Allegheny Trail started in a parking lot

The idea behind the creation of West Virginia’s longest footpath – the 330-mile-long Allegheny Trail – can be traced to a late-night conversation in a Charleston parking lot.

“Sometime in about 1972, I was attending an Izaak Walton League meeting in Charleston, where I was living at the time, when I met Bob Tabor, who had recently moved here from Virginia, where he had been a member of the Appalachian Trail Club,” said Nick Lozano, who now lives in Huntington.

“After the meeting, we spent two hours in the parking lot of the old United Fuels building, talking about trails,” Lozano recalled. “My dream was to give West Virginia a place where citizens would enjoy the experience of a long-distance hiking trail without leaving the state. Bob’s dream was to establish a Southern West Virginia connection to the Appalachian Trail.”

Tabor figured the best way to connect with the Appalachian Trail was to build a trail in Monroe County up the west side of Peters Mountain, where the iconic long-distance trail follows its crest — also the Virginia-West Virginia border — for 12 miles.

“I said, ‘How about starting another trail heading north from the point where the Appalachian Trail veers off the mountain and into Virginia?'” Tabor recalled. “Bob said, ‘That’s a good idea!’ and we started working on the Allegheny Trail from that point on.”

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