Shenandoah National Park closing more facilities due to COVID-19

By  | 

SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK, Va. (WHSV)— Shenandoah National Park is making other changes to their operations following new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Virginia Department of Health (VDH).

Photo of Nethers Road in Madison County that was later closed to all but local traffic. | Credit: Shenandoah National Park

While the park remains open, they closed two popular trails earlier this week due to the large number of hikers making proper social distancing impossible. As of March 25, the Shenandoah National Park closed the Old Rag and Whiteoak Canyon-Cedar Run circuit hikes.

On Thursday, the park announced more changes.

As of March 26, all restrooms are closed and the backcountry is closed to overnight camping through April 30. As of right now, there is no overnight camping allowed in the park.

Additionally, the Appalachian Trail huts, shelters and cabins are closed. All park-operated facilities are closed, including visitor centers.

Lewis Mountain Cabins and Campstore and the Big Meadows Wayside are not operated by the park, and will open with some restrictions. Lewis Mountain opens on March 26, but no more than 10 people are allowed in the camp store at a time. The Big Meadows Wayside will open March 27, but no more than 10 people will be allowed in at a time, and there will be no prepared food. The dining room is also closed.

There are also changes in Albemarle County. The county, Charlottesville and the Rivanna Water and Sewer Authority have closed Sugar Hollow Reservoir.

While the outdoor spaces in Shenandoah National Park will remain open, the park is encouraging everyone to follow CDC and VDH guidelines. Additionally, since services are limited, they're asking park-goers to practice Leave No Trace, and bring out everything you bring into the park, including trash.

If you're planning a trip to the park, you can find information about what's open and any other updates on their website or on their Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.