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The central point of the Caperton Trail is located in Morgantown, known as the home of West Virginia University, the inspiration for a Joni Mitchell song and the birthplace of Don Knotts. Morgantown is also known for its extensive rail-trail system along the Monongahela River—one of a few American rivers that flows north—and its tributaries.
The Caperton Trail is located at the heart of the trail system, spanning the north-south length of Morgantown and Star City. The paved rail-trail, named after a former West Virginia governor, parallels the river past retail businesses, West Virginia University, industrial areas and the back decks of eateries that cater to trail users.
Heading north out of Morgantown, the trail passes through several downtown parks, including Hazel Ruby McQuain Riverfront Park, West Virginia University's Core Arboretum and the Edith Barill Riverfront Park in Star City. The Hazel Ruby McQuain Riverfront Park in Morgantown is adjacent to a restored railway station, and is a vibrant hub of local activity, with a steady stream of walkers, runners, skaters and cyclists. The park is also the western endpoint of the Deckers Creek Trail, which heads east 19 miles to Reedsville.
At the Caperton Trail's northern end in Star City, continue along the river via the connecting Mon River Trail North to the Pennsylvania state line; south of Morgantown, the Caperton Trail links to the Mon River Trail South to access Marion County and Fort Prickett's State Park. All three trails follow the same former CSX rail line.
In 2020, the Mon River Rail-Trail system became an inductee into the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame.
Park at Hazel Ruby McQuain Riverfront Park in Morgantown. To reach the park from Interstate 68 west, take exit 7 and go 0.3 mile. Turn right on Count Road 857 south and go 1 mile. Turn left on US 119 (Mileground Road/North Willey Street). Go 3 miles and turn left as US 119 becomes High Street. Go 1 mile and turn right on Moreland Street. Hazel Ruby McQuain Park is in less than a quarter mile.
In Star City, parking can be found at Edith Barill Riverfront Park. To reach the park, take State Route 7 north from downtown Morgantown (Don Knotts Blvd./University Blvd./Beechhurst Ave./Monongahela Blvd.) to Star City.
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