Camping in West Virginia
4. Day Two: Seneca Rocks and Spruce Knob
After a disappointing night at Dolly Sods trying to capture the Milky Way, Bodie, Mike and I woke up early to attempt to capture a beautiful sunrise. The three of us hiked and boulder-hopped to the top of the mountain where we waited for the sun to join us. The three of us got to enjoy the beautiful sunrise in the West Virginia mountains.
After spending some time on the top of Dolly Sods, we returned to camp and ate a quick bite before we explored more of the Bear Rocks Trail. We hiked about 1 and 1/2 miles to a creek before turning around and hiking back to camp. Once we returned, we broke camp and drove to our next stop: Seneca Rocks.
Seneca Rocks is a jagged tuscarora quartzite that draws hikers and rock climbers from all over the county to ascend its steep rock faces. The hike to the top was a great switch back hike, and once at the top, we had a great 360 degree view of the entire valley. Bodie had a great time scrambling up some of the rocks leading to the top. Once it got too steep and too dangerous for him to be out of the backpack, he got to enjoy the ride the rest of the way to the top. Once on the rocks, there is a narrow area path that allows someone to traverse from the top of one side to the other side of the rock formation. One point, the rocks got so narrow that I was not able to make it through with Bodie on my back. After enjoying the view, we hiked back down to the bottom where Mike took us to a small cave. Bodie once again had a great time climbing on all of the rocks before we decided to head to our final stop of the day: Spruce Knob.
Spruce Knob is one of the darkest points on the East Coast, and we were hoping that we would get clear skies to capture the Milky Way. We made camp and went down to the lake to scout a location to best set up our cameras. After hiking almost half way around the lake, we found our location. After another disappointing sunset, things were shaping up for a very clear night. We started shooting around 9:15pm and ended just after midnight. During the night, we did in fact have very clear skies and a very vibrant Milky Way.
Stay tuned for day three of our camping adventure, where we were once again blessed with very clear vibrant skies and finding a cave from which to shoot.