Chained Rock – Pineville, Kentucky - Atlas Obscura

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Chained Rock

Pineville, Kentucky

This boulder stays on its mountain thanks to a huge chain and on the map due to local legend. 


Chained Rock is a massive boulder that looms over Pineville, Kentucky, threatening to roll down Pine Mountain, destroying the whole town, were it not for the massive chain tethering it to the mountain.

While the story of the chained rock is compelling, it was actually created by Pineville locals who were looking to create a tourist attraction near their small town. Thus in the 1930s the town installed the huge, 101-foot length of heavy-duty chain, linking one end to a colossal boulder on Pine Mountain and attaching the other end to the mountain itself. The rock is still a popular tourist attraction and even has its own informational plaque for visitors.

Know Before You Go

Pine Mountain State Resort is located south of Pineville, KY on US 25E and 10 miles north of Middlesboro, KY. The park is 13 miles north of the Cumberland Gap Tunnel. From I-75 South or North, take exit 29 at Corbin onto US 25E, then travel south on 25E, approximately 34 miles to Pineville, KY. Continuing on 25E south, the park entrances that are located about 1.5 miles south of Pineville. Buses and larger vehicles should use the south entrance, just past Wasioto Winds Golf Course. The Herndon J. Evans lodge is located 4.5 miles from the official park entrance; park signs mark the route.

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