Trip Report: Canaan Valley Resort 12-30-20

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For years now I’ve heard from several messageboard members, and a lot from David McCue, that the Canaan Valley area is an amazing place to go ski and snowboard and that it offers some of the best terrain in the region.   I had never had the opportunity to make it up that way as it’s a fairly long drive for me coming from Charlotte.  However, I’m up here at Snowshoe for the week and decided to make the less than two hour drive to the area.  I’m glad I did as I discovered how beautiful the Canaan Valley area is and I got a taste of what snowboarding is like up there.  Spoiler, it’s good and I want more!

Canaan Valley is well….a valley, duh.  I really liked the landscape and it’s a very unique layout compared to any other mountains I’ve seen in the region.  The flat valley floor where Highway 32 passes through is flanked by mountains on either side.  When you start to head south coming from the town of Davis, both Canaan Valley Resort and Timberline Mountain can be seen looming over the valley.  It’s a pretty cool sight and I didn’t realize just how close the two resorts are until I saw them side by side on the horizon.

We pulled into the parking lot a little after 8am and to my shock, I was one of the first handful of cars there and scored a front row spot.  I couldn’t believe it to be honest.  After seeing how busy Snowshoe has been and hearing about how crowded the resorts in the Boone, NC area have gotten in recent days, I was pretty shocked and even texted Mike about it.  I’m not sure if it’s always like that but on this day it was and it was great.

After failing twice to get a Facebook Live stream going from the slopes (the cell reception wasn’t the best), the wife and I lapped the place for a few hours with our guides Bo and Trevor.  Canaan Valley Resort has a lot of trails that are only open when there is natural snow, so on this day those runs unfortunately weren’t open.  Apparently we just missed it by a couple days as recent storms had allowed them to get 27 trails open at one point.  The trails that were open though were really, really fun.  It is always fun to ride at a new place and today was no exception.  Oddly enough, the green rated Timber Trail was actually my favorite run today.  Perhaps it was the fact that I was riding for the fourth day in a row and my legs were tired, but the mile long, tree lined trail was a delight to cruise down.  Well, until I fell and almost went off the trail.  Woops!

Valley Vista to Face was the other run of choice for me.  The blue to black line down the mountain mostly parallels the quad lift and you can really open it up if you want to get some speed.  If you are looking at the midstation webcam, it’s the run that is in frame.

Make sure to take a moment, unstrap your board or step out of your skis and walk down the little wood pathway once you get to the top of the quad lift.  Doing so takes you to a spectacular long range view that looks south.  It really is gorgeous.

The view looking south from the summit was amazing!

As I mentioned, a number of runs at Canaan Valley Resort are natural snow dependent, so we only got to ride a portion of the mountain today.  I was very stoked on what we rode though and the snow quality and coverage was excellent.  Man oh man though, after scoping out all of the terrain I am absolutely dying to ride this place when it gets a good dump of snow! There are lots of fun looking lines and I don’t believe they are groomed.  I bet a powder day here is sublime.  I must make it up there sometime during a storm.

After calling it quits on snowboarding for the day, the wife and I decided to drive around a bit and explore the other parts of the resort.  Right across the street from the ski area is the tubing hill.  I’m not a professional tuber but the tubing lanes here looked really, really long.  And fun.

Canaan Valley Resort Tubing
The tubing hill was large. Guests seemed to be enjoying themselves.

CVR is a sprawling resort and encompasses several different areas.  The conference center/hotel is on the other side of the valley and looks across at the ski area.  There is an ice skating pavilion which we didn’t check out as well as a golf course if you feel like hitting the links.

This is the view from the hotel/conference center looking at the ski area.

After driving through the resort we then decided to take Mark Moody’s (CVR Marketing Manager) advice and drive north a few minutes through the town of Davis and onto Blackwater Falls.  Davis is a cute little town with some lodging options and restaurants.  Blackwater Falls is a 57 foot waterfall that is easily accessible and I highly recommend going to see it!  It’s stunning!

Blackwater Falls
Blackwater Falls is a must see if you head to the Canaan Valley area!

All in all, it was a highly enjoyable day trip to what is an undeniably beautiful region.  For folks in the southern part of the Southeast, it may be a longer car ride for you, but it’s well worth the extra drive.  A huge thanks to Mark Moody for having us and showing us around.  Such a nice dude!  I have a feeling I’ll be back soon!

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