THE WEST FARM
|Address:||4116 Eads Mill Rd., Princeton, WV 24740|
Bill Zimmerman, 304-667-7026
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The 54 acre +/- West Farm is a multi-use property suitable for commercial and residential development, timber investment, outdoor recreation, and agricultural use.
The West Farm has circa an 1875 plantation style home, and with minimal work it can become a forever home or a country getaway. The property has several outbuildings, a 4-stall horse barn, and fenced areas. Most notably, an ancient Oak stands in the front yard and is estimated to be over 200 years old.
The 70,000 acre New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, America’s newest national park is nearby
- 54 acres +/- multi-use commercial, farming, timber investment, recreational and residential property
- 70,000 acre New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, America’s newest national park is nearby
- Public water, electric, landline telephone, great cell coverage with 5G service
- Some 39,000 vehicles pass by the property daily traveling on I-77
- An easy drive to higher population areas of Princeton, Blacksburg, Roanoke, Beckley, Lewisburg and Charleston, 4 jet airports, and 4 major interstates
- Property lies on both sides of state-maintained Eads Mill Road (paved)
- 30 +/- acres in valuable woodland
- 24 acres +/- agricultural land
- Brush Creek Whitewater Trail is on the property
- Blue line and intermittent streams flow through the property
- Large pond provides fishing and soft recreational opportunities
- 4 stall horse barn, several outbuildings
- Circa 1875 homestead with 3 bedrooms and 2 baths
- Well sized to create a wonderful country retreat – private but not remote
- City amenities nearby – 15 minutes to Princeton 45 minutes to Beckley
- 2 hours drive to Charleston – WV’s State Capitol and largest metro area & jet service
- Valuable timber is ready for immediate harvest producing cash flow to offset purchase and holding costs
- Mature hardwood forest is comprised of Red Oak, White Oak, Hickory, Poplar, White Pine and Maples
- ATV riding, hiking, camping, hunting star gazing and nature viewing
- Perfect location to enjoy all water sport activities supported by the nearby New River, Greenbrier River, and the 2000-acre Bluestone Lake
- Amazing resident wildlife population rich in diversity and ever changing
- Fur bearing – deer, black bear, squirrel, rabbit, bobcat, raccoon, coyote, fox, chipmunk, opossum
- Area winged wildlife includes Neotropical songbirds, turkey, grouse, eagles, herons, hawks, owls, ravens, king fishers, ravens, crows, and hummingbirds
- Forest soaks up tons of Carbon Dioxide and produces tons of life-giving oxygen
- A rewarding off-grid permaculture lifestyle can be easily developed
- Elevations range from 2337 ft. to 2613 ft.
- Low taxes, low population density
Google Coordinates: 37.437304°(N), -81.061990°(W)
Address: 4116 Eads Mill Road, Princeton, WV 24740
Elevation Range: 2337 ft. to 2613 ft. +/-
- 45 minutes to the New River National Park & Preserve
- 10 minutes to Athens and Concord University
- 15 minutes to Princeton
- 25 minutes to Bluefield
- 45 minutes to Beckley and Raleigh County Memorial Airport
- 45 minutes to Wytheville, VA
- 55 minutes to Dublin, VA and New River Valley Airport
- 1 hour to Blacksburg, VA and Virginia Tech
- 20 minutes to Camp Creek State Park & Forest
- 20 minutes to Pipestem Resort State Park
- 30 minutes to Bluestone Lake
From I-77 Athens Road Exit 14: 1.1 miles +/- (approximately 2 minutes) At the end of the exit ramps, turn to travel toward Rt. 20; travel a very short distance to where the divided highway merges together; turn left onto Eads Mill Road Rt. 14 (toward the high school complex); travel Eads Mill Road for 9/10 mile; the farm home driveway is on the right.
THE ORIGINAL HOMESTEAD – CIRCA 1875
The old homestead was built circa 1875 and is a classic two-story plantation-style home. An ancient Oak stands in the front yard estimated to be over 200 years old.
