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Author Topic: Virginia  (Read 906083 times)

cpzilliacus

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5300 on: October 08, 2020, 12:24:11 AM »

What are your thoughts about this stretch of road? While I know it would be both costly and disruptive in places, I wonder if more could be done to promote 17 as a viable alternative to 64 and 95...

I love U.S. 17 between I-64 in Newport News and the junction of U.S. 17 and U.S. 301 in Port Royal.  Been driving it somewhat regularly since the early 1980's and it is one of my favorites in Virginia. Back then there was a fairly long two-lane undivided section between Tappahannock and Port Royal. 

Just watch out for speed limit enforcement by the municipal police in the Town of Tappahannock, and sometimes the VSP has enforcement out on the "open road" parts of the corridor. 
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sprjus4

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5301 on: October 08, 2020, 09:53:59 AM »

^

Those "open road" stretches ought to be at least 65 mph, but state law that refuses to get updated...

They did increase the speed limit between Saluda and Gloucester last year from 55 mph to 60 mph, which is a nice improvement, but could go more.
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Old Dominionite

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5302 on: October 08, 2020, 06:00:05 PM »

I appreciate the perspectives, everyone. Thanks!
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MillTheRoadgeek

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5303 on: October 09, 2020, 01:36:09 PM »

60/65 MPH arterials? That is something I don't recall seeing anywhere around here. I didn't even know of any non-highway roads in the U.S. that were over 55 MPH for a while.

Quite awesome to hear anyway.
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1995hoo

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5304 on: October 09, 2020, 01:47:12 PM »

60/65 MPH arterials? That is something I don't recall seeing anywhere around here. I didn't even know of any non-highway roads in the U.S. that were over 55 MPH for a while.

Quite awesome to hear anyway.

You don't head southwest out of Prince William County very often, I take it. US-29 has been posted at 60 mph for most of the stretch between Opal and Ruckersville (with a short exception near Madison that's posted at 55) for probably at least ten years now. The segment of US-17 they're discussing is a lot quieter than US-29.
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—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

MillTheRoadgeek

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5305 on: October 09, 2020, 02:02:15 PM »

You don't head southwest out of Prince William County very often, I take it. US-29 has been posted at 60 mph for most of the stretch between Opal and Ruckersville (with a short exception near Madison that's posted at 55) for probably at least ten years now. The segment of US-17 they're discussing is a lot quieter than US-29.

Hehe. But yes, I've mostly traveled out west into the Shenandoah Valley, rather than across the Piedmont/Coastal Plain. With curvier and narrower roads being more plentiful there, I can understand the lack of higher posted speeds. That being said, I do hope to see such roads one day.
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1995hoo

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5306 on: October 09, 2020, 02:09:26 PM »

You don't head southwest out of Prince William County very often, I take it. US-29 has been posted at 60 mph for most of the stretch between Opal and Ruckersville (with a short exception near Madison that's posted at 55) for probably at least ten years now. The segment of US-17 they're discussing is a lot quieter than US-29.

Hehe. But yes, I've mostly traveled out west into the Shenandoah Valley, rather than across the Piedmont/Coastal Plain. With curvier and narrower roads being more plentiful there, I can understand the lack of higher posted speeds. That being said, I do hope to see such roads one day.

No wonder you haven't encountered it yet. The list of roads with at-grade intersections in Virginia that are posted above 55 mph is pretty short and is prescribed by statute:

Quote
The maximum speed limit shall be 60 miles per hour where indicated by lawfully placed signs, erected subsequent to a traffic engineering study and analysis of available and appropriate accident and law-enforcement data, on U.S. Route 17, U.S. Route 23, U.S. Route 29, U.S. Route 58, U.S. Alternate Route 58, U.S. Route 301, U.S. Route 360, U.S. Route 460, U.S. Route 501 between the Town of South Boston and the North Carolina state line, State Route 3, and State Route 207 where such routes are nonlimited access, multilane, divided highways.

Here's the full text of that section, if you're interested. The main thing is that any road with at-grade intersections can't legally be posted above 55 mph except for the ones for which an exception has been codified, and even for roads for which higher speed limits are permitted, a speed limit above 55 is not automatic due to the requirement for traffic engineering studies and accident analysis.
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

sprjus4

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5307 on: October 09, 2020, 04:27:49 PM »

^

The list is short, but Virginia is quite liberal at posting 60 mph when it's legally allowed.

