Wildflower Weekend

Rangers and visitors on wildflower hik

Sherry Hogue


Celebrate Spring in Appalachia at the Sixteenth Annual New River Gorge Wildflower Weekend

Join us for ranger-guided programs in local national and state park sites!

April 26-28, 2019

young girl examining a wildflower

Celebrate spring at New River Gorge! Discover the ever changing face of the season from the rim of the gorge to the river with rangers and naturalists at free guided hikes in parks. Enjoy the spirit of spring at a variety of art demonstrations and exhibits. Contribute your nature observations as well, helping document the diversity of Appalachia. Join in on the fun at New River Gorge National River, Tamarack, and the West Virginia State Parks of Babcock, Carnifex Ferry Battlefield, Hawks Nest, Pipestem Resort, and Twin Falls Resort for this celebration of spring.

All programs are free! Bring water and wear sturdy hiking shoes for guided walks. Snacks, binoculars, a hand lens, and a favorite field guide are also useful.


Friday, April 26, 2019

Handy Work for the Earth: Garlic Mustard Pull

10:00 am to 1:00 pm, Pipestem Resort State Park in Pipestem, WV.
Meet at Pipestem’s Nature Center.
GUIDES: Julie McQuade and Richard Altare.
Celebrate Earth Day a bit late and lend a helping hand to the Bluestone River Gorge. Team up with park staff to help remove a troublesome invasive species, garlic mustard. Wear long sleeves, long pants, sturdy walking shoes, work gloves, and bring water. Reservations requested by April 23; call 304-466-1800 ex. 379

Kid’s Nature Discovery Adventure

6:30 pm to 7:30 pm, Grandview Visitor Center at New River Gorge National River in Grandview, WV.
GUIDE: Suleka Deevi.
Hey kids and teens! Explore and discover amazing wildlife and plants of the forest in hands-on activities on this easy stroll around Grandview.

Endless Birds and Blooms Sunset Stroll

6:00 to 8:30 pm, Endless Wall Trail’s Fern Creek Trailhead at New River Gorge National River in Lansing, WV.
GUIDES: Jodi French-Burr and Keith Richardson.
Explore life in diverse forests and see one of the best cliff top views of the New River Gorge on this leisurely 2 mile moderate hike. Search for spring birds, blooms, and more on this early evening stroll. Bring binoculars or some will be available.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Early Birding at Grandview

7:30 to 9:00 am, Grandview – Shelter #4 at New River Gorge National River in Grandview, WV.
GUIDES: Jodi French-Burr and Suleka Deevi.
Start this spring morning by waking up with the birds. Perfect for people of all birding abilities. Bring binoculars or some will be available.

Hike Into Spring!

9:30 am to 2:00 pm, Grandview – Shelter #4 at New River Gorge National River in Grandview, WV.
GUIDES: Richard Altare, Jodi French-Burr, Mitchell Dech, Suleka Deevi, Betty Harler, Betsy Reeder, and Leah Thomas.
Join naturalists on a leisurely 2.5 mile hike from Grandview down to the New River, finding wildflowers and other natural wonders along the way. Be prepared for some steep terrain as we travel down an old dirt road. A free return shuttle will be provided. Reservations requested by April 25; call 304-574-2115

Old Growth Nature Trek

4:30 pm to 6:30 pm, Patterson House at Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park in Summersville,
WV. GUIDE: Sean Pettrey.
Hike to Pierson Hollow’s old growth forest to take a close look at this diverse ecosystem, including the plants and animals that call it home. Bring your favorite field guides or smart devices pre-loaded with nature apps to help document as many species as we can, plus keep an eye out for rare or threatened species. Be prepared for an easy 1 mile hike with some moderate terrain.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Spring Birding at Babcock

8:00 am to 10:00 am, Glade Creek Grist Mill at Babcock State Park in Clifftop, WV.
GUIDE: Sean Pettrey.
Stroll the diverse habitats of Babcock in search of regional beauties, birds. Bring binoculars, your favorite field guides, or smart device preloaded with nature apps. Some binoculars will be available.

