#JuneEvents @NaturalTunnel

[Contributed by Megan Krager, Natural Tunnel State Park]

NATURAL TUNNEL — Happenings at Natural Tunnel State Park — June 2017

“Stock Creek Passage” – June 15, 2017 @ 10 a.m.

stock-creek-passage
“Stock Creek Passage”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Over 200 years ago, early adventurers like Daniel Boone walked these same hills and valleys we see today. Walking in their footsteps makes their journey come alive as you hike into the tunnel. View the tunnel from the inside out. This strenuous walk will include crossing boulders and rocks, just like the early adventurers. You will feel the refreshing cool water of Stock Creek on your feet and the cool summer breeze inside the tunnel on your face. Once inside the tunnel you will hear stories about how the tunnel was formed and see a fault line. Wading attire, a flashlight and a wading staff are highly recommended. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. Cost is $5 per person. This program is open to anyone age 8 and up. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. No pets allowed.

 

“CSI: Power of Pollinators” – June 15, 2017 @ 2 p.m.

Why are pollinators so important? What do they do? Who are they? Find out the answers to these questions and more during this program. Learn about how you can make a difference in the pollinator world even if you live in a subdivision. Groups will have the opportunity to view pollinator homesteads and learn how to create one at home. This is a free program.

 

“Wild Cave Tour: Bolling Cave” – June 15, 2017 @ 2 p.m.

bolling-cave-maw
“The ‘gaping maw’ in Bolling Cave”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Get down and dirty with this two hour wild cave tour. Explore the underground world of caves there true form. Crawl through crevasses and waddle through tunnels. View the archeology room, soda straws, and columns. There are no special effects/lights or sidewalks in the caves. Guests will be given a helmet with a LED light on it along with gloves and knee pads. Expect to get dirty during exploration. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration required. This program is open to anyone age 8 and up. For your comfort and safety appropriate pants and close toe shoes required. Guest must use park gear. Cost is $15 per person or for a group of 10 or more $12 per person. No pets allowed.

 

“Outdoor Skills” – June 16, 2017 @ 10 a.m.

outdoor-skills-ntsp
“Outdoor Skills”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Start your morning learning how to survive in the outdoors using ordinary objects found around your home or in your camper. Each Friday will focus on a different survival skill. This is a good free program for the whole family. This program will meet at the Chairlift. No pets allowed.

 

“Boones Run Kayak Trip” – June 16, 2017 @ 1 p.m.

boones-run-kayak
“Boones Run: Kayak Trip”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Float in the path of early Native Americans and settlers as you travel seven miles down the Clinch River. Listen for cackling Kingfishers and the splash of turtles falling back into the water. View limestone shoals along your journey. Enjoy a short refreshing swim in the river at the halfway point or skip rocks. Traverse your way through a class II rapid. Once through try to surf the rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 13 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest. No pets allowed.

 

“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run” – June 17, 2017 @ 9 a.m.

cherokee-run-canoe
“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Spend time floating five and a half miles down the Clinch River. View a variety of aquatic life from alligator gar to fresh water mussels. Watch Great Blue Herons fly by, and turtles sunning themselves on logs and rocks. At the halfway point, cool off in the river with a swim. If you are lucky, you may see old abandoned railcars. No experience is needed. Paddling is required and guests may get wet. This section of water is designated less than a class I rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 6 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person or for groups of 10 or more $12 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest.  No pets allowed.

 

“Stock Creek Passage” – June 17, 2017 @ 2 p.m.

stock-creek-passage
“Stock Creek Passage”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Over 200 years ago, early adventurers like Daniel Boone walked these same hills and valleys we see today. Walking in their footsteps makes their journey come alive as you hike into the tunnel. View the tunnel from the inside out. This strenuous walk will include crossing boulders and rocks, just like the early adventurers. You will feel the refreshing cool water of Stock Creek on your feet and the cool summer breeze inside the tunnel on your face. Once inside the tunnel you will hear stories about how the tunnel was formed and see a fault line. Wading attire, a flashlight and a wading staff are highly recommended. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. Cost is $5 per person. This program is open to anyone age 8 and up. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. No pets allowed.

 

“Fincastle Hayride” – June 17, 2017 @ 6:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m.

fincastle-hayride
“Fincastle Hayride”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Take a step back in time as we travel along the historic Fincastle Turnpike. View Rye Cove’s breathtaking countryside with its rolling hills, grasslands, and abundance of wildlife. You will even see some cactus. Enjoy an evening listening to stories about some of the structures that remain standing from over 100 years ago. Some of these structures include The Masonic Lodge, Brick Church, and much more. Trip length: 1 hour and 30 minutes or 7 miles long. Pre-registration is required by calling (276) 940-2674. Wagon is pulled by a diesel truck. It may become breezy so a sweat shirt or jacket is recommended.  Cost: Adults $5 per person; Children 12 and younger $3 per person. No pets allowed.

