Blackwater Falls Memories

West Virginia state park beckons the soul needing nature’s nurturing gifts

DAVIS, W.Va. – For more than 50 years, I have been visiting Blackwater Falls State Park here. First, it was with my parents, usually with my great uncle and aunt who lived in nearby Parsons. Another aunt managed the dining room for several years, so we always had a good excuse – not that we needed one – to drive up for a Sunday dinner.

Later, I would take my new girlfriend here camping to impress her. It was my version of, “Courting: Mountaineer Style” and it did make an impression upon her, as our campsite was visited by a bear that night. That was 41 years ago; she married me anyhow, and we’ve continued to go, with additional bear sightings – and visits.

More recently, I spent time there with a friend of nearly 50 years, and we enjoyed nature’s nurturing gifts the park offers that we both needed for our souls.

Last year, we introduced our granddaughter to it for the first time, and she was soon the troop leader, captivated by the beckoning canyon and its awe-inducing appreciation for our place on the planet. At nine-years-old, she understood that. I hope these photos taken during our time there help you understand why. If you’ve never been there, I hope you’ll find time to visit.

© Michael M. Barrick, 2019.


  1. Always beautiful!! In every season!! We too go often!! Family picnics & more!! ❤️Blackwater!! Beautiful photos!!

  2. My father-in-law (b 1914) grew up in Philippi, WV. He and my mother-in-law often drove from Maryland with their little camping trailer to Blackwater Falls. To celebrate one of their last wedding anniversaries their four children, spouses, and grandchildren camped at the park. Evenings we sat around a campfire listening to my father-in-law tell of his early life. Just to read “Blackwater Falls” makes me misty-eyed.

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