Encompassing 100,000 acres, the scenic Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area (NRA) contains the highest peak in West Virginia, some of the best rock climbing on the east coast, outstanding views and a chance to enjoy America's great outdoors. Congress established the Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area in 1965. This area is unique because it was the first NRA to be designated in the USDA Forest Service. The Forest Service was directed to manage this special area with emphasis on the outstanding opportunities for outdoor recreation, wildlife habitat, cultural resource protection and scientific study. Other resources are managed in harmony with these emphasized activities. Cattle and sheep graze much of the open area, maintaining these areas in their open state, providing visual quality and benefiting wildlife while also providing beef and wool to local communities. Parts of the National Recreation Area are leased for natural gas production; openings built for gas wells are seeded with game-supporting grasses. Some areas are leased to farmers who raise corn or hay, continuing the rural agriculture landscape that has existed here for nearly 200 years. The Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks NRA provides a wealth of products, resources and recreational opportunities. Visitor facilities include the Seneca Rocks Discovery Center, Seneca Shadows and Big Bend campground, and the Spruce Knob Tower. Many thousands of acres of unspoiled quiet land await discovery. Use your imagination to see how the area may have looked to the early settlers, as they crested the mountain ridges or moved up the river. Imagine living a self-sufficient life on a high hillside farm. Envision the Native Americans gathering food on hunting forays. You will discover not only beauty, but a sense of history in the NRA.