The Official Website of the State of West Virginia

West Virginia Week in Review - Smoke Hole Caverns


Smoke Hole Caverns is located along State Route 28/55 about eight miles west of Petersburg in Grant County, at the western end of the North Fork Mountain water gap. The cave was opened for tours on May 30, 1940, and is one of four commercial caves in West Virginia. Smoke Hole Caverns is probably the most-visited cave in the state. The tour covers about 500 feet of the main passage; the total surveyed length is nearly 1,600 feet.
Smoke Hole Caverns developed geologically along bedding planes that have been tilted into a vertical position by the earth’s tectonic movements. The cave follows a generally straight passage, tending north with a small stream flowing along the east side of the passage. The passage height reaches more than 100 feet above the floor. The cave is beautifully decorated with stalactites hanging in rows along the ceiling bedding planes. Numerous calcite flowstone draperies line the walls. The main room is called the ‘‘Room of a Million Stalactites.’’

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