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Old 09-28-2016, 10:01 AM   #1
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Driving the Blue Ridge Parkway in a motorhome

Lots of folks have questions about driving a motorhome on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It is a beautiful drive, but the road is not forgiving. Case in point:

Overturned RV closes section of Blue Ridge Parkway | WLOS


FWIW, this is on the easy part of the BPR through Asheville.
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Old 09-28-2016, 10:15 AM   #2
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I've traveled the whole region for work for years. I would hop on and off the Blue Ridge Parkway from time to time, but I have no desire to go 45 mph on crooked, hilly roads for hundreds of miles. I feel the same about the Natchez Trace.

But I'm good for about an hour. I always carried road maps and watched when there's alternative roads in the area that were easier to travel on.
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Old 10-01-2016, 02:13 PM   #3
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We have driven about half on the Blue Ridge and all of the Natchez Trace 3 times. The first time was a little slow and time consuming. The next time we just relaxed and enjoyed the beauty and got 20% better milage made some nice stops along the way. Take 3 days and enjoy the trace.
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Old 10-01-2016, 07:28 PM   #4
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We just got back from driving the Skyline to the Blue Ridge Pkwy heading toward Ashville. It was quite beautiful and we camped in the Parkway campground around mile post 408. There were no hookups but decent fairly level space for our 26 foot rig. I saw just a few pull through sites. I recall seeing another Parkway campground further north, but it was too early in the day for us to stop. If you have a National Park Pass or a Senior Access Pass, the camping is half price. We paid $7.50.
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Old 10-01-2016, 07:40 PM   #5
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I bought my first motorhome in 1974. I have driven the Blue Ridge parkway many times. I have seen lots of other motorhomes on the parkway. I have never seen a motorhome wreck on the parkway. I am sure they do happen but I don't think it is very often. It is not for those in a hurry. You MUST slow down.
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Old 10-02-2016, 09:00 PM   #6
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Traveled the Parkway in October last year. Peak leaf time and a lot of traffic. Other motorhomes and quite a few Fifth Wheels. Parkway was not difficult driving but some entry roads could be a challenge.

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Old 10-02-2016, 09:13 PM   #7
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We've done both the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Natchez Trace. Indeed, they're NOT a high speed drive. On the other hand, if you're more interested in enjoying the journey than logging maximum miles in minimum time, they're both beautiful drives.

Life's a journey...enjoy the trip.

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Old 10-05-2016, 05:52 PM   #8
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We've been thinking about heading over there to see the leaves. However, some of the tunnel clearances make me take pause. At 13' 5" we exceed the height at the sides for a few of them, so I guess we's have to move toward or over the centerline to pass though. Is there a way to pause before entering some of the tunnels to allow oncoming traffic to pass?
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Old 10-05-2016, 06:09 PM   #9
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This road, and others that are similar in other areas of the country (there are quite a few), are the reason I pull a toad. My coach might be able to make the drive, but the bigger question is, which one am I going to enjoy driving the most? It's no fun driving a behemoth on roads designed for bikes and sports cars....
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Old 10-05-2016, 06:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamaman View Post
I have no desire to go 45 mph on crooked, hilly roads for hundreds of miles. I feel the same about the Natchez Trace.

But I'm good for about an hour. I always carried road maps and watched when there's alternative roads in the area that were easier to travel on.
I'm about the same way on both also. The beauty and history is there, but for me it becomes boring after a while. Also, I grew up in WV near that end the Blue Ridge Parkway so it is not that unique to me. I read a lot about the Natchez Trace and couldn't wait to get there, but after about an hour I was ready to see something else.

Just my 2c.

Steve
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Old 10-06-2016, 07:33 AM   #11
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This road, and others that are similar in other areas of the country (there are quite a few), are the reason I pull a toad. My coach might be able to make the drive, but the bigger question is, which one am I going to enjoy driving the most? It's no fun driving a behemoth on roads designed for bikes and sports cars....
I enjoy driving our motorhome more than anything else we own. We don't really have a comfortable car, we have a jeep for a toad and that thing rides like an ox cart.

I don't want to inconvenience other drivers while trying to maintain clearance in some of the tighter tunnels, so I am planning adjust our trip to avoid them. It looks like we can get onto Skyline drive near Stanardsville, VA at Rt. 33 to avoid the Mary's Rock Tunnel, detour around the Bluff Mountain Tunnel, and end our Blue Ridge Parkway adventure near Linville Falls, NC on Rt. 221 to avoid the remainder of the southern tunnels.

With regard to speed, if there aren't any grades steeper than 8% and no hard right switchbacks, I should not hold anyone up, so long as they are content to drive the speed limit. If they aren't, I'll be looking for the first available pull off.

Does anyone know if the park service keeps the trees trimmed back to a standard height?
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Old 10-06-2016, 08:40 AM   #12
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Just drove it end to end in August. Trees can be a problem on the southern end. In one section, I must have looked like a drunken driver weaving between them. Beautiful drive, but you have to pay attention.

Jake
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Old 10-06-2016, 09:39 AM   #13
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Just drove it end to end in August. Trees can be a problem on the southern end. In one section, I must have looked like a drunken driver weaving between them. Beautiful drive, but you have to pay attention.

Jake
Thanks for sharing your experience. We are trying to schedule our trip during the week in hopes of encountering a bit less traffic. Hopefully that will give us a little room for maneuvering around the trees.

I prefer to only tread where commercial trucks tread, for clearance reasons. However, after visiting other scenic mountain ranges in North America over the last few years, I feel remiss in not spending some time on the range that is right in my back yard.
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Old 10-07-2016, 04:16 AM   #14
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I've stated this on other BRP threads before, if nothing else, driving a big RV on the BRP so YOU can enjoy the beauty, is rude to those drivers stuck behind you that only get to see the back of your RV. It was built for AUTO touring......

You will also cause oncoming traffic to dodge you (hopefully) when you hug / go over the center line to dodge the trees that over hang the road, or ensure you have tunnel clearance. Worst case is you cause an accident or kill someone in a head on collision.

Large commercial trucks are prohibited, for good reason. No reason other than selfishness to drive it in a large RV. Not sure why they don't have a blanket GVW / length restriction.

I know some think otherwise........
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