Munday Beach, a favorite LK River swimming and
fishing hole near the long gone village of Industry
LK River partially frozen near Elizabeth
The Little Kanawha River winds through a six counties in West Virginia, connected to an early history of settlements and commercial development when river travel prevailed.
The oil and gas industry owes much of its development in West Virginia to the Little Kanawha River.
"The river ranges through some of the most rural countryside in West Virginia," said David Sibray, publisher of West Virginia Explorer.
"Its basin has been visited by cycles of timbering and oil and gas drilling. As a result, many of the old farms and small towns retain their scenic and historical character."
The river is 169 miles long and is a tributary of the Ohio River. The entire watershed of the Little Kanawaha drains about 2,320 miles of the Allegheny Plateau.
Scott Morrison, a fish biologist with the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, said that the Little Kanawha River is a popular body of water to fish.
He said it was particularly special because one can find both trout and muskies along stretches of the river. He said it is one of the best fishing destinations in the Western region of the state.
The West Virginia DNR lists the Little Kanawha as a "premier fishing destination" for muskie. The muskie, a fish known for being elusive, it's also called the "fish of 10,000 casts."
"Though I've angled on the Little Kanawha, mostly upstream above Burnsville, I encountered the largest fish I'd ever seen, a muskie near Big Bend below Annamoriah Flats," Sibray said.
Early photo where Hughes River joins the Little Kanawha
"I was fishing for a good photo, actually, and lost my footing on the bank. I slid down into murky water and onto what I thought was a log, but it turned out to be the back of a muskie which had to be over 50 inches long. It bucked like a bronco."
The river passes through Lewis, Braxton, Gilmer, Calhoun, Wirt and Wood counties before joining the Ohio at Parkersburg. A dam near Burnsville was completed in 1976 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
See A TINY STREAMLET GIVES RISE TO LITTLE KANAWHA RIVER - Winding Path Travels 160 Miles
GLORIOUS RIVER LIFE ALONG THE LITTLE KANAWHA - A Faded History Recorded By Early Photographers