All About AnstedJanuary 6, 2012
If you’re traveling from Charleston east on Route 60 (the Scenic Midland Trail National Byway), the first community you come when you reach the plateau is the town of Ansted. Located almost on the rim of the New River Gorge, this town is an interesting little community with a lot of history.
A Little History
The first settlers in this area were a group of Baptist “squatters” in 1790, but the town wasn’t established until around 1891. It was named after British geologist Dr. David T. Ansted, who mapped out the coal seams in the surrounding area and owned all the land that is now the town.
Ansted also played a role in the Civil War; both Union and Confederate armies concentrated their efforts on the area in the early 1860’s.
The expansion of the railroad in the early 1870’s helped Ansted flourish by allowing the transport of this area’s coal and timber resources. The narrow gauge railroad coming from the mainline was in use until 1972.
With a good small business environment and a great location for anything outdoor recreation-related, Ansted has a lot to offer its residents and visitors. Here are just a few of the activities that can be done near town.
- Whitewater rafting
- Zip Lines
- Rock Climbing
- Jet Boat rides
Hawks Nest State Park is located just inside of town limits, boasting a wonderful lodge and restaurant on the rim of the Gorge. A tram will take you down to the river, where you can catch a ride on the New with New River Jetboats. The river is dammed up just below the park area, creating a 250 acre lake that provides many opportunities for recreation.
Ansted a great vacation spot for anyone who likes small town life and enjoys outdoor recreation. Have you visited Ansted?