West Virginia DNR Offers Reduced Rates to Turkey Hunters

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With fall turkey hunting season approaching in West Virginia, Bluestone State Park in Summers County has "called up" reduced rental cabin rates. Bluestone is offering a reduced mid-week cabin rate late October through mid-November for hunting at nearby Bluestone Wildlife Management Area or for individuals looking to get away before the holidays.

Park Superintendent Brett McMillion recognizes that hunters may not realize how close Bluestone Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is to the state park's vacation rental cabins. "The WMA is another opportunity to enjoy outdoor adventure," McMillion explains. Bluestone WMA is accessible by several major highways. Take exit 139 (Sandstone/Hinton) off I-64 to WV 20 south and drive 15 miles. From the I-77 south, take the Athens Road Exit (exit 14) to WV 20 north, and travel 22 miles. Wildlife Management Area maps are available at Bluestone State Park office.

The 2008 Fall Turkey Season in Summers County is October 25 to November 1. In Monroe County the season extends to November 22. There is no fall turkey season in Mercer County. The 18,019 acre Bluestone Wildlife Management area is located over a three-county area that includes Summers, Mercer and Monroe counties. The topography ranges from flat bottomlands to steep mountains. The forest is predominantly oak-hickory and provides some of the eastern United States' best hunting opportunities for deer, squirrel, raccoon and wild turkey. Only one turkey of either sex may be taken during the fall hunting season with either bow or gun. Hunters are subject to hunting rules and regulations. McMillion notes that the mast appears to be abundant and a good indicator of good fall hunting season in his region.

Although hunting is prohibited on state parks, some areas with overnight accommodations are close enough to public lands (WMAs) to provide a sport venue for guests who hunt as an outdoor activity. Like West Virginia state forests, Bluestone WMA fills an outdoor niche for sportsmen and women. Hunting information is available online at www.wvdnr.gov or by contacting Division of Natural Resources District Offices.

Cabin styles at nearby Bluestone State Park vary from two-, four- and six-person to modern four- bedroom accessible cabins. Cabins are fully equipped for housekeeping, linens provided, and appeal to individuals looking for "a whole lot of nothing to do but relax."

"Cabins at Bluestone have always been popular with family reunions in the summer and special interest groups such as ski clubs, church retreats and Red Hat Getaways in other times of the year," McMillion says. "Bluestone WMA and our cabins here at Bluestone State Park are also a good option for hunters."

Bluestone's offer is a 30 percent discount for mid-week rentals of three or more nights from October 25 through November 13. "Our mid-week rates are very reasonable regardless of any discounts," McMillion says. "We all evaluate how we spend money and make decisions about what we can or can't do. Staying at Bluestone mid-week at good rental rate gives hunters, or anyone who can visit mid-week, an option to enjoy fall turkey hunting at the wildlife management area, or just to kick back and relax at Bluestone in October and November." Guests do not have to be hunters to take advantage of the mid-week offer.

When visiting, Bluestone cabin guests may use the indoor pool facilities at nearby Pipestem Resort. "It's a unique relationship to have two state parks close enough together to share amenities with guests," says McMillion. "Pipestem is nine miles from Bluestone State Park and it's about 30 minutes to Bluestone Wildlife Management Area."

Located near Hinton, W.Va., Bluestone State Park cabins are open year-round. Bluestone posts cabin rental discounts and package throughout the year online at www.bluestonesp.com

For more information about cabin rentals at Bluestone or other area events and packages, call 1-800 CALL WVA or go online at www.wvstateparks.com