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Cranberry Report The 35864-acre Cranberry Wilderness is located in Webster and Pocahontas counties West Virginia within the Monongahela National Forest The Cranberry is certainly one of the easts greatest Wilderness Areas It includes the entire drainage area of the Middle Fork of the Williams River and the North Fork of the Cranberry River The northern and southern parts of the area are drained by the main Williams River and the South Fork of the Cranberry Rivers Terrain is typical of the Allegheny Plateau The mountains are broad and massive and dissected by deep narrow valleys Elevations range from 2400 to over 4600 feet The primary cover is mixed Appalachian hardwoods Pure red spruce stands are common at the highest elevations Wildlife in the area includes black bear white-tailed deer wild turkey grouse snowshoe hare cottontail rabbit mink bobcat fox and a diversity of birds snakes and amphibians Naturally acidic water conditions limit fish variety Streams within the area are not stocked Hunting and fishing and trapping are permitted subject to West Virginia State Hunting and Fishing Regulations However the area is totally within the Black Bear Sanctuary which is closed to all bear hunting by regulations of the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources Over 50 miles of maintained hiking trails are in the wilderness Trails are marked at intersections only with routed unpainted signs All paint blazes from pre-wilderness days has been removed The trails are not otherwise marked however the Gauley Ranger District does an excellent job of maintaing the trails and looking after the place in general The area is not heavily used so hikers must be alert as to following the beaten path Bridges are not provided at stream crossings During periods of high water or cool temperatures crossing streams may not be advisable Trails are not maintained for horses Weather - You should plan for rain or snow in winter spring and fall The area receives more than 60
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