Blue Ridge Parkway staff and volunteers are actively preparing for the solar eclipse on August 21, 2017. That day, from approximately 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., the eclipse will cross much of the southern section of Parkway on its journey across the United States. Weather permitting, visitors to this section of Parkway, from Milepost 417 – 469, will have the opportunity to experience 100% totality in approximately 17 overlooks. Additional overlooks in this section, and extending north of this area, will experience varying partial totality.
In anticipation of an unprecedented volume of visitors on the day of the eclipse, Parkway managers are asking anyone interested in experiencing the eclipse on the Parkway to plan ahead and follow these guidelines:
- Expect heavy traffic. Have plenty of patience and make sure you have full tank of gas. Rangers may implement short term closures if parking becomes full or roads become congested.
- Plan several options for viewing locations and get there early. If parking is full at your first choice location, move to another.
- Be prepared. In addition to special viewing glasses, visitors should bring food, plenty of water, a first-aid kit, flashlight, and provisions for changing weather.
- Pack it in, pack it out. To help protect park resources, visitors should pack out any trash generated during their time on the Parkway.
Additional information about what to expect and how to prepare is available on the Parkway’s website. On the day of the eclipse, the Parkway will use its Twitter channel for any updates or announcements.
The Blue Ridge Parkway is one of 21 National Park Service sites in the path of the eclipse. National parks offer a memorable setting for watching the eclipse; and during the eclipse, park rangers and volunteers will be on site at selected overlooks throughout the day reminding visitors about the many other ways to experience the Parkway’s natural and cultural resources throughout the year.