“A full route through Coopers Rock with all the sights.”
— Michael Rankin
Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife
This is a great loop of the entire park, starting at the front gate parking lot.
Need to Know
This is a multi-use trail, so be on the lookout for mountain bikers and other trail users.
This route lets you see all of the environs of Coopers Rock State Forest (without Mont Chateau), including Raven Rock Overlook and the main overlook area.
Starting from Coopers Rock Road, on the Scott Run Trail
. The trail takes you along a fairly smooth trail, descending to Scott Run. From there, the trail rolls along following the run for roughly a mile. This trail gives runners wonderful views of Scott Run and the foliage that lines its banks, including soft pines and rhododendron.
Soon, visitors will arrive at a fork in the trail. Stay right to continue on Scott Run Trail
. This also marks the beginning of the ascent back to Coopers Rock Road. The ascent is entirely made of softball size rocks, with soil eroded away by the stream that runs between the rocks.
You'll emerge from the woods at the road, and stray left on Clay Run
Road Trail to connect to the Campground Connector Trail
. This trail heads through the woods until you come to a junction with the Raven Rock Trail
. Turn left for an out-and-back extension to the overlook.
Raven Rock Trail
proceeds gently downhill on a very rocky dirt road south, parallel to a powerline cut. Near the end, the trail briefly climbs somewhat steeply to the Raven Rock Overlook of the Cheat River Gorge. Once you are done taking in the view, run back the way you came and continue on the Campground Connector Trail
to the Roadside Trail
After a short run on the Roadside Trail
, continue onto the Rattlesnake Trail
. Moving below the steep bluff, this hidden gem is a great way to escape the crowds of the park. From here, continue your run using the short Rock City Trail
segment to connect to Ridge Trail
where you'll enjoy a downhill to connect to Mont Chateau Trail (North)
From here you start the last steady climb on Mont Chateau Trail (North)
and the Advanced Ski Trail
to get back to the main trailhead where you started.