What Is Skyline Drive?


Quick Answer

Skyline Drive is a 105-mile road that runs alongside the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia's Shenandoah National Park. The United States Department of Transportation recognizes Skyline Drive as a National Scenic Byway.

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Full Answer

As of 2015, Skyline Drive has 75 scenic overlooks that offer views of the Shenandoah River and Shenandoah Valley. Several biking, hiking and jogging trails are available, including a 101-mile portion of the Appalachian Trail. Wildlife viewing is a popular activity on Skyline Drive, as the Shenandoah National Park is home to black bears, deer and wild turkeys.

It takes an average of six to eight hours to travel Skyline Drive at the recommended speed limit of 35 mph. Mileposts are located on the west side of the road to mark reference points and areas of interest, such as milepost 51 at Big Meadows Lodge. Mileposts begin at 0.0 at the Front Royal entrance and end at 105 at the southern end of the Shenandoah National Park.

Skyline Drive is accessible by four entry points, which include Thornton Gap at Route 211, Rockfish Gap at Routes 64 and 250, Front Royal at Routes 66 and 340, and Swift Run Gap at Route 33. Each entry point collects a fee for access to the park.

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