Breaks Interstate Park

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Breaks Interstate Park
Breaks.jpg
Breaks Canyon, May 2003
Map showing the location of Breaks Interstate Park
Map showing the location of Breaks Interstate Park
Location on Kentucky/Virginia border
Location Kentucky and Virginia, USA
Nearest city Elkhorn City, Kentucky
Coordinates 37°17′47″N 82°17′49″W / 37.29639°N 82.29694°W / 37.29639; -82.29694Coordinates: 37°17′47″N 82°17′49″W / 37.29639°N 82.29694°W / 37.29639; -82.29694
Area 4,500 acres (1,800 ha)
Established 1954
Visitors 287,593[1] (in 2013)
Governing body Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation,
Kentucky Department of Parks
http://www.breakspark.com

Breaks Interstate Park is a bi-state state park located in southeastern Kentucky and southwestern Virginia in the Jefferson National Forest at the northeastern terminus of Pine Mountain. It is administered by the states of Virginia[2] and Kentucky[3] and is one of several interstate parks in the United States.

The Breaks, also referred as the "Grand Canyon of the South," is the deepest gorge east of the Mississippi River,[4] through which the Russell Fork river and Clinchfield Railroad (now the CSX Transportation Kingsport Subdivision) run. It is accessed via Virginia State Route 80, between Haysi, Virginia and Elkhorn City, Kentucky, and passes through the community of Breaks, Virginia east of the park.

American frontiersman Daniel Boone is credited with being the first person of European descent to discover the Breaks, which he first saw in 1767.[5]

Geography[edit]

Breaks Interstate Park is located about 5 miles (8 km) east of Elkhorn City, Kentucky. The park covers 4,500 acres (1,800 ha). The park's main feature, Breaks Canyon, is five miles long and ranges from 830 to 1,600 feet (250 to 490 m) deep. The canyon was formed by the Russell Fork river through millions of years of erosion.[4]

Activities and amenities[edit]

  • Trails: The park has trails for hiking (25 miles (40 km)), mountain biking (12 miles (19 km)), and horseback riding.[6]
  • Water-based: The park has a water park with Olympic-size pool and waterslides, fishing and canoeing on Laurel Lake, and white-water rafting on the Russell Fork.[6]
  • Accommodations: The park offers a lodge with 82 guest rooms, four cottages near Beaver Pond, five cabins overlooking Laurel Lake, and a 138-site campground.[6]
  • In addition the park has a visitors center with exhibits on the area's historical and natural features, a 6,000-square-foot (560 m2) conference center with restaurant, and an amphitheater.[7]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Virginia State Parks 2012 Attendance and Economic Impact Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. Retrieved 2014-05-10.
  2. ^ "Virginia State Park Locations". Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 25 June 2013. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  3. ^ "About". Breaks Interstate Park. Kentucky Department of Parks. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Breaks Interstate Park". Virginia Tourism Corporation. June 27, 2012. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Our History". Breaks Interstate Park Commission. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b c "Things to do". Breaks Interstate Park. Kentucky Department of Parks. Retrieved September 23, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Amphitheater Music Events". Breaks Interstate Park Commission. Retrieved September 24, 2013. 

External links[edit]