Backpacking in West Virginia: Day 1

We all woke up a little early. I was up and working on a morning fire by 5:30 a.m.. We had coffee and oatmeal by 7. After relaxing by the fire and waking up, dad and I nursed our coffee while checking out the map. We decided to go to a different part of the forest called Seneca Creek. Much safer sounding than Bear Heaven! On our way to West Virginia, Stephanie and I read an article in Backpacker magazine that featured Seneca Creek and a 17 mile loop trail that follows the creek. As soon as I mentioned the part about abundant trout in the creek, dad was sold. However, he did take a fee minutes before “suggesting” we try out that area. We divided up our gear, packed our bags, and set out for Seneca Creek.

An hour and a half later, and quite a breathtaking drive by the way, we arrived at the trail head.

We headed in and the scene was picturesque! Evergreen forest, open meadows, a crisp blue sky. It was about 65 degrees, which was perfect for this sunny hike. About 12:30 we came upon a campsite that was straight out of Lord of the Rings. There was a 6′ fire ring in the middle surrounded by stone seats for 12. If I wasn’t so excited, it would have been creepy.After lunch, Dad and I setup our tents while Stephanie DIDN’T take a nap. After the setup, dad went fly fishing and I snapped a few photos before journaling a bit. Then, Steph and I jumped in the creek and had to warm up in the sun. By the way, the creek was about -12 degrees.

After returning to camp with dinner on my mind, we saw a group of 15 college students move in as our neighbors. We could tell by the way they paused and sized us up that they were aiming for our spot. After all, it is a sweet spot. Stephanie made Anniversary Stir Fry for dinner. It was great! After dinner, Stephanie and I got a private lesson in how to make several different knots. There’s the Taught Line Hitch, Clove Hitch, Bow Line, Fisherman’s Knot, and the Double Fisherman’s Knot. Then we sat around the fire pit until we were all dozing off.


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