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Blue Ridge Parkway courtesy NPS

National Park Service Officials Remind Visitors to Enjoy the View, Watch the Road

Memorial Day Weekend signals the beginning of the summer visitor season on the Blue Ridge Parkway.  National Park Service staff, volunteers, concession operators, and park partners are prepared to welcome visitors to the many campgrounds, visitor centers and features found along the historic 469-mile route.

Blue Ridge Parkway courtesy NPS

Flame azalea near Rocky Knob on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Photo by Harold Blackwood/NPS.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is one of the largest designed landscapes in the country, providing visitors with a wide variety of opportunities to experience the nature, history, and culture of the southern Appalachian mountain region.  The Parkway was uniquely designed to enhance the experience of the park; and whether at Milepost 0 or 469, Parkway officials remind visitors to be aware of their surroundings and drive safely.

The Blue Ridge Parkway has many built in distractions. Scenic views, wildlife, and architectural details are all part of what make driving the Parkway so special. When you are driving on the Parkway it is absolutely essential to keep your full attention on the road.

J.D. Lee, Parkway Superintendent

A complete schedule of open facilities, as well as information to help plan a memorable and safe Parkway experience, is available on the Parkway’s website. Regularly updated information regarding ranger programs, tours, music performances, and cultural demonstrations is also available online.

In order to address the ongoing maintenance needs along the motor route, visitors can also expect several road projects happening throughout the summer season.  Current projects include bridge maintenance on the Linn Cove Viaduct at Milepost 304, pavement preservation treatment of 65 miles in North Carolina, and several smaller paving projects in Virginia. The Parkway website and real time road map are important planning tools that provide complete information regarding road projects or potential delays.

 

About the Blue Ridge Parkway

The 469-mile Blue Ridge Parkway connects Shenandoah National Park to the north with Great Smoky Mountains National Park to the south. The route travels the crests, ridges, and valleys of five major mountain ranges, encompassing several geographic and vegetative zones ranging from 600 to more than 6,000 feet above sea level. It provides visitors with many varied vistas of scenic Appalachian landscapes ranging from forested ridgetops and mountain slopes to rural farm lands and urban areas. The parkway offers a “ride-a-while, stop-a-while” experience that includes scenic pullouts, recreation areas, historic sites, and visitor contact stations. It is known nationally and internationally for its designed landscape as a scenic motorway. www.nps.gov/blri