting the sap to boil down into gallons of maple syrup.

LOCATION

Google Coordinates: 38.022691°(N), -80.359578°(W)
Address: Modoc Road, Renick, WV 24966. No 911 address is assigned to property without structures.
Elevation Range: 1943 ft. to 2459 ft. +/-

UTILITIES

Water: Water well could be drilled or develop existing mountain spring water
Sewer: None. Private septic could be installed
Phone: Cell phone reception excellent to none depending on terrain and location
Internet: Satellite or Cell Phone with 5G available depending on terrain and location
Electricity: None on site. Solar or Hydro could be possible

WATER RESOURCES

There is an abundance of water on the property. Spring Creek forms the 4900’ eastern boundary line. This awesome stream has large boulders and hard sandstone rock shelves that create rapids, rills and waterfalls along its length. Large trees, moss, ferns and wildflowers growing along the stream creating a serene and tranquil setting.

Gail’s Run, a ½-mile-long major blueline stream drains approximately 150 acres of the property’s western drainage basin.  There is an existing spring located at the base of a hill that could be developed as a domestic water source.

15 more ephemeral streams are found in the hollows and are interspersed throughout the property, creating a dynamic environment. These streams come roaring alive during rain events and trickle during the winter and spring.

FOREST AND TIMBER RESOURCES

The Mitchell Forest’s timber resource is composed of high quality Appalachian hardwoods. This well managed 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.

Timber Value of the timber and pulpwood has not been determined.

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.

The Mitchell Forest is a mixture of majestic older timber stands intertwined with former farm fields. The old fields on the property have been transformed into a lush forest dominated by Black Cherry, Yellow Poplar, Black Walnut and Black Locust.

The timber stands that were not formerly in agriculture contain some outstanding trees. White oak, red oak, hickory, sugar maple, chestnut oak and yellow poplar trees dominate this lush and very special forest.

Some of trees in the forest should be considered “Legacy Trees”, those trees that were here when the mountaineers settled the area in the late 1800’s. These special trees are scattered throughout the forest and field edges. These ancient trees, some 200-300 years old, have withstood the test of time, weathering ice, wind, lightning strikes and fire.

Each year, the forest produces thousands of tons of Oxygen while taking in thousands of tons of Carbon Dioxide, helping to lessen mankind’s Carbon Footprint. This is an important long-term value so often overlooked when thinking about the forest.

The property’s forest produces tons and tons of acorns, hickory nuts, walnuts, wild grapes, blackberries, beechnuts, poplar and maple seeds. Because there is such an amazing food source, there is an abundance of wildlife, including wild turkey, white tail deer, raccoons, opossums, squirrels and chipmunks. The dense forest, with its closed canopy, is home to a variety of song birds, owls, ravens, buzzards, woodpeckers and hawks. Many of these birds’ nest in the “den trees”, which are full of holes and cavities. The birds feed on a variety of insects, including thousands of small caterpillars that inhabit the upper reaches of the canopy.

Forest-wide, most stands are fully stocked, providing the next ownership with a great deal of flexibility in shaping their own silvicultural legacy. Some stands are currently ready for harvest which could generate significant income.

The forest has been professionally managed over many decades. Sections of the forest have been selectively harvested as prudent professional forest management guidelines called for. The last selective harvest was made in the year 2000 and another selective harvest in 1980.

The timber component consists of several age classes. The timber stands contain 2-120 year old stems ranging in size of 2”- 36” dbh. Stem quality forest-wide can be considered excellent with the forest containing an abundant future veneer source. Diameters are well represented across the commercial spectrum with a mature size class, as well as abundant pole size timber and growing stock.

The forest is healthy and presently there are no signs of pest infestations of Gypsy Moth. The Emerald Ash Borer and Hemlock Wooly adelgid are present and it is anticipated that the mature & pole size Ash component will decline significantly. There have been no forest fires in the recent memory.

The forest floor is home to several types of mushrooms, medicinal plants, wild ginseng, ferns and cool green mosses. One could spend a lifetime getting to know this inviting environ.

AGRICULTURE

Many mountain homesteads were abandoned after World War II when the mountaineers left the state to find employment in the northern cities. This was also the time when the horse/oxen drawn farm machinery was replaced with the “modern” farm tractor. The steeper fields and pastures were no longer tended as the tractors could not navigate the hillsides like the horses and oxen could.

When the farm was in full production in the 1940’s, about ½ of the property (150 acres) was in agricultural use. Today, there are about 20 acres of bottomland fields in various stages of regeneration. However, the fields could be cleaned up and restored to agricultural production.

Once farming operations were abandoned, the steeper hillside fields quickly regenerated to quality timber stands, leaving just the bottomland fields to be tended and later left to lay fallow. There are still a few pretty meadows, about 1 to 2 acres in size scattered about. These meadows have deep rich soils and would be well suited to raise crops such as vegetables, berries, fruits as well as livestock and poultry.

