Black Mountain is the highest mountain peak in the state of Kentucky, with an elevation of 4,149ft (1,261m).  The summit is located in Harlan County, Kentucky near the Virginia border, just above the towns of Lynch, Kentucky and Appalachia, Virginia.  On a clear day the Great Smoky Mountains on the Tennessee and North Carolina border are clearly visible.

Black Mountain’s history directly related to the coal mining of the surrounding area. Lynch, Kentucky, was once one of the largest coal mining towns in the nation. In 1998, Jericol Mining, Inc., petitioned to use mountaintop removal methods in the area of Black Mountain. Though the summit itself was not directly threatened, many people protested this action due to the peak’s status as the state’s highest point. In 1999, Kentucky purchased mineral and timber rights to the summit and prevented future large scale mining. Coal companies have alleged that mined coal veins converge beneath the summit of Black Mountain and that the summit is prone to collapse.