Cathedral State Park
consists of 133 acres, located on U.S. Route 50, in Preston County
in Northeastern, West Virginia. The region is hilly to
mountainous, but the park is located on gently sloping ground with
an elevation varying from 2460 to 2620 feet.
species of vascular flora have been catalogued; to
include 9 species of fern, 3 club moss, over 30 tree
species (17 broad leaf) and over 50 species of
park is an ancient hemlock forest of majestic
proportions, and one of the last living
commemorations of the vast virgin hemlock forest
which once flourished in the Appalachian
Trees up to 90 feet in height and 21 feet in
circumference form cloisters in the park. Throughout
the woods, eastern hemlock is the dominant species.
Branson Haas worked for the Brookside Hotel, which
stood where the park superintendent's residence now
stands. He sold the forest to the State of West
Virginia in 1942, with the provision that it remains
untouched by ax or saw. Mr. Haas served as caretaker
until his death.
On October 6,
1966, Cathedral State Park was entered in the
National Registry for Natural Historical Landmarks,
as �an area that possesses exceptional value in
illustrating the natural history of the United
It is of note this is the only
stand of mixed virgin timber left in West Virginia.
In addition, the largest hemlock tree in the state
is located within the park.
State Park is located on Rt. 50 near Aurora, WV,
approximately five miles west of Red House, MD.