For instance, most divided segments of US-58 are 60 mph, most divided segments of US-460 are 60 mph, most divided segments of US-29 are 60 mph, etc.

US-17 has mostly 60 mph south of Fredericksburg, though north of there, it still remains 55 mph due to local opposition to increasing it due to "safety reasons".

US-301 and VA-207 were recently approved to be included in the list, and now most of VA-207 / US-301 has been increased from 55 mph to 60 mph between Maryland and I-95.

60 mph segments are limited by route, but extend hundreds of miles throughout the state. To the south, North Carolina is quite conservative at posting 60 mph even though there's technically no limits on where it can be posted, but has been recently increasing more and more areas. The same holds true with their freeway system, where 70 mph is the maximum allowed, but a lot still remain at 65 mph (interesting enough, also was one of the only states on the East Coast besides West Virginia and Florida to once propose 75 mph limits in the last decade. Virginia proposed 75 mph interstate speed limits in the 90s, though never passed). South Carolina legally cannot go above 60 mph, but pretty much any divided road or 5-lane road for that matter is posted at 60 mph. West Virginia posts up to 65 mph on divided highways, as does Tennessee and Kentucky (though not the eastern part of the state).

Outside of the Northeast and Virginia/North Carolina/Maryland, 65 mph and 70 mph limits, even up to 75 mph in states such as Texas, is common occurrence on 2 and 4 lane divided highways.
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bluecountry

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5308 on: October 11, 2020, 06:58:00 PM »

PHEW!
Common sense prevailed, bypass will happen:

How do you prefer the bypass? I'm just curious and I would like a quick debate.

Honestly, I used to appreciate it but now oppose it quite so. Come to think - the 28 corridor past Manassas is hardly going to benefit from such a bypass, with no local configuration pouring money into the communities and providing for revitalization. There are also risks of pollution being next to Bull Run, and noise levels increasing in adjacent communities. I've even found a few sources that suggest that this bypass will struggle with traffic issues later on - the 6-lane segment in Fairfax will create a bottleneck between the two roadbeds (original and bypass), the intersections along the way are scheduled to operate at a weak LoS, and even overpasses will be needed down the line (along existing Godwin Dr.). I'm hoping there's still time for them to reconsider and finally get things going.

Because Rt 28 traffic is way to big for the current roadway.  It needs to continue with the freeway or near freeway like design until 234/Manassas, that is why.
West of the bypass, it is rural and things will be fine but currently Rt 28 is way way too small.
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MillTheRoadgeek

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5309 on: October 12, 2020, 03:40:29 PM »

Because Rt 28 traffic is way to big for the current roadway.  It needs to continue with the freeway or near freeway like design until 234/Manassas, that is why.
West of the bypass, it is rural and things will be fine but currently Rt 28 is way way too small.

While I have agreed to this idea in the past, I am more in favor of widening the road in town - especially with a new finding of mine. Some have found the 28 bypass to be a tad bit redundant, with the 234 bypass existing. I'll agree as the latter road is due for new interchanges and alternative-design intersections. What are your thoughts on this statement?
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Dirt Roads

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5310 on: October 12, 2020, 05:58:07 PM »

Because Rt 28 traffic is way to big for the current roadway.  It needs to continue with the freeway or near freeway like design until 234/Manassas, that is why.
West of the bypass, it is rural and things will be fine but currently Rt 28 is way way too small.

While I have agreed to this idea in the past, I am more in favor of widening the road in town - especially with a new finding of mine. Some have found the 28 bypass to be a tad bit redundant, with the 234 bypass existing. I'll agree as the latter road is due for new interchanges and alternative-design intersections. What are your thoughts on this statement?

I'm assuming you mean an eastern bypass for Manassas/Centreville, as opposed to the western bypass (Prince Bill VA-234).  Back 25 years ago, Manassas had a great eastern bypass that got very little usage (Liberia Avenue), but that only worked for traffic between VA-28 and VA-234 (Centreville to Dumfries).  After the initial Prince Bill opened up some sections, Liberia got connected to Hastings and the route was marked "To VA-28 South" and Liberia "To VA-28 North".  However, this route never worked as a true bypass of downtown Manassas since Hastings was winding and both Hastings/Liberia were fairly slow.  The only time I used both of them together was once traveling Dulles to Fredericksburg when WTOP was reporting bad traffic on I-95 through Lorton and there was a huge accident somewhere in Manassas on Church Street.  Of course none of this helps with the mess between Manassas and Centreville.

