Cass Loop
Virtual Ride

The Mileage and Ride Time (RT) figures were taken from my bike computer. Ride Time is just the time actually moving. Your total trip time will be higher. There are two photos with the each "Mile and RT" listing. Usually the first photo is the view up the trail and the second is the view looking back. Two views for the price of one.

Click on photo to enlarge

Mile: 0   RT 0:00
The bike ride begins at the entrance of
the Whittaker Campground
Since this loop takes several hours to
complete I always stay there the night
before so I can get an early start.
Turn left onto Gum Road.
Mile: 0.3
First Cass Scenic Railroad crossing.
There will be more of these later in the trip.
More info on the railroad HERE.
Roadside Art on Gum Road
Mile:1    RT 0:09 
Gum Road
Mile: 1.6   
Gum Road ends. Turn left onto Back
Mountain Road.
Mile:2    RT 0:19  
Back Mountain Road
Mile:3    RT 0:25    
Back Mountain Road
Mile:4    RT 0:32    
Back Mountain Road
Wanless Cemetery
This is the view directly across the
the road from the cemetery. You are looking
up at the observation platform at the
Bald Knob picnic area. The second photo is a
zoomed view of the platform.
To see what the cemetery looks like from the
observation platform click HERE.
Local dog patrol.
There are no lease laws so be warned that
you might have a barking dog come at you.
They were all bark, no bite.
Mile:5    RT 0:39     
Back Mountain Road
This is a farm at mile 5 with the view looking
again back up at the observation platform.
To see what the farm looks like from the
observation platform click HERE.
Mile:6    RT 0:45 
Back Mountain Road
Turn Back Mountain Road
onto Forest Road 235.
In the second photo on the right side of the
of the road is a small sign that reads "235".
This will be the only Forest Road sign on the
entire bike loop.
Mile:7    RT 1:02 
Forest Road 235
First of three hairpin turns on this section
of Forest Road 235.
Mile:8    RT 1:18 
Forest Road 235
Still climbing.
Forest Road 235
Second turn.
Mile:9    RT 1:35 
Forest Road 235
Third and last hairpin turn.
The road suddenly flattens out. There is a parking area here used by
hunters and hikers. Forest Road 235 continues from here across the mountain
to Cheat Bridge. We are going to leave FR 235 and get on Forest Road 267.
In the picture below FR 235 comes up from the right and leaves right of
center. FR 267 begins on the left side behind the gate.
Mile:10   RT 1:52 
Forest Road 267
There were blackberries all along
this section of Forest Road 267.
At this altitude they don't ripen
until late August.
Easy pickin's.
Mile:11   RT 2:03 
Forest Road 267
Mile:12   RT 2:14 
Forest Road 267
Forest Road 267, Forest Road 267B
and Cass Railroad intersection

Directly ahead is where Forest Road 267
crosses the Cass Railroad track. We'll
come back to this point later but first
is a trip to Bald Knob.
From this point look left....
.... and see the start of Forest Road
267B. The second photo is a closeup of
one a two signs posted at the
intersection. They have the Snowshoe
logo at the top but this is part of
Cass Railroad State Park.
Head on up Forest Road 267B.
Map of the Bald Knob area
Mile:13   RT 2:27 
Forest Road 267B
The road runs alongside the railroad
tracks it's entire length. They will
both end at the Bald Knob picnic area.
This is a spring fed water tank used by
the Cass steam locomotives to refill
on their trip up the mountain.
There is a slight oil sheen on top of
the water so I wouldn't drink from it
but it is plenty cold so a splash will
cool you down on a hot day.
Crossing for the path to Bald Knob.
Cross the tracks and head 0.5 mile up
the path to reach Bald Knob.
Path to Bald Knob.
This is the view just before you reach
the top of Bald Knob. You can just see
the Wilderness Cabin and the fire tower.
Bald Knob Wilderness Cabin
You can rent this cabin by the night.
The train brings you up the mountain
and drops you off at the crossing. You
catch the train to go back down the
mountain when you're done. Cabin
facilities are rustic.
Rental details available HERE
Bald Knob fire tower
This thing has seen better days. All the
lower steps have been removed.
Bald Knob is offically considered the
second highest point in the state.
Snowshoe is now claiming to be higher.
Mile:14   RT 2:42 
Path back down from Bald Knob.
Back at railroad crossing
Looking right up the tracks you can see
Forest Road 267B to the left of the
tracks. Get back on Forest Road 267B
and head towards the picnic
The "Flag Stop" is used to stop the
train if you stayed at the cabin.
Bald Knob Observation Platform
and Picnic Area

Forest Road 267B ends here.
The view from Bald Knob Overlook.
In the middle of the overlook photo you can
see a small white shape in the distance. It
is the top of the G.B.T. at the Greenbank
National Radio Astronomy Observatory .
This is the world's largest fully
steerable single aperture antenna.
Here's a closer photo of it.
View looking from the observation platform back at the picnic area.
On the far right you will see a caboose. You can rent the caboose by the night.
The train will bring you and the caboose up the mountain and you stay as long as you
like. The train comes up and takes you and the caboose back on it's regular run.
More info on caboose rentals can be found here.
If you're at the overlook at the right
time you'll be able to hear the train
coming up the mountain. Being coal
fired the locomotive produces a lot of
smoke going uphill.
This is a Shay Locomotive.
There were designed for steep and windy
mountain railroads. If you look closely
at the wheels on the engine you can see
the gearing. This engine was built in
1923. One engine in use at Cass is over
100 years old.
Mile:15   RT 2:52  
Forest Road 267B
Heading back the way we came.

The ride isn't over yet. To continue click
On to Cheat Mountain. Miles 16 to 33.

Cass - Bald Knob - Snowshoe Loop

Fun Places To Bike In West Virginia
All information is presented without any assurance of accuracy. Use at your own risk.
Distance measurements are approximate.
All photos © 2008 J. Watson. All rights reserved.