Public Lands

We strive to protect public lands for habitat conservation, public recreation, biodiversity preservation, and the economic value that they provide.



State Parks
Blackwater falls with a little snow

Latest News


Corridor H Comments

Friends of Blackwater has officially submitted comments to the West Virginia Department of Highways, concerning the proposed Corridor H route from Davis to Parsons, WV. We have objected to the route that runs in between Davis and Thomas for a number of reasons: -Virginia Big Eared bats are an endangered bat species have been found […]

haizlett illustration

Artist Spotlight

Walk along the main street in Thomas, WV and you will no doubt be distracted by the unique art that decorates the windows of the many galleries that call Front Street home. If you pause in front of Bloom (formerly Lamplight), artist Rosalie Haizlett’s illustrated map of Blackwater Falls State Park might draw you in, […]

view off bear rocks

Bill to Re-Authorize LWCF Passes Committee

On October 2nd, S.569 (the Land and Water Conservation Authorization and Funding Act) passed the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. This bill would provide permanent re-authorization for the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The Land and Water Conservation Fund is a key program which has provided funds to parks, forests, and public lands throughout […]

trail between pine trees, with a blue trail marker showing the way

Resource: West Virginia Tourism Analysis

A project partnership, between the Monongahela National Forest, West Virginia University, and local stakeholders investigated the role of tourism in West Virginia. Several case studies were used to represent different phases of tourism development. The New River Gorge has a well-developed trail system and a supportive alliance of stakeholder groups, and have already seen economic […]


New Report Highlights Importance of Public Lands to Rural America

A new report issued by the Democratic members of the Congressional Joint Economic Committee envisions public lands and tourism as an engine for revitalizing rural America. Rural areas have lagged behind in recovering from the great recession, and rural residents have lower incomes, on average, than their urban counterparts. These challenges are also opportunities however […]

people sitting at an overlook at Pipestem State Park

The Business of Recreation

Outdoor recreation is big business, and it depends on public lands. Every year, over 7 million people visit West Virginia’s State Parks and State Forests, adding between $160 million and $190 million in fresh revenue to local economies. Outside of the 400 full time and 1000 seasonal employees that work directly for State Parks and […]