Monday, November 25, 2019

Is June a good time to visit Glacier National Park?

Shhh! Don't tell anyone, but June is really a great time to visit Glacier National Park! Obviously July and August are by far the most popular months for visiting the park; however, if you wish to avoid the crowds, you may want to check-out the month of June. Sure, the Going-to-the-Sun Road likely won't be open all the way to Logan Pass until later in the month, but that doesn't mean there aren't plenty of things to do. In fact, all of the services outside of the park, as well as almost all of the concessioners within the park, will already be open.

So why visit in June? For one, June is an absolutely great time for observing wildflowers. Whitewater rafting is also at its best during this time period. Other popular activities include horseback riding, fly fishing, and as a result of far fewer motorists on park roads, June is also a great time for cycling. And there's nothing like taking a cruise on one of Glacier's lakes to soak in the splendid beauty of the snow-capped mountains. For more information on many of these activities and others, please visit our Thing To Do page.

Although the nights are still relatively cool, temperatures usually reach into the 70s during the day, which makes for nearly perfect hiking conditions. While trails in the higher elevations will still be closed due to snow, there are still a ton of great hiking opportunities around the park. Here are just a couple of suggestions (many of which are normally part of the June ranger-led hikes program - which, by the way, are free):


West Glacier / Lake McDonald Area:

* Avalanche Lake

* Apgar Lookout

* Johns Lake Loop

* Rocky Point Nature Trail

* Upper McDonald Creek Trail


St. Mary Area:

* Beaver Pond Loop

* St. Mary Area Waterfalls Hike

* Sun Point Nature Trail

* Virginia Falls


Many Glacier Area:

* Apikuni Falls

* Belly River Ranger Station

* Grinnell Lake

* Lake Josephine Loop

* Redrock Falls

* Swiftcurrent Lake Nature Trail


Two Medicine Area:

* Aster Park Overlook

* Rockwell Falls

* Running Eagle Falls


And in case you need one more reason to visit in June: rates on accommodations are much lower when compared to peak season! If you do plan to visit Glacier this June, or anytime throughout the year, please note that our hiking website also offers a wide variety of accommodation listings to help with all your vacation planning.



Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Audubon Invites You to Celebrate 120 Years of the Annual Christmas Bird Count

For the 120th year, the National Audubon Society is organizing its annual Christmas Bird Count. Between December 14 and January 5, tens of thousands of bird-loving volunteers will participate in counts across the Western Hemisphere. The twelve decades’ worth of data collected by participants continue to contribute to one of only two large existing pools of information notifying ornithologists and conservation biologists about what conservation action is required to protect birds and the places they need.

Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count is one of the longest-running wildlife censuses in the world. Each individual count takes place in a 15-mile-wide circle and is led by a compiler responsible for organizing volunteers and submitting observations directly to Audubon. Within each circle, participants tally all birds seen or heard that day—not just the species but total numbers to provide a clear idea of the health of that particular population.

When combined with other surveys such as the Breeding Bird Survey, Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count provides a picture of how the continent's bird populations have changed in time and space over the past hundred years. The long-term perspective is vital for conservationists. It informs strategies to protect birds and their habitat, and helps identify environmental issues with implications for people as well. For example, earlier this year, Science published a study using decades of Audubon Christmas Bird Count data to describe a grim picture: a steady decline of nearly three billion North American birds since 1970, primarily as a result of human activities. Christmas Bird Count data have been used in more than 300 peer-reviewed articles.

A brand new feature for this year’s 120th Christmas Bird Count will be “CBC Live”, a crowd-sourced, hemisphere-wide storytelling function using Esri mapping software. This “story-map” will ask users to upload a photo taken during their Christmas Bird Count as well as a short anecdote to paint a global picture of the Christmas Bird Count in real time.

Last year, the 119th Christmas Bird Count included a record-setting 2615 count circles, with 1975 counts in the United States, 460 in Canada and 180 in Latin America, the Caribbean, Bermuda and the Pacific Islands. This was the ninth-straight year of record-breaking counts. In total, 79,425 observers out in the field and watching feeders tallied up over 48 million birds representing more than 2600 species different species—more than one-quarter of the world’s known avifauna. Approximately 5 percent of the North American landmass was surveyed by the Christmas Bird Count. Last year included two new species for the Christmas Bird Count list of birds seen in the United States: a Little Stint in San Diego and a Great Black Hawk in Portland, Maine.