The two-story home has approximately 1,616 sq. ft containing three bedrooms (master on first floor), bathrooms on each floor, living room, kitchen, dining room, and utility room. The home also has a large covered porch creating additional seasonal living space.
The original farm buildings that supported the day-to-day activities of living on a self-sustaining mountain farm include a 4-stall barn and several outbuildings.
Living Room 15’x 15’
Master Bedroom 15’ x15’
Bath 11’x 5’
Kitchen 10’x 14’
Dining 14’x 14’
Foyer 8’x 5′
Utility Room 8’x 15’
Bedroom #1 13’x 15’
Bedroom #2 13’x 15’
Bath 8’x 5′
Foyer 15’x 8’
Total Heated Living Space 1,616 sq. ft.
This property has approximately 30 acres of highly desirable timber composed of high-quality Appalachian hardwoods and White Pine. 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 costs and long-term asset appreciation.
There are hay fields, pastures and meadows composed of cool and warm season grasses and beautiful wildflowers. There are several productive apple trees and blackberry bushes. The large amount of sugar maple and red maple trees could make hundreds of gallons of maple syrup if a sugarbush was established.
Brushy Creek and the large pond on the property are major contributors of the local ecosystem, richness and diversity of both plants and animals. The pond and the surrounding aquatic plant life create a water supported community with a wide variety of wildlife. Some of the margins of the pond are fringed by wetlands, and these wetlands support the aquatic food web, provide shelter for wildlife and stabilize the shores of the pond and banks downstream. The plant life associated with the wetlands includes rushes, slugs, cat tails, duck weed, and algae.
The “edge effect” benefits all the resident wildlife. White tail deer, black bear, wild turkey, squirrel, rabbit, bobcat, fox, chipmunk, and many species of songbirds make up the resident wildlife population.
Of equal importance, there is the insect and microscopic world including butterflies, dragonflies, water skaters, water beetles, damselflies, hellgrammites, tadpoles and various insect larve.
Great fishing is found in the lakes and rivers with small and large mouth bass, crappie, catfish, muskie, walleye, pike and bluegill present in good numbers.
The hardwood forest of the surrounding mountains 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.
A small section of Brush Creek, a blueline stream that should have waterflow nearly year-round, runs at the southern end of the property. An intermittent stream supporting Brush Creek lies inside the property for about 2/10 mile. The intermittent stream should flow during a rain event or periods of snow melt. Further, the farm has a 1-acre pond.
SELF-SUSTAINING LIFE OFF THE GRID
Just like 150 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 spring.
- The forest would provide fresh food (deer, and turkey).
- The agricultural land would be used to raise livestock, 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, maple syrup and pounds of nuts (walnuts, beechnuts and hickory nuts).
All mineral rights the owner has in title will convey with the property. 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 is being sold by the boundary and not by the acre.
Sewer: Private septic system
Electricity: Appalachian Power
Cellphone Coverage: Good with 5G service
The property appears to have about ½ mile of frontage on Eads Mill Road Rt. 14. That frontage is created by both the road running through a portion of the farm as well as running along a portion of the western side of the farm. Kraft Lane, a private road, appears to run along a portion of the eastern side of the farm.
The 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
This location of The West Farm makes it an excellent choice for commercial purposes. Currently, the property is being utilized as a farm consisting of home grounds, fields, a farm pond, and forestland.
RECREATION AT THE WEST FARM
The property offers unparalleled recreational opportunities. Numerous soft recreational activities are anchored by the nearby New River, 2000-acre Bluestone Lake, Greenbrier River, and the New River Gorge National River Park & Preserve.
Water-sports enthusiasts will find the nearby lakes and rivers 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.
Nature viewing is next 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.
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. Ideal for star walking and astrophotography too.
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
- 22 single shot rifle and a few tin cans make a fun day
All Terrain Motorsports
The property 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.
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, 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.
