• The Heart of the Highlands Trail System project will connect the non-motorized, multi-use trail systems of five land management agencies in Tucker County, West Virginia into a comprehensive, landscape oriented, environmentally sustainable, multi-use trail system that is accessible to the public. This trail system will combine recreational trails with alternative transportation routes within Tucker County and will further enhance the area's recreation and economic possibilities. The long-term goal is to connect the Heart of the Highlands Trail System to the surrounding regional and national recreational trail systems.
  • The first phase of the Heart of the Highlands Trail System is a 23-mile core loop that will connect the partner properties: Blackwater Falls State Park, Canaan Valley Institute, Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Canaan Valley State Park, Monongahela National Forest, and National Youth Science Foundation. Connecting trail segments will be established and existing trails improved to create the core loop and link the public lands in and around Canaan Valley to each other and to the Town of Davis. About half of this 23-mile core loop trail is already on the ground as existing trails.
  • Base funding of $500,000 has been secured through a grant agreement with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Tucker Community Foundation serves as our fiscal agent and the project is directed by the Heart of the Highlands Board of Directors including representatives from partner properties, Tucker County Trails, and community members. A project administrator was hired in 2011. New trail construction was initiated on the Splash Dam South Trail connector in fall 2010 and completed in July 2012 with funding awarded through the West Virginia Division of Highways (WVDOH) Recreational Trails Program (RTP). This trail provides the connecting trail segment from Davis through Canaan Valley Institute (now Little Canaan Wildlife Management Area) and National Youth Science Foundation properties to the Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge property near the Camp 70 bridge - all on the south side of the Blackwater River. Additional funding for materials has been secured through United State Forest Service's Title II Secure Rural Schools .
       Board of Directors
Roger Lilly, Tucker County Trails 
Andy Dalton, Friends of the 500th
Josh Stevens, National Youth Science Foundation
Community Representatives: Ben Herrick, Annie Snyder,
Dan Lehmann, Ben Neustadt


Advisory Council
Richard Zane, Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge
Stan Beafore, Canaan Valley Resort & Blackwater Falls State Parks
Julie Fosbender, Monongahela National Forest
J. Scott Carr, Little Canaan Wildlife Management Area
Diane Hinkle, Tucker County Commission
Project Administrator:  Julie Dzaack


Home     About Us     Maps     Photo Gallery     News & Updates     Support the Trail