Skip to main content

A Blue Ridge Parkway Journey

Yesterday, I visited an old friend, the North Carolina Mountains. I took a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. I took it from US 421 in Deep Gap (around mile 278) to VA 8 in the Rock Castle Gorge region (around Mile 170). It took about six hours to drive the 108 or so miles. Why because I stopped at a lot of the overlooks to hike or take photos. I took 209 photos on this trip. Here are some of the ones I liked the most.

The Cascades: There's a stop withing E.B. Jeffress State Park with a short hike to a waterfall simply known as 'The Cascades". It's a great spot for photos and to forget about life for awhile.


One of the great things about the Parkway are the vehicles that you find on it. Motorcycles are common place but so are classic cars.

View of Mt. Jefferson: Jefferson, NC is one of my favorite small towns in Ashe County. From the parkway, you are able to view the mountainous backdrop that shares its name.


The Lump: Is known for sweeping views of the foothills below. At the lump there's a small trail to the top and it gives this view.

Doughton Park: One of my favorite stretches of the Parkway is through Doughton Park. There are numerous trails and overlooks, and my next journey to Northwest NC and the Parkway, I will be spending considerable time there.


Devil's Garden Overlook: An awesome view here!

Mahogany Rock Overlook: I have a page on it already. I'm looking forward to improving the photos.

Bullhead Mountain Overlook: As you can tell in a number of photos. I experimented with various angles of adding the overlook information sign in the photo.

Puckett Cabin: Now in Virginia. Virginia starts of slow with overlooks and photo opportunities. In fact, for much of the southern part of Virginia, a local road parallels the Parkway. A neat little stop is Puckett's Cabin. It is the former home of Orlena Puckett who for most of her 102 served as a midwife. In fact, the year of her death - 1939, Ms. Puckett continue to perform that duty. Tragically, the 24 children that she would give berth to never survived infancy.

Mabry Mill: The last ten miles of the Parkway I was on in Virginia made the journey thoroughly enjoyable. First, a great setting of Mabry Mill. Took a number shots around the mill. Here's some highlights.



Finally, the last overlook that I stopped at was the best. The overlook for Rock Castle Gorge was home to a large patch of butterflies. It was one of those pleasant and unexpected surprises that makes any trip worthwhile.



I did gain two new Virginia Counties on this trip (Patrick and Floyd) along with a number of new routes. I also stopped at two covered bridges off of VA 8 north of Stuart. It was a great trip, the weather couldn't be better no humidity anywhere...with it in a warm upper 70s in the mountains and a just right mid 80s in the Piedmont.

I'll certainly get back to Doughton Park and more of the Parkway later this year

Comments

Mahzha said…
If you think you like Doughton Park now, you should camp there for a weekend. You'll fall in love with it.

CD
Vince said…
I'm guessing one of the covered bridges north of Stuart was Bob White «http://tinyurl.com/3xt6kx». What was the other one?

Popular posts from this blog

Roebling Aqueduct

In a quiet and often overlooked corner of Northeastern Pennsylvania, the country's oldest surviving suspension bridge crosses the Delaware River into New York.  The Delaware Aqueduct, designed and built by famed engineer John A. Roebling, has withstood a very colorful history from being an important piece in the region's transportation, to uncertainty during the growth of rail, nearly eight decades of neglect and poor management as a private toll bridge, to finally being restored by the National Park Service and in use as an automobile bridge today.

Construction and Canal Era (1847-1898):
During the 1840's, the Delaware & Hudson Canal was looking at ways to speed up service along its route.  One of the major bottlenecks was where the canal reached the Delaware River.  Since it began operation in 1828, the D&H used a rope ferry to pull traffic along to Canal across the Delaware.  The conflicting traffic of vessels going down the Delaware to Trenton or Philadelphia and…

Quemahoning Tunnel

The Quemahoning Tunnel may have never been built by the Pennsylvanina Turnpike Commission, but it still has a history unto itself.  Originally planned to carry rail along the South Penn Railway, the tunnel never would not see any trains until 1909 when a small line named the Pittsburgh, Westmoreland & Somerset began utilizing it.  The use was brief and by the end of 1916 the PW&S was no longer in operation and abandoned the facility.  Twenty-some years later, the newly formed Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission considered using the abandoned tunnel, in fact it was shown on some original plans.  However, the PTC decided against using it, and the tunnel remained empty.

The eastern portal of the Quemahoning Tunnel is easily accessible from the PA Turnpike.  The portal is located at mile 106.3 along the westbound roadway.  The tunnel is one of the many "What Could Have Been's?" of the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  Below, Bill Symons shares photos taken in late Fall of 1986 of …

The National Road - Maryland - Jug Bridge Memorial Park

For over 130 years, from 1808 to 1942, a very unique stone arch bridge carried everything from horse and buggy, Civil War troops, and finally automobiles over the Monocacy River just east of Frederick.  The bridge's most unique feature, and what would give the bridge its name, was the jug shaped stone demijohn on the east banks of the Monocacy.  The bridge was built in 1808 during the construction of the Baltimore-Frederick Turnpike - a precursor to the National Road and eventually US 40.   In 1824, the Marquis de LaFayette was greeted by Fredericktonians at the bridge upon his return to the area.  The Jug Bridge would see action in the Civil War during the Battle of Monocacy in July 1864.  At the time of battle, the bridge was under Union control and was attacked by Confederate troops hoping to move closer to Washington as a way to divert some of Ulysses S. Grant's troops from the Petersburg campaign. (1)

The bridge 425 foot long bridge consisted of four 65 foot stone arch s…