Blackwater Falls

  • Highlights: Waterfall views
  • Distance: .4 mile loop
  • Elevation Change 121 feet
  • Trail Surface: Dirt with wood boardwalks and steps
  • Difficulty Level: Easy/moderate
  • Trailhead Parking: Blackwater Falls State Park, Blackwater Falls Road, Trading Post parking area
  • Trail Markings: trail signs, no blazes
  • Website: AllTrails and Blackwater Falls State Park
  • Beer Pairings: Mountain State Brewing—Seneca IPA & Almost Heaven Ale

Trail Map:

The Hike:

This short hike has great views of the falls. It also features over 200 steps to reach the falls viewing area. This is a popular hike and the trail (and parking area) can become very congested. We arrived before 8am on a Sunday and had the trail and the falls to ourselves.

From the Trading Post, follow the signs (and the crowds) down the gravel trail. Rhododendron line the trail. A large stone patio has signs describing the history of the area and the geological history of the falls. Follow the wooden boardwalk over the many steps to reach two viewing areas.

The first viewing area provides nice views of the falls and the Blackwater River. The lower viewing area has great views of the falls. Access to the bottom of the falls is prohibited as hikers must stay on the boardwalk. 

Climb back up the steps to the stone patio. AllTrails makes this hike into a loop by returning to the parking area on a gravel path to the left. This route is a bit longer but has no steps.

Hike Photos:

Click on an image below for an enlarged view.

Beer Pairing: 

Mountain State Brewing in nearby Thomas WC is located about 10 minutes from the trailhead. Mountain State is one of the oldest breweries in WV with three locations. The Thomas brewpub has six taps of craft beer, indoor and outdoor seating, and really good wood-fired artisan flatbread pizzas.

Pete liked Almost Heaven Amber Ale (5.2% ABV). Brewed with Willamette hops, this easy drinking beer was crisp and refreshing. Kathy tried a pint of Seneca IPA (5.4% ABV), this American-style IPA is brewed with Galena, Cascade and Amarillo hops. We like our IPAs with a nice bitter finish and Seneca was too smooth for us. 

Hike and drink responsibly. Never drink and drive. Stay safe, be responsible, and leave no trace.