Friday, March 16, 2012

The Falls of Hills Creek, West VA

George and I have traveled to West Virginia three times in the past few years.  Each time,  we have found some fabulous areas AND waterfalls.  The first time (April of 2010) we found the New River Gorge area --including Sandstone Falls.  Click HERE for those pictures...

The second time we visited there was last Fall.  We discovered more of the New River Gorge area then ---and we also discovered Blackwater Falls.   Click  HERE to see those pictures...

This time---we stayed at the Blackwater Falls State Park Lodge in order to celebrate George's birthday... And,  as you know,  we saw LOTS of waterfalls on this visit also.  My favorite set of waterfalls (3 of them) on this trip were the FALLS OF HILLS CREEK.

 The trail leading to the falls is one of the most popular hikes in the Monongahela National Forest.  The trailhead is located on Highland Scenic Highway (another gorgeous drive) on State Road 39/55,  and 5.3 miles west of the Cranberry Mountain Visitor Center.   Hope you enjoy some of our photos from the Falls of Hills Creek.

Above is a picture of some snow left on the mountain that day (even though the temps were fairly mild).  The elevation here is about 3500 feet ---so we were lucky to get to see these waterfalls at all this year.  This entire area is usually covered with snow and ice this time of year.  But--as you know,  this winter has been fairly mild. 




This is the UPPER FALLS of HILLS CREEK.   This is the only one of the three that is hard to photograph,  since we were above it,  on the side... This waterfall has about a 25 foot drop.




This is a gorgeous area...   We followed the creek down the mountain on a series of boardwalks and steps.  Note the moss on the rocks and ground... SO pretty!




They have built an elaborate series of steps to make it easier getting down the mountain to the other two waterfalls.   George took this picture of me from the top --after I had climbed back up those stairs.




AND--I took his picture at the bottom showing how far up I really was!!!!  You can see the elaborate boardwalk ---and you can also see some snow still there along the creek area.




Here is a picture of the MIDDLE FALLS of HILLS CREEK.  The drop is about 45 feet.   This is a fabulous area --and the overlook is perfect for taking pictures.  We set up the tripod here and took our picture together (shown in this past Monday's blog post).




This is another picture showing the extensive stair work someone did in order to make it possible for us to get down to those two lower waterfalls.  (Wish they would do this at Blackwater so that we could see more of Pendleton and Elekala Falls.) 




We made it all of the way down to the LOWER FALLS of HILLS CREEK.  There were lots of stairs ---but we both made it just fine.  In fact,  we got hot with our jackets on, while hiking.




Here is a picture of the LOWER FALLS of HILLS CREEK.  This is the largest of the three falls and is about a 64 foot drop.  Lower Falls is often cited as West Virginia's second highest waterfall, behind Blackwater Falls.

We really enjoyed seeing all of these waterfalls (especially the Middle and Lower ones) --and recommend this hike if you ever get to West Virginia.

Have a wonderful weekend, and I will see you on Monday.
Hugs,
Betsy

61 comments:

Ms. A said...

My knees hurt just looking at those stairs! You two really get a workout for your beautiful photos.

laveta'splace said...

Such beautiful falls. I just amazed at those elaborate stairs they've built to make it easier to get to the falls. But that's still a lot of climbing. Thanks for sharing.

A Brit in Tennessee said...

Just look at those steps !
I would have to stop for a picnic half way around :)
Just beautiful Betsy, I can never choose a favorite, but the lower falls has to be the most gorgeous place to be.
You and George take the nicest of trips together, wonderful memories !
~Jo

diane b said...

fabulous shots of that beautiful area. So many falls. Those steps look a killer, you are doing well to be climbing them especially after a knee op. Well done.

Catherine said...

No doubt about it, you and your George find some of the most beautiful spots Betsy!

Wishing you both a terrific weekend!
xo Catherine

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Those are beautiful falls,nut oh my aching knees if I had to climb all those stairs.The walk looks well designed and is a great idea for those who are able to do it.

Daisy said...

Great photos, Betsy! Wow, that's a lot of stairs. You and George got a lot of exercise to see those pretty falls. :) Have a good weekend!

Sandra said...

i love the SNOW smile on your face in the first photo and really love the you looking down and george looking up, those are great and the steps are spectacular... ouch on climbing up and down them, not sure i would make it down that many. a really beautiful place.

Snap said...

