Seneca Rocks!

Seneca Rocks!

Preface: Have John Denver’s song “Take Me Home, Country Roads” running through your head.

Seneca Rocks is an unincorporated town in West Virginia. It is in the Allegheny Mountains and is beautiful! Not far from Virginia, the mountains are steep and covered with mostly deciduous trees (trees with leaves). There are exceptions though as Spruce Knob, highest point in West Virginia is topped with spruce trees.

Spruce Knob south viewSpruce Knob panoramic to the south

Our campground is in the Monongamelia National Forest near the Cheat Mountains. Seneca Shadows is in a multiuse recreational area with swimming, rock climbing, and hiking as the main draw. Peaceful and secluded, don’t expect cell coverage. West Virginia is notorious for lack of coverage. But hey! You don’t come here to talk on the phone or play internet games.

Seneca Rock, Campground

Seneca Shadows CG is managed by Fred and Deborah Morgan. There are also 2 camphost. Pleasant and friendly, they are workers. We found the campground immaculate. There are restrooms (very clean) with showers free for the guest. Day use people are charged $5.00. Campsites are large with a level pad (tenting) and paved pad (RV’s). Some sites are boondocking-only and a select few have electricity (both 30 & 50 amp). A dump station is nearby for when you leave. Like most National use lands (BLM, National Parks, National Forest, COE, etc), they honor senior, military, and other discount cards. This makes most federal lands a bargain!

Being nestled in the mountains, sunrise comes late in these parts. Being an early riser, as soon as it’s visible, I go for a walk. The only internet (and hot coffee) is available at Yokums, a local variety store with about a 2-mile drive. If you are like me and prefer hiking, there is a trail through the woods and is only a third of a mile. It’s an easy walk to the store …but. Coming back will exercise your legs as it is all up hill.

Harpers General Store and Seneca Motor Company

Our 2nd day here saw us drive the 12 miles to Spruce Mountain, better known as Spruce Knob. It is a rounded mountaintop that is over 4800 feet above sea level. It is the highest point in West Virginia. The summit (you can drive to it) affords views in all directions. To the west, it looks out over the Allegheny plateau and the Cheat Mountain range. To the south you will see the Back Creek Mountains. But the most spectacular view is to the east. Here, you see Shenandoah Mountain and the state of Virginia. As you might guess, this area is steeped in early American history. Make sure you check out both the geology and history of this beautiful part of America.

The views from the top of Spruce Knob are fantastic! West, and you looked at the Allegheny Plateau and to the east, you stared at Shenandoah Mountains

This last paragraph is a cautionary tale. Roads in these parts are well maintained but can be narrow. I clipped a roadsign in Petersburg. My camper is not huge but when you meet an 18 wheeler coming the other way, I pay attention. And the beauty can be distracting. Finally, the road up to Spruce Knob is narrow with steep drop-offs and no guardrails. Drive slowly and pay attention.

The view towards Shenandoah Mountains from Spruce Knob

 

Deb and I hiked the mile and half up to the platform on Seneca Rock

If you look closely in the above (left) picture and you can see the platform we were on

Next adventure; “Driving through the South.”

STAY TUNED! More “tales from the campah”!

For more reading pleasure: see my articles in Country Courier, Franklin Focus, and Western Maine Foothills.

Please comment (and share to facebook, twitter, instagram, other social media) (campahedu@gmail.com)

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