Rock slide blocking NC stretch of Blue Ridge Parkway is blamed on deluge of rain

Rock slide blocks part of Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina
Rock slide blocks part of Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina

The heavy rain that fell over the weekend in the North Carolina mountains caused a rock slide on the Blue Ridge Parkway in the Deep Gap area.

Both lanes of scenic parkway were blocked Tuesday with massive boulders at mile marker 277, which is near the Stoney Fork Valley Overlook. That’s north of Boone.

National Park officials are warning the public to “to travel with caution and watch for debris,” should other areas of rock break away.

The National Weather Service reports 2 to 6 inches of rain fell in Western North Carolina over the weekend. One area along the South Carolina state line reported nearly 7 inches of rain.

Photos of the rock slide showed boulders weighing several tons had rolled across the pavement. It is reported trees came as well.

The park service has not said when the road will reopen.

Areas along the parkway are famous for being “geologically unstable,” particularly between Asheville and Mount Mitchell, reported the Asheville Citizen-Times last year. Late winter and early spring is when rock slides typically occur because of the thaw-freeze cycle, especially at high elevations.

Travelers are advised to check for closures at: https://go.nps.gov/brp-map.