Yellow Trail to be closed temporarily starting June 21

BIG NEWS! Construction of the Claudia L. Workman Wildlife Education Center has started! With the start of construction there will be heavy equipment in and out and materials being delivered. Visitors must exercise caution when visiting the Natural Area during the construction period and some areas may not be safely accessible.

The contractor and the DNR  will do their best to maintain access to the area as much as possible, but visitors will need to exercise caution as there may be traffic disruptions and trucks and equipment moving during the day.

Please be sure to obey any cautionary signs and other directions during the construction period. YOUR PATIENCE IS APPRECIATED!


The drawing for the kayak has been postponed until later this year, depending on the resolution of the national health emergency. We apologize for the delay, but will still notify the winner as soon as the drawing can be held.


The City of Charleston has generously donated 126 tons of much-needed organic compost to help enrich the soil at the wildlife viewing area/pollinator field. Last year our volunteers planted a mix of native wildflower seed, much of which was injured by the drought that followed. Many flowers sprouted and bloomed, but in the poor soil they did not prosper.  The compost will be spread on the field as soon as weather conditions permit.  The next planting should do much better.

Meanwhile, we are very grateful to the City for their support of this exciting and beneficial project.


The Foundation’s annual membership has been cancelled due to the coronavirus-related meeting restrictions.


Thanks to the talented students and community spirited teachers at Boone Career and Technical Center, new habitat is being created for a native bird species that needs a place to live. Chimney Swifts are a beneficial part of our ecosystem because they eat lots of insects, but lack of chimneys and other suitable habitat has led to a decline in their populations.

The Foundation is collaborating with the Handlan Chapter of the Brooks Bird Club to fund construction of a Chimney Swift tower to provide a nesting/resting place for the birds. Since no one in the Foundation or the Bird Club was experienced in building anything like this, the Boone Career and Technical Center stepped up to make it happen.

The tower will be installed in a few weeks when weather permits. Chimney Swifts migrate to South America to escape our winters and return  in late March. Nesting begins in May and they fly south again in November.


The Girl Scouts of Troop #1839 have built and donated two bat houses to provide additional habitat for the local bat population. They presented the very well built bat houses to the Foundation at the September 16 meeting. Suitable habitat for bats is scarce at the Forks of Coal. Bats help control mosquito populations, a very important ecological function.

The Foundation and the Scouts collaborated on the installation of the bat houses at the wildlife viewing area near Little Coal River.

Thanks to Carol Stevens of Alum Creek who donated two additional bat houses which were installed at the opposite end of the wildlife viewing area. Our local bats will now have lots of good options for resting and roosting.


A Special Building Fund for the Claudia L. Workman Wildlife Education Center is Now Underway! Click Here to support the center by purchasing your very own personalized commemorative brick for the center and be a part of building a legacy.

Brick - Click to Purchase with Ribbon

Design Renderings for Claudia L. Workman Wildlife Education Center: Front (above) and rear (below)

Forks of Coal Rear

Click here to see full interior design rendering


Other News: 

The Forks of Coal State Natural Area Foundation gratefully accepts gifts and donations from individuals, families, groups of friends, businesses and community organizations for Forks of Coal State Natural Area. The Foundation is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, charitable organization. For more information about the park bench sponsorships contact Kim McCluskey at 304/982-2008.

Donations may be made through our website.

Click here to donate.