to going places
Ridge – Shenandoah
Virginia Tourism Corporation
Virginia boasts grand views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Jefferson National Forest
Wise, Va. 24293
A 4,162-foot high, multi-level observation tower offers
breathtaking views of Kentucky, West Virginia, North Carolina and southwest
Virginia. Two main trails for hikers are available with a 1.3-mile trail
leading to High Knob
Lake at the recreation area. For the more rugged hiker
there is a 19.2-mile trail, which leads to Hanging Rock Recreational Area
on the Mountain Fork Trail.
High Knob Recreation Area is at an elevation of 3,800
feet with a 4-acre cold-water lake and a 300-foot sand swimming beach.
Other amenities: Fourteen tent sites with picnic tables, bathhouse with
showers and flush toilets. The lake is stocked and fishing is permitted
with a Virginia license and a Forest Service Stamp.
Gap National Park
The park preserves the mountain pass used
by Indians, and later by settlers moving west.
Daniel Boone blazed a trail beginning in Southwest Virginia through Cumberland
Gap, which is known as the Wilderness Road. This became the route westward
for pioneers from North Carolina. Fort McCook Earthworks, created by the
Union Army, can still be seen on this strategic crossroads, which was
the site of many Civil War battles as both North and South vied for control.
More than 50 miles of trails meander over more than 20,000 acres of wilderness.
Cudjo’s Caverns, located beneath Pinnacle Overlook, offers the tallest
stalagmite in the world, while Sand Cove, eroded rock forms, has a ceiling
of gold, red and green. The cliffs at White Rocks once served as a landmark
for early pioneers. Open from 8 p.m. to 6 p.m. from Memorial Day to Oct.
31; 8 p.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 1 to Memorial Day.
Settlement is part of the Cumberland Gap National Park, which lies in
three states: Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee. First settled in 1903
by the Hensleys atop Brush Mountain, the settlement has been preserved
without electricity, indoor plumbing, roads or any modern conveniences
from 1775 until 1951 when the last inhabitant left.
Tunnel State Park
Virginia State Parks
view of the sky opens from the chairlift at Natural Tunnel State
Park in Duffield.
Rt. 3, Box 250
Duffield, Va. 24244
This state park is built around a 100-foot high, 850-foot-long tunnel formed
through rock by the erosive action of water. A hiking trail or chairlift
provides access to the mouth of the tunnel, which has both a stream and
railroad running through it. The park offers hiking trails, picnicking,
amphitheater, swimming pool, campground and a visitor center with an education
center and gift shop. The campground offers 23 campsites and 18 R. sites
with electric and water hookups. Several programs and events take place
through the year. Location: Natural Tunnel State Park is in Scott County,
approximately 13 miles north of Gate City and 20 miles north of Kingsport,
Tenn.. To get there, from I-81, take U.S. 23 North to Gate City (approximately
20 miles). Take State Route 871 and go one mile east to park entrance.
Interstate Park: Grand Canyon of the South
Virginia and Kentucky Interstate 80
P.O. Box 100
Breaks, Va. 24607
on the Virginia/Kentucky state line, the park is one of only two Interstate
Parks in the nation. The park encompasses 4,500 acres of greenwood lands
and mountain scenery, including Breaks’ Interstate Park: Grand Canyon
of the South.
The name “Breaks” is derived from the break in Pine Mountain
created by the Russell Fork of the Big Sandy River as it carved a 1,000-foot
gorge, the largest east of the Mississippi, on its way to the Ohio River.
Its craggy untouched beauty reaches more than five miles long and 1,600
feet deep. Park features: Olympic-size pool, a lake with paddleboats and
fishing, hiking trails, picnic areas, camping areas, a visitor center,
a gift shop, playground equipment, cabins, a lodge, motel rooms, a convention
center, a restaurant and amphitheater. Numerous events scheduled.
(276) 865-4413; (800) 982-5122
Virginia Department of Tourism, U.S. National Park Service,