Gorge visitors and locals alike now have a new playground right in their backyard! What used to be 300 acres of unused land is now Needleseye Boulder Park: a park for public recreational use located in Oak Hill that’s perfect for hiking, mountain biking and rock climbing.
In early 2017, the West Virginia Land Trust partnered with the City of Oak Hill to purchase nearly 300 acres of land with a grant from the Outdoor Heritage Conservation Fund.
The property has some amazing natural features, including a 2-mile long rock wall and other natural rock features that are perfect for bouldering, a technical style of rock climbing. Because these boulders and cliffs are shorter and lower to the ground, climbers are able to scale routes without harnesses and ropes. For those looking to get into rock climbing, bouldering is a great way to start.
The park isn’t just for rock climbers – hiking and biking trails in the park are sure to be a hit, too. Trails wind through forest habitats, perfect for scouting wildflowers, other native plants and wildlife. The boulders and cliffs in the park provide unique scenery as well, including the Needles Eye rock formation, which is where the park gets its name.
Ready to hit the trails and climb these boulders? The best way to reach the park is by using these Google map coordinates. While the park is open and trails are accessible, be aware that some areas of the park, including parking lots to official park entrances, pavilions and playgrounds, are still being developed. For more information about when these areas of the park will be completed, contact the City of Oak Hill. We’ll do our best to keep you informed, too!
Needleseye Boulder Park is one more piece of protected land that we’re lucky to have here in the Gorge! Have you visited yet?