Richard Grist, 304.645.7674
The Wilcox Forest is a 244+/- acre heavily wooded recreational property located just 15 minutes from the 2000-acre Bluestone Lake, the mighty New River, and the 80,000-acre New River Gorge National River Park.
- 244+/- acres multi-use land with a mature mountain forest
- Perfect for all water sport activities supported by the nearby Greenbrier River, New River and the 2000-acre Bluestone Lake
- 80,000-acre New River Gorge National River Park nearby
- All small city amenities are 15 minutes away in Hinton, the Summers County Seat
- Excellent river and lake fishing nearby with a mix of deep holes, rapids and still water
- 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
- An hour’s drive to jet airports and 4 major interstates
- Dynamic forest with some old growth trees estimated to be 150-200 years old
- A rewarding off-grid permaculture lifestyle could be easily developed
- Cell phone coverage is good
- Darkest of skies with little or no light pollution for star gazing and planet observation
- The 244+/- acres can offer ATV riding, hiking, camping, hunting and nature viewing
- Low taxes, low population density
- An easy drive to higher population areas of Charleston, Blacksburg, Roanoke, Beckley, Princeton and Lewisburg
Google Coordinates: 37.523683°(N), -80.944811°(W)
Address: Gerow Lane, Pipestem, WV 25979. No 911 address is assigned to a property without structures.
Elevation Range: 1813 ft. to 2580 ft. +/-
Wilcox Forest offers unparalleled recreational opportunities. Numerous soft recreational activities are anchored by the nearby Greenbrier River, New River, New River Gorge National River Park and the 2000-acre Bluestone Lake.
Water-sports enthusiasts will find the 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.
Nature viewing is first in line of recreational activities. Attentive wildlife management has been geared not to just larger 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, 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. It is hard to find a property that has a better mix of wildlife.
Total or 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.
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: A old 22 single shot rifle and a few tin cans make a fun day
All Terrain Motorsports
Wilcox Forest 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.
The nearby Bluestone Lake, New River, and Greenbrier River are major contributors to the local ecosystem richness and diversity for both plants and animals. There are many animals that live year round and at other times in the water and around the edges of the river, including beavers, otters, minks, raccoons, opossums, blue herons, Canada geese, wood ducks, mallards, king fishers, minnows, native fish, turtles, salamanders, newts, crayfish, muskrats, bull frogs, eagles, owls, hawks and redwing blackbirds.
The miles of “edge effect” created between the river, forest, and fields 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.
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 Greenbrier River, New River and Bluestone Lake with small and large mouth bass, crappie, catfish, muskie, walleye, pike and bluegill present in good numbers.
The rivers, lake, and creeks, and their surrounding aquatic plant life, create a water a water-supported community with a wide variety of wildlife. Much of their margins are fringed by wetlands, and these wetlands support the aquatic food web, provide shelter for wildlife, and stabilize their shores. The plant life associated with the wetland includes rushes, sedges, cattails, duckweed, bee balm and algae.
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.
SELF-SUSTAINING LIFE OFF THE GRID
Just like 200 years ago, when the first mountaineers settled the area, the property can be self-sustaining in times of necessity – even without on-grid electricity.
- Solar or wind power could provide an endless supply of off-grid electricity
- Fresh water for drinking and cooking would come from a drilled water well (hand drawing water from the well using a cylinder well bucket). Spring water is also a possibility.
- Deer and turkey can supply fresh meat
- Some of the woodlands could be cleared and 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 lumber for building.
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 possible 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)
The 244+/- acre forest is very mature with many trees in the 50-100-year-old range. The forest resource is composed of Appalachian hardwoods and pine. The species composition consists primarily of Black Walnut, Sycamore, Birch, Red Maple, Poplar, Red Oak, White Oak, Hickory, and a host of associated species (Ash, Pine, Eastern Cedar, Sourwood, Black Gum, Beech, Ironwood and Hop Hornbeam).
Several “Heritage Trees” are scattered throughout the forest and old field edges. These ancient trees, some 100-200 years old, have withstood the test of time, weathering flood, ice, wind, lightning strikes and fire.
Wilcox Forest is an easy drive of higher population areas of Charleston, Roanoke, Blacksburg, Beckley, Princeton and Lewisburg.
Nearby Hinton is the county seat with grocery stores, restaurants, banks, auto parts stores, hardware, hospital, dentists and most other small-town amenities. Hinton is also the Summers County Seat and the economic and governmental hub of the county. The county’s total population is about 14,000.
