Coonskin Branch Falls

  • Location: Near Mink Shoals, WV (Coonskin Park in Kanawha County)
  • Elevation: 737 feet
  • Coordinates: 38.383617, -81.576783 / (38°23’01.0″N 81°34’36.4″W)
  • Waterway: Coonskin Branch
  • Height: Around 15 feet

As many times as I have been to Coonskin Park in Kanawha County, there are very few times I’ve seen this waterfall roaring. However, after a heavy rain, it comes to life as it stumbles over a cave. I’ll be back at this spot soon to get a better photo of it after a heavy rain.

This waterfall is located on an enjoyable hike at Coonskin Park, and you can knock this waterfall out, along with the Coonskin Grotto as well. This is also an area where I do a lot of mushroom looking, so there’s plenty to do here.

To access Coonskin Branch Falls, you’ll need to get to the Oak Trail at Coonskin. To get there, take Exit 1 (Mink Shoals) off of Interstate 79 in Kanawha County and hop north on US-119 for 0.8 miles to the Coonskin Park entrance bridge on the right.

Once over the bridge, continue on the pavement that takes you through Coonskin Park. You will see the golf course, a skateboard park, and Herscher Lake on your right before a sharp turn to your left. Continue on the pavement and go past the tennis courts on your right, and you’ll begin to go up a hill. Right as you crest the hill, you’ll see a parking lot beside a road that juts to the left straight up a mountain. That’s where you should park. Directly across from the road going up the mountain, you will see the head of the trail, marked with a beautiful stone structure that says “Alice Knight Memorial Trail.” Your hiking begins!

You’ll follow this trail for a few hundred feet, where you will encounter a bridge. At the bridge, you will want to cross the creek and turn left to follow the creek upstream. You’ll essentially be paralleling the creek from the opposite side of the Coonskin Grotto on the Alice Knight Memorial Trail. After about another 1/3 of a mile, you’ll stumble up to it. It’s a good spot to take a break from hiking. From there, you can either continue on Oak Trail, which will get very steep shortly, or turn around and head back where you came, or continue the opposite way on the Oak Trail, where you’ll end up on the Cougar Trail (the trail becomes Hemlock Trail before merging with Cougar Trail). There’s plenty of hiking over at Coonskin!

Coonskin Branch Falls Location

I do plan on being back at this spot soon, so as soon as a heavy rain occurs, I’ll be sure to get some new photos for you all.

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