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West Virginia earns its nickname of the “Mountain State” fair and square – every one of its acres lie within the Appalachian Mountain Range. In these mountains adventure seekers find some of the country’s most exciting Class VI whitewater rafting, challenging rock climbing and world-class fly-fishing. In hunting season some 1.5 million acres of public lands open for the pursuit of whitetail deer, grouse, boar and bear.
Agricultural land in West Virginia looks much as it did when the state was carved out of western Virginia during the Civil War in 1863. Industrial farming in West Virginia is almost unknown – more than 98% of the cropland is controlled by the owner-operators. The average farm size is still just about 160 acres. In this rural economy many land deals are executed among neighbors and families so outsiders need to tap into this cloistered network to find the best property sales.
West Virginia is known for its coalfields and natural resources. Land can be bought with separate surface and mineral rights making rural land affordable if you don’t plan to sink an oil well or mine shaft. Waterfront property can be scored along some of West Virginia’s 2,000 miles of swift-flowing streams and 46 named rivers, including its formidable boundary rivers – the Ohio, Shenandoah and Potomac.
The fastest growing counties in West Virginia are Berkeley, Morgan and Jefferson in the Eastern Panhandle, close enough to Washington, D.C. to be part of the capital city’s burgeoning suburbs. More typical are the isolated communities of the state’s southern region which John Denver described as “almost heaven” when he sang Take Me Home, Country Roads. West Virginia beauty is protected by seven national park properties and over 200,000 acres of state parks.