There are a few old fruit trees scattered about the abandoned fields edges. Apples, pears, cherries, blueberries, chestnuts, chinquapins, pumpkins, watermelons, potatoes and flowers would thrive in the rich bottomland soils.

Interestingly, Greenbrier County in the 1950’s had about 4 times more farmland than there is today.

SPRING CREEK

Spring Creek forms the 4900’ long eastern property boundary line. Interestingly, at different times of the year, this section of Spring Creek will sink and run underground through subterranean caverns before popping back up to the surface a few miles downstream of the property. This rocky bottom mountain stream flows over boulders and ledges creating rapids, rills and small waterfalls along its journey.

Spring Creek is one of Greenbrier County’s most important drainage basins, and is a major tributary of the Greenbrier River. Spring Creek’s headwaters form 12 miles upstream of the property.

Spring Creek drains tens of thousands of acres on its twisting and curving journey through cattle and sheep farms, unbroken forests, steep mountain canyons, bottomland forests, wetlands and marshes before ending its trip at Spring Creek Station, emptying into the waters of the Greenbrier River. From there, the Greenbrier flows to the New River, to the Kanawha, onto the Ohio, then the Mississippi and terminating in the Gulf of Mexico. It is said that the waters of Spring Creek will arrive in the Gulf of Mexico 3 to 4 days after entering the Greenbrier River.

For many decades, a railroad ran alongside the 25-mile length of Spring Creek, connecting to the main line of the C&O Railroad on the Greenbrier River.

CREEKSIDE WILDLIFE

There are many animals that live year round and at other times in the water and around the edges of Spring Creek and Gail’s Run, including beavers, otters, minks, raccoons, opossums, blue herons, Canada geese, wood ducks, mallards, king fishers, minnows, native trout, turtles, salamanders, newts, crayfish, muskrats, bull frogs, eagles, owls, hawks and redwing blackbirds.

The miles of “edge effect” benefit all the resident wildlife. In addition to those listed above, white tail deer, black bear, wild turkey, squirrel, rabbit, bobcat, fox, chipmunk, and many species of songbirds make up the resident wildlife population along the creekside.

Of equal importance, there is the insect and microscopic world including butterflies, dragonflies, water skaters, water beetles, damselflies, hellgrammites, tadpoles and various insect larve.

FOREST FARMING

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 in each category that are currently being cultivated:

  • 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)

SELF-SUSTAINING LIFE OFF THE GRID

Just like 200 years ago, when the first mountaineers settled the area, the property would be self-sustaining in times of necessity – even without electricity.

  • Fresh water for drinking and cooking would come from springs and drilled water wells (hand drawing water from the wells using a cylinder well bucket).
  • The creeks, rivers and forest would provide fresh food (fish, deer, and turkey).
  • The agricultural land’s flat to rolling topography would be used to raise livestock of all kinds (chickens, pigs, cows, sheep, goats, rabbits etc.) and could be farmed with horse drawn equipment. The land would support vegetable gardens, berry patches, fruit orchards, and row crops of corn, oats and barley.
  • Beehives would provide honey and beeswax for candles.
  • The forest would provide firewood for heating and cooking, lumber for building, basket splints, maple syrup and pounds of nuts (walnuts, beechnuts and hickory nuts).

WILDLIFE

The long-term wildlife management practices maintain goals that have promoted overall wildlife health, developed wildlife viewing areas, increased carrying capacity, and increased species diversity. Years of progressive wildlife management practices have created the ideal wildlife preserve.

Spring Creek, Gail’s Run, Greenbrier River, and New River are major contributors to the local ecosystem richness and diversity for both plants and animals. The surrounding aquatic plant life create a water supported community with a wide variety of wildlife. Some of the margins of the creeks and rivers are fringed by wetlands, and these wetlands support the aquatic food web, provide shelter for wildlife, and stabilize the shore of the creek and riverbanks downstream. The plant life associated with the wetlands includes rushes, sedges, cattails, duckweed and algae.

There are many animals that live year round or at other times in the water and around the edges of the creeks and rivers, including beavers, otters, minks, raccoons, opossums, blue herons, Canada geese, wood ducks, mallards, minnows, native fish, turtles, salamanders, newts, crayfish, muskrats, bull frogs, eagles, hawks and redwing blackbirds.

There is the insect and microscopic world including butterflies, dragonflies, pond skaters, water beetles, damselflies, tadpoles and various insect larvae.

The diverse tree species, coupled with the abundant water supply from the ponds and creeks, creates the perfect wildlife habitat. The miles of “edge effect” created between farm fields, creeks, hollows, ridges, and rock outcrops benefit all the resident wildlife. Bald eagles, white tail deer, black bear, wild turkey, squirrel, rabbit, bobcat, raccoon, fox and many species of songbirds, owls and raptors make up the resident wildlife population.