Wow, Betsy ... waterfalls and snow ... jackpot! :D :D

Lynda said...

You two must have legs of steel!!! It's good exercise for the heart, too - - right?
The photos are beyond beautiful as usual. I especially love the one of you in the snow. The reflection from the snow makes you 'glow' like Monica in 'Touched by an Angel' - - very becoming.

Arkansas Patti said...

Those stairs are really awesome. Sadly,you at the top of the tower is something I could never do. I miss out on some great views and have to rely on my companions to tell me about it.
Loved that happy snow look. That is way more than we had. I kind of worry about the lack of moisture we have all had.

Peggy said...

Okay, I am tired and need a nap just from looking at where the two of you went! Beautiful falls and glad you share them with us.

TexWisGirl said...

the boardwalks and stairs are impressive! some engineering, there! beautiful area!

amelia said...

I wouldn't want to do those stairs! I'm happy your knee allows you to do these things now!

Tricia @ Bluff Area Daily said...

Looks like quite a hike, but worth it... too bad I'm scared of heights! =0

Thank you for including Landon in your prayers... very much appreciated! =)

Harriet said...

Wow!!!

Harriet said...

Wow!!!

Darla said...

I believe it wonderful how ya'll spend so much time traveling and checking out nature!

Sylvia K said...

Gorgeous waterfalls and such delightful captures as always, Betsy! I do love the tours you take us on, your photos are definitely the next best thing to being there!! Hope you and George have a great weekend! I've had trouble leaving comments of George's blog -- not sure why, just a strange message from Wordpress??? Anyway, I love his shots of the daffodils! They are SO beautiful!

Sylvia

Debbie Smith said...

Oh my gosh, Betsy! These waterfalls are gorgous!!!
The boarded trails and steps remind me of a hike I did in Okinawa to get to a waterfall. Which wasn't much of one at all, but a beautiful area!
I just learned yesterday that there is a few waterfalls right here in Reno! So you know I'll be going to check those out soon!
Happy St Paddy's Day!
Love ya!
Debbie

laveta'splace said...

Betsy, thanks for telling me about the word verification. I didn't even know I had it and you are the first to tell me. Can you please tell me how to get rid of it? Thank's again for letting me know.

laveta'splace said...

Betsy, me again. I think I have removed the word verification. Can you let me know if I did? One of these days I'll get this all down right.

gigihawaii said...

You sure do like waterfalls. In fact, you are the only one I know who has a "fetish" about them. Lol. Excellent hobby!

Chatty Crone said...

Betsy you two the nicest trips and I love all your waterfalls! sandie

Out on the prairie said...

lovely area, the stairs helped but can be a tough climb I bet

JDS said...

Looks like a lovely area...I like the perspective of taking a picture from above a waterfall looking down at it, as you did with the upper falls...And the stairwork passing by the rhododendrons (or are those laurels?) is a good example of something built by man blending well into the natural landscape.

Have a great St. Paddy's weekend, Barb!

John

Happyone said...

Beautiful photos. Those stairs must be quite a workout!!

Linda said...

I agree with Mrs. A about those stairs. I could feel my legs start to tremble at the thought of climbing and descending so many steps. But, from the looks of the alternative trail, the steps would be the only way to go. Beautiful pictures, as always.

Cheryl @ The Farmer's Daughter said...

The waterfalls are beautiful and I can see why you would walk the stairs and trails to see them! Have a great weekend!

Lynn said...

Wow that is impressive, the falls first of all and then the extensive work of the steps. Hmm if ever get to WV again I would love to try to do that. Even with hubby's great success of knee surgery, not sure if he could do ALL those steps. Yes, I totally understand you getting warm in your jackets after those steps! Such happy photos, just makes me laugh out loud with delight, you guys have 20 year old spirits and I could not be more delighted by the friendship you and I have begun thanks to our blogs.

Karin said...

Good thing you are both in shape from your extensive hiking; there's NO WAY I could have climbed all that with my knee! Those woods and falls look so beautiful - no wonder you love hiking!! Have a wonderful week-end!

Lady Di Tn said...

Looks like the weather will give us a great weekend here in TN. The photos are great. Wow that sure is some kind of walkway with numerous steps to get visitors to and from. Peace

Ann said...

That's quite a climb up all those steps but what a view from up there. Love the shots, looks like a really nice spot

Shug said...

