ATV lodgings struggle to meet demand in Mercer
BRAMWELL, W.Va. -- While work on new ATV lodgings is underway in Mercer County, it still isn't enough to meet the growing demand for rooms.
ATV enthusiasts from across the nation have ridden the Pocahontas Trail since it opened in May 2012. The rail is a new branch of the Hatfield-McCoy Trail.
Apartments, homes and even a former post office have been converted into ATV lodgings to meet the demand for accommodations.
A 50-cottage resort is expected to open by next spring, and another entrepreneur is creating ATV lodging in downtown Pocahontas, Va.
Jeff Lusk, director of the Hatfield-McCoy Trail Authority, told the Bluefield Daily Telegraph that even with current construction, more lodging is needed.
Lusk said every time new beds become available, trail pass sales increase, and the influx of new riders quickly exceeds the lodging space. He said more lodging is critical to the success of the trail.
For example, this year has seen a 13 percent increase in permit sales, but there has not been a 13 percent increase in local lodging to match it, Lusk said.
"The velocity of the opening of these places is not keeping up with the demand," Lusk said. "We believe there is potential for many, many more lodging providers and hundreds of more beds."