The high point was named for John Nelson Davis, an early settler, American Civil War veteran, surveyor and naturalist known for his studies of the mountain's flora and fauna.
Mt. Davis may be ascended by car or by a number of hiking trails. Its surrounds are noted for their patterns of unusual circular stone formed by periglacial action, and the summit features a metal observation tower with a relief map of the region.
Weather on the peak is temperate, punctuated by heavy winds, rain, and hail. Temperature extremes range from -30 to 106 °F (-34 to 35 °C), though frosts have been recorded in every month of the year. Summer conditions are generally mild and winters are characterized by moderate snowfall. Average annual precipitation ranges from 38 to 42 inches (970 to 1070 mm).