Take a trip to

Spruce Knob Lake
Spruce Knob

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The first thing you have to do is to get there.  We left from Elkins so we started the journey from US Route 33 east about five miles outside of Harman.   Harman, WV is just around the bend ... way down there.
Along the 29 miles of mostly dirt roads you will find plenty of places to stop and check things out.  I have been to this rock cut when the water was roaring.  It is an impressive site even on a dry day.

If hiking is your thing, there are trails all around.  At the bottom of this page there is a link to a map showing the various trails in the area.

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Spruce Knob Lake.  Not a very large lake, but very nice, especially on a hazy, hot and humid day (like much of the summer).  There were a few dozen fisherpeople strung along the shoreline.  Either the fishing is good, or they were just enjoying the coolness.  The nicest part about the lake is that there is a path that goes all the way around.  So, when you come, be prepared to take a walk.
The US Forest Service has provided a wonderful set of walkways through the entire area.  Areas of marsh stay dry by the use of wooden walks like the one pictured here.  The flora in the entire area provides the hiker with plenty to look at.

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Being somewhat of a carpenter myself, I really liked this part of the journey.  Here the walkway goes up, around, and through a mini pine forest.   Slip off the trail, walk a hundred feet into the pines and you've got your own private spot to lay back and watch the clouds through the treetops above.
Once you break out of the pines this is the view of the lake.   Here you look North, across the lake at the dam.

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Have you ever been out walking and suddenly a fragrance appears that is most pleasing to your senses?  Well, right here was the spot for the day.   Not a clue as to what produced the aroma, but it sure did slow the walking pace down to a standstill.
You will find that the walk will stimulate your "fantasy" senses.  Every twist and turn of the path makes you want to go farther and farther.  Eventually though, you end up back at your car to continue the next nine miles to the highest point in the state, Spruce Knob.

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Nine more miles of dirt roads and you arrive at Spruce Knob.   Here is the observation tower.  A family from Ontario, Canada were visiting at the time we arrived.  Being the kind soul that I am I had them pose for a group shot telling them their picture would be on the Internet when they got back home.  Guess which picture of the 75 or so I took that day didn't come out!  Yep.  That's them on the tower.

The temperature in the valleys this day reached 95 degrees.  On the tower it was cool at almost 4900 feet above sea level.

Hot and humid produces a haze as seen in most of these pictures.  Too bad, the view is most extraordinary.  Here we are looking South West. wpe1CB.jpg (9907 bytes)

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At the base of the tower there's a path that winds its way around the top of the ridge.  The sites along the path are breathtaking.  This scene is looking North West.
Take a good look at the trees and you will soon know how harsh the weather can be up here.  You can clearly see how the branches only grow on one side of the trees.  Now, guess which way the wind blows!  Hint:  The west is to the right of the picture.

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Here is a view looking South East.  Find a rock to sit on and you'll be literally, "sitting on top of the world!"
I can't begin to describe how beautiful it was walking along this pathway.  The picture is good, but you just have to experience the sensations.   And, when you go, take a special "friend" to enjoy the day with!

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This overlook provided a great view to the East.  The second ridge over (which is difficult to make out in the picture) is the Virginia line.   Just to the left of this area (not visible here) you can clearly make out the outcroppings of rock that are so plentiful in the Seneca Rocks region.
If you ever make this journey, be sure to pack a lunch.  There are some great places all along the route to stop, rest, and enjoy scenery. 

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Map of the area "click here"