(828) 898-5605 info@averycounty.com

Blue Ridge Parkway Increases Recreational Access to Additional Areas in NC and VA

Release Date: June 11, 2020

(Asheville, NC) – Following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities, Blue Ridge Parkway is increasing recreational access at many park picnic areas and restrooms. The National Park Service (NPS) is working servicewide with federal, state, and local public health authorities to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and using a phased approach to increase access on a park-by-park basis.

Beginning June 13, 2020, the Blue Ridge Parkway will reopen access to Picnic Areas, including restroom facilities, at the following locations:  

Virginia:

Humpback Rocks Picnic Area, Milepost 8.5

James River Picnic Area, Milepost 63.6

Peaks of Otter Picnic Area, Milepost 85.9

North Carolina:

Cumberland Knob Picnic Area, Milepost 217.5

Doughton Park Picnic Area, Milepost 241.1

Jeffress Park Picnic Area, Milepost 271.9

Price Park Picnic Area, Milepost 296.4

Linville Falls Picnic Area, 316.4

Craggy Gardens Picnic Area, 367.6 (port-o-johns)

Mt. Pisgah Picnic Area, 407.8

Restrooms or portable toilets are also available at these additional locations:

Virginia:

Humpback Rocks Visitor Center, Milepost 5.7

James River Visitor Center, Milepost 63

Peaks of Otter Visitor Center, Milepost 85.9

Mabry Mill, Milepost 176.2

North Carolina:

Moses Cone Carriage Barn, Milepost 294

Bass Lake Comfort Station, Milepost 294.6

Price Lake Boat Launch (port-o-johns), Milepost 297.2

Linville Falls Visitor Center (port-o-johns), Milepost 316.4

Craggy Gardens Visitor Center (port-o-johns), Milepost 364.5

Folk Art Center, Milepost 382

Graveyard Fields Trailhead, Milepost 418.8

Waterrock Knob Visitor Center, Milepost 451.2

The following areas continue to be available:    

Additional portable toilets may be available at intermittent North Carolina park locations

Select concession operations (additional details available on park website)

All Parkway trails, and

All other sections of the motor route in North Carolina and Virginia, except for a road closure from Milepost 112.4 to Milepost 135.9, from U.S. Route 24 to Adney Gap, due to multiple road hazards

With public health in mind or due to maintenance concerns, the following seasonal visitor facilities remain closed:

Campgrounds park-wide

Visitor Center park-wide

Select Picnic Areas in Virginia and North Carolina

The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount. At Blue Ridge Parkway, the operational approach will be to examine each facility function and service provided to ensure those operations comply with current public health guidance, and will be regularly monitored. The parks continue to work closely with the NPS Office of Public Health using CDC guidance to ensure public and work-spaces are safe and clean for visitors, employees, partners, and volunteers.

While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services may be limited. When recreating, the public should follow local area health orders in North Carolina and Virginia, practice Leave No Trace principles, avoid crowding and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.

The CDC has offered guidance to help people recreating in parks and open spaces prevent the spread of infectious diseases. We will continue to monitor all park functions to ensure that visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19, and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health.

Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted on our website at www.nps.gov/blri and social media channels. Updates about NPS operations will be posted on www.nps.gov/coronavirus.

Blue Ridge Parkway to increase recreational access from Milepost 0 to 13
Release Date: May 22, 2020

[Montebello, VA] – Following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities, Blue Ridge Parkway is increasing recreational access. The National Park Service (NPS) is working service-wide with federal, state, and local public health authorities to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and using a phased approach to increase access on a park-by-park basis.

On Saturday, May 23, 2020, the Parkway will reopen gates providing motor vehicle access to the northernmost 13 miles of the park, from Milepost 0 – 13, in coordination with the Shenandoah National Park planned reopening. In addition, the parking areas at Milepost 85.9 (Peaks of Otter Visitor Center and Sharp Top Parking Areas) and Milepost 92.5 (Sharp Top Parking Widening) will reopen.

With public health in mind, seasonal visitor service facilities including campgrounds, picnic areas, restrooms and visitor centers remain closed at this time.

The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount. At the Blue Ridge Parkway, the operational approach will be to examine each facility function and service provided to ensure those operations comply with current public health guidance, and will be regularly monitored. We continue to work closely with the NPS Office of Public Health using CDC guidance to ensure public and work-spaces are safe and clean for visitors, employees, partners, and volunteers.

