Spruce Knob – Riverton, West Virginia - Atlas Obscura

Spruce Knob

Riverton, West Virginia

Near-constant high winds deform the trees on Spruce Knob, the highest point in West Virginia at 4,683 feet above sea level. 


Well south of the Mason-Dixon Line, Spruce Knob is covered by a boreal forest.

In winter, over 180 inches of snow on average cover the mountaintop and makes nearby roads impassable from late autumn through spring. The unrelenting winds leave the spruce trees with branches only on their east sides. In botany, this is called flagging.

West Virginia Forest Road 104 runs up the mountain to a parking lot with picnic (and rustic restroom) facilities, and it’s a quick walk to the observation tower at the summit for a wide view of the surrounding Allegheny Mountains.  There is also a short (.5 mile) gravel nature walk around the summit, beginning and ending at the parking lot.

Know Before You Go

In the area there are multiple road signs directing you to Spruce Knob. From Seneca Rocks, WV, go south on US Route 33. Past the town of Riverton, turn right on Briery Gap Road, then follow it to Forest Road 112. Turn left and follow 112 to Forest Road 104. Follow 104 to the summit parking lot. There are no fees/charges for any aspect of this visit.

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