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Russell County is located in the southwestern portion of Virginia in the Heart of Appalachia region. A variety of recreational activities are available in Russell County. You can also raft, canoe, kayak or float down the Clinch River. Two portions of the river are part of Virginia's Scenic River Program. In addition the Big Cedar Creek flowing out of the Lebanon area into the Clinch is a scenic waterway.
A nice stop for floaters is at the confluence of the Big Cedar and the Clinch. The Pinnacle Natural Area Reserve offers lush greenery, trails, spectacular cliffs and breathtaking waterfalls.
The city of Dante in Russell County was once the headquarters of the Clinchfield Coal Corporation and home to thousands of coal miners and their families. Visit the Dante Coal Miner's Memorial, and learn more about this area through the Dante History Project at the Dante General Store.
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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.