 

“Boones Run Kayak Trip” – June 18, 2017 @ 9 a.m.

boones-run-kayak
“Boones Run: Kayak Trip”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Float in the path of early Native Americans and settlers as you travel seven miles down the Clinch River. Listen for cackling Kingfishers and the splash of turtles falling back into the water. View limestone shoals along your journey. Enjoy a short refreshing swim in the river at the halfway point or skip rocks. Traverse your way through a class II rapid. Once through try to surf the rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 13 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest. No pets allowed.

 

“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run” – June 18, 2017 @ 2:30 p.m.

cherokee-run-canoe
“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Spend time floating five and a half miles down the Clinch River. View a variety of aquatic life from alligator gar to fresh water mussels. Watch Great Blue Herons fly by, and turtles sunning themselves on logs and rocks. At the halfway point, cool off in the river with a swim. If you are lucky, you may see old abandoned railcars. No experience is needed. Paddling is required and guests may get wet. This section of water is designated less than a class I rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 6 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person or for groups of 10 or more $12 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest.  No pets allowed.

 

“Canorkel” – June 21, 2017 @ 10 a.m.

canorkle
“Canorkle”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

This is not your typical canoe trip. It is a canoe trip with a twist. Guests will have the opportunity to explore the rich history of the Clinch River. Learn of a time when Native Americans and Longhunters lived along its banks through current day significance of the river. At a few points along the river, guests will have the opportunity to snorkel. Look for freshwater mussels, darters, and other aquatic river life. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. Cost is $15 per person or for a group of 10 or more $12 per person. This program is open to anyone age 6 and up. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, and sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest. No pets allowed.

 

“Stock Creek Passage” – June 22, 2017 @ 10 a.m.

stock-creek-passage
“Stock Creek Passage”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Over 200 years ago, early adventurers like Daniel Boone walked these same hills and valleys we see today. Walking in their footsteps makes their journey come alive as you hike into the tunnel. View the tunnel from the inside out. This strenuous walk will include crossing boulders and rocks, just like the early adventurers. You will feel the refreshing cool water of Stock Creek on your feet and the cool summer breeze inside the tunnel on your face. Once inside the tunnel you will hear stories about how the tunnel was formed and see a fault line. Wading attire, a flashlight and a wading staff are highly recommended. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. Cost is $5 per person. This program is open to anyone age 8 and up. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. No pets allowed.

 

“Aquatic Life Investigation” – June 22, 2017 @ 2 p.m.

Ever wonder what is floating around in a river or stream? See for yourself as you stomp around in the creek or river. Find out what lives in Stock Creek and the Clinch Rivers. Guests might find crayfish, fresh water mussels and other aquatic life. Learn about why this critters are important to life along the creek or river. This is a free program and guests may get wet.

 

“Hike This Way” – June 22, 2017 @ 2 p.m.

Spend time hiking portions of Natural Tunnel’s trails. View unique and historic areas normally not seen while milling along the parks trails. Follow park staff as they lead you on a hike pointing out things sometimes missed while hiking on your own. Each hike will focus on a different trail. Lace up your hiking boots and get ready for a fun time. This is a program for all ages. For your comfort and safety no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals during the hike. Water is required. Programs will depart from the Visitor Center.

 

“Outdoor Skills” – June 23, 2017 @ 10 a.m.

outdoor-skills-ntsp
“Outdoor Skills”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Start your morning learning how to survive in the outdoors using ordinary objects found around your home or in your camper. Each Friday will focus on a different survival skill. This is a good free program for the whole family. This program will meet at the Chairlift. No pets allowed.

 

“Kayak Trip: Cherokee Run” – June 23, 2017 1 p.m.

boones-run-kayak
“Boones Run: Kayak Trip”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Spend time floating five and a half miles down the Clinch River. View a variety of aquatic life from alligator gar to fresh water mussels. Watch Great Blue Herons fly by, and turtles sunning themselves on logs and rocks. At the halfway point, cool off in the river with a swim. If you are lucky, you may see old abandoned railcars. No experience is needed. Paddling is required and guests may get wet. This section of water is designated less than a class I rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 13 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest.  No pets allowed.

 

“Great American Campout” – June 23-24, 2017

NT_GreatAmCampout_banner_00871.inddLeave your house, bed, and air conditioning behind and come out to Natural Tunnel State Park to take part in a camping experience that you won’t soon forget. Camping will take place in our beautiful gazebo area with views that go on for miles. Games and educational programs will be provided including an astronomy/star gazing experience as well as music, and please feel free to bring an instrument if you wish to do so. Tent set-up will start at 4 p.m. June 23 at the gazebo. The program will end June 24 at 12 p.m. Cost is $50 for a family of four. Each additional family member is an extra $10. Dinner and breakfast will be provided. Registration required by calling (276) 940-2674. Registration deadline is June 14, 2017. Call the park for more information.

