It’s winter. And just because it’s going to get cold and possibly snowy doesn’t mean you need to stop exploring. There are plenty of places in West Virginia that are just as much fun — and possibly more breathtaking — in the winter as they are in the summer.
1. Babcock State Park
This famous grist mill is most often photographed in the fall, but look how pretty it is in the winter. Babcock has 4,127 acres, a trout stream and is perfect for exploring.
There’s so much to discover in Helvetia, a tiny Swiss village in Randolph County, even during the cold months. You could explore the village while you go up for the town’s annual Fasnacht, which is a sort of Swiss Mardi Gras held on Fat Tuesday.
3. Blackwater Falls
Blackwater Falls State Park has been called the best park in West Virginia and look how spectacular it looks even in the cold and snow.
4. The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum
Most people think of exploring this former hospital in Weston around Halloween, but ghost tours are offered there year round. Be sure to bring a jacket (there’s no heat in the building).
5. Seneca Rocks
Even if its cold you’ll work up a sweat if you explore the hiking trail that takes you up to Seneca Rocks in Pendleton County. The rocks offer a breathtaking view of the valley.
6. The New River Gorge
The New River Gorge area has plenty of hiking trails and overlooks that are beautiful even in the winter. Check out Long Point, Endless Wall or Grandview State Park.
7. Ritter Park in Huntington
This city park, known for its rose garden, is gorgeous in the summer but it’s also beautiful covered in snow in winter.
8. Coopers Rock State Park
This 12,713 acres park is located near Morgantown and Bruceton Mills. It has great views, like this one at the overlook.
9. The Cranberry Wilderness
The Cranberry Wilderness is a 47,815-acre area in the Yew Mountains of the Monongahela National Forest.
it gets its name from the nearby Cranberry Glades, Cranberry River and Cranberry Mountain. Most people go in the summer but it’s a great place to visit in the winter, too.
10. Twin Falls Resort State Park
This state park in Mullens has a little bit of history in its 1830s-style Pioneer Farm. It's also got several hiking trails and a 47-room lodge to get out of the cold if you need to.
How many of these places have you been to during the winter? Where else do you want to explore this winter?