Top 8 Spots To Catch A New River Gorge Sunset

The New River Gorge National Park and Preserve offers stunning views from every angle, making it a photographer’s dream and a great area for anyone who loves a good sunset. With the breathtaking canyon cutting through the tree-covered slopes of the Appalachian Mountains, sunsets here are truly a sight to behold.

Remember that you’ll want a westward-facing overlook for the most vibrant sunset colors. And luckily, the New River Gorge has plenty to offer! This guide will show you the best spots to capture those magical moments, whether you’re looking for an easy overlook or a scenic hike with a rewarding view. 

1. Canyon Rim Boardwalk Overlook

Located at the Canyon Rim Visitor Center, this is a classic and convenient choice.  The overlook provides an amazing perspective of the New River Gorge Bridge bathed in the golden light of sunset. The upper observation deck is wheelchair-accessible, while the lower deck requires descending 150 steps.

2. Beauty Mountain

This short walk delivers a big reward! Climbers cherish Beauty Mountain for its crags, but hikers can enjoy the same majestic vista with minimal effort. Beauty Mountain features unobstructed cliffs, ideal for watching the sun dip below the horizon and paint the river red with its reflection. This is a must-do for anyone seeking a one-of-a-kind sunset location.

3. Long Point Trail

Hike Long Point Trail for a dramatic angle of the New River Gorge Bridge. This moderate 1.6-mile route leads you to a narrow, rocky overlook that juts out into the Gorge. This unique vantage point offers an unparalleled perspective. As you take in the vastness of the Gorge painted in the colors of sunset, you’ll almost feel like you’re floating on a cloud.

4. Endless Wall Trail

If you are looking for a beautiful golden hour view without a tough trek, Endless Wall Trail is your answer. This 3.2-mile, easy loop winds through the park’s verdant forests, offering nonstop glimpses of the Gorge throughout. But the true gem lies near the halfway point. Here, a short side trail leads to Diamond Point Overlook, facing westward for prime sunset viewing. 

5. Adventures On The Gorge

Enjoy a delicious meal at one of Adventures On The Gorge’s restaurants, or simply relax at a scenic overlook at the resort — all with serene sunset views as your backdrop. Feeling adventurous? Book a Sunset Dinner Trip during the summer months. Raft down the New River, enjoy a riverside dinner and end the day with a front-row seat to a spectacular sunset underneath the New River Gorge Bridge. 

6. The Burrito Bar At Breeze Hill

Cap off your day of adventure with a delicious meal and a mesmerizing vista! The Burrito Bar at Breeze Hill lives up to its slogan, “Great food with a view.” This seasonal outdoor restaurant (open May to October) is home to arguably the best sunset views in the area. Enjoy delicious burritos named after local rapids while taking in the vibrant sunset over the Gorge.

7. Kaymoor Trail

The Kaymoor Trail runs parallel to the New River between Fayetteville and Cunard, offering a moderate hike with incredible views of the Gorge ablaze at dusk. The abandoned Kaymoor Mine, a highlight of the trail, provides a glimpse into the area’s past, while the area right before the steep descent (821 steps) toward the mine complex is perfect for catching the fiery sunset.

8. Bridge Buttress Trail

Short on time but craving a panoramic sunset vista? The Bridge Buttress Trail is for you! This 0.1-mile trek is a breeze, taking less than five minutes to complete. Though rated moderately challenging due to a short rock scramble with a rope assist, it’s manageable for most hikers. The reward is up-close views of the New River Gorge Bridge immersed in the warm hues of a sunset. 

Visit these spots on your next trip to the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. Share your sunset sights with us by tagging us in your photos on social media using #GoGorge.