The hardwood forest provides the essential nutrient source and produces tons of hard mast including acorns, hickory nuts, beech nuts and black walnuts. Soft mast includes stag horn sumac, black cherry, tulip poplar seeds, maple seeds, autumn olive berries and blackberries.

RECREATION

The property offers unparalleled recreational opportunities. Numerous soft recreational activities are anchored by the nearby Greenbrier River, New River, New River Gorge National River Park the 2000-acre Bluestone Lake and the one million-acre Monongahela National Forest.

Nature viewing is first in line of recreational activities. Wildlife viewing is not just for larger animals. Equal consideration is given to a diversity of species including neo-tropical songbirds, butterflies, turtles, frogs, rabbits, chipmunks, dragonflies, owls, eagles and hawks. White tail deer, black bear, red/gray fox, bobcat, wild turkey, grouse, geese, squirrel, raccoon, fox and rabbit make up the resident wildlife population.

Water-sports enthusiasts will find the nearby Greenbrier River, New River and Bluestone Lake ideal for swimming, canoeing, fishing, kayaking, tubing, snorkeling, paddle boarding and windsurfing. Great fishing is found for small and large mouth bass, crappie, catfish, muskie, walleye, pike and bluegill.

Stargazing-Planet Observation
Near total darkness can be still be found on the property, thereby affording the opportunity to view the night sky in all its brilliant wonder. Star-walking and astrophotography are gaining in popularity.

All Terrain Motorsports
The property has many miles of dedicated trails and is perfect for experiencing the property from an ATV or UTV. Riders are welcome to ride all public roads that do not have a painted dividing line and there are miles and miles of open roads in the area. These exciting machines handle the wide variety of the forest’s terrain. Rock Crawling and Rock Bouncing enthusiasts will find the property interesting and a challenge.

Mountain Biking, Horseback Riding, and Hiking. The land may be used for mountain biking, hiking or horseback riding and the area offers several state and national parks geared for these activities.

MINERAL RESOURCES

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

BOUNDARIES AND SURVEY

The property was surveyed in 1980 and is shown on a survey plat and a metes and bounds description that are recorded in Deed Book 337 at pages 709-714. The property is being sold by the boundary and not by the acre.

ZONING

Greenbrier County has no formal zoning in this area of the county. A countywide major and minor subdivision code is in place that all prospective buyers who wish to subdivide the property should consult with the Greenbrier Planning Commission.

PROPERTY TYPE/USE SUMMARY

The property has been used as all forestland and some small fields.

DEED AND TAX INFORMATION

Deed Information: WB 57 Pg. 586
Greenbrier County, West Virginia
Acreage: 313.49 acres +/- by survey

Real Estate Tax ID/Acreage/Taxes:
Greenbrier County (13), West Virginia
Falling Springs District (4)
Tax Map 52 Parcel 6; Class 3

2021 Real Estate Taxes: $2303.10

SCHOOLS

Greenbrier County School District

Public Elementary School:
Frankford Elementary School

Public Middle School:
Eastern Greenbrier Middle School

Public High School:
Greenbrier East High School

Colleges:
New River Community and Technical College (Lewisburg campus)
West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine

Private Schools:
Greenbrier Community School (PK-8)
Greenbrier Valley Academy (2-8)
Lewisburg Baptist Academy (PK-12)
Renick Christian School (2-7)
Seneca Trail Christian Academy (PK-12)

SURROUNDING AREA

Lewisburg, which is the Greenbrier County seat, was voted the Coolest Small Town in America, combining the warmth of a close community with the sophistication of more urban locations. The thriving downtown historic district offers year-round live productions presented at the State Professional Theatre of WV, Carnegie Hall, distinctive dining venues, antique shops, award-winning galleries/boutiques, a year-round farmer’s markets.

Greenbrier Valley Medical Center is a modern hospital and all attendant medical facilities, along with the many big box stores.

The county and city host several fairs & festivals throughout the year including The WV State Fair, a professional 4-weekend Renaissance Festival, Chocolate Festival, Taste of our Town Festival (TOOT), antique car shows, Jeep Rally, Airstream Rally, WV Barn Hunt Competition, PGA Tour @ The Greenbrier Resort, and numerous fun parades.

Lewisburg is the home to the Greenbrier Country Public Library, a fantastic, ultra-modern public library that is open 7 days a week. The library’s services include: Reading Areas, References, Notary Public, Local History Room, Tax Forms, Fax Service, Photo Copies, Digital Printing, Inter Library Loans, Internet/Computer Access, Audio Books, eBooks, Story Hour, Video & DVD’s, Paperback Book Exchange, Literacy Tutoring, Databases, Computer Classes, Book Discussions, Children’s Programming and an Online Catalogue.

