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Humpback Rocks, MP 5.8

At the northern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Humpback Rocks is perhaps the best representation of the varied combination of natural and cultural resources anywhere along the Parkway corridor.

History

The prominent rock outcrop was a landmark guiding wagon trains over the Howardsville Turnpike in the 1840s. A portion of the historic trace still exists. This was a major route across the narrow Blue Ridge until railroads came through the mountain gaps. The view from “the rocks” is spectacular any time of the year.

Located at the northern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Humpback Rocks is an area rich in history, scenic beauty, and abundant hiking trails. Early European settlers forged a living from the native materials that flourished in the Appalachian Mountains. Hickory, chestnut, and oak trees provided nuts for food, logs for building, and tannin for curing hides, while rocks were put to use as foundations and chimneys for the houses, and in stone fences to control wandering livestock. Many self-sufficient farms sprang up in the Humpback Mountain area.

Outdoor Farm Museum

Adjacent to Humpback Rocks Visitor Center, an outdoor farm museum is surrounded by nearly 3,000 acres of predominantly forested lands. Early Parkway designers collected buildings from nearby and assembled them here in an arrangement that allows for an easy stroll along the pathway.

The farm museum consists of a single-room log cabin and a series of outbuildings that represent elements of regional architecture of the late nineteenth century. Costumed interpreters provide demonstrations, including weaving, basket making and gardening. Interpretation focuses on and emphasizes the generalized life styles of subsistence farmers.

Activities

  • Hiking trails:  Mountain Farm Trail (easy .25 mi.), a section of the Appalachian Trail (strenuous 2 mi.), Catoctin Loop Trail (moderate .3 mi.), Greenstone Trail (moderate .2 mi.)
  • 91-site picnic area at Milepost 8.5 - open seasonally
  • Interpretive programs available seasonally from costumed interpreters - check NPS calendar
  • Visitor Center here features exhibits and a gift shop - open seasonally
  • Humpback Rocks Mountain Farm buildings representing mountain farms of the nineteenth century, open for self-guided tour year round - see area map

Humpback Rocks Visitor Center phone: (540) 943-4716

Handicap Accessibility

- visitor center is wheelchair accessible 

- information is wheelchair accessible 

- restrooms are wheelchair accessible 

- exhibits are wheelchair accessible 

- interpretive programs are accessible with assistance 

- picnic area (Milepost 8.5) is NOT handicap accessible

Calendar

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Live Glassblowing Demonstrations

Thursday, May 28, 2015, 10:00 am

148th Memorial Day Parade and Ceremonies

Thursday, May 28, 2015, 2:00 pm

Marion Mountain Music

Thursday, May 28, 2015, 7:00 pm
29

Grandfather Mountain Nature Photography Weekend

Friday, May 29, 2015, 9:00 am

Live Glassblowing Demonstrations

Friday, May 29, 2015, 10:00 am

17th Annual Lebanese Festival

Friday, May 29, 2015, 11:00 am

Woody's Original Mountain Music

Friday, May 29, 2015, 7:00 pm
30

Grandfather Mountain Nature Photography Weekend

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 9:00 am

Live Glassblowing Demonstrations

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 10:00 am

Sidewalk Art Show

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 10:00 am

Blue Ridge Music Festival with Brad Paisley & Florida Georgia Line

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 11:00 am

17th Annual Lebanese Festival

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 11:00 am

"Yell Fire"

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 7:00 pm

Dinosaurs and the Blue Ridge Mountains

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 7:00 pm

Coyotes

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 7:00 pm

"Yell Fire"

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 7:00 pm

Tracks Music & Dance

Saturday, May 30, 2015, 7:00 pm
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31

Grandfather Mountain Nature Photography Weekend

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 9:00 am

Live Glassblowing Demonstrations

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 10:00 am

57th Annual Sidewalk Art Show

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 10:00 am

Sidewalk Art Show

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 10:00 am

17th Annual Lebanese Festival

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 11:00 am

Informal Jam on the Porch

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 2:00 pm
           

Highlights & Happenings

  • Blue Ridge Music Center
  • The Blue Ridge Music Center is a state-of-the-art performing arts facility built to preserve and promote the historic music of Virginia and the Blue Ridge. The Blue Ridge region has produced more old-time and bluegrass musicians per capita than any o
  • Parkway Visitor Center, MP 384
  • Visitors traveling the Blue Ridge Parkway can now make one stop to learn about the entire 469 miles and 73-year history of the Parkway. The Parkway Visitor Center opened in 2008 and unveiled innovative, high-tech interactive exhibits. The LEED-certif
  • Humpback Rocks, MP 5.8
  • At the northern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Humpback Rocks is perhaps the best representation of the varied combination of natural and cultural resources anywhere along the Parkway corridor. Visitors can tour a collection of nineteenth century far
  • Mount Pisgah, MP 408
  • Mount Pisgah’s spectacular views, hiking trails, camping and the Mount Pisgah Inn make this area a popular destination for visitors along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The mountain and thousands of surrounding acres was originally purchased by indust
  • Cumberland Knob, MP 217.5
  • Located near the Virginia state line, Cumberland Knob is the site where construction of the Blue Ridge Parkway began in 1935. It was the first recreation area opened to the public and remains a favorite destination for both locals and visitors. The m
  • Julian Price Memorial Park, MP 297
  • A majestic 4,200 acres at the foot of Grandfather Mountain, named in honor of Julian Price, comprises this popular park and lies directly adjacent to the Moses H. Cone Memorial Park. Together these parks make up the largest developed area set as
  • Peaks of Otter, MP 86
  • With stunning views, natural beauty, and the surrounding Jefferson National Forest, it’s no wonder the Peaks of Otter area has attracted people to the region for more than 8,000 years.
  • Civil War Sesquicentennial
  • 2015 marks the 150th year anniversary of when the last shot east of the Mississippi was fired during the Civil War, which rang out in present-day Waynesville.
  • Parkway Road Conditions
  • An open Parkway is a safe Parkway. Be sure to check road conditions online or by phone before you travel and during your visit.
  • Hiking Trails
  • A journey on the Blue Ridge Parkway offers motorists spectacular views of Southern Appalachia’s diverse beauty for 469.1 uninterrupted miles.
  • Blue Ridge Parkway Directory & Travel Planner
  • The 66th edition of the Blue Ridge Parkway Directory & Travel Planner is your ultimate source for planning a trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains.
  • Camping
  • Camping is one way visitors traveling through the Blue Ridge Parkway can spend the night under the stars in one of America’s most beautiful natural settings.
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