Shenandoah National Park to implement night closures of Skyline Drive

Park Superintendent Jim Northup announced today that portions of the Skyline Drive, the famed mountain road through Shenandoah National Park, will be closed at night during hunting season. He noted that this is the 33rd year that this closure has been undertaken and stressed its importance in reducing illegal hunting activity within the park during the Commonwealth of Virginia hunting season outside the park.

Beginning Monday, Nov. 11, and ending Sunday, Jan. 5, the Skyline Drive between Front Royal (Mile 0 at U.S. Highway 340) and Thornton Gap (Mile 31 at U.S. Highway 211) and between Swift Run Gap (Mile 65 at U.S. Highway 33) and Rockfish Gap (Mile 105 at U.S. Highway 250) will be closed daily between 5 p.m. and 8 a.m.  The central portion of the Drive, between Thornton Gap and Swift Run Gap, will remain open for overnight access to Big Meadows Campground and Skyland Resort until those facilities close on Dec. 1 and Dec. 8, respectively.  Beginning Monday, Dec. 9, and ending Sunday, Jan. 5, the entire length of the Skyline Drive will be closed daily from 5 p.m. until 8 a.m.

Superintendent Northup said, “Closing portions of the Skyline Drive enables rangers to concentrate patrols on problem areas and to increase contacts along the park boundary.”

Superintendent Northup also reminded the public that the park has a reward program to assist in combating illegal hunting in the park.  “A reward will be paid to anyone who furnishes information which leads to the conviction of any person who hunts, transports, or attempts to transport illegally taken wildlife within the park,” said Northup.

Anyone with information about such activities should call the park (toll free 1-800-732-0911; or 540-999-2227).  The identity of persons furnishing information will be kept strictly confidential, and a person does not have to reveal his or her name.

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