Weeks of rain has taken its toll on the Blue Ridge Parkway at what is the worst possible time for a closure of a stretch of roadway in the Mount Pisgah Asheville area as peak leaf season is coloring the slopes and valleys of North Carolina.
Crews are working right now to erect temporary barriers in hopes that the most of the roadway will be opened back up Friday for the 2nd weekend of peak leaf season on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The area that will remain closed would be the Ferrin Knob Tunnel Number 1.
The slope that is causing all this grief has been closely monitored by the park service since it first failed in 2002 and had been repaired and according to Bambi Teague, the Blue Ridge Parkway's chief of resource management "It has been slipping and sliding since then, but in the past three weeks, it has been moving way more than anyone expected it would" which prompted the closure.
The picture above was taken 2 days ago on the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina and shows how fall color has already painted the slopes and valleys in reds, yellows and oranges between US 441 and US 19. This stretch is unaffected by the closure and leaf peepers traveling from Asheville should use US 276 near Brevard or NC 151 from Candler.