Posts Tagged With: Blue Ridge Parkway

The Light At The End Of The Tunnel And Then Back To Reality!

Jim says:

We’ve just completed six days in RVing Heaven.

Yesterday we drove 50 miles and completed our second day on Skyline Drive. It was the end of 305 miles on the Blue Ridge Parkway and 105 miles on Skyline Drive. Six days of delightful weather, beautiful scenery, low-speed limits (45 on the Blue Ridge Parkway and 35 on Skyline Drive), no speeding drivers, no trash along the roadways, winding, curvy, up and down roads at elevations reaching 4,000 feet through the states of North Carolina and Virginia.

About 32 miles from the end we passed through Mary’s Rock Tunnel with only inches to spare.

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and then…about one hour later…we were back in reality…90 degree heat…traffic congestion…traffic lights…trucks…speeding drivers…exhaust fumes…trash along side the roads…YUK! Oh well, it was great while it lasted.To see the other 10 photos I took on our last day in RVing Heaven, click this link…
http://picasaweb.google.com/jimjrver/51510#

We ended up parking at the large and beautiful Moose Lodge #829 in Front Royal, Virgina. Mary has friends from the Washington, D.C. area, about 60 miles distant, coming to visit today so we will spend tonight here as well.

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2010
For more information about my three books, click this link:
http://www.panamaorbust.com

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Blue Ridge Parkway – Day 4 & Skyline Drive – Day 1

Jim says:

Yesterday we drove 115 miles, 60 miles on the Blue Ridge Parkway and 55 miles on Skyline Drive…all in the clouds/fog! Skyline Drive and the Shenandoah National Park begin where the Blue Ridge Parkway ends.

The entire journey my maximum vision was from about 50 feet to about 100 feet which meant from 20 to 35 miles per hour the whole day. A very tiring day of driving. 5.5 hours of driving to do 115 miles.

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I’m sure the Shenandoah National Park is very pretty…if I could just see it!
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The only place with no clouds/fog was inside of a tunnel.
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The mystery flower from yesterday’s Blog is a Mountain Laurel which was identified in the Shenandoah National Park brochure.
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The fog/clouds abated only slightly just about the time we arrived at our campsite.

Here’s the official government website link…
http://www.nps.gov/shen/index.htm

Here’s a Wikipedia informational link…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skyline_Drive

Today we continue in a Northeasterly direction.

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2010
For more information about my three books, click this link:
http://www.panamaorbust.com

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OTTER CREEK ON THE BLUE RIDGE

From Mary’s desk:
After a peaceful night at a Moose Club in Vinton, a small town near Roanoke, VA. we got back on the parkway. A morning haze covered  the peaceful mountain, heavy with leafy trees.

As we rose in elevation the trees changed to more stunted growth; trees are yet to gain full leaf, here. The forecast was for rain, but the day was mostly overcast as we drove along.

Many vistas. So far in the Blue Ridge we have seen deer, turkeys aplenty, squirrels, many birds and butterflies which seem to drift in front of the motor home. Two turtles in the road where we hoped other motorists would miss them as we did. This area backs up to Jefferson National Forest with treed hillsides as far as the eye can see.
The first wild rhododendrons in bloom, not that my through-the-window pictures do them justice. Rocks vary the landscape.

Another beautiful stone bridge, of many.

The park design was deliberately zig-zagged to take advantage of the view, always the views were the foremost consideration. As below, the James River.


At Otter Lake we realized we were at the lowest elevation on the parkway at 649 feet. We stopped to have a bit of lunch and play. Rock climbing and photographing the little plants and flowers about the creek. Noticing a beaver chewed tree.

At Otter Creek Camp Ground, which was unexpectedly open, we found a drive through spot right along the burbling Otter Creek.

We explored, walked, read a bit. No sooner finished, Jim brought in the chairs and boom. The thunder commenced and a heavy downpour enveloped us as we sat safe inside with our dinner cooking on the stove. (Glad we were not in a tent.)
Finally the rain ceased. Neighbors Frank and Diane Wilson came by to chat. They were driving in the downpour and got caught about a quarter mile before the campground by a downed tree. A new ranger, without a chainsaw had just come from a class on learning to use a chainsaw. We had a laugh over that. The tree was cut with a handsaw, with the help of travelers, and all turned out well.

