Lewis County is home to two well-loved lakes that are home to some of the best views, fishing, and waterfront activities. Fall is especially magical lakeside Lewis County. As the leaves change and the air cools, visitors are drawn to campgrounds and lakesides to take advantage of the many activities West Virginia has to offer. From fishing to camping to hiking, there’s no better way to celebrate the return of autumn than a trip to Stonewall Country.
As the water temperature slowly cools off with the first days of fall, some of the most sought-after fish are drawn to shallower waters. Naturally, this draws fishermen to the water’s edge. Stonecoal Lake is known to be a hotspot for musky fishing in particular, for which the Lake holds two state records. Besides this elusive and speedy “fish of 10,000 casts,” fishermen can also catch walleye, trout, bass, carp, and catfish.
Stonecoal Lake is just as much a destination for avid fisherman as it is for novices and families. The fishing docks are idea for a child’s first cast. As a part of the Wildlife Management Area, Stonecoal Lake is also the perfect spot to admire and learn about West Virginia’s wildlife in their natural habitats.
Close to Stonecoal Lake is Kathy’s Ice Cream Barn for fishermen that have worked up an appetite and craving for a sweet treat. All year long, Kathy’s Barn serves hot food, ice cream and specialty desserts that will hit the spot every time.
If after fishing your crew is craving more adventure and excitement, Stonewall Jackson State Park should be your next destination. Equipped with hiking trails, watercraft rentals, an indoor/outdoor heated pool and more, you can spend a day or a weekend comfortably at the state park and resort.
The site features more than 16 miles of hiking trails, including Cairns Trail, which takes visitors on a moderate 2-mile route around the west side of Stonewall Jackson Lake. Along the way, hikers can spot cairns (pronounced kar-ins), which are stacks of rocks used to designate direction along a trail. Up to 200 cairns have been found in the park, and some even have bullets and markings embedded in them.
After a full day of exploring, gather your family around the site’s firepit for a star-filled sky. Find constellations that only appear when city lights disappear and enjoy the scent of roasted marshmallows and hotdogs from fellow campers. For those that prefer seated dining, the park’s restaurant, Stillwaters, remains open, but asks that visitors wear masks whenever indoors.
Lodging at the park is as varied and accommodating as its daytime activities, ranging from RV and tenting on the campground to lakeside lodges and cottages. Some rooms are even designated pet-friendly for folks traveling with furry family members as well.