Shenandoah National Park in winter is one of the most beautiful parks in Virginia. Usually, people go to this park during the autumn season, but there is plenty to do during the winter months too. As it gets really cold during the winter months, the mountains get a decent amount of snowfall. Here are some fun things that you can do in Shenandoah National Park in winter:
Start your trip to National Park with a drive:
When you visit Shenandoah National Park in winter, make sure to go for a drive because the view around the park is very picturesque and beautiful. You can enjoy the skyline and views around the park while having the comfort of your car. It is a beautiful route to take if you want to have a fun drive. The 105-mile long skyline drive is the most peaceful experience you can have in the park, and if the roads are closed for the cars, you can always walk around and enjoy the beautiful view. During the summer months, everything around is super green and lush, but during the winter months, it’s covered with snow which gives it a beautiful view.
Check out the Byrd Visitor Center:
Usually, all the park facilities are closed during the winter months, but the Byrd Visitor Center is open during the weekends. You can stop there to check out every detail about the park, from the weather to the things you can do around. If you want to pick any supplies for your stay, you can also do that from the center.
Go for a hike:
You can go for a fun hike trip in Shenandoah National Park in winter, and make sure to wear extra layers because the temperature drops down a lot during the winter season. You can also bring a map to be safe about the route and mark your trails. Also, make sure you are fully prepared for the hike, like get extra batteries, have enough water, and carry some snacks. It will be one of the best hikes of your life. The trails usually go up higher on the mountains, so make sure you are going in a group and not alone. There are many things to explore while you are on the hike because the Shenandoah National Park in winter is surprisingly beautiful with all the snow. You can also go to the campsites to enjoy the camping experience during the winter months.
Check out the winter wildlife in Shenandoah National Park in Winter:
Shenandoah National Park in winter is known to be home to hundreds of unique animal species, so if you see anything around you, then don’t be scared but be prepared. You will get to explore and see so many new kinds of birds and animals. If you are lucky enough with the timings, then you might come across some foxes and bobcats. You can watch birds like woodpeckers, nuthatches, and many more. There are around 300 to 400 black bears in the park but make sure you admire the animals from a distance. They take refuge in their dens during the winter months as they hibernate during that time. Any close interactions with the animals shouldn’t be made because that can be dangerous as you do not know if the animals are hungry or well-fed.
Licensed hunters can visit the nearby wildlife management area:
Hunting is restricted inside the National Park, but you can go to the Rapidan Wildlife Management Area because it is a private property that is open for licensed hunters to go hunting. However, there are various regulations that you need to follow, but other than that, it is all safe. You can also go in for fishing because that is open throughout the year.
Enjoy the vineyards in Shenandoah National Park in Winter:
Near the Shenandoah National Park, there are Glen Manor Vineyards which are over hundreds of years old. You can plan a visit to this vineyard and do some wine tasting. You can also explore a lot inside the vineyard, and the place is beautiful.
Visit the Luray Caverns in the Shenandoah National Park in winter:
When you are in the park, then make sure to go to this amazing site known as Luray Caverns. It used to be a key attraction for tourists earlier and even now. It is also known as the escape site during bad weather days in the park. It is a complex cave system that is home to various geological features like beautiful mirror pools, gigantic stones, and much more.