Days 15-17 Wild, Wonderful West Virginia
When we left Pikeville, KY we decided to take a little detour and drive through Virginia on our way to West Virginia.
We stayed at the Ace Adventure Resort near Oak Hill, WV. It is a huge recreational facility, but built on the side of a mountain. To get to the resort we drove 3.5 miles on a narrow winding road (Minden Road) that we thought that was pretty bad. In fact, one of the worst roads we’ve driven in the country with the motorhome, but the final road from the registration building to our campsite was HORRIBLE! It was only 1 ½ lanes, very steep with a blind sharp curve.
In good weather and without COVID-19 restrictions, this camp would be a really fun place for the outdoor enthusiasts! It has a wonderful water park area, many levels of cabins and tents to rent, whitewater rafting on either the Gauley River or the New River, a mud obstacle course, frisbee golf, miles of hiking trails, etc. However, we chose to stay there to whitewater raft on the New River. Because of the COVID restrictions we were not able to raft. The restriction was that you had to ARRIVE with a minimum of four people to be able whitewater and we were only a party of three. So….no whitewater rafting for us.
On Sunday morning Ben played at the waterpark ($21 per person) while I went into Oak Hill to do our laundry.
New River Bridge Catwalk
I booked an adventure for Ben and me to walk the catwalk (usually $125 per person, but for some reason I got it ½ price) under the New River Gorge Bridge for Sunday afternoon. Driving there we got caught in the worst hailstorm I’ve ever seen. I stopped on the side of the road and waited for a while before turning around and heading back to the campground. When we got to the Minden Road to get back to the campground, the water was too deep to go through. A whitewater bus was right behind me and once I stopped, the driver walked up to the car and told me he was going to try and turn the bus around and I could follow him to the back entrance of the resort. Meanwhile, ten miles later I finally got back to our campsite.
The Minden Road was impassable the rest of the time we were there. In fact, the resort staff used rafts to rescue people from their homes along the Minden Road. We were told that a bridge washed out to some homes that were off the Minden Road.
Monday morning at ten we were able to take the catwalk tour under the New River Gorge Bridge. Once again because of the COVID restrictions, Ben and I were the only ones with the tour guide. That part was great. At time of construction, the New River Gorge Bridge’s arch made it the longest steel arch bridge in the world, a title it held until 2003 with the construction of China’s Shanghai’s Lupu Bridge. It is currently the longest single-span steel arch bridge in the United States and the third highest bridge in the country.
Hiking the Long Point Trail
After walking the catwalk, I drove back to the campground to get Tom and we hiked the 2.9 mile Long Point trail above the gorge to see a magnificent view of the bridge and gorge from a different perspective.
When we got back to Ace Adventure Resort, Ben spent 5 hours swimming at the water park while the outside temperature dropped from 64 to 57 degrees! Although I thought it was very cold, he had a great time because he was able to do all the stuff over and over without having to wait in long lines!
After leaving Oak Hill we drove down to see some friends in Montgomery and to walk though the town. The town is very hard for me to go back to since it is nothing like the town I grew up in. I have several good friends who still live there and it was great to see them. Driving down Rt.61 in the motorhome is no picnic. We decided not to town the car so I drove it separately.
Here we are with Lou Ann & Gary Bowen
We also had a short visit with Beach Vickers
- We’ve driven a total of 1,997 miles - 1,516 in Big Hat and 481 in the CRV.
- Total campground costs: $493.36. Ace Adventure Resort $51.94 per night
- While in WV we hiked 10.7 miles. Our total since we left 66.16 miles