It's going to be tough to push an eastern bypass through since it will disturb the lower sections of both Cedar Run and Bull Run.  But it has been needed for at least three decades.
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froggie

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5311 on: October 13, 2020, 12:11:25 AM »

A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away...

There was a proposal for the Monticello Freeway, from the east side of Manassas vicinity to the Beltway at Braddock Rd.  The 1969 regional plan had it continuing further inside the Beltway to other proposed and never built facilities, while at least one 1960s era regional plan suggested tying it into Route 28 southwest of Manassas.
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1995hoo

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5312 on: October 13, 2020, 07:35:49 AM »

The maps in the Northern Virginia Thoroughfare Plan show the Monticello Freeway extending inside the Beltway. The public library in Fairfax City has the plan. I have a copy of some of the maps I scanned using an iPad, but the only online copy of my scans is in Photobucket. If I can figure out where it is on my PC, I’ll upload it, but I don’t want to make any promises as to when that might be.
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

MillTheRoadgeek

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5313 on: October 13, 2020, 05:00:48 PM »

I'm assuming you mean an eastern bypass for Manassas/Centreville, as opposed to the western bypass (Prince Bill VA-234).  Back 25 years ago, Manassas had a great eastern bypass that got very little usage (Liberia Avenue), but that only worked for traffic between VA-28 and VA-234 (Centreville to Dumfries).  After the initial Prince Bill opened up some sections, Liberia got connected to Hastings and the route was marked "To VA-28 South" and Liberia "To VA-28 North".  However, this route never worked as a true bypass of downtown Manassas since Hastings was winding and both Hastings/Liberia were fairly slow.  The only time I used both of them together was once traveling Dulles to Fredericksburg when WTOP was reporting bad traffic on I-95 through Lorton and there was a huge accident somewhere in Manassas on Church Street.  Of course none of this helps with the mess between Manassas and Centreville.

It's going to be tough to push an eastern bypass through since it will disturb the lower sections of both Cedar Run and Bull Run.  But it has been needed for at least three decades.
Well, the planned bypass is the eastern one here - it is clearly oriented towards 28 and Centreville. It'd be a route that's more laterally aligned with city commuters, though the 234 bypass is an overall faster way to a true highway in I-66, versus the arterial 28 in Fairfax.

Liberia has certainly been built up with retail, making it less of a bypass than previously believed. It's a tad shame development patterns and natural features have prohibited construction of easy connectors like those in the area.

A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away...

There was a proposal for the Monticello Freeway, from the east side of Manassas vicinity to the Beltway at Braddock Rd.  The 1969 regional plan had it continuing further inside the Beltway to other proposed and never built facilities, while at least one 1960s era regional plan suggested tying it into Route 28 southwest of Manassas.
I do believe it would have been a benefit to traffic early on, and could perhaps work today. Though with a lot of highways dotting the area, imagine what the development situation might have been!
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AlexandriaVA

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5314 on: October 13, 2020, 05:11:51 PM »

If you look at Fairfax County tax maps, you can see that VODT still has a pretty handsome unused right-of-way buffering Braddock Road in a number of areas, particularly outside the Beltway as far west as Guinea. Presumably left over from the unbuilt freeway. I've heard rumors of a Braddock Rd HOT lane in recent years...don't know how that would work with the grade-level crossings such as Burke Lake Rd, Wakefield Chapel, etc.

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1995hoo

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5315 on: October 13, 2020, 09:41:12 PM »

?s=21
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

cpzilliacus

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5316 on: October 13, 2020, 09:48:58 PM »

If you look at Fairfax County tax maps, you can see that VODT still has a pretty handsome unused right-of-way buffering Braddock Road in a number of areas, particularly outside the Beltway as far west as Guinea. Presumably left over from the unbuilt freeway. I've heard rumors of a Braddock Rd HOT lane in recent years...don't know how that would work with the grade-level crossings such as Burke Lake Rd, Wakefield Chapel, etc.

