Less than a mile from Blackwater Falls State Park, the Inn is only nine miles from Canaan Valley, Timberline and White Grass ski resorts and well-located for day trips to nearby wilderness areas. The 800,000 acres of Monongahela National Forest that surround the inn are a naturalist’s dream. The Canaan Valley region’s high altitude and scenic beauty are a Mecca for hiking, mountain biking, whitewater sports, cross country and downhill skiing, rock climbing, caving, hunting and trout fishing. Winter finds the area blanketed with 150-200 inches of natural snowfall annually. And our cool summers (2001 high temperature was only 84!) are a welcome relief from sweltering cities. Bring your own equipment, or let us introduce you to local outfitters for guidance, trip planning and rentals.
Things to Do in Davis, WV and Canaan Valley
Hiking — Easiest hiking can be found in the Blackwater Falls and Canaan Valley state parks. At Blackwater, don’t miss the steps down to the falls and the short hike to Lindy Point overlook. For more challenging hikes try the Mononogahela Forest’s wilderness areas at Dolly Sods and Otter Creek and Seneca Rocks. Hiking is also available on the Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge and off of Canaan Loop Road.
Biking — Davis has long been a Mecca for mountain biking. Camp 70 road, a flat seven-mile gravel trail that begins behind the Shop N Save grocery store, is popular for beginners. It connects with a few shorter trails within the wildlife refuge. There are also two railroad grades that lead from nearby Thomas that are popular for novices. More challenging trails are the Plantation trail system off of Canaan Loop Road and the Dobbin House trail system accessed from Blackwater Falls State Park. The folks at Blackwater Bikes, next door to the inn, will be more than happy to help you plan a ride to suit your skill level. The area also boasts beautiful terrain for road riding. Route 72, south of Canaan Valley is an especially popular ride.
Skiing — For downhill skiing, the inn is only nine miles from Timberline and Canaan Valley Resorts. It’s a straight shot south on Route 32, and takes about 15 minutes.
For cross country skiing, nearby Blackwater Falls offers ungroomed trails, while Whitegrass, in Canaan Valley, offers a larger system of groomed trails. Both offer ski and snowshoe rentals. Whitegrass also offers lessons and an excellent café open for lunches daily and weekend dinners by reservation.
Whitewater Rafting — Guided whitewater rafting is available from Blackwater Outdoor Adventures in St. George (40 minutes) or Cheat River Outfitters in Albright (50 minute drive). Call in advance to reserve a space.
Canoeing & Kayaking — Most canoeing and kayaking occurs when water levels are high along the Blackwater and Dry Fork rivers. Highland Scene Tours at Blackwter Falls State Park rents small kayaks and provides shuttle service to the Blackwater.
Fishing — Trout are plentiful in the Blackwater and along the Dry Fork. Stocking begins in late winter and proceeds throughout the spring. The folks at Wilderness Sports, at the end of the block, sell fishing gear, bait and supplies and have lots of good advice about where the fish are biting. Fishing licenses can be purchased at the lodge at Blackwater Falls State Park.
Rock Climbing — The climbing school at Seneca Rocks, about 40 minutes away, is the center of climbing activity for the area. It boasts a climbing school, rock wall and a community of expert climbing instructors.
Birding — Spring and summer offer awesome bird watching. Hotspots include the Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge, the Otter Creek Wilderness area and Seneca Rocks. Bird lists of local species are available from Susan. Fall bird migration can be observed at Dolly Sods in early fall at the bird banding station set up along the Allegheny Front. It’s a great way to see banding in action and meet some expert birders.
Stargazing — Our dark nights offer great stargazing. Popular dark spots include the ride along Canaan Loop Road and turnouts along the lodge road at Blackwater Falls.
Horseback Riding — Guided rides are available at Mountain Trail Rides on Freeland Rd. in Canaan Valley, which offers offers great rides to the top of the valley rim.
Petting Zoo — Younger children will enjoy the Petting Zoo at Blackwater Falls State Park, offering a small selection of docile farm animals and pony rides.
Driving/Touring — West Virginia is famous worldwide for its country roads, and we are surrounded by some of the most beautiful ones in the state. Popular drives include the Laneville Road to Dolly Sods, Route 72, Back Hollow Road and Route 33 to Seneca Rocks. The gravel Canaan Loop Road is also beautiful, but quite rugged where it meets Blackwater Falls State Park. It’s for expert four-wheel drivers only.
Underground Caverns — Rainy days are great times to explore the fabulous Smoke Hole caverns, about a 40 minute drive. Smoke Hole is home to the world’s longest ribbon stalactite.
Train Rides — The Potomac Eagle based in Romney (about an hour’s drive) offers three hour round-trip excursions and all day and special event excursions from May to November. Eagle sightings occur in over 90% of excursions.
Hunting — West Virginia’s hunting season begins with gobblers in the spring and ends with deer in December. The Canaan Valley National Wildlife refuge is an increasingly popular hunting destination. Hunting is also available in the Monongahela Forest off Canaan Loop Rd. and at Dolly Sods. Hunting regulations and information about licensing are available at the refuge visitor center.