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Nelson County is located in the central part of Virginia and the economy has traditionally been based on agriculture and natural resource-based industry such as timber and quarrying.
The scenic surroundings have attracted recreational development in recent years, most notably the 10,800-acre Wintergreen Resort in northwest Nelson County. Nelson County is also home to Swannanoa mansion and is the location of Walton's Mountain made famous by the television show, The Waltons. Nelson County is also home to many thriving vineyards, three craft breweries, a cidery, a whiskey distillery, and Crabtree Falls.
Fishing and camping are popular activities in Nelson County. Sections of the Tye River are also popular for whitewater boating with canoes and kayaks. The rapids are rated Class I to Class II+ Depending upon water conditions some rapids on the Tye River can approach class III.
Nelson County is approximately 30 miles from both Charlottesville and Lynchburg; 150 miles southwest of Washington, D.C.; 100 miles west of Richmond, the state capital; and 191 miles from Norfolk.
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SKYLINE DRIVE... The Skyline Drive runs 105 miles north and south along the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Shenandoah National Park and is the only public road through the park. You can enter Shenandoah at four places: Front Royal near Rt. 66 and 340, Thornton Gap at Rt. 211, Swift Run Gap at Rt. 33, and Rockfish Gap at Rt. 64 and Rt. 250 (also the northern entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway). It takes about three hours to travel the entire length of the park on a clear day.
As you travel along Skyline Drive you will notice mileposts on the west side (right side if you are traveling south) of the road. These posts help you find your way through the park and help you locate areas of interest. The mileposts begin with 0.0 at Front Royal and continue to 105 at the southern end of the park.
The speed limit is 35 mph, so you can roll down your windows, feel the breeze and experience every curve and turn of this beautiful drive. There are 75 overlooks that offer stunning views of the Shenandoah Valley to the west or the rolling Piedmont to the east. The park purposely leaves the roadsides unmowed so wildflowers put on a show all year long.