I believe that would be the Monticello Freeway.  Short Wikipedia article here
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bluecountry

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5317 on: October 14, 2020, 03:48:18 PM »

Because Rt 28 traffic is way to big for the current roadway.  It needs to continue with the freeway or near freeway like design until 234/Manassas, that is why.
West of the bypass, it is rural and things will be fine but currently Rt 28 is way way too small.

While I have agreed to this idea in the past, I am more in favor of widening the road in town - especially with a new finding of mine. Some have found the 28 bypass to be a tad bit redundant, with the 234 bypass existing. I'll agree as the latter road is due for new interchanges and alternative-design intersections. What are your thoughts on this statement?

I couldn't disagree more.
1) The 234 bypass stinks, it needs to be limited access.  Moreover it is N-S directionally.

2) Rt 28 is the major corridor from the Dulles area/Dulles Toll Road/I-66/and central FFX-Tysons-even inner Arl and DC to points west in PW and south in PW and Stafford.  It is appropriately becoming a limited access road from Bull Run to Rt 7 before it becomes a gridlocked stop and go local business route in town that is completely inadequate.  This is not just a rush hour issue, think weekend getaways to I-95; West FFX and PWC lack a needed freeway to connect them to I-95.  28 is being used as this and the result is immense suffering (and safety) issues.
-The bypass is SOLEY needed as this is a thru route and a continuation of an existing freeway.  The bypass as planned will take existing traffic already there and move it smoothly through Manassas (where it can exit) to Bristow (where it can exit) to 234 (where it can also exit in route to 95).  This is SO so needed and will not induce as the demand is there NOW.
-In fact it will give the business and residents of Manassas on 28 a needed breather and improve their quality of life.

3) The other bypass to the south of 28, I was with DOT, we already studied it, bad choice.
-It costs more, it has many more wetland, parkland, and green space takings.
-It reduces 28 traffic less as it focuses more on routing people to 234-95 as opposed to Manassas, Bristow, as well as 234-95.
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bluecountry

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5318 on: October 14, 2020, 03:50:36 PM »

A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away...

There was a proposal for the Monticello Freeway, from the east side of Manassas vicinity to the Beltway at Braddock Rd.  The 1969 regional plan had it continuing further inside the Beltway to other proposed and never built facilities, while at least one 1960s era regional plan suggested tying it into Route 28 southwest of Manassas.

My dream would be for Braddock Road to become a limited access parkway west of Shirley Gate.
-Braddock would have an interchange @ Shirley Gate and all points west...it would be renamed 'Braddock Parkway'
-It would extend over I-66, dumping traffic on I-66 before connecting with Stone Road.
-This would allow US 29 in Centreville to become a more walkable revitalized village.
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Jmiles32

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5319 on: October 15, 2020, 01:44:36 PM »

Because Rt 28 traffic is way to big for the current roadway.  It needs to continue with the freeway or near freeway like design until 234/Manassas, that is why.
West of the bypass, it is rural and things will be fine but currently Rt 28 is way way too small.

While I have agreed to this idea in the past, I am more in favor of widening the road in town - especially with a new finding of mine. Some have found the 28 bypass to be a tad bit redundant, with the 234 bypass existing. I'll agree as the latter road is due for new interchanges and alternative-design intersections. What are your thoughts on this statement?

I couldn't disagree more.
1) The 234 bypass stinks, it needs to be limited access.  Moreover it is N-S directionally.

2) Rt 28 is the major corridor from the Dulles area/Dulles Toll Road/I-66/and central FFX-Tysons-even inner Arl and DC to points west in PW and south in PW and Stafford.  It is appropriately becoming a limited access road from Bull Run to Rt 7 before it becomes a gridlocked stop and go local business route in town that is completely inadequate.  This is not just a rush hour issue, think weekend getaways to I-95; West FFX and PWC lack a needed freeway to connect them to I-95.  28 is being used as this and the result is immense suffering (and safety) issues.
-The bypass is SOLEY needed as this is a thru route and a continuation of an existing freeway.  The bypass as planned will take existing traffic already there and move it smoothly through Manassas (where it can exit) to Bristow (where it can exit) to 234 (where it can also exit in route to 95).  This is SO so needed and will not induce as the demand is there NOW.
-In fact it will give the business and residents of Manassas on 28 a needed breather and improve their quality of life.

