The drive to Snowshoe...?
27 posts
17 users
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Mark91178
January 19, 2010
Member since 01/19/2010 🔗
2 posts
Hey all -

I'm making my first trip from Nova to Snowshoe on Thursday and they're calling for light rain/freezing rain. How concerned should I be about makin this trip safely?
I know freezing rain, anywhere, is never good. It doesnt sound like they're calling for much, but I've never been in the WV mountains and don't know what the trip there will be like once I get off 81.

Any insight?

Thanks!
Steve
January 19, 2010
Member since 02/15/2006 🔗
160 posts
Mark,

Drove back today. About half of the trip is interstate, the rest windy to hilly and windy roads. Be careful when you get past Petersburg. The good news is that most of the trip after that is in the valley and the Temps are 10 degrees higher than on the mountain. The last 10 miles or so could be hairy in freezing rain.

Good luck, have a great time.

Steve
snowglobe
January 20, 2010
Member since 03/12/2007 🔗
150 posts
From DC area to snowshoe, If the road condition is sketchy, I would take the second entrance.

Once you get on Rt 66 and get pass Cass, you will find the first entrance to snowshoe, keep driving for about 10-15 minutes, you will see the second entrance -- this one is less steeper. My friend couldn't drive up the mountain using the first entrance during a snowstorm but had no problem with the second entrance.

Hope this help.
kwillg6
January 20, 2010
Member since 01/18/2005 🔗
2,034 posts
Which route are you taking? It really depends on how much time you spend on ridges. The top at the shoe will be a snowy, icy, slide, regardless.
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Murphy
January 20, 2010
Member since 09/13/2004 🔗
618 posts
During freezing rain events, the deep valleys are usually colder. If you check the pointwise forecast from the NWS, you'll see that Greenbank's forecasted low for tonight is actually lower than the summit at Snowshoe. This inversion should end sometime during the morning tomorrow and the freezing rain will switch to sleet and then snow.

With the temps as marginal as they are, salt should keep the roads from freezing. Not sure if they treat those back roads but hopefully WVDOT will use the same stuff they had on I77 two weeks ago that kept if from freezing when it was 7 degrees. What ever it was may explain why all the grass was black when I drove that stretch yesterday.
Mark91178
January 20, 2010
Member since 01/19/2010 🔗
2 posts
My route is taking me 81 to Rte 11 @ Harrisonburg, then 33 to 66W.

It looks like the forecast is ever changing (as usual), and the temps may stay up until afternoon. That'll give me enough time to leave early tomorrow and get there before anything gets bad.

Thanks for the feedback.
REL1203
October 3, 2010
Member since 10/3/2010 🔗
27 posts
i have never been to snowshoe, can someone explain to me why everyone always says the drive to snowshoe from NoVa is so bad? what is it exactly? should i be worried about a trip there around the 23rd of Jan for a week>
Tucker
October 3, 2010
Member since 03/14/2005 🔗
893 posts
...have you ever seen deliverance???
fishnski
October 3, 2010
Member since 03/27/2005 🔗
3,530 posts
The route goes thru some very knarly terrain that has become infested with Redneck Al-queada...Much better to head for Canaan Valley....
JohnL
October 3, 2010
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,518 posts
Quote:
...have you ever seen deliverance???


Dude, you're on a roll.
David
October 3, 2010
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
Originally Posted By: fishnski
The route goes thru some very knarly terrain that has become infested with Redneck Al-queada...Much better to head for Canaan Valley....


Redneck Al-Quada? Come on now Andy, how you gonna talk about the good folk of Pocahontas County like that???
snow.buck
October 3, 2010
Member since 12/12/2009 🔗
202 posts
Snowshoe: you can't get there from here!

Man, you all are soooo right - Corrider-Byrd connects one trailer park to another. We've had renters abandon the teck at Seneca Rocks, spend the night in a "motel" and go back to DC!

Uh, Murphy - WV does NOT use salt! They just discovered guard rails (used sparingly).
David
October 3, 2010
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
Originally Posted By: snow.buck
Snowshoe: you can't get there from here!

Man, you all are soooo right - Corrider-Byrd connects one trailer park to another. We've had renters abandon the teck at Seneca Rocks, spend the night in a "motel" and go back to DC!

Uh, Murphy - WV does NOT use salt! They just discovered guard rails (used sparingly).


Dang you guys are laying it on us heavy here lately. Lets all take a step back and remember where you'll be skiing lots of deep powder here in the Mid Atlantic this season. It sure won't be anywhere near the Beltway.

