The New River Gorge Bridge, in Fayetteville, West Virginia, is a destination spot for adventure seekers. The bridge, 876 feet high and 3,030 feet long, has drawn parachuters and rappellers since about the time it opened in 1977.
Each year on the third Saturday in October, the bridge is closed to traffic and opened to pedestrians. Bridge Day, sponsored by the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce, draws up to a quarter of a million people for range of outdoor activities.
Activities on the Bridge
Building, Antenna, Span and Earth (BASE) jumpers are among the most extreme of extreme sports enthusiasts. For these thrill seekers, BASE jumping is offered on Bridge Day, but you have to be registered to jump (see Resources).
Activities Around the Bridge
The New River Gorge National River offers activities such as whitewater rafting, camping, recreational climbing, hiking and mountain biking. Zip lines, sky bridges, rappels and guided hikes are available for those who would like to explore the hemlock and hardwoods forest around the New River Gorge.
Two visitor centers, Canyon Rim and Sandstone, are open year-round. You can find food, lodging and campgrounds in the communities around the park.
About 25 percent of the land within the park is private property. This includes homes, farms and the railroad right-of-way. Visitors should respect the property boundaries.