The Monongahela National Forest… Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge… Blackwater Falls State Park… these landscapes contain the most beautiful natural areas in West Virginia and the Allegheny Highlands. Biking, hiking, and paddling are great ways to explore the region.  FOB works with land managers and civic groups to promote and maintain these trails.

One of our current projects is the Olson Fire Tower area, to the west of the North Fork of the Blackwater River. Despite being easily accessible from Thomas and U.S. Route 219, this area has a remote “backcountry feel.” FOB volunteers are upgrading several trails in this area, with plans to reopen abandoned corridors and establish new ones.

We are also working with the Forest Service, Blackwater Falls State Park, and other local stakeholders to create a management strategy for trails in the Dobbins House area. Sandwiched between the town of Davis, the North Fork of the Blackwater River, and Blackwater Falls State Park, this area houses six miles of easily accessible, beginner-friendly trails.

Our goal is to develop an area-wide network of trails, linking towns and local attractions together.

Latest News


FOB’s 2020 Volunteer of the Year

Congratulations to Pam Lutz for receiving the Friends of Blackwater’s 2020 Volunteer of the Year award! Pam was a tremendous help this past fall as FOB began the botanical restoration project along the Blackwater Rail Trail. She volunteered on several Wednesday mornings and tagged many of the invasive species that were later cut down and […]

New Vinyl Banners along Blackwater Rail Trail!

Recently, Friends of Blackwater, in collaboration with historian David Vago, have made some vinyl banners that are currently hanging along the Blackwater Rail Trail. These banners focus on the history surrounding the city of Thomas, particularly about the railroads and the various industries that helped make the town boom in its hay day. The first […]

Rail Trail Botanical Restoration

Rail Trail Botanical Restoration Volunteering Opportunities

Rail Trail Botanical Restoration Volunteering Opportunities: Identify and remove invasive species Plant natives species & learn about their positive impacts Upcoming dates are: Wednesdays 12:00pm – 3:00pm  October 16th & 30th 11:00am – 2:00pm Friends of Blackwater was awarded a grant from the National Forest Foundation to begin the Blackwater Rail Trail Botanical Restoration project, […]