The Greenbrier River Trail Association (GRTA) is proud to announce the opening of a new handpump water well on the Greenbrier River Trail (GRT) near the 9.5 mile marker. The new water source is located approximately half-way between the Caldwell Trailhead and Anthony trail access points. This section of the GRT is the most heavily used of the 78-mile rail trail spanning Greenbrier and Pocahontas counties along the beautiful Greenbrier River. It winds through forest, farm fields, and mountains. GRT’s low grade provides a safe and serene place for all ages and ability levels to experience the outdoors, exercise, and enjoy the infinite variety of flora and fauna that make their home in the Mountain State
The well was made possible by generous grants from the Hollowell Dawkins Foundation and HEAL the Greenbrier River Trail. The Greenbrier River Trail Association (GRTA) applied for the funds and worked with State Parks Superintendent, Jody Spencer, to coordinate efforts. GRTA is a 501c(3) non-profit “friends” organization devoted to the Greenbrier River Trail health and vitality. The state Greenbrier River Trail maintenance crew headed by Sam Parker prepared the site for drilling alongside its normal duties of trail mowing, removal and clearing of downed trees and rockslides, and upkeep of trail facilities.
The Frame Drilling Co. of Elkins, WV was selected to drill and sanitize the well. Brothers Jack and Luke Frame have fond memories riding in their father’s truck as young boys when patriarch, Jack Frame, installed other wells on the Greenbrier River Trail (GRT) over 20 years ago. For instance, Jack drilled the well at the former campsite at13 mile marker buried in a landslide following the torrential rains of June 2016. At this site, rock has continued to fall over the cliffs as it has done for more than 100 years since the days when the GRT was a railroad. As a result, the former campsite and well were relocated to a more stable site at Loopemount at 9.5 mile marker, near Keister.
Developing this now “full service” campsite and picnic area has been in the works for two years. First, a privately funded shelter was designed and built by Dale McCutcheon and other local volunteers to complement the existing tent pad, fire ring and picnic table. Last year, with a grant from the Marie Leist Foundation, volunteers built a bathroom. At the same time, the state Greenbrier River Trail maintenance crew installed a bear proof trash can. The site was recently finished with the handpump water well installation. The new water source meets a real need for those who run, walk, bike and camp the Greenbrier River Trail.
This project is one more example of the energy, generosity, and cooperative spirit of our community to ensure that we have some of the finest recreational opportunities to share locally and with those who come to visit our uniquely beautiful region! For more information about the Greenbrier River Trail Association or to donate to GRT projects, please visit www.greenbrierrivertrail.com. Want to volunteer on the GRT, contact Nancy Harris at email@example.com. GRTA is currently seeking volunteers to help paint and clean GRT kiosks, sign posts, and signs.