A spectacular view on this clear morning from Little Stony Man Cliffs!

This popular site is also one of many sensitive rock outcrop habitats in the park. Some state-listed endangered plant species that grow here are three-toothed cinquefoil (Sibbaldiopsis tridentata), Rand's goldenrod (Solidago simplex var. randii) and Appalachian fir clubmoss (Huperzia appalachiana). These and other plants...
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Among the many joys of hiking in the winter, you'd think no ticks would be one! But, unfortunately, we have many, many reports of visitors and staff finding the pesky monsters this winter. Be sure to be vigilant and anytime you have symptoms, even if you didn't find a tick or have the classic bull's eye, tell your healthcare provider that you've been in tick habitat. Especially for those of...
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A winter sunrise from last year, featuring my favorite, "Gone with the Wind" tree. :)

March 2016 | Just below Hazel Mountain Overlook
From: Shenandoah National Park
To: You <3

#NPSPickupLines #ValentinesDay #birds
February is an important courtship period for many medium-sized carnivores in the Park. These include skunks, coyotes, raccoons, and bobcats. This marks a time when you’ll be able to observe these ordinarily nocturnal species more frequently during the day. #ValentinesDay
It may be winter right now, but we know you're already planning your spring and summer trips to the Park. Don't forget to mark your calendar for this year's special events!

Special Events - Shenandoah National Park (U.S. National Park Service)

"The February sunshine steeps your boughs and tints the buds and swells the leaves within."

~ William C. Bryant

It is still winter in these mountains and it will be for another couple of months. To some, this is cause to celebrate; the rest mark the days until spring arrives.

But nature doesn't care which side of the fence you're on as regards spring; nature just continues to work her...
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Stony Man has a cold nose this morning!
A dash of cinnamon-red burns through the dark plumage of an aptly named red-tailed hawk along Skyline Drive. She was kind enough to show me her best side before diving deeper into the forest - far from prying eyes (or camera lenses). Just another reason to take it slow on the Drive (the speed limit is 35 mph)...you never know what you'll see! < br >
Ice stings the edges of Mary's Rock Tunnel like fangs filling the mouth of the abominable snowman....

Okay, so maybe I let my imagination run a little wild here, but isn't that what visiting the Park is all about? What other hidden images have you seen in Shenandoah lately?
"I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape ~ the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn't show." ~ Andrew Wyeth

Photo: Stony Man profile.
"The sky is the soul of all scenery. It makes the earth lovely at sunrise and splendid at sunset. In the one it breathes over the earth a crystal-like ether, in the other a liquid gold." ~Thomas Cole

Hazel Mountain Overlook | February 2016
When the winter seems too long, I always look for hepatica--the harbinger of spring. This beautiful, delicate, but tough flower is among the first wildflowers to bloom in Shenandoah, usually signaling the coming of a new season. Imagine our surprise to find it blooming along the Moormans River Trail last Friday, the 27th of January! It may be jumping the gun, but it's a beautiful sight...
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Skyline Drive is closed due to ice and snow. If you are heading up to hike, please be very, very careful because under the snow is a sheet of ice. Very slippery!! Be sure to use traction coils on your boots!
Here's what Skyline Drive looked like at dusk when we decided to close!
All seasons have something to offer: winter's crisp air, spring's new life, summer's ease, fall's brilliant color. At Shenandoah National Park, you can pick a time to visit that suits your style. What's your favorite season?
Want to be in the U.S. Department of the Interior's Valentine’s video? Send your public lands romance pics to newmedia@ios.doi.gov
It's honorable: the determination with which water flows down a mountain. As the cold sets in and icy fingers grip to defiant river rocks, the cold streams refuse not to continuously move forward. There is power and force there, but there is also something else: a quiet peace that can be found nowhere else on Earth. It's in this peace that I find true refreshment of the soul.
Due to extremely wet and icy conditions, ALL of Skyline Drive is closed.