Shenandoah National Park announces winter Visitor Center hours
Starting Friday December 4, Byrd Visitor Center will go to a weekend only schedule, weather permitting. The visitor center will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays when Skyline Drive is open. It will also be open on both winter holiday Mondays: January 18 (Martin Luther King Day) and February 15 (Presidents Day). The center will be closed on Friday, December 25.
Rangers will be available to answer questions and help plan visitor trips. Movies, interactive exhibits, and the Park bookstore will be available. Backcountry camping permits may also be obtained during operating hours.
Winter visitors must come prepared as no commercial services are available after November 29. The following picnic grounds will remain open, weather permitting: Elkwallow, Pinnacles, South River, and Dundo.
Late fall through winter is a special time to visit Shenandoah National Park. Trails are less crowded and new discoveries can be found around every corner. Landforms are revealed in the absence of leaves; ice formations appear along shady springs and streams; and wildlife goes about its daily business of survival.
Weather can be drastically different in higher elevations and along Skyline Drive than in the surrounding valleys. Please use caution when driving Skyline Drive or hiking in the park. Be prepared to encounter winter driving conditions, including snow and ice, at any time. Winter visitors need to be self-reliant. Keep extra, warm clothing in your car and wear layers when hiking. Visitors should bring plenty of water and food, as well as a flashlight, map, and traction coils for hiking boots.
Skyline Drive is open year round, but the Drive may be temporarily closed on short notice for indefinite periods due to winter weather conditions. For the most current Skyline Drive status, call (540) 999-3500, choose Option 1, and then Option 1. Park road status is also posted on Facebook and Twitter.
There is a $20-per-vehicle entrance fee to the park, good for seven days. For more information about planning a trip to Shenandoah National Park, please see the Park’s website at http://www.nps.gov/shen/ or call the park at (540) 999-3500.