The West Virginia. Cyclopedia

Hawks Nest State Park

From West Virginia (WV) Cyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
View of the New River Gorge from Hawks Nest Main Overlook
Stone structure built by WPA at Hawks Nest State Park
Hawks Nest Rock, circa 1920s

Hawks Nest State Park (map), in Fayette County, east of Fayetteville, WV, is among West Virginia's most popular state park destinations. Protecting 270 acres on the northern rim of the New River Gorge, the park is beloved for its panoramic vistas -- from the lodge, aerial tram, and from its overlooks. Stone buildings, including the park museum and main overlook visit complex, were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and may be of particular interest to historians.

The park's main overlook, Hawks Nest, was known as Marshall's Pillar during the period of 1812-1840, so named for U.S. Chief Justice John Marshall, who visited the site in the early 1800s in connection with plans for canalization of New River. By the era of the Civil War through the 1920s, the rock pillar was known as Hawks Nest Rock.

A small community located at the bottom of the New River Gorge known as Hawks Nest was established circa 1873. Although much of the settlement had long since been abandoned, the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway (C&O) continued to maintain the Hawks Nest station until the late-1930s.


Recreation: hiking, biking, playground, paddleboating, lake fishing, aerial tram rides

Lodging: 31 lodge rooms

Dining: restaurant, picnic areas

Highlights: Aerial Tramway, Hawks Nest Overlook, Tour Boat, Museum

Additional Sources of Information

Hawks Nest State Park: Official Website
P.O. Box 857, Ansted, WV 25812 / Phone: (304) 658-5212


Map: Hawks Nest State Park

Park Maps: Map : Topo Map : Aerial Photo : Tiger Map