Lewisburg is also home to the modern Robert. C Byrd Medical Clinic (300 employees), the WV Osteopathic Medical School (600 students) and the New River Community and Technical College. The area is a strong economic generator with a solid workforce employed in county/state government, tourism, hospitality, medical, education, retail, construction, wood products, mining and agriculture.

The world-renowned Greenbrier Resort, with 800 rooms and 1600 employees, is located in the sleepy little town of White Sulphur Springs. The 4-Star resort has a subterranean casino and is at times the home to the NFL Summer Practice Event, Tennis Exhibitions (Venus Williams, John McEnroe etc.). Several other area golf courses are available in the area – including Oakhurst Links, America’s first golf course, where guests play using old style hickory-handled clubs and ground-burrowing golf balls.

A picturesque train ride from White Sulphur Springs connects the area to DC, Philadelphia, Chicago, and many other locations. By car, DC is 4 hours away and Charlotte is only 4.

Within a two-hour’s drive are located some of the finest recreational facilities in West Virginia. Winterplace Ski Resort, whitewater rafting / fishing on the New River and Gauley River, 2000-acre Bluestone Lake, Pipestem State Park and Resort and the 80,000-acre New River National Gorge National Park. Five other area state parks and state forests offer unlimited hiking, horseback riding, ATV riding and rock climbing opportunities. Snowshoe Ski Resort is 90-minute drive through some of the most scenic country on the East Coast. The new 12,000-acre Boy Scout High Adventure Camp and home to the US and World Jamboree is an hour’s drive.

GREENBRIER RIVER

At 162 miles long, the Greenbrier is the longest untamed (unblocked) river left in the Eastern United States. It is primarily used for recreational pursuits and well known for its fishing, canoeing, kayaking and floating opportunities. Its upper reaches flow through the Monongahela National Forest, and it is paralleled for 77 miles by the Greenbrier River Trail, a rail trail which runs between the communities of Cass and North Caldwell.

It has always been a valuable water route, with the majority of the important cities in the watershed being established river ports. The river gives the receiving waters of the New River an estimated 30% of its water volume. Over three-fourths of the watershed is an extensive karstic (cavern system), which supports fine trout fishing, cave exploration and recreation. Many important festivals and public events are held along the river throughout the watershed.

The Greenbrier is formed at Durbin in northern Pocahontas County by the confluence of the East Fork Greenbrier River and the West Fork Greenbrier River, both of which are short streams rising at elevations exceeding 3,300 feet and flowing for their entire lengths in northern Pocahontas County. From Durbin the Greenbrier flows generally south-southwest through Pocahontas, Greenbrier and Summers Counties, past several communities including Cass, Marlinton, Hillsboro, Ronceverte, Fort Spring, Alderson, and Hinton, where it flows into the New River.

Along most of its course, the Greenbrier accommodated the celebrated Indian warpath known as the Seneca Trail (Great Indian Warpath). From the vicinity of present-day White Sulphur Springs, the Trail followed Anthony’s Creek down to the Greenbrier near the present Pocahontas-Greenbrier County line. It then ascended the River to the vicinity of Hillsboro and Droop Mountain and made its way through present Pocahontas County by way of future Marlinton, Indian Draft Run, and Edray.

GREENBRIER RIVER TRAIL

The 77-mile-long Greenbrier River Trail State Park is operated by the West Virginia State Parks and is a former C&O railroad grade now used for hiking, bicycling, ski-touring, horseback-riding, and wheel-chair use. The trail passes through numerous small towns and traverses 35 bridges and 2 tunnels as it winds its way along the valley. Most of the trail is adjacent to the free-flowing Greenbrier River and is surrounded by peaks of the Allegheny Mountains.

THE NEW RIVER AND BLUESTONE LAKE

The property is located in the heart of the recreational mecca area. The New River Gorge was a vast and largely unsettled wilderness until the C&O railroad was built on the eastern side of the river in the 1880’s. The railroad opened up the rich coalfields and virgin timber stands of the region. Early “mountaineers” settled the area and soon were carving out mountain farms and raising families.

The New River is the second oldest river in the world, preceded only by the Nile; it is the oldest river in North America. The New River is unique because it begins in Blowing Rock, N.C. and flows north through Virginia into West Virginia. The Nile and Amazon are the only other major rivers that also flow north. Year after year, it produces more citation fish than any other warm water river in WV. Smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, sunfish, hybrid striped bass, and muskie are all common species of fish found in the New River and Bluestone Lake.

Bluestone Lake is over 2000 acres at summer pool and is the state’s third largest body of water. Great hunting and fishing opportunities abound at the 17,632 acre Bluestone Wildlife Area adjacent to the park and nearby Camp Creek State Forest.

REGIONAL INFORMATION