Charleston is West Virginia’s state capitol and is an easy 90-minute 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 40-minute drive, has a population of 34,000, and is the county seat of Raleigh County. All city 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 surrounding area offers unlimited recreational activities including white water rafting, golfing, fishing, camping, hiking, bird watching and rock climbing and snow skiing.
- 15 minutes to Hinton
- One hour or less to Beckley, Princeton, Lewisburg, 80,000-acre New River Gorge National Park, 2,000-acre Bluestone Lake, Pipestem Resort and Bluestone State Park, Sandstone Falls, Winterplace Ski Resort and the 4-Star Greenbrier Resort
- A picturesque Amtrak train ride from Hinton connects the area to DC, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, and many other locations
- Washington, DC is 5 hours away and Charlotte only 3
- Charleston, Beckley, Lewisburg airports offer jet service to main hubs
- Charleston, the state capitol, is 1.5 hours’ drive and offers all large city amenities
- Easy access to I-64, I-77, I-79, US 460, US 19
- The Bechtel Summit Reserve, the12,000-acre Boy Scouts of America’s high adventure camp, is also an hour’s drive
- The 14,000-acre Wildlife Management Area is just up river at Bull Falls
Historic Summers County
Hinton, the county seat of Summers County is a 15-minute drive. Hinton, founded in 1871, grew rapidly as the hub of a growing railroad industry serving the New River coal fields, passenger travel and coast to coast freight lines. Today, Hinton serves the growing tourist and technology industries.
Summers County (2014 population—13,417) is located in the southeastern region of West Virginia, scenically placed between the beautiful Greenbrier and New River Valleys. The City of Hinton (2013 population—2,588) serves as the county seat and is the sole municipality within Summers County.
The railroad boom of the early 20th century helped to build Hinton and Summers County. However, the county’s current economy is based primarily on tourism thanks to the Bluestone Dam and Lake along with the Bluestone, Greenbrier, and New Rivers, which converge in Hinton. Further, the New River Gorge National River begins at Hinton and flows northward into neighboring Fayette County.
Summers County is also home to Bluestone State Park, Pipestem Resort, and a number of other facilities that provide lodging, camping, and a variety of recreational activities. The Hinton Railroad Museum, the Graham House, the Campbell Flanagan Murrell House, and other museums provide glimpses into the county’s history. The architecture of buildings in Hinton’s nationally-registered historic district is of interest to many. A solid core of retail stores and professional service providers meet the needs of residents and visitors alike.
Residents of Summers County enjoy a wonderful small town, laid back quality of life. Service clubs such as the Kiwanis, Lions, Rotary, and Ruritans support a number of community initiatives, school programs, and special events. The Summers County Library supports the county school system and provides visitors with Internet access and other services. Several denominations of churches meet the Summers County community’s spiritual needs.
Summers County is served east-west by Interstate 64 and by north and south connections to Interstate 77. The New River Parkway, when completed, will improve access to Sandstone Falls by upgrading River Road from I-64 near Exit 139 Sandstone into Hinton. West Virginia Routes 3, 12, 19, 20, and 107 are the primary highways within the county. Amtrak also provides an important transportation link to Summers County with its Cardinal line from New York to Washington DC to Chicago. Stops are made three times per week to pick up and disembark passengers at Hinton’s historic Rail Depot.
The Summers County Appalachian Regional Hospital provides a fully-staffed emergency room and a variety of medical services. Summers County Emergency Services provides ambulance service. Law enforcement is provided by the Summers County Sheriff’s Department, a detachment of the West Virginia State Police, the City of Hinton’s Police Department and park rangers with the US Army Corps of Engineers, the National Park Service, and the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources. Similarly, the City of Hinton has a new fully-manned and equipped fire station complemented by six other volunteer fire departments throughout the county.
THE NEW RIVER AND BLUESTONE LAKE
Wilcox Forest is a 15-minute drive to the New River, 80,000-acre New River Gorge National River Park, and the 2000-acre Bluestone Lake at Hinton. 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, walleye, pike 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.
THE GREENBRIER RIVER
The lower Greenbrier River possesses the excitement of life on one of the nation’s great wild rivers. The focus of a vast outdoor-recreation destination, it flows untamed out of the lofty Alleghenies, attracting anglers, paddlers, and naturalists from across the globe.
At 172 miles long, the Greenbrier drains over 1.5 million acres and is the longest undammed 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.
ARCHEOLOGY AND GEOLOGY
Wilcox Forest lays between the folded Ridge and Valley Province to the east and the younger Allegheny Plateau to the west.