The Northern Bobwhite, the only native quail in the eastern United States, continues its downward spiral. This species has essentially disappeared from the Northeast and faces massive declines due to loss of shrubland habitat exacerbated by increased droughts. On the flip side, Red-breasted Nuthatches and Purple Finches staged major irruptions southward during the 119th CBC.

Beginning on Christmas Day in 1900, Dr. Frank M. Chapman, founder of Bird-Lore – which evolved into Audubon magazine -- proposed a new holiday tradition that would count birds during the holidays rather than hunt them. Conservation was in its beginning stages in that era, and many observers and scientists were becoming concerned about declining bird populations. So began the Christmas Bird Count. 120 years later, the tradition continues and still manages to bring out the best in people and contribute valuable data to the worldwide scientific community.

To sign up for a Christmas Bird Count and ensure your bird count data make it into the official Audubon database, please find the circle nearest you and register with your local Christmas Bird Count compiler on this map here. All Christmas Bird Count data must be submitted through the official compiler to be added to the long-running census.

The Audubon Christmas Bird Count is a community science project organized by the National Audubon Society. There is no fee to participate. Counts are open to birders of all skill levels and Audubon’s free Bird Guide app makes it even easier to learn more. For more information and to find a count near you visit www.christmasbirdcount.org.







Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Friday, November 22, 2019

Shining Rock Wilderness Temporarily Closed to All Visitors Due to Wildfire

A wildfire was reported at approximately 3:00 am Thursday morning near Cold Mountain in Haywood County on the Pisgah Ranger District. Currently the fire is at approximately 106 acres.

The wildfire is burning within the Shining Rock Wilderness on the Pisgah Ranger District. The U.S. Forest Service has implemented a forest closure order for the entire wilderness area which prohibits all recreational uses, including the use of 53 miles of trails.

There are 30 firefighters working on the fire today and a crew will continue working throughout the night.

There will be heavy smoke in the area throughout Thursday night as a result of smoldering in the burn area. There is no imminent threat to structures at this time. Crews have been performing structure protection activities and this work will continue through Friday.

Agencies involved in the response include USDA Forest Service, NC Forest Service Haywood County Emergency Management, Cruso Fire Department, and National Park Service.






Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Thursday, November 21, 2019

“History of hiking” 50% off

As you're likely already aware, Black Friday is next week. As a result, I wanted to let you all know that my book will be on sale throughout the upcoming holiday season. Beginning today, and continuing through Christmas, the paperback version of Ramble On: A History of Hiking will be sold at 50% off the regular price. During this timeframe hiking enthusiasts will be able to purchase the book on Amazon for only $9.95 (regular price is $18.95).

Additionally, the Kindle e-book version of my book will be sold for just $4.99 on Black Friday and throughout Cyber Weekend. This special price will be offered for one week only, from November 27th through December 3rd.

Ramble On: A History of Hiking is an outstanding gift idea for anyone who loves hiking, and wishes to learn more about the rich and amazing history of one of the world’s top pastimes.

Thank you very much!




Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Sunday, November 17, 2019

National Take a Hike Day

Did you know that today is “National Take a Hike Day”? Each year, on November 17th, National Take a Hike Day is observed by hikers across the country. Though the origins of this day seem to be a little murky, it appears that it may have been started by the American Hiking Society. Whenever and whoever started the day, hiking has its roots firmly planted in many of the same societal trends that shaped our country. According to the National Today website:
Hiking, while a major part of our culture today, wasn’t always the ubiquitous weekend warrior activity is today. Before Walden, Thoreau, and John Muir there was Romantic and Transcendentalism movement, art and cultural shifts to the natural order and time spent being outside. A reaction to the Industrial Revolution, train schedules, 90 hour work weeks and more.

The idea of taking a hike turned romantic and peaceful.
If you can’t actually make it onto a trail today, you can still download a copy of my book, “Ramble On: A History of Hiking,” to learn about the rich and amazing history of one of the world’s top pastimes, which will help to explain why today is now recognized as a "national holiday".