DEED and TAX INFORMATION
Deed Information: DB 984 Pg. 599
Mercer County, West Virginia
Acreage: 80 acres +/- (Estimated to be 54 acres, more or less)
Real Estate Tax ID/Acreage/Taxes:
Mercer County (28), West Virginia
Plymouth District (9)
Tax Map 16 Parcel 8
2021 Total Real Estate Taxes: $1712
Mercer County School District
Public Elementary Schools:
Athens Elementary School
Public Middle Schools:
Pike View Middle School
Public High School:
Pike View High School
The surrounding area offers unlimited soft recreational activities including white water rafting, golfing, fishing, camping, hiking, bird watching and rock climbing. Snow skiing at the Winterplace Ski Resort is a ½ hour away. The Beckley Airport is just 45 minutes away. Yeager Airport in Charleston WV, is an easy 2 hour drive.
The West Farm is supported with the thriving community of Princeton. The area is a strong economic generator with a solid workforce employed in county/state government, tourism, hospitality, education, retail, construction, wood products, mining and agriculture. The surrounding area is richly blessed with a wide array of cultural events that keep life interesting and satisfying. Visit http://www.visitmercercounty.com/
Charleston is West Virginia’s state capitol and is an easy 2-hour drive. Charleston is West Virginia’s largest city with a population of some 50,000 and a metro area of 225,000. It is the center of government, commerce, culture and industry. There is a commercial airport with daily flights to most major hubs.
Beckley is a 45-minute drive, has a population of 34,000, and is the county seat of Raleigh County. All amenities are available in Beckley. Beckley is located at the intersection of I-77, I-64 and US 19 so easy access to Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Charleston and Cincinnati is just around the corner.
The world renowned 4-Star Greenbrier Resort, home of the PGA tour, is an hour drive. Several other area golf courses are available in the area. The New River Gorge recreation area offers white water rafting, rock climbing, ziplining, camping and horseback riding. The nearby and very popular 100+ mile long Hatfield-McCoy ATV trail makes for a very active recreation area.
Year round, state maintained paved roads and a private driveway provide easy access. Weekly trash pickup, daily newspaper and daily mail delivery is available at curb-side. UPS and FedEx service this area also.
Situate within an hour’s drive of the confluence of the New River, Bluestone River and Greenbrier River, the 2000 acre Bluestone Lake, at Hinton is truly a gateway to water recreation. The 80,000 acre New River National River Park, Bluestone State Park, Pipestem State Park Resort and 17,000 acre Bluestone Wildlife Management Area are recreational cornerstones in the area. The new 10,000 acre Boy Scout high adventure camp is an hour’s drive.
THE NEW RIVER GORGE NATIONAL PARK and PRESERVE
The 70,000-acre New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is a unit of the United States National Park Service (NPS) designed to protect and maintain the New River Gorge in southern West Virginia in the Appalachian Mountains. Established in 1978 as a national river, the NPS-protected area stretches for 53 miles from just downstream of Hinton to Hawks Nest State Park near Ansted. The park was officially named America’s 63rd national park, the U.S. government’s highest form of protection, in December of 2020, amid the COVID-19 pandemic as part of a relief bill.
West Virginia is home to parts of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, a foot path that stretches more than 2,100 miles between Maine and Georgia; the Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail, which cuts through 16 states for 4,900 miles; the Bluestone National Scenic River; and Harpers Ferry National Historic Park. Now, over 70,000 acres of land, bordering 53 miles of the gorge, has earned the government’s protection.
The New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is rich in cultural and natural history, and offers an abundance of scenic and recreational opportunities. New River Gorge is home to some of the country’s best whitewater rafting, mainly from the Cunard put-in to the Fayette Station take-out, and is also one of the most popular climbing areas on the East Coast.
Home to the New River, which drops 750 feet over 66 miles, with its Class V rapids, has long drawn adventuresome rafters and kayakers to this whitewater area. The New River, which flows northward through low-cut canyons in the Appalachian Mountains, is actually one of the oldest rivers on the planet.
Rock climbing on the canyon walls, mountain biking and hiking on trails that flank the river, and wildlife viewing—bald eagles, osprey, kingfishers, great blue herons, beavers, river otters, wild turkeys, brown bats, snakes, and black bears—are all popular activities within the park.
Begin your experience with a stop at Canyon Rim Visitor Center, which is situated on the edge of the gorge, for maps, current information, and chats with a park ranger. You can learn any pertinent safety protocols and visit the bookstore.