And also remember that at 11pm when you run your AWD Volvo off the road and into a snowbank (most likely because you can't drive in the snow) I'll almost guarantee that it will be a guy from one of those "trailer parks" with his own shovel and/or truck helping to dig you out.
lbotta - DCSki Supporter
October 4, 2010
Member since 10/18/1999 🔗
1,527 posts
Mark, I've never had a problem getting to Snowshoe. I do have a Jeep Cherokee and also have chains. In the last 11 years, I have used chains once. WVDOT does a great job of keeping the roads clear. Do watch it on the mountain pass between Circleville and Greenbank as it can get slippery.

As far as the drive, forget Mapquest and Google Maps. They'll route you through Harrisonburg or Staunton. You'll be on the road two hours more than you should.

Road directions from Roosevelt Bridge DC to Snowshoe (220 miles, 4 hours, 15 mins):
I-66 to I-81: 76 miles
I-81 to Exit 296: 4 miles to go on Rte 55
Rte 55 to Wardensville WV: 20 miles.
Rte 55 to Moorefield (Corridor H) and left at Rte 28/55: 24 miles
Rte 28 to Greenbank, 2 miles past Greenbank right at Rte 66: 81 miles
(Note: Pass Moorefield [SPEED TRAP], Petersburg [SPEED TRAP] Cabins, Seneca Rocks, Circleville)
Rte 66 to Redgate Road: 11 miles
Redgate Road to the Village: 4 miles

As far as the redneck alert: I have everything on my vehicle identifying me as a total left-wing Liberal. I have never had a problem except having people go out of their way to be nice to me.
REL1203
October 4, 2010
Member since 10/3/2010 🔗
27 posts
lbotta,

Coming from Manassas, Your directions seem to be the way Google is telling me to go shockingly enough. I cant seem to find Redgate rd, but am assuming Google just had that part listed as another name (they might be calling it Irongate Redgate rd)...

Is the driving part while in the MNF for that long the easiest way? What are those roads like?

ANother question, if it isnt currently snowing/icing, is the drive up there still not a good drive?
MarkMascolino
October 4, 2010
Member since 01/18/2007 🔗
32 posts
We've also never had a problem (we are coming from the West rather than the East). I can see how people would get freaked out a bit. The road does wind and undulate and could get hairy if it is icy or snowy. It also gets pretty dark as well for the last 30-60 minutes. In general, try to make the drive with daylight and just slow down and be cautious.
scottyb
October 10, 2010
Member since 12/26/2009 🔗
559 posts
You folks should start driving now and you should get to Blowshoe just in time for snow. Get going now.
lbotta - DCSki Supporter
October 10, 2010
Member since 10/18/1999 🔗
1,527 posts
You're totally correct. The back entrance to Snowshoe was changed because of endangered species. It was moved a couple of hundred feet. Still Redgate Road or whatever.

The drive on the MNF is awesome. It follows the Potomac as it meanders to the Southwest and there are a couple of 35MPH turns that are indeed 35MPH because they are tight. However, once you get to Circleville, you go up a couple of thousand feet and come back, there are a few turns but these are safe.

As to Moorefield, Petersburg and even Wardensville, get thee a radar detector. These towns realize they don't have much to offer the tourist and they specialize in taxing you on the way through traffic tickets.
kwillg6
October 11, 2010
Member since 01/18/2005 🔗
2,034 posts
The drive to the shoe is much improved from back in the day. The drive over the hill from Cass now has guardrail and pavement. So does the access roads. There had been a time when one took one's life in one's hands driving to the shoe in weather. It can still be hairy on white roads but then you just slow down. I'd prefer to do it in daylight if for no other reason than to avoid deer.
REL1203
January 2, 2011
Member since 10/3/2010 🔗
27 posts
I am gonna bump this thread.

Is going through Seneca rocks still the preferred way versus going through Harrisonburg and rt.33 or Staunton and taking 250?

This is just me, i HATE going up and around switchbacks and big mountains, so I would rather do more highway miles to avoid those long unfun mountain passes where I can. My jeep likes to downshift to around 5000RMPs to go 30MPH up some of them and it just kills my nerves.
Norsk
January 2, 2011
Member since 05/13/2003 🔗
315 posts
33 has WAY more bad gnarly switchbacks than the Wardensville/Moorefield/Seneca Rocks route.
fishnski
January 3, 2011
Member since 03/27/2005 🔗
3,530 posts
Originally Posted By: REL1203
This is just me, i HATE going up and around switchbacks and big mountains, so I would rather do more highway miles to avoid those long unfun mountain passes where I can. My jeep likes to downshift to around 5000RMPs to go 30MPH up some of them and it just kills my nerves.