Happy Take a Hike Day!



Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Temporary Closures on Park Roads for Tree Removal Work

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced that single-lane and full-lane closures will affect several park roads beginning Monday, November 18 through Friday, March 31 for tree removal work. Closures are necessary to ensure the safety of motorists and tree-removal crews along the park’s narrow roadways during the work.

The Cades Cove Loop Road will experience periods of full closure and partial closures from December 2 through December 19 on Mondays through Thursdays. Cherokee Orchard Road, beginning just beyond the Noah Bud Ogle Cabin, will be fully closed from December 2 through December 20 on Mondays at 6:00 a.m. through noon on Fridays. During the work periods, roads will be closed to all vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists. The Noah Bud Ogle Cabin and parking area will remain accessible to visitors throughout the closure period. Wears Cove Gap Road will be fully closed from January 29 through January 30. Single-lane closures will be implemented on the Spur from November 18 through November 22, and again from December 2 through December 20. Beginning November 18 through March 27, single-lane closures will be implemented for short durations on Newfound Gap Road, Little River Road, Foothills Parkway West, and Lakeview Drive as well as the developed areas in Deep Creek, Cades Cove, Elkmont, and Smokemont.

All tree removal work involving single-lane closures will occur from 6:00 a.m. on Mondays to noon on Fridays throughout the work period, excluding federal holidays and the holiday period between December 23 and January 5. The work schedule is subject to change due to weather or other unplanned delays.

For more information about temporary road closures, please visit the park website at www.nps.gov/grsm or follow SmokiesRoadsNPS on Twitter.






Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Blue Ridge Parkway Invites Public Input on Proposed Special Events Involving Temporary Closures

The National Park Service announced today the opportunity to provide input on two proposed Special Use Permits which could include temporary, full closures of sections of the Parkway motor road near Roanoke, Virginia and Asheville, North Carolina, in the spring and summer of 2020.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is reviewing a permit request from Revel Race Series to allow for a portion of a running event on the Parkway motor road on Saturday, May 2, 2020. The proposed permit would include a temporary, full closure of the Parkway motor road in both directions from Milepost 377 to 383, in Asheville, North Carolina, for all or a portion of the day.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is simultaneously reviewing a permit request from The Ironman Group to allow for a part of the cycling portion of a triathlon on the Parkway motor road on Sunday, June 7, 2020. This proposed permit would include a temporary, full closure of the Parkway motor road in both directions from Milepost 91 to 112, near Roanoke, Virginia, for all or a portion of the day.

These proposed events would bring recreational users to the park as part of larger regional events, while at the same time temporarily limit access to portions of the Parkway for the safety of event participants and park visitors. Any additional management costs incurred by the National Park Service would the responsibility of the event organizers, per National Park Service policy.

The public is invited to provide comments related to impacts of potential temporary road closures associated with each of these events on the National Park Service’s Planning, Environment and Public Comment Site. Comments related to the Asheville area running event can be entered at https://parkplanning.nps.gov/RevelBRP; and comments related to the Roanoke area triathlon should be entered at https://parkplanning.nps.gov/IronmanBRP. The comment period for both proposed events is open through Friday, November 22, 2019. The National Park Service appreciates the public’s input, which will be one of many factors considered in the final permit decision.






Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Phase 1 of the Trillium Gap Trail Rehabilitation Project is nearing completion!

Great Smoky Mountains National Park has announced that the first phase of the Trillium Gap Trail Rehabilitation Project will be completed later this week. On their Facebook page this morning, the park stated that ⁣Thursday, November 14th, will be the last day of the closure for the 2019 season.⁣ According to the post:⁣
The first phase of the project focused on the rehabilitation of the trail starting from the Trillium Gap Trailhead up to Grotto Falls. The project involved the removal of hazard trees along the trail corridor, the restoration of the trail tread, and the construction of new stone and timber structures to help combat erosion and provide a safer, more sustainable trail. The work was performed by the Smokies Trails Forever Crew, along with an ACE AmeriCorps Crew. ⁣