The area has many interesting “riches from the earth” in the form of sandstone, limestone, agates, fossils, geodes, caves and curious rock outcrops. The river’s bottom and banks have numerous types, ages and classes of rocks that originate from several diverse geological regions.
The Droop Sandstone, a very hard, quartz-rich rock originally deposited as sand beaches along an ancient shoreline, is especially prominent in the area. Numerous sheer rock cliff formations are created by the erosion-resistant Droop Sandstone. Locally, the Muddy Creek Mountain quarry produces decorative sandstone from the Droop that is known worldwide for its beauty and durability.
The area is well known for the healing waters of the numerous “Sulphur Springs”. During the 1800’s and early 1900’s, several “Sulphur Springs Resorts” flourished in the area. Most notably and still in existence are White Sulphur Springs, Warm Springs, and Hot Springs. Others included, Sweet Springs, Blue Sulphur Springs, Red Sulphur Springs, Green Sulphur Springs, Salt Sulphur Springs, Pence Springs and, Sweet Chalybeate Springs.
There are three dashed blue line streams containing some 6000’ of intermittent water flow and several ephemeral streams that flow during rain events and snow melt. (Estimated from tax maps only)
All mineral rights the owner has 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 does not have a current survey. Several old deeds make up the description and the location of the property is based on the tax maps obtained through Summers County tax office and online information. Portions of the boundaries are evidenced by fences, fields, utility lines, timber harvest lines etc. Before purchasing the property, potential buyers should consult a licensed surveyor to determine the actual location of the property and the true number of acres.
Water: no drilled water wells
Sewer: no septic system
Electricity: no onsite power
Telephone: None onsite
Internet: None onsite
Cellphone Coverage: Good overall but can be spotty in the hollows
Propane: none onsite but can be obtained through local companies
The property is accessed by a right of way that has been used for many years to access the property. From the Indian Ridge Road turn in at the Neely Cemetery onto the private Gerow Lane proceed 1500’ and take a right on an unimproved forest road for 1000’ and arrive at two gates. Take the right-hand gate on into the property.
Summers County currently has no known zoning or subdivision regulations. However, all prospective buyers should consult the County Government and also the Health Department for any changes and details regarding zoning, building codes, and installation of water wells and septic systems.
PROPERTY TYPE/USE SUMMARY
The property has about 244+/- acres of forestland.
(This summary is an estimation of current property use as determined from aerial photography. It is made subject to the estimation of property boundaries and any errors in the interpretation of land use type from the aerial photography utilized.)
DEED AND TAX INFORMATION
Deed Information: Part of DB 184 Pg. 248
Summers County, West Virginia
Acreage: 244 acres +/-
Real Estate Tax ID/Acreage/Taxes:
Summers County (45), West Virginia
Pipestem District (6)
Tax Map 12 Parcel 64; 20 ACRES TOMS RUN; Class 3
Tax Map 12 Parcel 65; 24 ACRES TOMS RUN; Class 3
Tax Map 16 Parcel 46; 100 ACRES TOMS RUN; Class 3
Tax Map 16 Parcel 47; 100 ACRES TOMS RUN; Class 3
2019 Total Real Estate Taxes: $1,611.00
Summers County School District
Public Elementary Schools:
Hinton Area Elementary School
Talcott Elementary School
Public Middle Schools:
Summers County Middle School
Public High School:
Summers County High School
Starting from the Entrance of Pipestem State Park, take Route 20 north 1.5 miles, turn right at Cooks Chapel Church onto the Indian Ridge Road for 9/10ths mile and bear hard right for another 600’ and take left at the Neely Cemetery onto the private Gerow Lane and travel 1500’. Take a right on an unnamed and unimproved forest road and travel 1000’ to two gates. Take the right-hand gate on into the property.
- Amtrack Station at Hinton, WV
- Barns of Summers County – Info on Historic Barns and Great History of Area
- Bluestone State Park
- Bluestone Wildlife Management Area
- Camp Summers
- Concord University
- Groundworks Nursery
- Mercer County Convention and Visitors
- Mercer County, WV Official Page
- New River Gorge National Park
- Otter and Oak General Store and Art Gallery
- Pipestem Resort State Park
- State of West Virginia
- Summers County Appalachian Regional Healthcare Hospital
- The Boy Scouts of America – The Summit Bechtel Reserve
- Three Rivers Avian Center
- West Virginia Cave Conservancy
- West Virginia Conservation Agency
- West Virginia State Parks
- Willowood Country Club and Golf
- Winterplace Ski Resort
- WV Department of Natural Resources
- 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