Smoke Hole Caverns (SHC) is a picturesque show cave in Grant County in West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle.
SHC were opened to the public on 30 May 1940. They are located near the Smoke Hole Canyon from which the cave takes its name. They are located on WV 28 13 km west of Petersburg.
Local lore has it that the cave was utilized during Prohibition by moonshiners. There is only one entrance into the caverns which made it secure and with an ever present supply of fresh water it was a perfect place to produce moonshine. The cave also has an artesian well.
SHC is owned and operated by Jerry and Janet Hedrick.
Smoke Hole Caverns is reputed to have one of the largest ribbon stalactites in the world, unusual helicitites, a crystal cave coral pool, found in only one other cavern in the world and the second highest ceiling of any cavern in the eastern United States. However, it has been adapted significantly to make it tourist friendly, including extensive concrete walkways, the introduction of rainbow trout and aeration into the coral pool and inappropriate lighting, resulting in extensive damage to the stalactites and stalagmites.
Famous quotes containing the words caverns, smoke and/or hole:
“... the bold care of an ecstatic trull
Who rearranges with impartial feet
The silence in the caverns of a skull.”
—Allen Tate (18991979)
“O women, kneeling by your altar-rails long hence,
When songs I wove for my beloved hide the prayer,
And smoke from this dead heart drifts through the violet air
And covers away the smoke of myrrh and frankincense;
Bend down and pray for all that sin I wove in song....”
—William Butler Yeats (18651939)
“never dare entrust them to a safe
For fear they burn a hole through two-foot steel.”
—Robert Graves (18951985)