Falls & Flowers: the Nature of Brush Creek

1:00 to 4:00 pm, Nature Center at Pipestem Resort State Park in Pipestem, WV.
GUIDES: Julie McQuade, Richard Altare, and Suleka Deevi.
Enjoy waterfalls and blooms along Brush Creek on this moderate 3 mile walk. Meet at Pipestem’s Nature Center to car caravan to the trailhead 20 minutes away.

Hot ID: Skills with Apps and Guides (plus Old Growth Bonus Hike)

2:30 to 5:00 pm (BONUS hike 5:00 to 7:00 pm), Stone Cliff Trail near Thurmond, WV.
GUIDES: Jodi French-Burr, Mitchell Dech, and Rosanna Springston.
Hike 1 miles along the New River and try your hand at species identification using the hottest flora and fauna ID tools, from new technologies to traditional field guides. Bring your favorite nature ID tools, like field guides or smart device pre-loaded with nature apps. Some tools will be available. Share your favorite nature identification tips and techniques too. Optional BONUS hike: add 3 miles in search of more species, including old growth hemlock trees.

Bat and Owl Prowl

8:30 to 10:00 pm, Burnwood Trail at the Burnwood Day Use Area, across US 19 from Canyon Rim Visitor Center at New River Gorge National River in Lansing (park in the lot past the cabin).
GUIDES: Jodi French-Burr and Suleka Deevi.
Explore nature’s night life on this 1 mile forest adventure in search of bats and owls. Bring a red-filtered flashlight.
wildflower art contest winners

Youth Arts in the Parks 2019 Applachian Spring Wildflower Art Exhibit
April 13 through June 9, 2019

Tamarack in Beckley, WV
7:00 am to 8:00 pm daily, art exhibit in the theater lobby of the Hulett C. Smith Theater and the David L. Dickirson Fine Arts Gallery.
Students from Fayette, Nicholas, Raleigh, and Summers Counties celebrate regional ecology through art in this special exhibit. Each work was inspired by an area wildflower. #NRGYAP

Music in the Mountains Live at Tamarack
April 26 and 27, 2019

Enjoy how the Appalachian Mountains inspire music. Hear live performances at Tamarack’s food court 12:00 - 2:00 pm.
  • April 26: piano music by Debbie Bowling
  • April 27: music by Maggie and Tim Mainland

West Virginia Master Naturalist Wildflowers and Weeds core course (two parts)

Explore the classification, diversity, and ecology of wildflowers in this WV Master Naturalist core certification course. This two-part course includes classroom and field exploration, where we’ll learn and practice wildflower field identification skills. Reservations required; e-mail jodi_french-burr@nps.gov.
  • Part 1: Wednesday, April 24, 6:00 - 8:30 pm CLASSROOM location: Canyon Rim Visitor Center at New River Gorge National River in Lansing, WV.
  • Part 2: Sunday, April 28, 2:30 - 5:00 pm FIELD LAB location: Stone Cliff Trail in New River Gorge National River near Thurmond, WV. Bring your favorite nature ID tools, like field guides or smart device pre-loaded with nature apps. Optional BONUS hike will continue to 7:00 pm.

Spring Photography Workshop at Twin Falls
May 17 - 19, 2019

Learn and practice new digital and film photography skills, plus hone old ones. Use the beauty of Twin Falls Resort State Park and natural wonders of spring as a backdrop for this adventure with instructors Steve Shaluta and Steven Rotsch. Workshop includes lots of hands-on photography outings and popular night photography session. Instructors are open to special photography subjects you’d like to learn. Call 304-294-4000 for class details and workshop prices.
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Be a Citizen Scientist

Share Your Nature Observations

Explore, learn, and record your observations for FREE.
  1. Download the iNaturalist app on your smart device from the app store.
  2. Make an iNaturalist account.
  3. Join the New River Gorge National River project list.
  4. Start making observations in the park and become a citizen scientist, sharing your sightings anytime.

Last updated: April 10, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 246, 104 Main Street
Glen Jean, WV 25846


(304) 465-0508

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