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West Virginia/Virginia during Thanksgiving (8 days)

West Virginia/Virginia during Thanksgiving (8 days)

Old Jan 3rd, 2017, 07:24 PM
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West Virginia/Virginia during Thanksgiving (8 days)

Hi All,

So we always head out to the mountains during Thanksgiving when we can. We like to rent a cabin and do hikes, sight see, etc. We were going to head to Estes Park in Colorado (from Houston) this coming Thanksgiving 2017 but we've been there a few times before so I started looking at the map and realized Houston to West Virginia/Virginia is only a couple of hours more. We've never been there before so thought it may be good to go exploring to somewhere new. We take a couple of days to get there but a solid 7 days once we're there. Where would you suggest we go? We'd like to rent a cabin, do some hikes, but also visit interesting towns. I imagine it snows there (?) around Thanksgiving? We have twin boys that will be about 6 at that point but my boys aren't typical boys that like amusement parks and the like. They like to go hiking and kayaking and anything outdoorsy. They love animals and horseback riding. If there is snow there would love to go tubing or sledding. We're also art lovers and foodies so cute little town with great restaurants sounds magnificent. Hubby also like breweries.

Any ideas? Any suggestions would be really helpful. We don't mind doing day trips from the cabin as well to go exploring different places. I think i saw Shenandoah National Park so we'd probably have to check that out since we're huge National Parks fans.

Many, many, many thanks in advance?
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Old Jan 4th, 2017, 03:48 AM
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The good news is that there is a lot to do outdoors in this area, the bad news is that it is more likely to be 54 degrees than to snow but not warm enough to kayak. But you can probably bungee jump.

You can enter SW Virginia on I-81, go into WVA on I-77, and return to VA on I-64, making a nice scenic/historic loop.

Spectacular nature: New River Gorge, Natural Bridge, Luray ( and other) Caverns.

History: Civil War battlefields, presidents' houses (Jefferson, Madison, Monroe), University of Virginia, Staunton ("Stanton") and Lexington.

National park, of course, and vast National Forest holding. Blue Ridge Parkway

Bluegrass music all over SW Virginia. Wineries and breweries.

Skiing on man made snow: Massanutten and elsewhere in Virginia, Snowshoe in WVA.

Grand Hotels: Greenbriar and Homestead

Serious, very expensive foodie hotels: Keswick and Inn at Little Washington.

Stop in Nashville or Memphis or both on your drive.
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Old Jan 4th, 2017, 06:42 AM
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I seriously doubt if there will be snow, and skiing at Thanksgiving is not going to happen, manmade snow or not. It isn't cold enough. Even the conditions at Christmas this year were horrible for skiing at Snowshoe, let alone Massanutten. They are terrible right now. It was raining all day the day after and about 60 degrees. I don't think most ski resorts are even open at Thanksgiving yet, I know Timberline wasn't, nor was Massanutten. They generally don't open until mid-December. Snowshoe did open the day after Thanksgiving, but closed on some days due to rain and many runs aren't open until later in December.

Shenandoah National Park's facilities are closed (lodging, campgrounds, etc) at end of November until Spring.
https://www.nps.gov/shen/planyourvisit/winter.htm
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Old Jan 4th, 2017, 08:56 AM
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Thanks all! Any particular area you guys recommend to base our stay in (cabin wise)? Somewhere that would be a good base for day trips as well and which day trips would you recommend? I dont' mind no snow and we can kayak in 54 degrees! We own kayaks but perhaps they won't rent them at that time though.

We've done Nashville/Memphis and the whole Smokey Mountains area for Thanksgiving as well.

Thanks!
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Old Jan 12th, 2017, 10:03 AM
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I would look at Blackwater Falls, WV. It is a terrific outdoor recreation area with lots of trails for hiking, etc.

http://www.blackwaterfalls.com/

I love Virginia and there are some beautiful wild and rustic places but I think that WV really does live up to its "Wild, Wonderful" motto.
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Old Jan 12th, 2017, 10:25 AM
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Thanks schlegal1. Will definitely look into blackwaterfalls.com
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Old Jan 23rd, 2017, 03:27 AM
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If you get close to Charlottesville, it's worth a trip! A great small city with wonderful eateries and a neat Downtown Mall area. The grounds of UVA are also lovely to walk through and there is that whole Thomas Jefferson thing. Monticello is stupidly expensive but Thomas Jefferson was such a great inventor that my kids have always loved visiting.

Crozet is cute little town. Lots of wineries and breweries outside of Charlottesville. Scottsville used to be the start of a float on teh James River ... may or may not be doing it over Thsnkgiving.

I don't know much about WV but from driving through, it is WILD off I64! Have fun!
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