BETA PHOTO: Major Seneca features to aid in locating routes
Located in the Monongahela National Forest, Seneca Rocks is best known for multi-pitch trad climbs and stiff old-school ratings. The rock is formed from white Tuscarora quartzite, which feels much like sandstone. Bring your helmet since some of the rock can be loose at times. Many moderate routes exist on Senca Rocks, and the wildly exposed summit pinnacle can be obtained by several 5.2-5.5 routes. This makes Seneca a popular destination for trad climbing on the East coast.
Camping can be had at either the Seneca Shadows campground (1 mile east of Senca Rocks on RT 33), or Yokum's Princess Snowbird campground in the town of Seneca Rocks.
Gear and guides can be found at the Gendarme and Seneca Rocks Climbing School or at Seneca Rocks Mountain Guides. Food and beer may be purchased at Harper's Country Store or Yokum's, both located in the town of Seneca Rocks. The Front Porch restaurant, located above Harper's Country Store serves pizza, sandwiches and salads. The restaurant does not serve beer, but you may purchase beer in the store below and bring it upstairs to drink with your meal.
Seneca Rocks is located at the intersection of Route 33 and 55, east of Elkins, WV.
Browse More Classics in Seneca Rocks
Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Seneca Rocks:
Featured Route For Seneca Rocks
Bring on the Nubiles
5.9+ PG13 WV
: Seneca Rocks
: South Peak - West Face
Bring on the Nubiles is an awesomely exposed arete climb. It is best approached via the first pitch of West Pole, but it does have it's own first pitch which is quite run out. P1: For this pitch begin just left of the tree at the start of West Pole and head up just right of the arete to a belay stance. P2: Get ready! Climb straight up on thin cracks to a stance on a pedestal. From here reach up to a good horizontal and wander up near the arete to the top. Gear is sporadic - take what you c...[more] Browse More Classics in WV
BETA PHOTO: The West Face of Seneca Rocks
Which way down?
BETA PHOTO: Oh, over there...
Gotta love Seneca
Spectacular view from the top.
BETA PHOTO: The town of Seneca Rocks
Seneca, West Face. October '07.
Seneca Creek in evening fall colors.
Used car dealership on the east side of Seneca.
Inscription carved on the summit block:
Routefinding at Seneca can be a challenge, especia...
This guy lived in the summit register for a few ye...
Seneca Rocks as seen on foggy fall day.
View from behind (east of) Seneca Rocks on North F...
A photo of the Gendarme before it fell.
Urtiscay Unyanray learns the story of Pollux
The saint, easing up Castor
Climbers on the twin cracks of Castor and Pollux
A view of the Southern Pillar from the top of the ...
Great shot of the rocks from the parking lot.Photo...
View of the South End and the Cave as seen from th...
Leading on the southpeak-east face.
A view of Princess Snowbird Campground from the Gu...
Top of Green Wall 5.7
BETA PHOTO: West side of North and South Peaks.
View taken from the East side of Seneca
Wild flowers (weeds?) in full spring bloom.
Seneca Rocks, WV
West Face from Seneca Shadows
Seneca Rocks from the meadow at Seneca Shadows on ...
Fish eye from the summit of the South Peak
Terrible photo however you can somewhat gauge the ...
From the south side, picture taken from the southe...
|By Brian Adzima|
Feb 8, 2007
Steep, sandbagged, and occasionally scary. What's not to like?
|By Ladd Raine|
From: Plymouth, NH
May 3, 2007
For folks heading down to Seneca for the first time:
Don't trust pitons-many were placed during WWII as training and they aren't great placements.
Lots of loose rock!
Wear your helmet.
Be in awe of the voluteers that built The Stairmaster!
|By Mark Cushman|
From: Cumming, GA
May 3, 2007
About pitons - there are a few new ones here and there, you can tell they are new because the eyes are not rusting off them and aren't completely part of the rock. For example there is a very helpful newer piton on Conn's East at the crux of the second pitch. I'm pretty sure this was a replacement for an old one that was unsafe to clip, however many people clipped it anyway.
|By Mark Cushman|
From: Cumming, GA
Jun 14, 2007
The 4-U Restaurant is a decent place to get breakfast when climbing at Seneca. The prices are cheap and it's only a few miles south of Seneca Rocks on Route 33.
|By John Kelbel|
From: Eldersburg, Maryland
Feb 17, 2010
A few interesting rules from the National Forest about the Seneca Rocks area. Below is just an abbreviated list from the link at the bottom.
There is No parking on Roy Gap Road.
Bivouacking is only allowed fifty 50 above base of rocks and only on the east face.
No other camping is allowed in the Seneca area except for the established campground.
No Alcoholic, No Fires, No Horses, No Bicycles on any trails.
Just to be clear this only pertains to the small portion of the National forest land considered as the Seneca Rocks Area, see the link for more details, this is where the information came from.
Have fun it's an amazing place.
|By Mike Anderson|
From: Dayton, OH
Oct 19, 2010
Gumbies swarm to this place (multi-star 5.3s are hard to come by), so bring your patience and try not to be too cynical.
|By Gini Kramer|
Sep 5, 2011
A few things of note...
The 4-U motel & restaurant is closed.
Valley View Restaurant a little further south on Rte. 33 does a decent breakfast.
Hellbender up in Davis serves burritos the size of your head.
Avoid the older section of Yokum's Motel at all costs. Appalachia Cabins, just north of Seneca Rocks, has a row of motel rooms that are much nicer (complete with micro wave, toaster, fridge, and coffee maker) and cost the same.
When they say that the ratings on Seneca Rocks climbs are stiff, they mean it!
|By David Cooper|
From: Annapolis, MD
Jun 9, 2012
Classic Seven Tour.
After the Hundred Club this is the next best way to spend a long day at Seneca. Best on a weekday or less crowded weekend.
My favorite tour, in order of routes... SJM, Ecstasy, Dufty's, Prune, Crispy Critter, T Jam, West Pole, Pleasant O, Green Wall, Soler, Rox Salt.
Start at sunrise and you should be walking out in time for dinner.
A fantastic way to shake it up a bit if you've been looking for a new Seneca adventure.
|By Ted Bjorklund|
Oct 28, 2012
Left a pair of la sportiva miuras near the cave entrance...pretty new, size 40. Please send me a message if you found them, or are going there soon.
|By Cody Bradford|
From: Boone, NC
Nov 13, 2012
Cell phones do not work at Seneca. Might as well keep it at home.
Not the best place to come if you are just beginning in the traditional game. Hard sandbags, tenuous rock, difficult route finding, the list goes on. Hire a guide.
That being said, Seneca is a delightful slice of humble pie and a great alpine training ground during winter months.