Although this is filed under “Hiking”, it’s mostly a driving trip. I took off Friday afternoon and headed up toward Waynesboro with no particular plan. Reaching the northern entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway, I began driving south hoping to camp at the Otter Creek Campground around mile marker 60. After stopping to photograph the sunset around mile marker 40, I arrived at Otter Creek around 8PM, set up camp, and ate dinner. Even though it was early October, Otter Creek Campground is at one of the lowest points on the Parkway and the temperature never fell below the mid-70s during the night. Not quite typical nor what I expected.
Having lived in western North Carolina for many years, I’ve spent a good amount of time driving, cycling, and hiking on the Blue Ridge Parkway. I had never traveled the entire length in a single trip, however. In fact, I had never visited the extreme northern or southern ends at all. After breaking camp Saturday morning, I continued driving south and, after taking some sunrise photos just north of Roanoke, continued on – stopping at various overlooks along the way. The fall foliage was just beginning to turn so there weren’t many photo opportunities for large, dramatic, and colorful vistas. Spending the night outside of Asheville, I drove the final 60 miles to the southern terminus in Cherokee, NC.
I never grow tired of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Whether driving, cycling, or hiking – and regardless of the time of year – I can always find something to enjoy on the Parkway. I’m looking forward to getting back up there with the bicycle or the backpack next spring.
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