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Cheat Ranger District




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Description - Office Hours: Monday through Friday 7:00 am - 4:30 PM except Federal holidays. Location: Located just north of Parsons, West Virginia, on U. S. Route 219. Directions: From Parsons take U.S. Route 219 north. Travel over the Black Fork River Bridge and take the next right immediately past the bridge. HIKING: The Cheat Ranger District manages 160.8 miles of trail; 36.8 miles in Otter Creek, and 124 miles of non-wilderness trails. Otter Creek Wilderness party size is limited to 10 people, and mechanized equipment and vehicles are prohibited. Many trails outside the designated wilderness area are suited for hiking, mountain biking, skiing, and horseback riding. Several handouts for circuit hikes are available at no charge from the district office. They are: Canaan Mountain Backcountry, Horseshoe Run Area, Otter Creek Wilderness, and Pheasant Mountain. CAMPING: Three developed campgrounds are located on the district. Camping reservations may be made for Horseshoe and Stuart Recreation Areas up to four days in advance. Call the USFS Reservation Center at (877)444-6777 or TTY/TDD (877)833-6777 for reservation information. Information is also available on the Internet at www.ReserveUSA.com. Bear Heaven Recreation Area: Located approximately 14 miles NE of Elkins, WV, on Stuart Memorial Drive (Forest Road 91). High elevation, open year round, and situated in a dense oak stand. Found on USGS Quad - Bowden. · Fee: $5.00/night with 8 person/site maximum and 14-day stay limit. · Unit: Parking, table, fire ring, tent pad, and lantern holder. · Facilities: Vault toilets (not accessible) and hand water pump. A day use area with accessible vault toilets nearby. Hiking. Horseshoe Recreation Area: Located approximately 7 miles NE of St. George, WV, along the river bottom of Horseshoe Run on WV Route 7. Open mid-May to early December. Found on USGS Quad - Leadmine. • Fee: $10.00/night with 8 person/site and 14 day stay limit. • Unit: Parking, table, fire ring, tent pad, and lantern holder. Two sites are fully accessible. • Facilities: Accessible vault toilets, nonaccessible flush toilets, and hand water pumps. Day use picnic area with a large and small pavilion. • The large and the small pavilion may be reserved. Play field, river access, horseshoe pits, fishing, and hiking. Stuart Recreation Area: Located approximately 6 miles NE of Elkins, WV, on the Shavers Fork River at the junction of WV Route 6 and Stuart Memorial Drive (Forest Road 91). Open mid-May to early October. Found on USGS Quad - Elkins. • Fees: $19.00/night, except one double site is $33.00/night, with 8-person/site maximum and 14-day stay limit. • Unit: Parking, table, fire ring, tent pad, lantern holder, and electric hook-up. Five sites are fully accessible. • Facilities: Fully accessible shower building with flush toilets. Combination of accessible and non-accessible vault toilets. Six water faucets dispersed throughout campground. Large day use area with three pavilions. All of the pavilions may be reserved. Play fields, volleyball area, horseshoe pits, river access, swimming beach, fishing, and hiking. PAVILION RESERVATIONS: Pavilions at Horseshoe and Stuart Recreation Area may be reserved according to the fee schedule listed below. Reservations may be made up to 4 days in advance by calling (877)444- 6777. Please indicate that you are calling for a site in the state of West Virginia on the Monongahela National Forest. Stuart Electric: $100.00 Stuart Non-Electric $ 60.00 Alpena Shelter: $ 40.00 Horseshoe Electric: $ 70.00 Horseshoe Non-Electric: $ 15.00 FERNOW EXPERIMENTAL FOREST In 1934 a portion of forest, which would eventually become the Monongahela National Forest, was recognized as representative of much of the timberland in West Virginia and adjacent states in topography, history of cuttings, climate, and variety of species. It was set aside for research use and designated the Fernow Experimental Forest in memory of Bernhard E. Fernow, a pioneer in American forestry research. The experimental forest, with recent land acquisitions from the Monongahela National Forest, now totals approximately 4,700 acres. This project of the USDA Forest Service is headquartered at the Timber and Watershed Laboratory, which is collocated with the Cheat- Potomac Ranger District, in Parsons, WV.

Attractions - Office Hours: Monday through Friday 7:00 am - 4:30 PM except Federal holidays. Location: Located just north of Parsons, West Virginia, on U. S. Route 219. Directions: From Parsons take U.S. Route 219 north. Travel over the Black Fork River Bridge and take the next right immediately past the bridge.

Recreation - HIKING: The Cheat Ranger District manages 160.8 miles of trail; 36.8 miles in Otter Creek, and 124 miles of non-wilderness trails. Otter Creek Wilderness party size is limited to 10 people, and mechanized equipment and vehicles are prohibited. Many trails outside the designated wilderness area are suited for hiking, mountain biking, skiing, and horseback riding. Several handouts for circuit hikes are available at no charge from the district office. They are: Canaan Mountain Backcountry, Horseshoe Run Area, Otter Creek Wilderness, and Pheasant Mountain. CAMPING: Three developed campgrounds are located on the district. Camping reservations may be made for Horseshoe and Stuart Recreation Areas up to four days in advance. Call the USFS Reservation Center at (877)444-6777 or TTY/TDD (877)833-6777 for reservation information. Information is also available on the Internet at www.ReserveUSA.com.

Climate - West Virginia experiences four distinct seasons, none of which are extreme. Temperatures in the highlands of the Allegheny Mountains are somewhat more severe than the rest of the state. Generally temperatures during the winter months range from 15 to 40 degrees F. Ample snow accumulation provides for cross-country and downhill skiing opportunities. Spring brings blooming trees and shrubs to the forested regions of the state, as well as warmer temperatures. During this season, March through May, expect mild temperatures between 45 and 70 degrees F. Summers are normally hot with high humidity, especially at lower elevations. Expect temperatures to range from 70 at night to 95 during the dog days of August. Fall brings cool, crisp air to West Virginia and spectacular foliage color changes. Bring a light jacket for this season, which brings temperatures between 35, at night, to 70 degrees F, during the day.

Location - Directions: From Parsons take U.S. Route 219 north. Travel over the Black Fork River Bridge and take the next right immediately


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More Information

Additional Information:
Monongahela National Forest - The rugged terrain of the Monongahela National Forest includes some of the highest elevations in West Virginia. Steep mountains are dissected by rivers and streams.

Links:
Cheat Ranger District - Official site of Cheat Ranger District

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