While I agree that the VA-234 bypass stinks and should be light free north of VA-294/Brentsville Road, the notion that VA-28 will be limited access between the Bull Run and US-29 is basically nonexistent since there doesn’t appear to be any plans to remove any of the lights through Centreville due to it being a more 'residential" area. Do I agree with this plan or lack thereof? No. Is it unfortunately tough reality? Yes. Next, to be clear, the bypass will not be a freeway and will have at grade intersections on both the planned part and the existing one (Godwin Drive) will no current plans to change this. Finally, I am still not convinced that this bypass will take much if any existing traffic off of VA-28 and will instead take the traffic off of VA-234 and make VA-28 north of the bull run even worse (and the soon to be constructed 3rd lane obsolete) when the bypass and regular VA-28 meet back up. All this does is entice commuters in Bristow to take the bypass/VA-28 all the way to I-66 instead of first using VA-234. If this bypass is built, current VA-28 in Manassas will still have problems. As I’ve said before, I believe that the best option here is the one not currently on the table that is to construct a new southbound only roadway a block west of current VA-28 and make this part northbound only with 3 lanes in each direction and an additional BRT/HOT lane. Improvements should then also be made to VA-234 such as constructing interchanges at Sudley Manor Drive and University Blvd…oh wait :banghead:
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Stephane Dumas

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5320 on: October 15, 2020, 02:05:12 PM »

?s=21

They could have convert US-50 as a mini-freeway with the adjacents streets being turned into one-way streets but I can already hear the Nimbys saying "how dare you?".
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noelbotevera

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5321 on: October 18, 2020, 11:16:03 PM »

My god I love the roads in the Shenandoah Valley. Drove VA 259, VA 42 north of Harrisonburg, US 211 - all so much fun. I did go EB on 211 so I got stuck on the older, narrower highway which was harrowing thanks to Luray Caverns tourists (the type who inexplicably speed up when they're being overtaken...then there's a curve). The climb and descent to Sperryville also felt like forever.

Anyways, first remarks over a daytrip to Harrisonburg (went to Bar-B-Q Ranch for lunch, along with walking around James Madison University). Instead of I-81, took US 48 to WV/VA 259 instead - lot more fun. Went around and took pictures of fall foliage and wanted to go to Luray Caverns. Decided against it due to price and looked like a tourist trap - drove on to Washington VA and toured around the town (looks gorgeous in fall colors). Sadly, the Inn at Little Washington covered the windows, and so the famed mannequins are no longer visible. Did buy some chocolates, spices, bread, and jam there.

Are there any caves in Virginia worth visiting? I guess I have to visit Luray at some point to say I've been, but I prefer less touristy, more natural caves (I liked the Smoke Hole Caves at Seneca Rocks).
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Alex4897

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5322 on: October 18, 2020, 11:44:52 PM »

Are there any caves in Virginia worth visiting? I guess I have to visit Luray at some point to say I've been, but I prefer less touristy, more natural caves (I liked the Smoke Hole Caves at Seneca Rocks).
This isn't so much a cave as it is another massive geological formation, but Natural Bridge, VA is worth a visit. The whole park consists of a trail leading up a river valley, through the natural bridge (which is massive), and past a small cave that you can wander around in and some other neat features. Making that a stop along a Blue Ridge Parkway / Skyline Drive trip is definitely worth it, the whole area is beautiful.
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Rothman

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5323 on: October 19, 2020, 01:40:58 AM »

Luray has always been expensive.  Went there fifteen years ago.  Hit on my wallet still smarts.
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1995hoo

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Re: Virginia
« Reply #5324 on: October 19, 2020, 07:34:46 AM »

Luray Caverns is expensive, but it’s the largest one and is generally agreed to be about the best of the bunch.
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"You know, you never have a guaranteed spot until you have a spot guaranteed."
—Olaf Kolzig, as quoted in the Washington Times on March 28, 2003,
commenting on the Capitals clinching a playoff spot.

"That sounded stupid, didn't it?"—Kolzig, to the same reporter a few seconds later.

 


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