⁣Phase 2 of the project will begin in the spring of 2020. During the second phase, the upper section of the trail from Grotto Falls to Mt. LeConte is expected to be closed from mid-May through mid-November. The actual dates for the closure will be announced next spring. The lower part of trail from the Trillium Gap Trailhead up to Grotto Falls will remain OPEN throughout the closure, providing visitors access to the falls.
⁣The photo below shows a side-by-side comparison of the trail approaching Grotto Falls (photo courtesy of Great Smoky Mountains National Park):

The rehabilitation project is supported by Friends of the Smokies, a nonprofit partner of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. For more information about Friends of the Smokies visit: https://friendsofthesmokies.org ⁣ ⁣

For information regarding the Smokies Trails Forever Program and Volunteering with Trails, please visit: https://friendsofthesmokies.org/trailsforever/






Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Monday, November 11, 2019

National Park Service Announces Entrance Fee-Free Days for 2020

The National Park Service will have five entrance fee-free days in 2020. On each of these significant days of celebration or commemoration, all national parks will waive entrance fees.

The dates for 2020 are:

● Monday, January 20 – Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

● Saturday, April 18 – First Day of National Park Week/National Junior Ranger Day

● Tuesday, August 25 – National Park Service Birthday

● Saturday, September 26 – National Public Lands Day

● Wednesday, November 11 – Veterans Day

“Across the country, more than 400 national parks preserve significant natural and cultural areas, each one an important piece of our national identity and heritage,” said National Park Service Deputy Director David Vela. “Free entrance days serve as additional motivation for people to get outside and enjoy these places of inspiration and recreation.”

Since their inception almost 150 years ago, national parks have protected resources and provided places for public health and enjoyment. With at least one site in every state, the National Park Service’s 419 parks, recreation areas, cultural sites, rivers, and trails are accessible destinations that supply benefits for overall physical and mental well being. Time spent in nature reduces stress and blood pressure and often leads to lifestyle choices that include more exercise and better nutrition. Paddling, bicycling, walking, fishing, star gazing, and camping are just some of the many memorable and healthful recreational activities available in national parks.

Veterans Day on November 11 is the only remaining fee-free day in 2019. Out of the 419 National Park Service sites, 110 charge an entrance fee, with costs ranging from $5 to $35. The other 309 national parks do not have entrance fees. The entrance fee waiver for the fee-free days does not cover amenity or user fees for activities such as camping, boat launches, transportation or special tours.

The annual $80 America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass allows unlimited entrance to more than 2,000 federal recreation areas, including all national parks. There are also free or discounted passes available for senior citizens, active duty members of the U.S. military, families of fourth grade students, and disabled citizens.

Other federal land management agencies offering their own fee-free days in 2020 include the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Forest Service, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.






Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Friends of the Smokies Seeks Donations for Cades Cove Bear Brigade

Yesterday, the Friends of the Smokies announced on their Facebook page that they are seeking donations for the "Cades Cove Bear Brigade". Here's the post if you wish to help:
Love bears? For #fundmefriday we’re spotlighting an important project: Cades Cove Bear Brigade. This volunteer program focuses on visitor safety and protection of bears through education and outreach. Donate on Facebook or online: https://friendsofthesmokies.org/donate

About the project:

This program will enable the park to more efficiently manage “bear jams” and help visitors more responsible view wildlife. These funds will be used to purchase uniforms, outreach materials, and safety equipment. (Project cost: $3,000)




Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Friday, November 8, 2019

The National Park Service Salutes Military Veterans - Free Admission on Veterans Day

The National Park Service will commemorate Veterans Day on Monday, Nov. 11, with special events and free admission nationwide.

“In recognition of the bravery and patriotism of America’s military veterans, all national parks will waive entrance fees for visitors on Veterans Day,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt. “While visiting our national parks, I encourage all Americans to pause and reflect on the significance of the holiday and the freedoms we enjoy thanks to the courageous service of the men and women in our military.”

“We are grateful for the brave men and women who have answered the call to serve in the military,” said National Park Service Deputy Director David Vela. “We invite all veterans to continue the long tradition of enjoying respite, recreation and relaxation in their national parks. From the peaceful quiet of watching wildlife to the thrill of whitewater rafting, parks are full of activities that refresh the body and soul.”

