The West Virginia University Research Forest is located 10 miles northeast of Morgantown and encompasses an area of 7,600 acres. It is managed by the WVU Division of Forestry and Natural Resources under terms of a 100-year lease from the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. The forest cover consists of 60 to 80-year-old stands of mixed oak and mesophytic hardwood types. There is a limited area of conifer plantations on the forest. Owing to its proximity to campus, faculty and students use the research forest for classes and research. Many of the labs for required Forestry and Forest Management courses are conducted at the University Research Forest.
The direct responsibility for day-to-day operations on the research forest is in the hands of the Forest Manager who reports to the Division Director. The University Research Forest includes the Forest Manager’s residence, office, vehicle, and equipment garages, as well as a maintenance shop, tool storage building, and a building to house the sawmills. The Forest Planning and Coordinating Committee, composed of faculty from each of the Division’s program areas, initiates policy governing the projects carried out on the forest.
The Westvaco Natural Resources Center serves as a site for training sessions, classes, conferences, and meetings. The facility is 5,000 square feet with an attached 1,600 square foot covered pavilion. It houses the Forest Manager’s office and an apartment for visiting instructors. The Westvaco Natural Resources Center is managed by a Program Coordinator whose office is located in Percival Hall.