The New River Gorge Bridge is a work of structural art. Construction of the bridge began in 1974, and was completed in 1977. The Bridge spans 3,030 feet in length and is the third highest bridge in the U.S., at 876 ft. During Bridge Day, an annual one-day festival celebrating the construction of the Bridge, BASE jumpers launch off the 876-foot bridge and parachute down to the New River. New River Gorge is the only national park in the U.S. that permits this extreme activity.
President Jimmy Carter signed legislation establishing New River Gorge National River on November 10, 1978 (Pub.L. 95–625). As stated in the legislation, the park was established as a unit of the national park system “for the purpose of conserving and interpreting outstanding natural, scenic, and historic values and objects in and around the New River Gorge, and preserving as a free-flowing stream an important segment of the New River in West Virginia for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future generations.” The New River Gorge National Park and Preserve Designation Act was incorporated into the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, changing the designation to New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. Less than 10% of the original national river was re-designated as a national park, where hunting is no longer permitted, while the remainder is a national preserve with little change.
NEW RIVER REGION OVERVIEW
The New River is shared by boaters, fisherman, campers, park visitors and local neighbors. The waters of the New River system contain a mosaic of hydrologic features and aquatic habitats that support a highly productive aquatic ecosystem that includes distinct populations of native fish, mussels, crayfish, and a broad array of other aquatic life, including rare amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.
The 320-mile New River rises in the Blue Ridge region of North Carolina and flows northeastward through the Appalachian uplands to Radford, Va., where it turns northwestward and passes through a series of narrow valleys and gorges into southern West Virginia. It ends where it joins the Gauley River to form the Kanawha River. In WV, the New River is entrenched in a steep and narrow valley, the most narrow part of which is known as the “New River Gorge.”
In 1998, because of historical, economical, and cultural importance, President Clinton signed into law the New River as one of the very first American Heritage Rivers. Much of the river’s course through West Virginia was designated as the New River Gorge National River. In 2021, the area was designated as the United States’ newest National Park.
The New River is recognized as the “second oldest river in the world” and is estimated to be between 10 and 360 million years old. Its headwaters begin near Blowing Rock, NC, and is one of the few rivers in North America that flows northerly.
Class I, II, III, IV and V rapids dot the entire 320 miles of New River making it a great paddling, tubing, and white rafting adventure. Beautiful cliffs, bluffs, and mountain views make it one of the most scenic rivers on the east coast.
New River Gorge National Park includes 53 miles of free-flowing New River, beginning at Bluestone Dam and ending at Hawks Nest Lake. The New River typifies big West Virginia style whitewater. Within the park it has two very different characters. The upper (southern) part of the river consists primarily of long pools, and relatively easy rapids up to Class III. It is a big powerful river, but very beautiful, always runnable, and providing excellent fishing and camping. There are a number of different river access points, and trips can run from several hours to several days.
The lower (northern) section of river is often referred to as “the Lower Gorge.” In a state that is justifiably renowned for colossal rapids, the Lower Gorge has some of the biggest of the big with rapids ranging in difficulty from Class III to Class V. The rapids are imposing and forceful, many of them obstructed by large boulders which necessitate maneuvering in very powerful currents, crosscurrents, and hydraulics. Some rapids contain hazardous undercut rocks.
Prior to the rise of the Appalachian Mountains, the New River cut its bed at a time when the land sloped to the northwest. Amazingly so, as the Appalachians gradually rose around the river, the New River wore away the bedrock at the same rate the mountains formed, leaving behind towering cliffs and prominences that hover hundreds of feet about the water level.
Accounts claim that Indians referred to the New River as the “river of death,” however this origin story is likely legend. Native Americans and early European settlers regarded the New and Kanawha rivers as being one single waterway. The name “New” may have been derived when the river upstream was discovered by European explorers as the first “new” river found flowing westward.
Native American Indians used the New River as they traveled west years before the pioneers arrived. In the 1600s explorers navigating the New River thought they were close to the Pacific Ocean because of its westerly flow.
