Jennifer B.
Reviewed Aug. 30, 2019

Worth An Extended Stay

I stayed at Chief Logan for 3-days and 2-nights and didn’t get to do or see everything I wanted to experience at this wonderful WV State Park, so it’s worth an extended stay. 

Chief Logan has 26 level RV camping spots with water and electricity at all sites and a sewer connection at about half of them. The park also has a large open field for group camping or enough space for about 40 to 50 individual tents for those who prefer a more primitive experience. No water or electricity at the primitive campground, but you’re within walking distance of the main bathhouse which was nice and clean during my stay.   Here's a link for an interactive map of the Chief Logan campground where there's cell phone service for both AT&T and Verizon customers.

When you check-in at the park headquarters, make sure you visit the adjoining museum which gives you some background on the local coal industry and the hardy settlers who clashed with the American Indians when this area was still used as their hunting grounds. The gift shop has a variety of souvenirs with their#1 best sellers tied to alleged sightings of “Big Foot,” not Chief Logan… Lol… 

Chief Logan State Park has lots of trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding. I hiked the Coal Mine Trail with remnants of the coal industry decaying in the forest, then continued on the Wilderness Trail which gives you a nice view of the surrounding mountains. I was super impressed by the maintenance staff when I reported offensive graffiti on the Guyandotte Beauty Trail and a crew hiked into the woods and painted over it before I even had time to show my photos to Superintendent Bruce Collinsworth.

There are a variety of shelters and playgrounds scattered throughout the nearly 4,000 acre forest so you can spread out and enjoy the park without feeling like you’re fighting any crowds. 

I didn’t get to try the Chief Logan swimming pool, but it looked amazing with a giant slide, high dive and kiddie pool. There's also a stocked fishing pond in this park.

There’s a small wildlife center where you can see bears, bobcats and raptors in enclosures for a$2.00 donation. The caretaker helped me get some nice photos of the bears by putting some honey and peanut butter on the fence around their enclosure. You won’t have to pay a dime to see deer. I spotted dozens of does, bucks and fawns during my stay, so keep your eyes peeled because they don’t seem terribly cautious around people or cars. 

I should add that nearly 100 elk have recently been reintroduced in and around Chief Logan State Park. I didn’t see any elk during my visit, but I plan a return trip in the fall when naturalist Lauren Cole offers tours during the mating season. 

I can’t write a Chief Logan State Park review without mentioning the outdoor theater. Actors had just wrapped a sold-out run of “Deadly Divide” about the bloody history of the Hatfields and McCoys and were practicing for the “Lion King, Jr.” Chief Logan also has an entertainment venue called“Pickin’ In The Park,” where you can hear some local bluegrass music on the weekends. 

Chief Logan also has a really nice lodge and some new deluxe cabins about 2-miles from the main portion of this state park. The lodge has a restaurant and conference rooms, plus there’s a modern recreational center nearby which includes a heated indoor swimming pool, weight room, tennis courts, and elevated walking track. Admission to the rec center is free for lodge guests, but campers can also use the facility for$10/day or$32/month for a family of four… Deal! 

So why is such a grandiose state park located in the middle of Lincoln County, WV, where the decline of the coal industry has left many in poverty? Former WV Governor Earl Ray Tomblin is from Lincoln County, so he made sure big bucks where channeled into his home turf, including a nerve jangling connector road that links the main portion of Chief Logan State Park to the lodge and rec center. This road, named “Tomblin Drive,” in his honor, is so steep and curvy it’s closed during the winter months. 

Additional things/do to see nearby: The Coal Heritage Trail, Blair Mountain, Hatfield and McCoy ATV Trails, and the City of Logan.

  • Entrance sign at Chief Logan State Park
  • Chief Logan State Park headquarters/museum
  • Coal miner memorial
  • Chief Logan, a Cayuga warrior who killed some white settlers to get revenge for the slaughter of his family.
  • Level RV sites with water & electricity
  • RV sites not too crammed
  • ADA-accessible toilets in the campground bathhouse
  • ADA-accessible showers.
  • Lots of  playgrounds and shelters throughout the park.
  • Gift shop goodies
  • Gift shop goodies
  • Gift shop goodies
  • Gift shop goodies
  • Quilts on display in the Chief Logan State Park Museum
  • Chief Logan State Park Museum
  • Vintage oil and carbide coal mining lamps
  • Coal Mine Trail
  • Remnants of the coal industry
  • Remnants  of a coal tipple
  • Chunks of coal on the trail
  • Oh deer!
  • Young buck
  • .... and more deer!
  • Props from outdoor drama about the Hatfields and McCoys bloody feud.
  • Outdoor theater
  • Old steam engine used to transport coal.
  • Trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding
  • View from the top of the Wilderness Trail
  • Lots of rain, so lots  of mushrooms on the trails
  • Giant slide at outdoor pool
  • Outdoor pool complex with high dive, giant slide and kiddie pool.
  • Curvy, steep road connecting main park with Chief Logan Lodge.
  • Connector road not for the big trucks for the faint at heart.
  • Tomlin Drive so steep and curvy, it's closed during the winter months.
  • Chief Logan Lodge
  • Lodge dining room
  • Lodge fireplace
  • Lodge lobby
  • New deluxe cabin is more like a small house.
  • Large rec center free with lodge stay.  $10/day for campers
  • Indoor tennis courts
  • Indoor heated pool
  • Indoor walking track
  • Wildlife Exhibit
  • Wild boar
  • Bobcat
  • Hawk
  • Caretaker putting honey and peanut butter on the bear enclosure.
  • Mandy snacking out on some honey put on the fence of the bear enclosure.
  • Mandy snacking on peanut butter while Rascal watches.

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