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Julian Price Memorial Park [MP 295.1 – 298]

Julian Price Memorial Park is named in honor of Julian Price, an insurance executive. Price was an insurance executive who purchased the acreage in the late 1930s and 1940s to create a retreat for the employees of his insurance company. His premature death in 1946 postponed these plans and the lands were deeded over to his company. They in turn donated the lands to the National Park Service / Blue Ridge Parkway for public recreational use with the cooperation and approval of Price’s son and daughter. Jefferson Standard did request that Boone Fork be dammed to create Price Lake as a memorial for Julian Price. [1]

Comprising more than 4,200 acres including a small lake, Julian Price Memorial Park offers many activities, including hiking, fishing, canoeing, camping, guided walks, and evening campfire programs. The grounds include 100 picnic sites, with shelters and comfort stations. A 300-seat amphitheater is used for lectures and talks during the summer months. Canoes and boats can be rented for use on Price Lake.

The park’s seven trails include the Price Lake Loop Trail (2.7 miles), which circles the well-stocked lake, and the challenging 5-miles Boone Fork Loop Trail. The ingeniously engineered Tanawha Trail (13.5 miles) passes under the Linn Cove Viaduct and wraps around the southeastern ridge of Grandfather Mountain.

The grounds are also known for the fact that the nation’s largest National Lumberjack Association rally is held here annually.

The visitor center and store are open April 22nd – October 31st from 9am – 5pm, except 12pm – 1pm for lunch.

Excerpted from TripAdvisor hiker reviews:

Beautiful (mostly) covered hiking trail around the lake – We hiked this trail while it was raining and barely got wet. The foliage is very think around the well-worn trail. It made for a very enjoyable hike. The path is pretty flat and easy to follow. It was a nice, relaxing morning hike. ” — user melbyt Durham, North Carolina

Wonderful stop for picnic, fishing, camping, hiking – This is a charming park that has everything to offer outdoor enthusiasts. A beautiful lake, trails, picnic ground and excellent campground. (no hookups). Boat rentals in season. We hope some day to return for a long multi day visit. ” — user Hobbits2nfro Tennessee Ridge, Tennessee

Leaves at their PEAK! (October 19) – Wonderful views and scenic overlooks! There are tons of places to stop in the grass if there isn’t an overlook nearby. The famous “postcard view” of the Linn Cove Viaduct is here! ” — user kfamoore Chapel HIll, North Carolina

Interpretive and Educational
  • During the summer months – educationl and interpretive programs in the amphitheater by the National Park Service (NPS).
  • Flat Top Mountain Carriage Trail [MP 294] A “moderate” walking trail to the Fire / Observation Tower where one can get a complete view of the park.
  • Green Knob Trail [MP 295.9] This trail offers a view of Calloway Peak from its summit.
  • Boone Fork Trail [MP 296.4] This follows Boone’s Fork Creek and runs jointly with the Mountains-to-Sea Trail.
  • Mountains-to-Sea Trail access [MP 296.4]
  • Price Lake Loop Trail [MP 296.7] Loops around the lake.
  • Tanawha Trail [MP 297.1] This trail runs 13.5 miles thru the Park, around Grandfather Mountain, under the Linn Cove Viaduct and ends at Beacon Heights [MP 305.5]. There is an access point here.
[1] Wikipedia, “Julian Price Memorial Park”

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