Being Home in Keyser
Downtown Keyser is admittedly not as vibrant as other central town hubs, but the spokes around Keyser are strong with life. Population booms and drops are common in West Virginia, so empty storefronts should not deter you from seeing the beauty all-around. Enter the locally-owned establishments in and near town, and explore the stimulating state forests nearby. See if you appreciate some of these places:
Queens Point Coffee – Downtown. Sip a coffee and eat a sandwich, like a jalapeño grilled cheese. The North Branch Craft Pub serves incredible beverage options. The owner of the place is friendly, and offers endless guidance on local trails, waterways - drop-offs and pick-ups, including contacts who can shuttle.
Marla’s Main St Bakery – Downtown. If I lived in Keyser, I would frequent Marla’s for their selection of donuts, scones, cookies, cakes, and other bakes. Open Tuesday 8 a.m. - 12 p.m., Thursday and Friday 8 a.m. - 2 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Near RHI student housing:
- Port West Restaurant – 7-minute drive south – Pizza, subs, and wings.
- Duckie’s Bar and Grill – 10-minute drive west – Americana restaurant.
- Hoovers Bar and Grill – 13-minute drive south – “Where Good Times and Great Music Come Together.”
- Castiglia’s Italian Eatery – 4-minute drive south – Eat-in or take-out known for large portions.
- El Jinete Mexican Restaurant – 10-minute drive south – Self-proclaimed world-class margaritas.
- Long Spring Chinese Restaurant – 3-minute drive west – Cash only, all you can eat.
- Indian Water Maple Company – 12-minute drive south – Maple syrup products.
- Potomac Highland Winery – 10-minute drive east of town – Call ahead at 304-788-3066; hours not listed online.
- Clancy’s Irish Pub, 5-minute drive east.
- The Indie on Main – downtown – Host a steady line-up of music, comedy, and art. Visit theindieonmain.com.
- Mineral County Driving Tour - see more on govisitmineralwv.com
- Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad - 4-hour train ride in either open-air or a covered coach. Train departs in Romney at Wappocomo Station - 35-minutes southeast of Keyser.
Annual events in Keyser include:
- Blue Dragon Boat Regatta at Shaw Beach on Jennings Randolph Lake in July.
- Knobley Tunnel Day in Carpendale, WV in late-July (35-minute drive).
- Apple Harvest Festival in early October in Burlington, WV (20-minute drive).
Keyser North Branch Stream Access – downtown – near a park with a basketball hoop and sports field.
In Westernpoint, MD (11-minutes west of Keyser), the river appears high enough to calmly kayak during drought conditions. It also looks clean enough to swim!
Drive up to Savage River State Forest (25-minutes from Keyser) for a world full of trails and overlooks. On the way, you can stock up on fishing supplies from Savage River Outfitters. Fly fishing within a 15-minute drive of Keyser will yield Rainbow and Brown trout.
At the Savage River State Forest, I tried out the Big Savage Hiking Trail, which is very challenging and not recommendable because it is hard to stay on trail.
Drive up the mountain, and you’ll see an amazing overlook pull-off.
- Consider kayaking from Westernpoint, MD to Keyser anytime of the year. You would have to coordinate your own rides (perhaps by speaking with people at Queen's Point Coffee). Otherwise, contact Savage River Outfitters for kayak or canoe rentals.
- The North Branch of the Potomac is well-regarded for whitewater and fishing. Check ahead for release dates and fishing info.
- A few times per year, there is a scheduled dam release for whitewater rafting near Keyser. Check ahead for Savage River release dates.
- Jennings Randolph Lake has hiking trails with a swimming area to boot.
- Keyser Historical Walking Trail - Sponsored by the Mineral County Genealogical Society - includes the stories of historic buildings.
- The American Discovery Trail passes within a 5-minute drive east of Keyser. There is no trailhead, but one could walk along Knobley Rd and other rural roads and trails for hundreds of miles.
- Larenim Park in Burlinton, WV, 20-minutes southeast of Keyser – more hiking.
For more info on hiking or biking trails near Keyser, check these sites out:
E-mail Gerardo Patron with feedback on your adventures in Keyser! We can post comments on this page.
The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed on this website belong solely to the author and not the author’s employer, West Virginia University. They are not intended as an endorsement or recommendation on behalf of West Virginia University of any person, organization, activity, product, or service.