Hiking the Gorge? Bring These Essential Items.

Is hiking the way you like to get exercise and enjoy nature?  If so we’re not surprised; it’s a great way to truly experience the outdoors. There’s no better place to hike than our very own New River Gorge. Vast forests, scenic beauty, and a historic past make our hiking trails a great way to explore some of the best parts of West Virginia.

Wondering how to prep for your New River Gorge hiking adventure? We’ve got the scoop for you.

Hiking Essentials

Here's a list of some essentials you will want to take with you on your trek.

  •  If you plan on being out in nature for any extended period of time you’ve got to bring along liquids. Water is ideal, but sports drinks will work as well.
  • A comfortable pair of hiking boots or shoes are recommended. Don’t break in new shoes on your hike; you’re guaranteed to get a blister.
  • Pack rain gear as weather can change quickly and being prepared is important.
  • Don’t forget your trail map. Most area trails are clearly marked, but having a map with you is a good idea.
  • Binoculars are a must if you're looking for birds or wildlife in the Gorge.
  • You’ve got to bring a camera! Remember, the New River Gorge is a National Park and pictures are the only thing you can take from this protected area.
  • Pack a snack for longer hikes. Trail mix, granola bars, and whole fruit are easy to carry and hit the spot when you take a break.
  • If you bring along a guide book you’ll be able to identify the flora and fauna you discover along the way.
  • Hiking with little ones can be a lot of fun. Just be prepared for any extra needs they might have while out on your trek.

Keep in Mind

But before you take off hiking in the New River Gorge, read these safety tips.

  • Stay on the trail. The Gorge is a large area and getting lost is a possibility. Eliminate that possibility by staying on the designated trail.
  • Watch your step. Not only is the terrain tricky in spots, but there are poisonous snakes that live in the Gorge. Pay attention to where you put your hands and feet.
  • Be careful. The Gorge can be very steep in spots. Be extra cautious around cliffs and overlooks. There are also abandoned coal mines and coke ovens in this area that can be extremely dangerous. Don't enter these structures.

Hiking is a wonderful way to experience some of the more remote and beautiful areas of the New River Gorge. So lace up your boots and get out there!