CTNC donates more Blue Ridge Parkway property to NPS

The Blue Ridge Parkway just got a little bit wider: We donated a small but critical tract of protected land near Cumberland Knob to the National Park Service.

CTNC bought the Roaring Fork Headwaters II property with the intention of giving it to the park service for inclusion in the Parkway corridor.

In times when government has limited resources to protect critical land and water resources, the work of local conservation groups like CTNC is essential to our ability to safeguard the special charm of the Blue Ridge Parkway corridor,” said Phil Francis, Parkway superintendent.

CTNC purchased the 12.7-acre tract near Milepost 220.6 in August 2011 and transferred it to the National Park Service (NPS) early this month. It joins two more properties in the area that were also protected by CTNC and donated to NPS:

  • Saddle Mountain Vista, a 201-acre property acquired by CTNC in 2004 with help from the N.C. Clean Water Management Trust Fund and donated to the NPS in 2007.
  • Roaring Fork Headwaters I, a 49-acre tract purchased by CTNC in 2009 and donated to the NPS in 2010.

All three properties are highly visible from several Parkway vantage points including the Fox Hunters Paradise Overlook in the Cumberland Knob National Recreation Area. They all contain headwater streams of Roaring Fork, a tributary of the Fisher River, and headwaters of the Yadkin River, which provides drinking water for a million people in the North Carolina Piedmont, including residents of Winston-Salem.

The three properties are part of a growing landscape of protected land in the area. They lie north of the 3,400-acre Saddle Mountain Wilderness area and south of the 1,000-acre Cumberland Knob National Recreation Area.

Financial support for the purchase of Roaring Fork Headwaters II was provided by the Cannon Foundation, the John and Anna Hanes Foundation, the Tom and Elaine Wright Family Fund, the Park Foundation, other private donors, and the N.C. Environmental Enhancement Grants Program.