“We fought for this land, now it’s time to enjoy it,” said Adam Stump, a combat veteran who frequently visits national parks to hike and soak in the surroundings. “National parks provide amazing opportunities to appreciate the beauty and history of this country that we served to protect.”

Throughout the country, take advantage of the resources in 419 national parks to paddle, fish, hike, bike, swim, climb, explore or simply relax.

The National Park Service’s American Military website provides a list of events, as well as information about other military-related connections to national parks.

Veterans Day will be the last fee-free day in 2019. Active duty members of the military and permanently disabled veterans are also eligible for free year-round park passes. The passes provide free admission to more than 2,000 national parks, wildlife refuges, national forests and other federal recreational areas.






Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Smokies Hosts Star Gazing Event at Purchase Knob

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is hosting a stargazing event on Friday, November 15, 2019 at the Appalachian Highlands Science Learning Center in North Carolina. Located on Purchase Knob at 5,000 feet in elevation, the learning center provides one of the clearest views of the sky from the Haywood County region of the park.

The Astronomy Club of Asheville will lead an exploration of the night sky at this high elevation site with a 260-degree, unobstructed view of the sky. Visitors can expect to see many celestial wonders including star clusters, binary systems, as well as the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxies.

“National park areas offer a wonderful opportunity to stargaze,” says Park Superintendent Cassius Cash. “Visitors are often amazed at the amount of stars that can be seen simply by entering into the natural darkness of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.”

The event starts at 5:00 p.m. with an indoor presentation of what can be seen in the nighttime skies during November. This event will be held rain or shine. The learning center is located at 5,000 feet in elevation so visitors should bring warm layers for a fall Appalachian mountain evening. The program is free, but participation is limited by parking availability. Participants must register in advance to reserve one of the 45 parking permits. Reservations for parking permits can be made by registering through Eventbrite at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/stargazing-in-great-smoky-mountains-national-park-tickets-78025623741 or by calling 828-497-1907.

For more information about stargazing in the park, please visit the park’s website at www.nps.gov/grsm/learn/nature/dff509-focuspartner1.htm.





Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Laurel Falls Trail Reopened, Road Work Continues

The Laurel Falls Trail in Great Smoky Mountains National Park reopened today, November 5, 2019, following road work on November 4. Road crews will continue to pave pullouts and parking areas on each side of Fighting Creek Gap Road and Little River Road from Sugarlands Visitor Center to the Townsend “Wye” intersection over the next few weeks, weather permitting. Motorists should expect short delays and allow extra time when traveling in these areas of the park.

For more information, please visit the park website at https://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/temproadclose.htm



Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Prescribed Burns Planned for North Cherokee National Forest

During the period of November 4—8, 2019, if weather conditions permit, prescribed (controlled) burns will be conducted in various locations in the North Cherokee National Forest. Smoke may be visible in surrounding areas.

AREAS TO BE BURNED - November 4—8, 2019

Unaka Ranger District (423-638-4109)

Wagon Train (300 acres) – Located at: N 35° 57’ 46.36” X W 83° 1’ 41.14” in Cocke County on west end of Meadow Creek Mtn. along Yellow Spring Branch and Long Creek Rd, approximately 2.5 miles north of Del Rio.

Devil’s Kitchen (600 acres) – Located at: N 36° 00’ 12.05” X W 82° 46’ 59.42” in Greene County north of Asheville Hwy (Hwy 70) along Rough Branch. North end of the burn is Devil’s Kitchen Branch Rd.

Rich Mtn (100 acres) – Located at: N 36° 8’ 47.68” X W 82° 28’ 39.65” in Unicoi County on Rich Mtn. along FS Rd. 190, approximately 2.5 miles west of Erwin.

Green Knob (500 acres) – Located at: N 36° 7’ 27.61” X W 82° 28’ 28.60” in Unicoi County between Rich Mtn. and Green Knob along FS 190 Rd, approximately 2 miles southwest of Erwin. Shares a border with South California Creek burn.

South California Creek (400 acres) – Located at: N 36° 7’ 35.76” X W 82° 29’ 13.68” in Unicoi County north of California Creek at the head of the drainage along FS 190 Rd, approximately 2 miles west of Erwin.

