From the pristine headwaters of the Blackwater River to the mine-scarred tributaries of the North Fork, we work to protect and restore the vital watersheds and mountain streams that all of us depend upon.

water quality monitoring involving a tape measure and a flow meter

Latest News


North Fork Update – Fall 2018

In September, Friends of Blackwater has hired Langan, Inc. and Hedin Environmental to design a replacement for the wetland anoxic limestone drain (WALD) mine drainage treatment system, just downstream of the FOB office, on the North Fork of the Blackwater. The WALD was an experimental system that was installed to treat acid mine drainage entering […]


North Fork Watershed Video

Learn about the origins of the North Fork Watershed Project with this video, which was created as part of the 15th West Virginia Watershed Celebration Day. This video features our executive director Judy Rodd and former staffer Brandae Mullens explaining the unique challenges of acid mine drainage in the North Fork.

view of Douglas Falls from above

New Grant to Improve Water Quality Monitoring

Friends of Blackwater is excited to announce that we will be adding to our water quality monitoring program, with help from the North Face. The new grant we have received from the North Face will help us purchase 8 automated sensors, that will collect continuous data on local waterways. This will provide much more detailed […]

from Matthew Umstead


All the rain we’ve been having lately has made some great waterfalls, featured in this video. All these waterfalls are visible from the Blackwater Canyon Rail Trail!

musicians performing on the festival stage at Cheat Fest

Cheat Fest Fun

Cheat Fest, the annual music festival fundraiser for Friends of the Cheat, seems to get bigger and better every year. This year was no exception, and spirits were high despite some rain Saturday afternoon. Friends of Blackwater had a table in the non-profit tent, and we enjoyed talking to festival-goers about our watershed restoraion work […]


First Brick in the WALD

As part of our Beaver Creek project, FOB had the opportunity to make improvements to the inflow structure at the Wetland Anoxic Limestone Drain (WALD) adjacent to the North Fork of the Blackwater.  Local craftsmen Lon Marshall and Tommy Ashton rebuilt the structure and were so generous with their time that FOB was able to […]

beaver creek newsletter pH

Beaver Creek Update June 2018

Despite being neighbors, the North Fork watershed and the Beaver Creek watershed are quite different in character and temperament.  With its high elevation and low gradient, Beaver Creek quietly glides through a maze of wetlands that one would expect to find in Canada, while the North Fork (often loudly) rages down the Blackwater Canyon. After […]

Blackwater Falls

Blackwater River Fun Facts

Where is the Blackwater River? The Blackwater River is located in Tucker County, West Virginia. Its headwaters are in Canaan Valley, and from there it makes its way past the towns of Thomas and Davis. The Blackwater passes through some amazing public lands on its journey, including Canaan Valley State Park, Canaan Valley National Wildlife […]

two pipes discharge water into the North Fork

Watershed Based Plans

In order to do watershed remediation work in West Virginia, organizations must have a watershed based plan that has been approved by the Department of Environmental Protection. There are many different elements that go in to a watershed based plan including: -A description of the watershed, its geography, geology, and existing land uses -Identification of […]