While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services may be limited. When recreating, the public should follow local area health orders, practice Leave No Trace principles, avoid crowding and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.

The CDC has offered guidance to help people recreating in parks and open spaces prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Park management will continue to monitor all functions to ensure visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19 and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health.

Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted on the Parkway’s website and social media channels.

www.nps.gov/blri

Blue Ridge Parkway announces increased access to historic motor route

Release Date: May 8, 2020

[Asheville, NC] – Following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities, Blue Ridge Parkway officials are increasing recreational access to sections of the motor road previously closed to motor vehicle traffic in North Carolina. The National Park Service is working with federal, state, and local public health authorities to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and using a phased approach to increase access to the Parkway and park sites across the country.

Beginning Saturday, May 9, 2020, the Blue Ridge Parkway will reopen gates providing motor vehicle access to the southernmost 14 miles of the park, from Milepost 454 – 469, in coordination with the Qualla Boundary and Great Smoky Mountains National Park planned reopening.

Beginning Friday, May 15, 2020, the Parkway will reopen gates providing motor vehicle access at the following locations in North Carolina, once initial seasonal mowing and road preparations are complete:

Milepost 292-296.5 near Blowing Rock, including Moses Cone Parking Area and Hwy 221 Bass Lake Parking Lot.
Milepost 298.6-308 through Grandfather Mountain area, including Rough Ridge and Linn Cove Viaduct
Milepost 316.4 Linville Falls Spur Road, including parking at Linville Falls trailheads
Milepost 334-342 including Crabtree Falls Area, near Little Switzerland, NC
Milepost 355-375.6 from Mt. Mitchell to Ox Creek, including Craggy Gardens
Milepost 377.4 Parking areas at Craven Gap (Town Mountain Rd) for MST Trail access
Milepost 384.7 Roadside parking at MST Trailheads at US 74A Parkway access ramps
Milepost 393-454 from French Broad River Overlook and south to Soco Gap

In addition, the following areas continue to be accessible:

All Parkway trails, and
All other sections of the motor route in North Carolina and Virginia previously accessible to motor vehicle traffic.

Road maintenance projects are underway in some of these areas, visitors may experience delays or one-lane closures and should check the Parkway’s Road Closure page at https://go.nps.gov/roadinfo for more information.

In alignment with federal and state public health guidance, the following areas remain closed at this time:

Road closure from Milepost 0 to 13 in Virginia,
Milepost 85.9 Peaks of Otter Visitor Center and Sharp Top Parking Areas closed,
Milepost 92.5 Sharp Top Parking Widening closed at Appalachian Trail crossing, and all

Seasonal visitor service facilities including campgrounds, picnic areas, restrooms and visitor centers.

“We are pleased to once again provide motor vehicle access to these popular Blue Ridge Parkway locations. We know the park’s recreation opportunities and scenic beauty provide important ways to connect with our natural environment during this time, and for many a leisurely drive on the Parkway provides solace,” said J.D. Lee, Superintendent of the Blue Ridge Parkway. “Our phased approach to the 2020 visitor season is focused on balancing the enjoyment and protection of this park with the enjoyment and protection of our visitors. I encourage everyone who visits the Parkway in the coming days to recreate responsibly while here, whether that’s social distancing on park trails or driving safely on this beautiful, scenic drive.”

The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount. In the coming weeks, the operational approach on the Blue Ridge Parkway will be to examine each facility function and service to ensure operations comply with current public health guidance and will be regularly monitored. Park officials will continue to work closely with the NPS Office of Public Health using CDC guidance to ensure public and workspaces are safe and clean for visitors, employees, partners, and volunteers.

While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services may be limited. When recreating, the public should follow local area health orders in North Carolina and Virginia, practice Leave No Trace principles, avoid crowding and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.

The CDC has offered guidance to help people recreating in parks and open spaces prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Park officials will continue to monitor all functions to ensure that visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19, and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health.

Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted at www.nps.gov/blri and the Parkway’s social media channels. Updates about NPS operations will be posted on www.nps.gov/coronavirus.

