Differences in physical properties of normal and compression wood of spruce (Picea abies Karst.) were studied. The density of compression wood compared to the normal was slightly higher. The volume, radial and tangential shrinkage of compression wood with respect to the normal wood was half smaller, while shrinkage in longitudinal direction was 6x greater than that of the normal wood. Our research confirmed also a significant difference in drying characteristics of normal and compression wood. Compression wood, compared to normal secondary xylem of spruce, has slightly lower gas permeability in transverse direction, and more than 6x lower gas permeability in fiber direction. Slower drying of compression wood in hygroscopic range was also confirmed, as well as lower diffusion coefficient measured in radial direction.