Otter Creek Campground closing on Aug. 24 because of Blue Ridge Parkway staffing issue

Otter Creek Campground closing on Aug. 24 because of Blue Ridge Parkway staffing issue

Chris Graham
blue ridge parkway
(© karenfoleyphoto –

Otter Creek Campground will have to close early for the 2023 season because of a lack of staff, according to a press release from the Blue Ridge Parkway on Wednesday.

The campground, located at milepost 60.9 in Bedford, will close for the season on Aug. 24, the Parkway announced.

Reservation holders for Otter Creek campground will be contacted about refunds and other options for camping at nearby Parkway campgrounds.

The Parkway’s remaining seven campgrounds are expected to remain open through Oct. 31.

“To manage campgrounds, recreational areas, visitor centers and destinations that park visitors enjoy during the summer and fall season, the Parkway relies on a dedicated team of year-round and seasonal employees who work across a broad range of jobs. This year, due a significantly reduced applicant pool, we were able to hire 64 percent of the planned seasonal employees across the Parkway in North Carolina and Virginia,” Parkway Superintendent Tracy Swartout said.

The early closure at Otter Creek will allow the Parkway to shift its limited staffing to higher-traffic campgrounds and visitor destinations, Swartout said.

“We appreciate the public’s understanding and patience with this and other operational adjustments that may be necessary as we navigate the remainder of the 2023 season with a commitment to high quality services and safe working conditions for our team,” Swartout said.

More details about campground locations and reservations are available or; and a complete listing of facility operating schedules is also available on the Parkway’s website.

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page,