Blue Ridge Parkway Announces Paving Project in Asheville Corridor

Parkway Visitors Can Expect Overnight and One-Lane Closures

(Asheville, NC) –National Park Service officials announced today that approximately 25 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway, in the vicinity of Asheville, NC and between Milepost 365 and 392, will be resurfaced with thin-lift asphalt beginning April 27, 2020. Within scheduled project areas, park visitors can expect full, two-lane night closures and single-lane day closures and delays. Due to high traffic volumes in the area of this project, the following specific conditions will be in place:

Night work may take place from 8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m., Monday – Friday, with full, two-lane closures from Milepost 382.6 (just south of the US 70/Tunnel Road ramps) to 393.7 (just north of the NC 191/Brevard Road ramp).
Day work with single-lane traffic control will occur accordingly:
From Milepost 365.5 to 382.0 work may take place from 30 minutes past sunrise to 30 minutes prior to sunset.
From Milepost 382.0 (Folk Art Center) to 393.7 (at the NC 191 ramp) work is restricted to the hours between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

This resurfacing project is expected to be complete by September of 2020. This project does not include a section of the Parkway between Milepost 388.8 and 392 due to the ongoing I-26 bridge construction. As with any road project, motorists and park users must exercise caution. In the interest of visitor safety, park visitors are asked to:

Check the Parkway’s Real Time Road Map for regularly updated work zone information.
Plan an alternate route around this area during night closures.
Expect delays while work takes place Monday through Friday. Lane closures will be managed with flagging operations and a pilot car to lead traffic through work zones.
Observe reduced speed limits in work zones, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; to maintain safe operations and allow for proper curing of pavement.

 

(NC/VA) – National Park Service officials announced additional modifications to operations on the Blue Ridge Parkway in a continuing effort to support federal, state, and local efforts to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Effective immediately, and in addition to all existing restroom, visitor center, campground and picnic area closures, the Blue Ridge Parkway is implementing closures at the following locations until further notice.

BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY ROAD and AREA CLOSURES effective 4.15.2020
Information is organized from North to South using Parkway Mileposts and nearby locations

Milepost &Nearby Landmarks or Common Place Names

VIRGINIA
MP 0 – 13
Road closed, including Humpback Rocks (previously announced)

MP 85.9
Peaks of Otter Visitor Center and Sharp Top Parking Areas closed

MP 92.5
Sharp Top Parking Widening closed at Appalachian Trail crossing

NORTH CAROLINA

MP 292 – 294.5
Road closed near Blowing Rock, including Moses Cone Parking Area and Hwy 221 Bass Lake Parking Lot.

MP 294.5 – 296.4
Road closed, including Price Park Picnic Area

MP 298.6 – 305
Road closed through Grandfather Mountain area, including Rough Ridge and Linn Cove Viaduct

MP 305 – 308
Road closed

MP 316.4
Linville Falls Spur Road closed, including parking at Linville Falls trailheads

MP 334 – 342
Road closed, including Crabtree Falls Area, near Little Switzerland, NC

MP 355 – 375.6
Road closed from Mt. Mitchell to Ox Creek, including Craggy Gardens

MP 377.4
Parking areas closed at Craven Gap (Town Mountain Rd) for MST Trail access

MP 384.7
Roadside parking closed at MST Trailheads at US 74A Parkway access ramps

MP 393 – 469
Road closed from French Broad River Overlook to Southern Terminus of Parkway

*ALL listed closures are to vehicular traffic only.*

The health and safety of park visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners remains the Parkway’s number one priority. Some sections of the Blue Ridge Parkway motor road and outdoor spaces, including trails, remain accessible to the public in accordance with the latest federal, state, and local health guidance. If contemplating a visit to a national park during this pandemic, the NPS asks visitors to adhere to guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local public health authorities to protect visitors and employees. As services are limited, the NPS urges visitors to continue to practice Leave No Trace principles, including pack-in and pack-out, to keep outdoor spaces safer and healthier.

The NPS encourages people to take advantage of the many digital tools available to explore the National Park Service and learn more about the Blue Ridge Parkway during this time, including:
Learn about the lives of the people who played key roles in the creation of this scenic roadway.
Explore stories of how the Parkway was designed and constructed.
Discover the diversity of plants and animals that make their home along the Parkway.
Ask a park ranger a question about the park by submitting an email to blri_info@nps.gov or on the park’s social media platforms under the handle @blueridenps on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Find Your “Virtual” Park information and activities for park sites across the country.

Platinum Partners

Gold Partners

Silver Partners