Oh my goodness Betsy....you guys are in good shape....I don't know if I could make it up and down those stairs and up and down all those paths that you both climb. I am really impressed...These shots are beautiful and I appreciate the two of you for hiking up and down the hills to bring us such beauty..
Have a great weekend..
shug

~Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

So many waterfalls in such a little time. Waterfall overload! I love it. So glad you got to enjoy some snow too.

Rose said...

Though it is truly a beautiful place, I am so impressed by all those steps/stairs. Can you imagine what a job that must have been to build all of them. Someone is really dedicated to their job to stick through those.

Nava said...

Thanks for sharing this beautiful area--I feel out of breath!

wildlifewatcher said...

Hi Betsy, I like that photo of the middle falls best. I am happy you had such a great trip. Looks like a lot of fun. Have a wonderful weekend! I am happy to have had a little rain today - good for the veggies and fruit I just planted.

Carletta said...

Beautiful shots Betsy!
It would take me all day to do those steps these days and I'm younger! :)
I am so glad you saw a little snow visiting. And, we're expecting close to 80 degrees a day or two next week. You and George should have waited a week or so.!

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

Great pictures, Betsy! I'm so very much enjoying your travels in search of beautiful waterfalls!

Maple Lane said...

I'm happy that you two climbed those steps and shared the photos! That was quite a workout. Have a good weekend.

Rose from Oz is Back! said...

The places you go are amazing, and beautiful and we are so lucky that you take wonderful pictures to share with everyone.

Janice K said...

My first thought was "look at all those steps!" But the views were certainly worth it!

W. Latane Barton said...

That is a lot of stairs! but well worth the climb. Those pictures are so amazing. I love water falls but don't see many. Now I can just look at yours.

Annie said...

A beautiful place and definitely one I will never experience. Going down those steps would drop me into dizzy land. Going back up would surely give me a heart attack.

Glenda said...

Those stairs are amazing - as are the falls. I'm thinking you are in better shape than I am; not sure I could have made down and back up! Have a great weekend!

carolina nana said...

I'm glad your knees are well with all that step climbing. That was surely a test !!
Blessings
Marilyn

HolleyGarden said...

Those are some impressive stairs! Loved the pictures of you at the top, and George at the bottom! The waterfalls don't look that tall - so glad you gave the ft. drop in your descriptions. Have a great weekend!

Tracy said...

Betsy, that bridge is magnificent; talking about a lovely capture of the camera. I love the various points and demensions...great job! I'm hoping you are healing...

ladyfi said...

What beautiful falls! And such wonderful tulips in your header!

SquirrelQueen said...

Those steps would certainly make the trek to the falls much safer. I love that photo of the middle falls.

Hope you and George are having a great weekend.

Neal said...

Very, very nice. That is a very beautiful part of the country. We didn't make it to all the falls that you did but we saw quite a few of them.

Crystal Mary said...

What a blessing to be able to climb those stairs. And the scenery is beautiful. I can almost smell the fresh air.

Ginny said...

You are my two daredevils! This post should have been titled Vertigo!!!! But all those steps will keep you really healthy, and you have a beautiful scene at the end!

Ginny said...

Uh-oh! What's going on with the comment moderation?

Retired English Teacher said...

I am fascinated about how you two keep falling for all these falls. Now be care to have no falls on any of those steps or rocks.

Jane said...

Lovely pictures! I certainly hope to be getting out more now that the big book report is finished!

Jane

Buttercup said...

Love the waterfalls. So enjoy "traveling" with you.

Linda G. said...

Beautiful waterfall pictures, as always! My knee started to hurt just thinking of all the walking and stair climbing that you did to see those falls!

Kirigalpoththa said...

This is a super place. Lovely pictures.

Lot of work done on that staircase and it merge with the nature perfectly.

Angela said...

Oh my goodness Betsy! You and George are in fabulous shape to climb all those stairs like that! We have never been to that part of the park before. I'm not sure if I could do all of those steps. I don't do the steps going down to see the Blackwater Falls. We always take the walk down that is a road until you get to that big rock that is at the bottom of the road and the bottom of the steps from the other side. Then we will take the steps the rest of the way down. If the falls aren't that impressive we don't even go down to take a closer look! lol We are lazy!

Great pictures! I'll have to look into that one more and maybe my husband and kids will hike down to it.

Hugs,
Angela