• sun setting over the gorge

    New River Gorge

    National River West Virginia

There are park alerts in effect.
show Alerts »
  • Portions of Rend Trail closed for Bridge Repairs

    Portions of the Rend Trail, formerly known as the Thurmond Minden Trail, will be closed effective immediately due to safety concerns. More »

  • River Detours and Closures at the Thomas Buford Pugh Memorial Bridge

    The WV Department of Highways and the Federal Highways Administration is replacing the Thomas Buford Pugh Memorial Bridge on Route 41 in the town of Prince. Construction will require temporary full river traffic closures and long term river detours. More »

Hiking Safety

young hiker on the Grandview Rim Trail

Hikers on the Grandview Rim Trail.

Dave Bieri

Hiking is always a fun way to enjoy the outdoors and spend a day, and New River Gorge National River offers some outstanding hiking opportunities. As with any outdoor activity, there are always potential risks. Knowledge and preparedness can reduce the chance of injuries.

Safety First:
Know the weather forecast and plan your hike accordingly.

Wear appropriate clothes and shoes for hiking.

Carry rain gear; sudden thunderstorms can occur at any time.

Bring a trail map (available at any visitor center). A compass or GPS is also a good idea.

Bring water and drink regularly; bring snacks or lunch for longer hikes.

If hiking alone, tell a friend where you will be going and when you expect to be back.

Stay on designated trails, and use extra caution around cliffs and overlooks.

During spring and summer, check for ticks.

Watch where you put your hands and feet; poison ivy, copperheads, and timber rattlesnakes occur in the park. Learn to recognize these potentially harmful inhabitants.

Hunting is permitted in the park; blaze orange clothing is recommended during hunting season.

Abandon coal mines and coke ovens are common in the area. These openings are extremely dangerous, due to unstable conditions, lack of oxygen in the air (a condition miners called "blackdamp,") and bees and snakes that often inhabit these areas. Do not enter structures, mines, or coke ovens. "Stay Out - Stay Alive"

In case of emergency call 911.

Remember to help protect your national park by following these trail regulations:
All trash must be carried out.

All trails are closed to motorized vehicles.

Pets must be restrained and leashed.

Disturbing, destroying, and removing natural and cultural objects is prohibited.

Bicycles and horses are only permitted on designated trails

Did You Know?

BASE Jumper at New River Gorge

One day each year, hundreds of BASE (Building, Antenna, Span, and Earth) jumpers come to New River Gorge to parachute from the New River Gorge Bridge.