A Bucket List Road—The Blue Ridge Parkway

A Bucket List Road—The Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway plows through the longest linear park in the U.S., stretching over 469 miles from near Waynesboro, VA, to US 441 in North Carolina along the Blue Ridge Mountains. Those hundreds of miles include some of the most stunning views you can find in all of America.

It’s no wonder the Parkway is constantly the most visited part of the National Park System every year. An ocean of trees stretches out over the mountains and valleys at every pullout and lookout point.

With around 6,000 feet of elevation changes across its length, the Blue Ridge Parkway lets you experience multiple seasons during one ride. The warm, summery weather in the valleys can give way to what feels like winter chills on the peaks.

Perhaps the incredibly varying weather is what led to the construction of this road being such a lengthy process. Work began in 1935 and wasn’t complete until 1966—with the exception of the Linn Cove Viaduct that opened in 1987. The Parkway was half a century in the making, but it sure was worth it.

That also means you should prepare for all kinds of weather along this incredible road. You likely won’t freeze if you ride it in the summer, but you may get drenched so don’t forget your rain gear.

Otherwise, the Blue Ridge Parkway is a relaxing and exciting ride at the same time. The speed limits don’t get above 45 mph, making for a smooth, laid-back motorcycling experience.

Yet, the mountain twisties along the way will sate your thirst for curves. There’s also plenty of gravel around (and sometimes on) the road for those of you looking for a more technical ride.