In 1671 the Batts-Fallam expedition, by way of the New River, came through to the Lurich area and ended there because the Indian guides refused to take them any farther. They carved their initials in a tree and claimed the territory for King Charles II of England. This was the first proclamation of English territory west of the Alleghenies making the New River the first gateway into the west.
Fast water, big rocks and lazy/slow stretches are features of the New River. Water sports enthusiasts will find the New River ideal for swimming, canoeing, fishing, kayaking, tubing, snorkeling, paddle boarding and windsurfing. Great fishing is found in the New River with bass (largemouth, smallmouth and rock), flathead catfish, channel catfish, muskie, walleye and bluegill present in good numbers. Year after year, it produces more citation fish than any other warm water river in WV.
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 gorge was practically impassible before completion of the New River Gorge Bridge, near Fayetteville, WV, in 1978. The river within its gorge is one of the most popular whitewater rafting destinations in the eastern U.S. Much of the New between Hinton and Gauley Bridge is managed by the National Park Service as the New River Gorge National River.
Principal tributaries of the New in West Virginia include, from south to north, the East River, the Bluestone River, and the Greenbrier River.
Many former mining communities located on the New River in its gorge have since become ghost towns. These include Sewell, Nuttalburg, Kaymoor, Fayette, South Fayette, Hawks Nest, Cotton Hill, and Gauley, Beury and Claremont.
THE SURROUNDING BLUESTONE AREA
Amidst the beautiful scenery of southern West Virginia lies the long Bluestone Lake. This reservoir, the third largest lake in West Virginia, is popular for its fishing and other recreational activities. Bluestone Lake was formed by a concrete dam built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers across the New River to reduce flooding. Although the dam was started in 1941, its construction was delayed because of World War II, and it was not fully completed until 1952. The lake is nearly eleven miles long, with an area of 2,040 acres during summer pool, though the water level does change frequently. The Lake can grow to over 36 miles long at flood control pool. At higher levels, the lake extends into Giles County, Virginia. The Lake’s Catchment Area is 4,565 square miles. Water levels are drawn down four feet in winter to make room for melting snow and spring rain.
Bluestone Lake, Greenbrier River and the New River are great places for fishing, and it is said that New River is the best warm-water fishery in the state. Some of the species of fish available in the lake and river are bluegill, catfish, crappie, muskellunge, and various types of bass. New River bass have set some West Virginia state records.
In addition to fishing, Bluestone Lake is fantastic for enjoying all sorts of water activities, including boating, canoeing, water skiing, and wake boarding. The lake has several boat ramps and a commercial marina for the boater’s convenience, and there are no limits to the size of boats or motors that can be on the lake.
Bluestone Lake is part of the Bluestone Wildlife Management Area, which covers an area of 18,019 acres. The Wildlife Management Area is known for having some of the best hunting in the area, and hunters and trappers will be able to catch a variety of game including white-tail deer, turkey, fox, and other animals.
One great place to enjoy the lake is at Bluestone State Park. The park has ample accommodations for those who want to stay overnight. There are a variety of camp sites – or, if you prefer a more comfortable stay, there are 26 cabins with TV’s, showers, and other modern conveniences. Park visitors can take a walk on the hiking trails, play in the swimming pool, or rent game equipment to play croquet or horseshoes. The park also has weekly events with lots of fun activities.
In addition to all the fun activities on the lake, there’s plenty more to do in the surrounding area. There are several other parks nearby, where you can enjoy all sorts of outdoor activities. You can experience some great whitewater on the New River. And the New River Gorge is well-known as a great place for rock climbing, with its many hard sandstone cliffs. If you want a break from outdoor activities, the nearby town of Hinton has many attractions. There are a variety of restaurants, shops and antique stores to browse, and museums to visit.
Historical and recreational interest located in the Bluestone area includes the outdoor musical dramas “Hatfields and McCoys” and others shows performed at Grandview Park, near Beckley. Pipestem Resort with its myriad recreational facilities is 20 minutes away, and the 80,000 acres New River Gorge National River Park, center of some of the state’s best whitewater rafting and canoeing plays an integral part of the area. Of special note are Sandstone Falls and the Visitor Center, just north of Hinton; and Bluestone National Wild and Scenic River, which flows into Bluestone Lake within the park boundaries.
