Pioneers of the Iconic Cheat River

In the rugged Allegheny Mountains of West Virginia, an equally rugged river flows north for almost 162 miles. Forming at the confluence of five pristine mountain streams, it twists and turns, tumbling through valleys and canyons.

Meet the Cheat.

Some say that the Cheat River embodies the story of Appalachia—the rise and fall of industry, a biblical flood, and a legacy of environmental catastrophe. But like Appalachia, it has survived the turmoil, somehow remaining wild and scenic, and lovingly embraced by a tight-knit cast of thick-skinned characters who are determined to right its wrongs.

Read: Meet Jim Snyder and Charlie Walbridge: Pioneers of the Iconic Cheat River