Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Day 3 - Shenandoah National Park Vacation

Shenandoah National Park Vacation
Day 3
Luray Caverns
Luray, VA
Monday, September 3rd, 2012

Amy and Marielle at Luray Caverns

There are many Caverns in this part of Virginia and Luray Caverns is by far the busiest and most commercialized.  We decided to try and beat the Labor Day crowds by getting there just before they opened the doors.  This worked out rather well as we got into the first tour group of the day.

My brother and his family inside Luray Caverns

Me inside Luray Caverns

I have to say that Caverns are not really my thing, but it was still an enjoyable tour.  These are probably the most impressive Caverns I have been through, but I would probably have preferred one of the less commercialized Caverns.

After our cavern tour, my brother and his family decided to partake in Luray Caverns newest attraction; the ropes course!
My brother Bill and his family geared up for the Ropes Course!

Amy wanted no part of this, and I decided to hang back as well so I could get some photos of Bill, Michelle, and the kids.







Next up was the Garden Maze which turned out to be a lot of fun.

Overlooking the Garden Maze 
 
 Liam and Marielle at the entrance to the Garden Maze

Amy inside the Garden Maze


We also checked out a couple of the Museums at the Caverns including the antique carriage and car museum.
Marielle at the Antique Car and Carriage Museum

Panning for Gems outside one of the other Museums


After our visit to Luray Caverns, My brother Bill and his family packed up leaving Amy and I alone together for the rest of our Vacation.

It was still early enough in the day to get a good hike in.  I decided on the hike to Overall Run Falls which is listed as the tallest waterfall in Shenandoah National Park.

It was a nice hike, but unfortunately I learned that late summer is the worst time to visit the waterfalls of Shenandoah National Park.  Especially since the area is in a mild drought.

Overall Run Falls wasn't just a low flow waterfall.  During my visit it was a  no flow waterfall!  I didn't even bother to continue the climb down to the base.  At least there was a nice view from the top so it wasn't a total waste.  And the steep climb out gave me some nice exercise before the awesome dinner we had after my hike!

View from the top of Overall Run Falls

The day ended with me sitting in front of the TV at the cabin watching my Virginia Tech Hokies beat Georgia Tech.  I was happy the cabin had ESPN, but I sure did miss my big screen HDTV!

The complete set of photos from Day 3 of our vacation is posted here:
http://family.webshots.com/album/583374745tjlbwC





2 comments:

HemlockMan said...

Shenandoah is one of my least favorite National Parks. I've written about it before as being probably the most ecologically sick NP I've ever seen. Quite a number of tree species are gone, or in decline that it's disturbing when you realized the damage that's been done and which continues.

Also, the narrow-corridor aspect of it doesn't make it all that conducive to habitat preservation. I know Appalachian Trail hikers who completely avoid Shenandoah because the AT is in such close proximity to the Blue Ridge Parkway for so many miles there that the noise and presence of cars and crowds is problem.

Still, I guess it's better than no National Park there at all.

Eeyore said...

Squeaked it out in overtime, but hey, now GT has to sweep the rest of their ACC schedule and VT has to lose two for GT to have a chance. Way to go.