BLUESTONE LAKE MARINA
Bluestone Lake Marina offers guests lake opportunities for water-oriented recreation. Depending on lake conditions, it is open from April 15th through October 15th.
At the marina you can rent fishing boats, pontoon boats, kayaks, canoes and slip rentals as well as cabin rentals conveniently located near Bluestone Lake and Bluestone State Park. Fuel, bait and snacks are available for purchase.
BLUESTONE WMA – 18,109 ACRES
The statewide Wildlife Management Program is designed to conserve and manage high quality habitats for a variety of wildlife species and to improve public access to these resources. West Virginia provides numerous opportunities to learn and appreciate the abundant wildlife.
Bluestone Wildlife Management Area offers visitors a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities on 18,109 acres. Being adjacent to Bluestone Lake, the state’s third largest body of water, the area offers guests boating, canoeing and fishing opportunities. The section of the lake from just upstream of the Bluestone River to Bluestone Dam is in Bluestone State Park; the rest of the lake in West Virginia basin comprises Bluestone WMA.
Hunting is offered due to the wildlife management area status, and Bluestone has over 330 primitive campsites and picnic sites. Avid fishermen can enjoy float fishing and stocked trout fishing in Indian Creek. Hiking and equestrian trails are also popular.
Bicycles are permitted on main roads, day use areas and campground areas. Many of the roads leading to Wildlife Management area campgrounds are dirt roads which provide an experience similar to off-road bicycling.
BLUESTONE STATE PARK
Bluestone State Park was established in 1950 and is named after the Bluestone National Scenic River, which flows into the New River at the park. Bluestone State Park encompasses over 2,100 acres of rugged, heavily forested, mountainous terrain, and provides a variety of water-oriented activities for guests and residents of southern West Virginia. This park is five miles south of Hinton, WV.
Classic Cabins at Bluestone State Park are available for rent year-round. The campgrounds, although seasonal by nature, are popular campsites with visitors. Hiking and the opportunity to view eagles makes Bluestone a neat area to visit.
Bluestone State Park has 26 modern, fully furnished cabins with kitchens, showers, linens, towels, cooking utensils, dishes, tableware and modern appliances. Each cabin also has a stone fireplace, grill, picnic table and campfire ring. Cabins are available for rent year-round and accommodate two to eight people. Select cabins are pet friendly. Guests also have access to nearby Pipestem Resort State Park’s indoor facilities including an indoor pool and sauna for some more rest and relaxation.
Bluestone State Park has four campgrounds with 120 campsites. The Meador Campground has 32 sites open to RVs and tents with electric and water available at seven of the sites, electric at 15 sites, and a central bathhouse also on-site. The Tent Area Campground has five rustic sites and is designed for group camping. Old Mill Campground, open to tents and RVs, has 44 rustic campsites and a central bathhouse. East Shore Campground has 39 primitive sites accessible by boat only. The campgrounds are open mid-April through late October. Campground reservations are available from Memorial Day through Labor Day each year. Campgrounds are open on a first-come, first-serve basis through October 31. A campsite reservation application is available here.
An extra plus is that Bluestone Park is adjacent to Bluestone Lake, the state’s third largest body of water. Due to this sizeable lake, boating and fishing are naturally an important part of the recreational opportunities at the park. The addition of hiking trails, a swimming pool, game courts, and a seasonal nature/recreation program creates a well-rounded array of activities. The proximity of Bluestone to Winter Place ski area makes the park’s rental cabins affordable accommodations for ski groups and winter vacations.
Nearby is “The Year-Round Crown Jewel of West Virginia State Parks,” Pipestem, is known for its scenic overlooks and an aerial tram ride into the Bluestone Gorge. Park amenities include an 18-hole, par 72 championship golf course with several restaurants and snack bars.
