May 2017 … green is creeping up the ridges in Shenandoah National Park. It was a road trip along Skyline Drive to see the shades of green, wildflowers, and even ridges where winter was still clinging in the form of leafless trees….
Route 33 east of Harrisonburg as it approaches Shenandoah National Park.
Swift Run Gap entrance station.
Blackened trees are a reminder of the April 2016 Rocky Mount forest fire that burned thousands of acres in the southern section of Skyline Drive.
Much of this area is new growth after the Rocky Mount fire. Charred trees remain.
Maintenance was underway including mowing along the shoulders in the middle section.
The Park conducted a controlled burn three weeks ago at the Big Meadow, an annual event to keep the field open as it was during the days when Native Americans hunted in the area, but green is overtaking the charred areas.
A backpacker was making his way to Big Meadow Campground.
Picnic in Big Meadow picnic area.
Big Meadow Wayside.
There was a Rockingham County school trip at Big Meadows.
Massanutten in the background with Rt. 33 making its way westward toward Harrisonburg.
At South River Picnic Area we again ran into the school kids, this time eating lunch at surrounding picnic tables.
We saw this house from one of the overlooks on the eastern side of Skyline Drive in the south section. What a gloriously beautiful place to live….
Photo taken from Skyline Drive looking at Rt. 33 West at Swift Run Gap.
Camping along the southern section of Skyline Drive at Loft Mountain.
Dondo picnic area.
Photos by Lynn R. Mitchell
May 3, 2017