 

“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run” – June 24, 2017 @ 9 a.m.

cherokee-run-canoe
“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Spend time floating five and a half miles down the Clinch River. View a variety of aquatic life from alligator gar to fresh water mussels. Watch Great Blue Herons fly by, and turtles sunning themselves on logs and rocks. At the halfway point, cool off in the river with a swim. If you are lucky, you may see old abandoned railcars. No experience is needed. Paddling is required and guests may get wet. This section of water is designated less than a class I rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 6 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person or for groups of 10 or more $12 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest.  No pets allowed.

 

“Wild Cave Tour: Bolling Cave” – June 24, 2017 @ 2 p.m.

bolling-cave-maw
“The ‘gaping maw’ in Bolling Cave”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Get down and dirty with this two hour wild cave tour. Explore the underground world of caves there true form. Crawl through crevasses and waddle through tunnels. View the archeology room, soda straws, and columns. There are no special effects/lights or sidewalks in the caves. Guests will be given a helmet with a LED light on it along with gloves and knee pads. Expect to get dirty during exploration. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration required. This program is open to anyone age 8 and up. For your comfort and safety appropriate pants and close toe shoes required. Guest must use park gear. Cost is $15 per person or for a group of 10 or more $12 per person. No pets allowed.

 

“Lighting of the Tunnel” – June 24, 2017 @ 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

tunnel-lighting
“Lighting of the Tunnel”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Take a seven minute lantern lit chairlift ride down to the naturally made tunnel. Visit one of Scott County’s oldest buildings, the Carter Cabin. Once there, listen to stories about the Wilderness Trail provided by the Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail Association. Head out to the mouth of the tunnel to view the sheer limestone rock walls it at night. Curl up next to a campfire and listen to live entertainment echoing through the amphitheater. Entertainment will be June 24 Big Stone Gap String Band; July 29 Richard Phillips and Friends; August 26 Richard Phillips and Friends; September 30 John Kilgore Jr. and Friends; October 28 John Kilgore Jr. and Friends. These groups will get your toes tappin’ and your hands clappin’. Parking is $4 per vehicle. Chairlift is $4 per person for a round trip ticket and $3 for a one way ticket. For more information call (276) 940-2674.

 

“Kayak Trip: Longhunters Run” – June 25, 2017 @ 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

longhunters-run
“Longhunters Run Kayak Trip”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Spend your day floating nine miles down the clean Clinch River. View the Scott County countryside from a kayak as you pass over limestone shoals. At the half-way point, cool off in the river, have a rock skipping contest, or start a splash war with your family. Cruise down a class II rapid. Once everyone is through the rapid, guides can show you how to “surf” the rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 13 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $25 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest. No pets allowed.

 

“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run” – June 25, 2017 @ 3 p.m.

cherokee-run-canoe
“Canoe Trip: Cherokee Run”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Spend time floating five and a half miles down the Clinch River. View a variety of aquatic life from alligator gar to fresh water mussels. Watch Great Blue Herons fly by, and turtles sunning themselves on logs and rocks. At the halfway point, cool off in the river with a swim. If you are lucky, you may see old abandoned railcars. No experience is needed. Paddling is required and guests may get wet. This section of water is designated less than a class I rapid. To register or for more information, call (276) 940-2674. Pre-registration is required. This program is open to anyone age 6 and up and will depart from the Visitor Center. Cost is $15 per person or for groups of 10 or more $12 per person. For your comfort and safety appropriate footwear is required, no flip-flops, crocs, or sandals. Drinking water is required by the guest.  No pets allowed.

 

“Pickin’ in the Park: Music in the Mountains” – June 25, 2017 @ 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

pickin-in-the-park
“Pickin’ in the Park”, Natural Tunnel State Park. Courtesy Virginia State Parks, Creative Commons, 2017.

Do you like bluegrass or country music? Wondering what to do on a warm Sunday afternoon? Head to the Amphitheater at Natural Tunnel State Park. Members of the Cultural Arts Council provide local bands to play the afternoon away. This program showcases some of the talents our local musicians have. Dust off your shoes because these bands will get your toes tapping and hands clapping. The program is sponsored by: Hob Nob Drive in and the Mountain Empire Community College School of Music. Admission is free; parking is $4 per vehicle.

 

Show how much you like Virginia State Parks by uploading your favorite State Park picture to #vastateparks.

 

All hiking trails are open from 8 a.m. – dusk.

 

Cabins, Campgrounds, Yurts, Chairlift, Visitor Center, Pool, and the Cove Ridge Center are open.

 

The award-winning Virginia State Parks are managed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation.

For more information about Virginia State Parks’ activities and amenities or to make reservations in one of the more than 1,800 campsites or 300 climate-controlled cabins, call the Virginia State Parks Reservation Center at 1-800-933-PARK or visit www.virginiastateparks.gov.

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