Allen Branch Pond (170 acres) – Located at: N 36° 56’ 20.93” X W 82° 56’ 38.47” in Cocke County around Allen Branch Pond south and east of Weavers Bend Rd.

Watauga Ranger District (423-735-1500)

Heaberlin (400 acres) – Located at: N 36° 33’ 57.15” X W 81° 55’ 7.03 in Johnson County southeast of McQueen Gap in the Heaberlin Branch drainage, approximately 2.5 north northeast of Shady Valley.

Otherside (100 acres) – Located at: N 36° 13’ 31.36” X W 82° 0’ 38.52” in Carter County along Walnut Mtn. Rd northeast of Roan Mountain, approximately 3 miles northeast of Roan Mountain.

Brickyard (100 acres) – Located at: N 36° 30’ 14.75” X W 81° 53’ 7.76” in Johnson County north of Hwy 421 where it crosses Iron Mtn. near the top of Lewis Ridge, approximately 2.5 miles southeast of Shady Valley.





Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Monday, November 4, 2019

Temporary Closure of Laurel Falls Trail November 4-5, 2019

The Laurel Falls Trail in Great Smoky Mountains National Park will be closed on November 4-5, 2019, to allow road crews to pave the trail’s parking areas on each side of Fighting Creek Gap Road.

This temporary closure allows contractors to safely operate equipment in the vicinity of the trailhead. Work is expected to take all day Monday and Tuesday, and the trail will reopen Wednesday morning, November 6, weather permitting.

For more information, please visit the park website at https://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/temproadclose.htm



Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway Announces Fall and Winter Road Maintenance Projects

National Park Service managers recently announced three upcoming projects that may affect Parkway travel in the coming weeks. Visitors should anticipate one-lane or intermittent, temporary closures in active work zones. Affected sections for all projects close at approximately 8:00 a.m. each weekday and re-open daily by 4:30 p.m. The motor road will be open on the weekend, weather permitting. Those who normally commute on the Parkway during the week may want to find alternate routes.

Project information and affected areas are as follows:

• Asheville, NC Edge Rutting Project – The project begins November 4, 2019, to repair severe edge rutting from Milepost 385 – 397.5. The project will continue into the winter as weather conditions allow and will be conducted with single-lane traffic control.

• NC Bridge Maintenance – This project also begins November 4, 2019, and includes a preventative maintenance work on 20 bridges in NC between Milepost 220-469. The work will occur under single lane traffic control.

• Parkwide Boom Axe Operations – Annually, Blue Ridge Parkway maintenance and resource management staff conduct boom axe operations to help control vegetation growth along the Parkway. This work, using a large tractor with a long arm cutting head, helps insure safe sight distances and a clear right-of-way. This tractor must remain in the travel lanes during operation to properly perform its work while cutting the banks and road shoulders. Both lanes of the Parkway will be closed to all activity (cars, bicycles, and hikers) in active work zones to ensure the safety of the maintenance workers as well as Parkway visitors. Planned boom axe closures begin in November and continue through early spring. The full schedule of planned boom axe closures is available on the Parkway’s website.

Specific information regarding daily closures, related to these projects or for any other reason, is available on the Parkway’s Real Time Road Map, found at www.nps.gov/maps/blri/road-closures/





Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Friday, November 1, 2019

Cades Cove Loop Road Opening Delayed until 11:00 a.m. on Sunday, November 3

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials remind park visitors that access to Cades Cove will be delayed on Sunday, November 3 until 11:00 a.m. for the annual Cades Cove Loop Lope. The event is held on an early morning in November to minimize disturbance to visitors for this once-a-year opportunity for pre-registered participants to run either a 10-mile or 5-K loop course in support of the park.

The park granted approval for the park’s philanthropic partner, Friends of the Smokies, to host this unique event to support the park under a Special Park Use permit. To accommodate parking for the event, access to the Cades Cove area is restricted at the Townsend Wye until 11:00 a.m. on Sunday morning, which is traditionally a period of lower visitation to the area. Registered Cades Cove campers, Tremont program participants, and event participants with a parking pass must show registration documents for access beyond this point.

For more information regarding temporary road closures, please visit the park website at https://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/temproadclose.htm



Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking