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2013 West Virginia Special Insert


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Adventure Galore at the Summit F


irst, we have to mention the Summit, also known as the Summit Bechtel Family Nation- al Scout Reserve. A 10,600-acre high-adventure base operated by the Boy Scouts of America and located in Southern West Virginia right in the middle of some of the most spectacular country east of the Rocky Mountains, the Summit of- fers every adventure you can think of in one outstanding location. And starting in 2013, the property will become the permanent home of the national Scout jambo- ree. Although it’s a day’s drive (or less) from many large cities in the East, this wild area is one of the best-kept secrets in the United States. So what’s going on there? Where to start… Located near the New River Gorge, which


is forever protected by the National Park Ser- vice, the area’s streams, mountains, and forests are a haven for those who love outdoor sports. Mountain bikers will ride the Summit’s “High Gear” downhill course and the 27 miles of


cross-country trails on the “Low Gear” course. White- water rafters will float the New River Gorge’s class III,


IV, and—yikes!—V white- water. Rock climbers will flock to the Gorge to scale the Endless Wall along its north face. Fishermen will float the New River and many other streams to engage in the world-


class, smallmouth bass fishing. Summit visitors will also find a


lake for canoeing and kayaking, zip lines, BMX and mountain biking, scuba diving, a water ob- stacle course, and even a stadium area for out- door concerts and events. Planners say the site will be ready for the


2013 National Scout Jamboree, which begins July 15. The expected 50,000 Scouts, including as many as 10,000 adult volunteers, will make the Summit the second-largest city in West Vir- ginia from July 15-24. To register or check out the cool activities taking place at the jamboree, go to summit.scouting.org.


An Amusement Park and More T


ake a break from your nature- oriented excursions and head


to Camden Park in Huntington. Camden boasts more than 30 rides and attractions,


including


a rollercoaster, a haunted house, and more (866-822-6336, camden park.com). Or for a slower-paced afternoon, visit the Heritage Farm Museum (304-522-1244; heritage farmmuseum.com). This Hunting- ton museum showcases Appala- chian heritage through interactive displays. The shopping area down-


town is also worth checking out. The stores and specialty shops in downtown Huntington also offer a variety of one-of-a-kind items, many crafted by local artisans. For an interesting lunch or din-


ner experience stop by Hillbilly Hot Dogs, which was recently featured on The Food Network. A large menu with an interesting dining experience that has fun with rural Appalachian culture (hillbillyhotdogs.com; 304-522- 0044).


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