Tag Archives: hinton

Summer County, WV, You will love what you ‘see’

Summers County is known for its pristine, wild and wonderful outdoor landscape.

“People forget there’s another gorge here” said Wendy Perrone. “There’s a Bluestone Gorge here as well as the New River Gorge. And the Bluestone Gorge is much more wild, a little bit harder to get to. You’ve got to want to get to it, but it’s worth every bit of the footwork.”

The rivers and recreation were at the top of conversation among community leaders for a video about Summers County for Visit Southern WV. The county is at the confluence of 3 of West Virginia’s major recreational rivers, the New, the Greenbrier and the Bluestone. For that, the area is home to the West Virginia Water Festival.

“You can actually get on the water and just have a float trip,” Perrone said. “You don’t have to do the whitewater rafting, where you’re doing the big scary water. Some days you just want to relax a little bit, and Summers County is the place to relax.”

The waters are also prime fishing spots, one of the best in the country for smallmouth bass. But the waters aren’t the only draw to the scenic Summers County.

“Summers County is all about the mountains, everywhere you look,” said Julia Gator, from the Otter and Oak. “There’s a huge variety, whether you’re a sportsman, a golfer, a hiker… or just like to shop.”

The 3 rivers merge in the tiny town of Hinton, where the Southern hospitality adds to the charm of the Appalachian beauty.

“You walk down the street, you see a new face or an old face, you say hello,” Sheila Allman of The Ritz Theater said of the area’s kind manner. “It’s just a friendly little town.”

Each year, they welcome in visitors to Hinton to celebrate its rich train heritage at Hinton Railroad Days. You can explore those rail roots at the Railroad Museum, or hop aboard a train car for a scenic ride.

Coal was a big reason the trains trekked into the Hinton depot, and the industrial push to replace workers in the area birthed the legend of hardworking, blue-collar icon John Henry.

The tale symbolized the plight of the workers, who feared for their jobs in the wake of rapidly evolving technology. The story goes he challenged a steam engine, and strained so hard killed him. Though it did pay off— he won the challenge.

Regardless, the victory was not enough to keep the industry from fading out across the Summers County landscape, leaving the vast outdoors open for farming.

You drive through this whole region, and you can just see old farmland,” said Perrone. The people in the area protect the wild, scenic beauty of the land that grants them an easy-going livelihood.

They also look after the wildlife that share their forests. Perrone works at the Three Rivers Avian Center, where petite songbirds and majestic raptors alike are nursed back to health when injured.

The center often brings the majestic birds into the community, and sometimes opens its doors to tours.

Not that one needs to travel far from town to explore the Summers County wildlife. The two National Parks help maintain the untouched terrain, which you can come explore for yourself.

 

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Where The Locals Dine

Anytime you visit a new place, there’s one question you should ask: “Where do the locals go?”

Whether it’s hiking, biking, shopping, or relaxing, locals are the key to finding those sometimes overlooked or unknown places in your vacation destination. At no time are locals more helpful than when trying to decide where to dine.

Searching out the best local cuisine can sometimes be a tough task.  But never fear, we’re here to

Pie from Pies and Pints

share some restaurants with you that locals can’t get enough of!

Where To Go, What to Eat

According to locals, these are just a few of their favorite eating-out spots:

* Pies and Pints– This restaurant features handcrafted pizza and beer, and beer and handcrafted pizza. Need we say more?  Locals liked it so much that they branched out from their Fayetteville location and opened a second restaurant in Charleston.
* Gumbos – In Fayetteville, Gumbo’s has a Cajun-influenced menu featuring  good southern cuisine.
* Pasquale Mira–   This Beckley restaurant has been serving the area’s best Italian food for 50 years.
* Diogis–  Also in Fayetteville, here you’ll find excellent Mexican cuisine with a bit of El Salvadoran style.
* Chetty’s Pub– After a day of rafting with Adventures on the Gorge, Monday night wing night is a must.
* The Char– Looking for a formal dining option?  Go to The Char, one of Beckley’s finest restaurants.
* The Market at Courthouse Square in Hinton, WV.  Extraordinary pizza, sandwiches, baked good and gelato.  Sandwiches have railroad themed names.  Awesome small town dining open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
* The Bramwell Cafe– Country food at it’s best and just like mom used to make.
* Tamarack– Featuring a menu create by The Greenbrier, the fried green tomatoes are a must-try.  And after you dine, you’ll have the chance to view lots of West Virginia crafts and artisans at work.

Each of these places (and many other southern WV restaurants) has good eats and some endearing qualities that make it special to locals.

Do you have a favorite Southern WV Restaurant?

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