Thursday, June 17, 2010

Oh Shenandoah ... History Rich with Folklure

Shenandoah, a wilderness oasis in the busy east .

Gazing across the horizon from the peaks of Shenandoah
National Park it’s hard to believe you are just 75 miles
from the bustle of our nation’s capital. Take Skyline Drive
along the crest of the mountains through the woods
and past spectacular vistas. Hike in the shade of oak trees
along the Appalachian Trail, discover the stories from
Shenandoah’s past, or just relax in the wonder of wilderness.

Skyland Resort
Originally named Stony Man Camp, is located at the
highest point of elevation along Skyline Drive (3,680)
in Page Co, VA in the Blue Ridge Mountains providing
179 units.

ranging from the cutest little cabins

to more traditional rooms

George Freeman Pollock was the first private owner of
Skyland Resort from 1888- 1924. A young Washington DC
man whose father owned the land surrounding the resort.
George's father was a principal stockholder in the Miners
Lode Copper Co... but when the mine was not commercially
successful, George convinced his father that the land had
value for resort development.

Massanutten Lodge

To his guests at Skyland—‘Polly,’ they called him—
George Freeman Pollock was the eternal party boy,
blowing his bugle at sunrise while dressed in a ten-gallon hat
hunting trousers, boots and decorated fringed vest.

They have restored Massanutten Lodge and it is
well worth the tour if you find yourself in Shenandoah

He enjoyed breath taking views of the valley and cool mountain
breezes from his mountain cabin

He may not have been a businessman but he was a promoter...
He sold lots and developed cabins, established dining and
recreation halls. Most of all he planned and engineered
elaborate balls, costume parties, teas, pageants and bonfires.
The Skyland Resort became the core
of the new Shenandoah National Park after the
National Park Service awarded the new concession
contract to VA Sky-Line Co. Inc. in 1937

The Big Meadows Lodge is listed on the National Register
of Historic Places featuring 25 rooms and 72 additional
cabins suites.

The main lodge was built from stones cut from the
Massanutten Mtns. and the interior structure of the lodge
is made from native chestnut trees which are
now virtually extinct.

In the past a few activities included Tea with the First Ladies:
Lou Hoover and Eleanor Roosevelt.
Me? Not so grand....I just had my picture taken with
the bear who greets each person coming through the door

Each lodge has nightly entertainment..
keeping with George's tradition.....
Local talent ranging from solo singers
with acoustic guitars to blue grass bands and
Shenandoah cloggers

If that doesn't appeal....get out and hike. We went
to the Limberlost trail and found many surprises along
the way.

In June the trail is lined with pink and white mountain

Benches are provided for a rest along the way

A scenic bridge spans the trail way

If you can't find a bench... find, as I did, an old hollowed
out stump and have a seat and gaze with the binoculars
for wildlife and birds..

You won't be disappointed!
I think they should make
the Indigo Bunting their official Park Bird because
we heard them everywhere and photographed them
in every setting..

Of course we saw Bear!! Beware though they
aren't as friendly as they appear.

Driving slowly would be the safe way to view the deer
as they walk along the sides of the road....
this one appears to be reading the sign, maybe she's
checking in.

At the end of your day as the temps drop and the cooler
air comes across the mountains... relax in front of
the stone fireplace at one of the Lodges.

Visit Shenandoah... It is a great place to be.

Next post we will explore the wildlife of Skyline Drive.

To God be The Glory ~~ Great Things He Hath Done


Ruth's Photo Blog said...

What a gorgeous place.The cabins look lovely and that trail calls me for a walk.Thanks for sharing these beautiful places.

Razzberry Corner said...

Beautiful! I love Shenandoah!!!

JKoenig said...

I remember staying at Big Meadows Lodge a long time ago--probably 1963. seems like yesterday...but it wasn't!

Kathiesbirds said...

What a great place. Of course, everytime I hear of Shenendoah I want to sing that whistful song, "oh Shenendoah, I long to see you, way hey, you rolling river..." that shot of Pollock in his ten gallon hat and fringed vest is priceless!

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