River of Promise Trail


Take a self-guided tour to see the effects of coal mining’s legacy on Preston County. Located north of Albright and running alongside Route 26, this 4 mile trail offers visitors an opportunity to learn about what can be done to transform orange-colored mine impacted streams back into the healthy ecosystems they once were.   Four sites along streams in the area display interpretive signage on the impacts of coal-mining in the Cheat River watershed.  There are River of Promise trail signs to direct you to each site.

Sally Wilts preps the display case for an interpretive sign at the Virginia Iron Furnace.

See the Virginia Iron Furnace on the banks of Muddy Creek.  Learn about the 1994-95 mine blowouts that mobilized the formation of Friends of the Cheat and the River of Promise Task Force at the confluence of Muddy Creek and the Cheat River.  Discover the history of Ruthbelle and the story of a reclaimed strip mine.  If you are up for the challenge,  put in at the the Cheat Festival Site river access to run the Class II-V rapids of the Cheat Canyon.

The Cheat Festival Site is located off of Beech Run Road, which intersects Route 26 at a narrow angle. It is best approached from the south.  Signs here explain the origins and mission of Friends of the Cheat.


View ROP Trail in a larger map

Education & Outreach