DAY RIDE TO NATURAL TUNNEL STATE PARK

Jeff is ready to ride.

Jeff is ready to ride.

On Tuesday, July 1st, 2014, we took a Day Ride. Our destination was the Natural Tunnel State Park in Southwest Virginia.

 

 

Jeff kicks off our ride with this short video:

We took off from our home in North Knoxville at 9:45 am. We rode north on Broadway stopping briefly to fuel up and grab some snacks for the trip. We continued north on Broadway, rode through Halls, and continued on 33 through Maynardville.

We stopped briefly at the marina off 33 to eat a snack.

View from the marina.

View from the marina.

From the marina, we continued north on 33 to Tazewell. In Tazewell we took 25E north which took us through Harrogate and then into Cumberland Gap. We rode into Cumberland Gap and took a few photos.

Cumberland Gap

Cumberland Gap

Cumberland Gap

Cumberland Gap

From the Gap we rode into Virginia on 58.

Highway 58

Highway 58

Highway 58 is a wide four lane road that runs parallel to the Cumberland Mountains. We continued on 58 through Jonesville, then stopped at a scenic overlook in Stickleyville, VA.

Scenic overlook in Stickleyville, VA.

Scenic overlook in Stickleyville, VA.

Virginia is beautiful!

Virginia is beautiful!

Another view from the scenic overlook.

Another view from the scenic overlook.

Another view.

Another view.

Jeff discusses our ride so far in this short video:

We then rode onto Duffield and into the Natural Tunnel State Park.

The Natural Tunnel is described on the Natural Tunnel website as follows: More than 850 feet long and as tall as a 10-story building, Natural Tunnel was naturally carved through a limestone ridge over thousands of years. William Jennings Bryan called it the “Eighth Wonder of the World.”

The park has a $3.00 per bike admission fee and a $3.00 per person chair lift fee. The view of the Natural Tunnel is well worth the admission fee! Look at our photos and videos to get a great sense of this wonderful site and then make plans to go yourself.

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Chair lift descending to the Natural Tunnel.

Video of the chairlift ride:

Pathway to the Tunnel.

Pathway to the Tunnel.

Railroad into the Tunnel.

Railroad into the Tunnel.

Jeff getting a closer view.

Jeff getting a closer view.

Jeff talks about the Tunnel in this video:

An even closer view of the mouth of Natural Tunnel.

An even closer view of the mouth of Natural Tunnel.

Natural Tunnel opening.

Natural Tunnel opening.

View from Natural Tunnel down the railroad track.

View from Natural Tunnel down the railroad track.

Railroad track going through adjacent man made tunnel.

Railroad track going through adjacent man made tunnel.

Jeff shoots another video:

Overlooking railroad.

Overlooking railroad.

Video of chairlift leaving the Tunnel site:

Railroad car display on the edge of the parking lot.

Railroad car display on the edge of the parking lot.

Jeff at play.

Jeff at play.

Inside the Natural Tunnel Park Museum.

Inside the Natural Tunnel Park Museum.

After gawking at the Natural Tunnel, we visited the Museum before heading off to lunch. We truly enjoyed our visit here and were absolutely blown away by the beauty and wonder of the Natural Tunnel.

We had lunch at the Red Stone Drive In which is only about a mile from the park entrance.

Red Stone Drive In

Red Stone Drive In

Red Stone Drive In

Red Stone Drive In

Inside the Red Stone.

Inside the Red Stone.

A cool fifties motif.

A cool fifties motif.

Yum!

Yum!

Look at that delicious banana split! Wow!

Look at that delicious banana split! Wow!

When you go to the Natural Tunnel, be sure to visit The Red Stone In. The folks are friendly and the food is great.

After lunch, we took 23 south, stopping briefly in downtown Gate City, Virginia.

Gate City, Virginia

Gate City, Virginia

Gate City, Virginia

Gate City, Virginia

We continued on 23 south into Kingsport where we took 346. 346 took us through Mount Carmel, then Church Hill and led us right to 11W.

We took 11W into Rogersville and continued on to Mooresburg where we took 31 north. 31 took us up and over Short Mountain with curves very similar to parts of the Dragon. After we descended down the other side of Short Mountain, we took 131 into Thorn Hill and then into Washburn.

Having a drink and Popsicle in Washburn.

Having a drink and Popsicle in Washburn.

From Washburn we continued south on 131 through Lutrell, Plainview and then back into Knoxville.

We got back home at 6:15pm and our total ride was 242 miles.

Here is our ride wrap up video:

If you enjoy taking Day Rides, put this one on your to do list!

See our entire list of Day Rides HERE.

About Pam Huggins

I love to hang out with my family, ride motorcycles, and draw comics.
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8 Responses to DAY RIDE TO NATURAL TUNNEL STATE PARK

  1. Adam Shue says:

    I love your store. You guys are great. So helpful and easy to talk to. Thanks for the blog, has given me a lot of ride ideas. Keep it up! God bless you two.

    • Pam Huggins says:

      Hi Adam. Thank you for following along! We are so glad you like our rides.
      Next time you do a great ride- let us know. We always appreciate hearing new ideas.
      Take care and enjoy the ride.
      Jeff and Pam

  2. Carolyn says:

    This looks like a beautiful place. This is for sure on our list of day trips. Thank you

  3. Carolyn says:

    Do you have directions to all of these great places that you can print off with out printing all the pics?

    • Pam Huggins says:

      Hi Carolyn. No, it’s all combined. You could copy and paste the the post into your Word program, delete out any media you don’t need and then print. Takes a little time but would eliminate printing so much.
      Hope that helps!

  4. Lisa says:

    On this tunnel ride does it have any bad curves and how long did it take from Farragut to there

    • Pam Huggins says:

      Hi Lisa. The ride is easy with nice gentle curves. The total mileage to The Tunnel State Park in Virginia is about 120 miles.
      Thanks for your comment! This is a great ride and fun to do.

Comments are closed.