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Last Update : 2008/6/20
Currently 4 visitor(s) on-line
Total visits in past 24 hours : 126
Shenandoah National Park
Visits :
   Skyline Drive  |  North District Early Spring  |  Center District  |  Little Stony Man  |  Wildflower Weekend 2006, Millers Head  | 
   Hawksbill Summit  |  Big Meadows, Black Rock  |  South District
Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park is in Virginia. It is only 2 hours away from Washington by car. Skyline Drive passes through the center of the park which is a 100-mile-long scenic drive on the ridge of mountains.

I have been to this park for a couple times in the past and still have the same question. How did it get the designation of National Park ? It has some mountains and forest, and maybe some small brooks. These are probably all the park has. We finally figured out after we saw the introduction film in the visitor center during our most recent visit. There is a presidential retreat in the park which was build on 1920 circa. Apparently it was a very popular vacation land in Rooservelt era. I guess that the presidents helped the park to earn its fame.

In my humble opinion, the views along the 100 miles long Skyline Drive look almost the same. Some viewpoints offer magnificent overlooking of the Shenandoah Valley, some offer views of range of mountains, and these are probably about all. The park lacks a main theme to keep visitors excited and eager to see more along its long 100 miles drive. I always have difficulty to describe this park. Other than mountain/valley there seems to be nothing else. Maybe we didn't do the right thing in the park. However, the only thing we could do other than driving (which we always do) and horseback riding, fishing and camping (which we opted out) is hiking. I don't really expect to see anything different on trails.
Location: Virginia, USA North East

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Park Summary
Park Rating
Rating : 1.83  (6 votes)
Rating : 3  (5 votes)
Physical Demand
Rating : 1.8  (5 votes)
Family Activity
Rating : 3.6  (5 votes)
What does the rating mean ?I want to rate for this park
Park Geography

Nearby City(Definition of Driving Distance and Time)
City, StateDistanceDrive Time
Washington, DC103 miles2:16
New York, NY337 miles5:52
Cleveland, OH350 miles5:35
Columbia, SC370 miles5:53
Detroit, MI500 miles7:35
Atlanta, GA518 miles8:06
Nashville, TN520 miles7:37
Boston, MA530 miles8:20
Chicago, IL670 miles10:10
Little Rock, AR869 miles12:27
Miami, FL1000 miles15:49
Minneapolis, MN1073 miles15:43
Nearby National Park(Definition of Driving Distance and Time)
National ParkDistanceDrive Time
Fort McHenry110 miles2:00
Congaree360 miles6:00
Cuyahoga378 miles7:02
Smoky Mountain396 miles7:16
Fort Pulaski528 miles8:46
Mammoth580 miles10:20
Acadia859 miles12:49
Hot Springs920 miles13:21
Everglades1006 miles17:40
Isle Royale1090 miles18:47
Dry Tortugas1166 miles19:34
National Park Service Website
Weather Forecast
Monthly AverageJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Temperature (ºF)29.732.542.45261.268.672.571.264.553.744.634.4
High Temperature (ºF)4245.355.765.874.98285.68477.867.757.546.2
Low Temperature (ºF)17.519.6293847.35559.358.351.239.631.522.6
Precipitation (inches)2.72.7333.
Activity Suggestion
Driving : Follow the Skyline Drive about 100 miles long. There are only a few intersections on the drive to connect to outside roads so don't expect that you can escape the park at any time. There are a couple gas stations along Skyline Drive. However, it is still a good idea to fill up before you enter the park. Speed limit is 35 mph (or 40 mph, I forgot) so plan to spend minimum 4 hours for the 100 miles long journey.

There are lots of view points along the drive. Maybe it's not necessary to stop at every point but you should try to stop at as many points as possible. Some look better than others but you won't know unless you stop and have a look.

Hiking : Trail heads are located nearby parking points or visitor centers. We didn't try any so we can't comment. You can talk to Rangers in visitor center for more information and suggestions.
Discussion Area - Shenandoah
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