Blackwater River Fishing In WV

Blackwater River WV

The Blackwater River is a 32 mile river that lies entirely within Tucker County, WV. The Blackwater River originates on Canaan Mountain and then passes through several noteworthy areas of West Virginia.

Never leaving Tucker County, it passes through Canaan Valley, Canaan Valley State Park and Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge.

After picking up some tributaries along the way it flows toward Davis, WV and Little Canaan Wildlife Management Area.

Blackwater River WV

It drops over the Blackwater Falls, West Virginia’s tallest waterfall, and courses through Blackwater Falls State Park. After dropping 62 feet, it follows an 8 mile stretch of class IV and V rapids is a popular destination for whitewater rafters.

After 32 miles, the Blackwater River finally ends its course by joining the Dry Fork at Hendricks, WV.

Blackwater rivers get their name from the leeching of tannins from nearby vegetation that falls into the water. Eastern Hemlock and Red Spruce needles are the primary contributors to this coloration.

Near West Virginia’s Blackwater River, however, the abundance of mountain laurel and rhododendron also contribute. Anyone that has spent time in the area is familiar with the dense thickets of mountain laurel and rhododendron covering the landscape.

Blackwater River Fishing WV

Blackwater River WV Fishing

The Blackwater River in Tucker County is a part of the WV DNR’s Trout stocking schedule. Here, trout are stocked once in January, twice in February and once each week March thru May, twice in October along the 32 mile length of the river.

In 2023, the Blackwater River was one of 62 locations chosen to be part of the West Virginia Gold Rush. 50,000 Golden Rainbow Trout, a unique species of trout originating from WV, were released over the course of 12 days.

Aside from the Gold Rush, there are many other chances to reel one in. Anglers who are fishing Blackwater River can expect to catch:

  • Brown Trout
  • Rainbow Trout
  • Brook Trout
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Bluegill

As you can see above, there are many prospects to fish the Blackwater River in Tucker County. There is a handicap accessible pier located on Timberline Road and even multiple opportunities to fish West Virginia’s Blackwater River from a kayak.

Another location worth mentioning is located within Blackwater Falls State Park. Here you will find the start of the Blackwater River Catch and Release area. As the name suggests, the fish go back in the water. This stretch continues through the Blackwater Canyon.

Along the park road is easy to access trail from the bridge down to the river bank. It’s a nice feature for anyone staying inside Blackwater Falls State Park. This is a nice secluded spot in the off season but may get a bit crowded when the park is full of visitors.

Blackwater River WV fly fishing

Remember, anyone over the age of 15 who wants to fish in West Virginia must have a valid West Virginia fishing license.

Kayaking Blackwater River WV

If you are planning to kayak the Blackwater River or fish from your kayak, head to Little Canaan Wildlife Management Area. It is a 3,168 acre WMA located just east of Davis, WV. To access Little Canaan, travel down Camp 70 Road.

Three miles of the Blackwater River flow through Little Canaan WMA. Along the way there are several designated ramps to launch your kayak. Pull off of Camp 70 Road and get paddling. The slow flow makes for a great spot to kayak.

Blackwater River WV Fishing
The Blackwater River in WV as seen from Little Canaan Wildlife Management Area.

There are lots of unique things to do in Davis, WV both indoors and outdoors. Fishing the Blackwater River is just one of them. Plan a trip, gear up and head to Tucker County.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *