Road Trippin'

Plan a weekend away with our guide to summer road trips.

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One day just isn’t enough to explore these destinations—all within about two hours of Morgantown. Big city amenities, small town charm, and resort hospitality—an unforgettable weekend awaits just down the road.

 

Stonewall Resort

Less Than 75 Miles from Morgantown

 

Twenty-five years ago, no one could have imagined that the little river town of Roanoke, West Virginia, would be the site of one of the Mid-Atlantic’s finest lakeside resorts. For starters, there was no lake.

By 1990, Roanoke lay under 60 feet of water, the new flood control lake was the centerpiece of Stonewall Jackson Lake State Park, and—over the next decade—the park became a popular camping, boating, and fishing spot. At the turn of the 21st century, the state partnered with a private developer to build Stonewall Resort. The resort’s location was two miles off busy Interstate 79, just over an hour from Morgantown, and near many other major metropolitan areas.

Built in the style of a 1920s Adirondack hotel, the lodge has a timeless quality and an atmosphere that captivates. With nearly 200 stylishly simple guestrooms decked out with all the modern amenities, the building’s layout spoils you. There is so much to see and do under one roof, including the full-service spa with its fitness center, heated indoor/outdoor swimming pool, and the restaurant and lounge.

On the ground level of the lodge is Stillwaters Restaurant, where you can choose inside or patio seating—both with lake views—and enjoy an eclectic menu of local game, fish, and produce. Across the hall is TJ Muskies Lounge, where you can cozy up to the fire with drinks, listen to live entertainment on Saturday nights, and grab a signature burger.

If you’d rather find your own home away from home, check in at one of the 10 modern saltbox-style cottages on the lake. Ranging from two to four bedrooms, these cottages—with their vaulted ceilings, exposed beams, fireplaces, and spacious decks—are perfect for a romantic getaway, a private family gathering, or a weekend with the buddies. The cottages also have ample parking for boat trailers, so bring the boat and explore the lake. With 82 miles of shoreline on the 26-mile-long lake, there’s plenty of room to lose yourself in nature.

Of course, the center of water activities is the marina with its 374 slips. Rent a pontoon boat to cruise the lake and watch for osprey, pursue the legendary fishing opportunities, or explore under your own power with a kayak or stand-up paddleboard, both of which are free to guests. If you prefer a guided tour, join the one-hour daily excursion aboard the 100-passenger Little Sorrel.

If you’d rather stay on land, try golf at the resort’s 7,149-yard Arnold Palmer Signature Course, ranked in the country’s top 100 public and resort layouts. Après golf, replay your triumphs and defeats at Lightburn’s, the casual restaurant atop the clubhouse. But if the call of the wild is too strong to ignore, the park also boasts miles of well-maintained hiking and biking trails. For a short jaunt, check out the pedestrian boardwalk that connects the lodge with the campground and day-use areas or the Cairns Trail, where more than 150 unusual stone constructions dot the landscape.

Visitors to the area can find more than 16 miles of trails at Stonewall Jackson State Park, where the resort is located. You can even head out on a trail right from the lodge. If that isn’t enough to keep you busy all weekend, geocaching, Segway adventures, and the Roanoke Activity Plaza—with its two playgrounds, nine-hole disc golf course, basketball courts, horseshoe pits, and four-mile fitness trail—is sure to please. The plaza even includes a small outdoor theater for musical and theatrical performances. And don’t let a little seasonal rain ruin your road trip; there’s an indoor climbing wall and nine-hole miniature golf course as well as an indoor pool in the lodge.

The resort is open year-round, the marina April 1 to October 31, and the golf course March 30 to November 15.

WRITTEN BY DALE LEATHERMAN

Resort Drive, Roanoke, WV 26447; 304.269.7400; stonewallresort.com

 

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