Today, modern road tripping is a fast growing hobby, and not just a means of vacationing. Groups dedicated to the art of the road trip, known either as professional road trippers or road enthusiasts, are becoming prevalent online.
Although there are many personalities in the road tripping community, many road enthusiasts advocate sharing the roadways, preservation of historic places and natural spaces, and safe driving. Much like backpacking, many road enthusiasts also subscribe to the ideas of Leave No Trace
The Leave No Trace message is framed under seven principles:
Plan Ahead and Prepare
Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
Dispose of Waste Properly
Leave What You Find
Minimize Campfire Impacts
Be Considerate of Other Visitors
So I ask you, are you ready for a road trip? I am compiling an itinerary of the state parks that would be fun to visit on one road trip per month, I have grouped them in 12 different trips, so that equates to one per month. This is part 1 of this road trip!
Part 1 consists of Shenandoah River and Sky Meadows State Parks:
Let's begin in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia where we can stay overnight at Shenandoah River State Park
just outside of Luray and Front Royal. This park is located along the beautiful meandering south fork of the Shenandoah River and has 24 miles, seven of which are multi-use. The park is 1,604 acres with 5.6 miles of river frontage. It also the park offers scenic vistas overlooking Massanutten Mountain and Shenandoah National Park.
Drive Times to reach this park: Northern Virginia, two and a half hours; Richmond, two and a half hours; Tidewater/Virginia Beach, four hours; Roanoke, two and a half hours.
Shenandoah River State Park
is open year-round; it has standard tent only sites, electric-water camping, four camping cabins (bunkhouses), regular cabins and a lodge. For information on availability of overnight accommodations, particular park amenities or to make a reservation, you can reserve online
or call 1-800-933-PARK (7275). Click here
for park fees.
From Shenandoah River State Park
we now hit the road for 35 minutes to visit Sky Meadows State Park
, which does not have cabin rentals, but does allow year-round primitive hike in tent-camping. See the map below (click for road trip turn-by-turn directions).
Scenic overlook at Shenandoah River State Park in the fall
A bug's eye view of Sky Meadows State Park in the fall
Sky Meadows State Park
offers a peaceful getaway on the eastern side of the Blue Ridge Mountains. With rolling pastures and woodlands, the park boasts beautiful vistas of the foothills and access to the Appalachian Trail. Its rich history is shaped by the development of agriculture and the impact of the Civil War. Activities include hiking, fishing, picnicking, horseback riding, primitive camping, and nature and history programs.