33 has been my route for years now(Harrisonburg to Canaan)...Its my personal Go Kart trac crazy..Although coming home from Canaan during the Blizzard of 2010 in a front wheel Drive, it did get a little...Testy? smile...BUTT, I-95 wasn't any fun either!

I think the weather & Mtn passes on the routes folks take to get to SS & Canaan have cut into the Amount of visits..Lets hope that the Corr H will get more folks to the Slopes!
rmcva
January 3, 2011
Member since 01/28/2004 🔗
187 posts
I drive to SS often and have used all routes. My favorite is 55 thru Seneca Rocks. Rt33 has more switchbacks whereas 55 thru Petersburg, Seneca Rocks, and then on to Green Bank has more valley driving. I'll take Rt33 and Rt250 during the summer for different scenic views and Rt33 sometimes during the winter - but never Rt250! Rt55 thru SR is my favorite.
snow.buck
January 3, 2011
Member since 12/12/2009 🔗
202 posts
Originally Posted By: rmcva
... - but never Rt250! ...


Agreeee. The ONLY way is the 55W Moorefield/Petersburg/Seneca Rocks/Green Bank. Rt. 250 guarantees car sickness not to mention the danger. Face it - driving to SS = pick your poison. I pop it into 4x4 from Cass...pass 6+ cars off in ditches/on the side/just plain stuck. SS employees make a killing towing them out/up. I personally wouldn't help anyone just due to this litigious society - "your tow chain damaged my bumper...I'm gonna sue!!!". Oh, I'll give them a ride to the top, but ain't touching their car!!! What's left of Fortress/Intrawest/Snowshoe can spend all they want on the top (though those daze are long over), but can't make 55W straight (not that there's anything wrong with that!) LOL
KeithT
January 3, 2011
Member since 11/17/2008 🔗
383 posts
Originally Posted By: REL1203

This is just me, i HATE going up and around switchbacks and big mountains, so I would rather do more highway miles to avoid those long unfun mountain passes where I can.


Anyone ever looked at 64 and up via Marlington---REL1203 got me thinking with the above quote??? Sure its 100 more miles per google maps, but all interstate.

Also a caveat, I am pretty sure I have never driven on 219 south of Marlington so I can't vouch for the road.
David
January 3, 2011
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
Originally Posted By: KeithT

Anyone ever looked at 64 and up via Marlington---REL1203 got me thinking with the above quote??? Sure its 100 more miles per google maps, but all interstate.

Also a caveat, I am pretty sure I have never driven on 219 south of Marlington so I can't vouch for the road.


From the point where it crosses under in I64 in Lewisburg to Droop Mountain, 219 is a very friendly stretch of road. No mountain passes and mostly just wide open valley driving. Droop Mountain is right at 3,000 ft and is very flat and windy at the top. The North side has a very steep grade with REALLY tight switchbacks, but they are very manageable. There is a little climbing coming into Marlinton, then the fairly steep grade with a few switch backs dropping in right before town.

If one were trying to get to Snowshoe and avoid as much snow as possible by taking 64, I'd recommend getting off at the White Sulfur Springs exit (181) and take 92 North from there. That way would be faster and safer than 219. 92 would have much less snow than about any part of 219 and it is VERY straight and flat. You can easily cruise at 65 mph. It eventually joins up with 39 and when those two split (only after about 5 miles) you can either stay on 39 and go right into Marlinton (<10 miles) to pick up 219, or you can stay on 92 until Greenbank then just jump on 66. Both are roughly the same time, it's more just about what side of Snowshoe you prefer to drive up. I've never driven up the Cass side in bad weather, but I'm assuming coming from Marlinton up 219 would be the safer bet.
REL1203
January 24, 2011
Member since 10/3/2010 🔗
27 posts
I thought since i bumped this thread a few times I should update it. I made the drive to Snowshoe yesterday from Nova going 66, 81, 55, 28, 66 and it really wasnt that bad. Sure, there are some big mountains to go over at 2 points, but besides that, the drive wasnt to bad. Granted, it wasnt snowing, and i could take it slow at like 35mph going up, but it was totally managable. Snowshoe is awesome so far. I have never been here and already I love the Resort feeling it has. Getting ready to hit the slopes for the first tim in about an hour and cant wait.

For those are you that are reading this and worried about to drive to snowshoe, just make sure to do it during the day (when its light), dont speed, and just pat attention and you will be fine. I was really worried, but after doing it once, i will have no problems and wont think twice bout doing it again now.
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