Blue Ridge Parkway

Map of Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center TRACK Trail

The Blue Ridge Parkway’s Asheville Visitor Center TRACK Trail was the first TRACK Trail we installed (August 29th, 2009). Located at the Blue Ridge Parkway’s Asheville Visitor Center (Milepost 384), the TRACK Trail offers four self-guided adventures for kids of all ages. The 1.5-mile long loop trail follows a section of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail on both sides of the Parkway. Note: there is a road crossing… be aware of Parkway traffic when crossing. The trailhead can be found at the far end of the visitor center’s parking lot. Be sure to go inside the visitor center and interact with their exhibits, watch the Parkway’s film and get more information about the Blue Ridge Parkway.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a 469 mile journey through the Blue Ridge Mountains, connecting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina and Tennessee with Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. The Parkway travels along the crests of the Blue Ridge Mountains through 29 counties in North Carolina and Virginia. With breathtaking vistas around every turn, hundreds of miles of hiking trails to stretch your legs and more biological diversity than almost any other region in the United States, the Parkway is a Journey of a lifetime.

In addition to the TRACK Trail, another fun and exciting program for youth to do on the Blue Ridge Parkway is the Junior Ranger program! Become a Junior Ranger by stopping at any visitor center to pick up activity sheets specific to the local area. Complete the activities and promise to help care for and learn about America's National Parks to earn stickers, badges, and patches. Complete all 10 activity sheets for the Parkway and you will receive a special badge designed just for Blue Ridge Parkway Junior Rangers.

Track an adventure here
Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center TRACK Trail sticker

Location Details

Recreational Features: Picnic Tables, Interpretive Programs, Birding
Amenities: Restrooms, Nature Center, Visitor Center, Gift Shop
ADA Compliant: No
Seasonality: Open all year
Trail Head sign
Young boy on trail with walking stick
Group of children on guided hike on trail
Young boy playing by Trail Head sign
Young boy playing with feather on trail
Curve in the trail
Young children playing by trail head sign

Adventures for Blue Ridge Parkway

Fall Foliage: Nature's Painted Landscape Brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Fall Foliage - Nature's Painted Landscape

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
In the Fall Foliage: Nature's Painted Landscape brochure, you will discover about the natural processes that cause the leaves of deciduous trees to change color every fall. From greens to yellows to deep reds, you will learn what pigments leaves use to paint the Parkway into an unforgettable autumn landscape. So, get out there along the Parkway (or anywhere outdoors really) and enjoy the colors of fall.
Buds become Blossoms brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Buds become Blossoms

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Buds become Blossoms brochure was designed to help you identify a few of the most common trees found along the Blue Ridge Parkway based on the tree's buds and blossoms. Simply match the pictures of the buds and blossoms found in the brochure with their proper description. Then, use the pictures and descriptions to help you find as many buds and blossoms as you can as you walk along the trail.
Ferns - A Sketchbook Guide brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Ferns - A Sketchbook Guide

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Ferns - A Sketchbook Guide brochure is our most challenging adventure. Follow the illustrations and clues to find as many of the ferns as possible. You're going to have to be a nature detective to find them all.
Nature's Hide & Seek brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Nature's Hide & Seek

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Nature's Hide & Seek brochure is designed so that kids of all ages can walk along the trail and discover common things that are often overlooked in nature. Some of them are hard to find, others are easy. Best of all, the adventure never ends because every time you walk the trail you will discover new things hiding in nature.
Nature's Hide & Seek Winter Edition brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Nature's Hide & Seek Winter Edition

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Nature's Hide & Seek: Winter Edition brochure is similar to our original Nature’s Hide and Seek brochure led adventure except that the items you are looking for are common things that are often overlooked in nature during the winter. See if you can help TRACK find all of the items on his checklist. Some of them are hard to find, others are easy; but, best of all the adventure never ends because every time you walk the trail you will discover new things hiding in nature.
Nature's Relationships - Everything's Connected brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Nature's Relationships - Everything's Connected

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
In the Nature's Relationships brochure you will discover how everything in nature is connected... even us.  As you walk along the trail, the brochure will tell you a story about a few of the relationships that can be found. Many more relationships exist, so keep your eyes and heart open and you will discover many of nature's relationships - even yours.
Tracking Tree Treasures brochures
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Tracking Tree Treasures

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Tracking Tree Treasures brochure was designed to introduce you to the various tree treasures found along the trail.  Follow the riddles to find the next tree and discover the natural, cultural and historic tree treasures.
Animal Athletes brochure
Hiking

Animal Athletes

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Animal Athletes adventure challenges kids to exercise with the animals. This brochure gives kids eight different animal exercises they can do along the trail. From hummingbird hand-swings to lizard pushups, kids are sure to have fun getting in shape with the animals during their outdoor adventures.
Flower Power brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway : Flower Power

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
Many flowers depend on relationships with pollinators to reproduce. Use the clues in this brochure to see how a flower’s size, shape, color and smell have the power to attract unique pollinators.
Birds of the Blue Ridge Mountains brochures
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Birds of the Blue Ridge Mountains

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
The Birds of the Blue Ridge Mountains brochure is an illustrated field guide containing some of the more common birds found along the trail. Each illustration contains the bird's common name, Latin name and phonetic spelling of their call. Having trouble locating birds? Use the back panel illustration to identify their preferred location within the forest.
Hikin' to Find Lichen brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Hikin' to Find Lichen

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
This brochure-led adventure takes kids deep into the mysterious world of lichen. Kids will discover the three different forms lichen can take, and some of the features that make the lichen lifestyle unique. Kids will also read the Lichen story about Alice Algae and Freddy Fungi to help them remember how lichens work.
Bug Out brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Bug Out

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
Bugs come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and colors, so it can be easy to mistake one family of creepy-crawlies for another. On your hike today, use this brochure to get "Bugged Out" and learn the differences between insects, spiders, and other common arthropods.
Types of Trees brochure
Hiking

Blue Ridge Parkway: Types of Trees

Difficulty:
Easy
Trail length:
1.50
It’s easy to get confused with the various types of trees that can be found in the Blue Ridge Mountains. There are more species of trees here than in all of Europe! Use this guide to identify and learn about a few of the common types of trees in the area.

Directions

Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center -milemarker 384, 195 Hemphill Knob Rd.
Asheville, NC 28803
Latitude: 35.564346800000
Longitude: -82.479837400000

There are four main entrances to the Parkway that are within a 10 minute drive to the visitor center –  one from the “north” and three from the "south".

From the North

Tunnel Road Entrance:

From the Tunnel Road entrance to the Parkway, travel “south” for 1.3 miles to the Visitor Center entrance on the right.

From the South

Charlotte Highway / US 74-A Entrance:

From the US 74-A entrance to the Parkway, travel “north” for 0.7 miles to the Visitor Center entrance on the left.

US 25 Entrance:

From the US 25 entrance to the Parkway, travel “north” for 4.6 miles to the Visitor Center entrance on the left.

US 191 Entrance:

From the US 191 entrance to the Parkway, travel “north” for 11 miles to the Visitor Center entrance on the left.

Partners

The Blue Ridge Parkway's Asheville Visitor Center TRACK Trail was made possible through partnerships formed between the Kids in Parks program and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the National Park Service.

There are several other activities available on the Blue Ridge Parkway! To find out more, visit the NPS website at http://www.nps.gov/blri/forkids/index.htm