Bluestone Dam, located at Hinton, is one of the major flood control dams in West Virginia. It has the largest drainage area and flood storage capacity of any dam in the state. It is built across New River, one mile above its junction with the Greenbrier River and two miles below the confluence of New River and Bluestone River. Prior to the construction of the Bluestone Dam, flooding was a major problem on this great river system.
Bluestone Dam was authorized in 1935 by an executive order issued by President Franklin Roosevelt. Construction on the project began in 1942, but work was suspended in 1943 because of World War II. Work resumed in January 1946, and the dam was completed for operational purposes in January 1949, and totally completed in 1952. The approximate cost was $30 million.
With a drainage area of 4,565 square miles Bluestone Dam controls 44 percent of the river flow through the populous Kanawha Valley, which is downstream. It is a concrete gravity dam 165 feet high and 2,048 feet long, administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Normal release of water from the Bluestone Lake is accomplished through 16 sluices in the base of the dam. The 790-foot spillway has 21 flood gates. There are also six sluiceways for hydroelectric power that have not been used in the early decades of the dam’s history. The maximum discharge capacity is 430,000 square feet per second.
The dam contains 942,000 cubic yards of concrete and 7,800 tons of steel. Its lake has a summertime surface of 2,040 acres and is very popular with boaters, skiers, and fishermen. Bluestone State Park, located on the Bluestone River about three miles above the dam, provides lodging, camping, a restaurant, and recreational facilities.
The Bluestone Dam celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1999, when the Army Corps of Engineers estimated that the dam had prevented more than $1.6 billion in flood damages. Bluestone ended its first half-century with important improvements under way. The lake became a major supplier of public water in 1997, serving Hinton and Princeton and a large area between and around those two communities.
Reinforcements were added to the dam under the federal Dam Safety Assurance program, with raising the dam by 8 feet, installing anchors and thrust blocks to tie the dam into bedrock, spillway improvements and other work. The second phase, installing bedrock anchors, is underway and three additional phases remain to be constructed. Simultaneously, work began to add hydroelectric capacity to the dam, in a partnership between Hinton and other communities and private industry.
Hydroelectric Power Generation Project: Bluestone Dam was originally designed for Federal hydropower and six penstocks were constructed through the east abutment. During World War II, construction activities were delayed, during which time interest in Federal hydropower declined.
The Water Resources Development Act of 2000, authorized Tri-Cities Power Authority (TCPA) to design and construct a hydropower generating facility at Bluestone Dam. TCPA is made up of the West Virginia cities for Hinton, Philippi and White Sulphur Springs.
Until the early 2000’s the penstocks were capped and never modified. Between 2001 and 2017, the Corps modified the penstocks to create an auxiliary spillway as a required Dam Safety Action.
The Corps and TCPA initiated negotiations for the installation of a non-federal hydropower facility at Bluestone Dam but these negotiations were put on hold as the Corps advanced required dam safety actions so TCPA could re-assess the project. Bluestone State Park was established in 1950 and is named after the Bluestone National Scenic River, which flows into the New River at the park. Bluestone State Park encompasses over 2,100 acres of rugged, heavily forested, mountainous terrain, and provides a variety of water-oriented activities for guests and residents of southern West Virginia. This park is five miles south of Hinton, WV.
The information contained herein has been obtained through sources deemed reliable but cannot be guaranteed. All information should be independently reviewed and verified for accuracy.
From I-77 Athens Road Exit 14: 1.1 miles +/- (approximately 2 minutes) At the end of the exit ramps, turn to travel toward Rt. 20; travel a very short distance to where the divided highway merges together; turn left onto Eads Mill Road Rt. 14 (toward the high school complex); travel Eads Mill Road for 9/10 mile; the farm home driveway is on the right.
- State of West Virginia
- West Virginia Explorer
- West Virginia Government
- West Virginia State Parks
- West Virginia Tourism
- Wonderful West Virginia Magazine
- WV Department of Natural Resources
- Virginia – Commonwealth of Virginia
- Virginia is for Lovers
- Virginia Museum of History & Culture
- Virginia Museum of Natural History
- Virginia National Park Service
- Virginia Recreation
- Virginia State Parks
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