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Blue Ridge Parkway – Day 3

Jim says:

We drove 52 miles yesterday. Here’s 10 photos…

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The day started sunny but hazy.
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The stonework on the bridges is beautiful.
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35 miles of today’s journey went through the Jefferson National Forest.
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Above 3,500 feet, the trees have fewer leaves.
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The James River as seen through my driver’s window screen. At 649 feet elevation, it’s the lowest point of the Blue Ridge Parkway.
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About one mile beyond the James River is Otter Lake.
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Mary holds a small delicate flower.
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The small delicate flower tree. Neither Mary nor I know the name. Do You?
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About one mile beyond Otter Lake, the Otter Creek Campground was open.
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Mary relaxing (snoozing) at our campsite. It’s nice to see here at ease as opposed to her hectic life when she’s at home in California. The afternoon was overcast with a temperature of 70 degrees with relatively low humidity.

About 3:30 PM the skies opened up and it rained HARD for about an hour. Later in the evening we enjoyed a nice two-hour conversation with our neighbors, Diane and Frank Wilson from Florida. They recently completed a couple of months RVing in Mexico. They bought a copy of my Panama or Bust book from me.

Today we have another 60 miles of Blue Ridge Parkway left to drive. Once completed, we will have driven 305 of the 469 mile parkway. Road repairs/closures prevented us from driving the entire length.

The roadway then continues on for another 105 miles as Skyline drive as part of the Shenandoah National Park.

Here’s the official government website link…
http://www.nps.gov/blri/index.htm

Here’s a Wikipedia informational link…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Ridge_Parkway

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2010
For more information about my three books, click this link:
http://www.panamaorbust.com

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Blue Ridge Parkway – Day 2

Jim says:

Yesterday we drove 120 miles on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Shortly after starting our day we crossed from North Carolina into Virginia.

High was 65 degrees and some occasional rain showers. We spent the night at a Moose Lodge about one mile off of the Blue Ridge Parkway in Roanoke, Virginia.

Here’s four photos…

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It looks like fog,but in reality we are 3,000+ feet elevation and driving in the clouds. It got so bad at times that I had to slow to 20 mph and use my emergency hazard lights.
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The Blue Ridge Parkway is VERY hilly and curvy. It’s rare to be able to see one mile in advance.
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The old Mabry Grist/Saw Mill is the most photographed site on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
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There are no traffic lights on the Blue Ridge Parkway. This is a temporary light to control one-lane traffic during bridge repairs.

Here’s the official government website link…
http://www.nps.gov/blri/index.htm

Here’s a Wikipedia informational link…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Ridge_Parkway

Today we’ll continue in a Northeasterly direction on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2010
For more information about my three books, click this link:
http://www.panamaorbust.com

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Blue Ridge Parkway – Day 1

Yesterday we drove about 75 miles on the Blue Ridge Parkway still in North Carolina. No commercial vehicles are allowed on the parkway.

Here’s three photos…

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It doesn’t show in any of these photos, but we saw miles of blown-down/broken trees from an ice storm just before last Christmas.

To see the other 13 photos I took, click this link…
http://picasaweb.google.com/jimjrver/BlueRidgeParkway51010#

It was partly cloudy with the temperature in the low 60’s. There was very little traffic and much to our surprise, when we arrived at the campground…it was closed. Our guidebook indicates the campgrounds open in early May. We inquired at the visitors store and were told the campgrounds open on May 15th. We spent the night parked in front of this old cabin along a quiet country road about one mile off of the parkway. According to the owner, a Mr. McCarthy, this cabin was built in the 1880’s…his wife was born here and it was the Cherry Lane Township’s first country store and post office.

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Here’s the official government website link…
http://www.nps.gov/blri/index.htm

Here’s a Wikipedia informational link…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Ridge_Parkway

Today we’ll continue in a Northeasterly direction on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2010
For more information about my three books, click this link:
http://www.panamaorbust.com

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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