West Virginia is an eastern US state known for the Appalachian Mountains and the town of Harpers Ferry. It was made famous by the Civil War-era raid and is surrounded by other historical landmarks. Most of the area has been preserved and looks like it did in the 19th Century. Most of the buildings in the area are now living-history museums. You can experience the preserved history on a hike through some of these trails below or those of other US national parks. Meanwhile, you’ll get a nice workout!
Best Hiking Trails In West Virginia
|1||Maryland Heights Loop||6.3|
|2||Loudoun Heights Trail to Split Rock||6.6|
|3||Endless Wall Trail||2.7|
|4||Seneca Rocks Trail||3.4|
|5||Spruce Knob Trail||10.4|
1. Maryland Heights Loop
Location: GPS 39.325283, -77.725587
Mileage: 6.3 miles
Hike Time: 6-7 hours
Maryland Heights Loop is a 6.3-mile loop trail in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. It’s a moderately trafficked moderately difficult trail open year round with an overall elevation gain of 1437 feet. Here, you may go dog walking, backpacking, birding, hiking, on nature trips, trail running, and walking. You’ll see a forest, river, cool views, wild flowers, and plenty of wildlife. The path itself is very rocky.
Maryland Heights Loop is a scenic and historical trail in West Virginia with overlooks, civil war fortifications, and strenuous climbs. The trail itself is well-marked with plenty of detailed signs along the way.
The trail will take you to overlooks of Harpers Ferry and the two big rivers in the area: Potomac and Shenandoah. You’ll make a long and strenuous climb upwards to earn the beauty of the land and rivers below.
Meanwhile, you can appreciate the history of the area. The trail takes you through remains of fortifications built in 1862 by Union forces after they were defeated at Harpers Ferry. You’ll find well-preserved artifacts to remind you of the history there including ammunition pits, breastworks, powder magazines, and gun batteries.
2. Loudoun Heights Trail to Split Rock
Location: GPS 39.320872, -77.719760
Mileage: 6.6 miles
Hike Time: 6-7 hours
Loudoun Heights Trail to Split Rock is a6.6-mile loop trail in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. It’s a moderately trafficked moderately difficult trail open year-round with an overall elevation gain of 1532 feet. Here, you may go dog walking, mountain biking, hiking, trail running, and walking. You’ll see a forest, river, wild flower, and neat views. The path itself is quite rocky so bring your trekking poles.
Loudoun Heights Trail was once occupied by John George Walker, a Confederate General between September 12th and 15 in 1862 during the Battle of Harpers Ferry. It was here that Mosby’s Rangers led a night attack against the Maryland Volunteer Cavalry and lost.
The trail is well marked, and the views are unforgettable. One of the best parts is the split rock view at the end of the hike. Bring some lunch and relax for a bit, taking in the history and beauty of the land.
3. Endless Wall Trail
Location: GPS 38.094771, -81.084533
Mileage: 2.7 miles
Hike Time: 2-3 hours
Endless Wall Trail is a 2.7 mile out and back trail in Lansing, West Virginia. It’s a lightly trafficked moderately difficult trail open year-round with an overall elevation gain of 298 feet. Here, you may go dog walking, backpacking, hiking, trail running, on nature trips and walking. You’ll see a forest, beautiful views, and wildflowers.
Endless Wall Trail is one of the most scenic of the trails in West Virginia. It takes you along an unbroken cliff line that forms the north rim of the New River Gorge. It’s a gigantic wall providing you scenic views the whole way. One of the best points is Diamond Point which is found about halfway through the trail.
The trail starts by taking you through an old growth forest with pines, hemlocks and hardwoods then ventures to a wooden footbridge before ascending towards the Diamond Point. 1,000 feet above ground, you can capture all the amazing views including the vultures swooping and dense trees below.
4. Seneca Rocks Trail
Location: GPS 38.833420, -79.405508
Mileage: 3.4 miles
Hike Time: 3-4 hours
Seneca Rocks Trail is a 3.4 mile out and back trail in Seneca Rocks, West Virginia. It’s a moderately trafficked moderately difficult trail open year-round with an overall elevation gain of 807 feet. Here, you may go dog walking, birding, hiking, trail running, on nature trips, and walking. You’ll see a forest, captivating views and wildlife.
A West Virginia landmark, Seneca Rocks is made up of a bunch of rock outcroppings over a valley. These are massive sandstone rocks crowding a sprawling river 900 feet below. The hike starts at the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center to a descent followed by a bridge and the Seneca Rocks Picnic Area. You’ll follow into the woods and find yourself walking over a beautiful bridge where you may see people fishing. About 1.3 miles in, you’ll come to the best part of the trail with a viewing platform for you to take in all the scenery. You won’t forget this adventure!
5. Spruce Knob Trail
Location: GPS 38.690009, -79.533937
Mileage: 10.4 miles
Hike Time: 10-11 hours
Spruce Knob Trail is a10.4-mile loop trail in Riverton, West Virginia. It’s a lightly trafficked difficult difficult trail open year-round with an overall elevation gain of 1089 feet. Here, you may go birding, hiking, trail running, on nature trips, and walking. You’ll see gorgeous views, wild flowers, and wildlife. The trails are generally rocky.
If you’re looking for something a bit more vigorous in West Virginia, then this is the trail for you. It’ll give you a heck of a workout. Not only is it long and elevated, but it’s steep with a calorie-burning terrain similar to Nordic walking with Nordic walking poles. However, it also has some of the best views in the state. In-fact, most of it is one big old overlook. You don’t have to walk far to find a nice overlook on this trail. Bring water and some protein-rich snacks to enjoy this adventure!
Who needs history books when you can experience it first-hand? Visit these trails in West Virginia to feel the history of the land. Meanwhile, take advantage of the captivating views and rugged terrain. You’re guaranteed a good time!