“Where the deer and antelope roam”
Big Meadows is a recreational area of the Shenandoah National Park in Madison County and Page County, in the US state of Virginia. The meadow is located on the Skyline Drive at Milepost 51 and contains the park's Harry F. Byrd Visitor Center, a lodge, camp store, and camping area. Several hiking trails can be accessed from Big Meadows, including the Mill Prong Trail which leads to Rapidan Camp on the Rapidan River, the fishing retreat of President Herbert Hoover from 1929–1933, which is now restored to its 1930s configuration. President Roosevelt used Big Meadows in 1935 as the site for dedicating Shenandoah National Park and Skyline Drive. In 1962, during the Ash Wednesday Storm, Big Meadows recorded Virginia's greatest 24-hour snowfall with 33 inches, and the total storm snowfall was 42 inches at Big Meadows. In the Blizzard of 1996, Big Meadows recorded Virginia's greatest storm snowfall accumulation at 47". Archaeological work has uncovered evidence of prehistoric periods of human habitation as long ago as 2000 BC. Big Meadows was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.
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