Seneca Rocks is an extremely popular climbing area featured in our Dolly Sods-Seneca Rocks Lizard Map. Hundreds of climbing routes are available for serious climbers who want to scale rocks, while one well maintained hiking trail leads hikers towards a platform near the top of these cliffs. Notice the platform on the left side of the picture below. This is our destination today:
Cell service is not often available in this part of the country, so pack your Lizard Map to find the parking area for Seneca Rocks. Hikers can either park at the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center, or at the adjacent picnic area.
A nice walking bridge spans North Branch South Fork Potomac River near the beginning of this hike. Be sure to stop on the bridge and enjoy the great views both up and down stream.
The trail is wide, with plenty of gravel for most of the 1.5 mile climb. Although the terrain is steep, modern stairways and switchbacks help to make the effort easier for hikers.
Interpretive media signs can also be found along the trail. Besides being informative, these signs offer a good excuse for hikers who need to stop for a breather during the climb!
After about 1.5 miles the trail ends at a viewing platform. The views are excellent during clear weather, but far less impressive on rainy days...but it was worth the effort anyway. It's just a great place to be! This platform is adjacent to the climbing rocks, which are open for experienced climbers with the proper gear. Be sure to know what you're doing before scrambling around in the nearby rock outcrops because they are not trails...they are access to sheer walls for rock climbing.
This trail is an out-and back, so when you are ready simply turn around and retrace your route back down to the trailhead.
Be sure to bring a good camera or binoculars so you can spot climbers ascending the rock walls!