From the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park:
Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park continues to clean up, make repairs, and remove downed trees following the damaging thunderstorms that passed through the area on Wednesday, June 22. The quick-moving storm dumped nearly an inch and a half of rain in just minutes and winds were measured at 60 mph, with gusts to 85 mph very likely in some areas. Downbursts associated with the storm resulted in many downed trees and limbs and widespread power outages.
At the park, several of the large trees around the Fredericksburg visitor center planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s fell. Numerous trees and branches were downed throughout the National Cemetery, the trails around the Sunken Road, and all along Lee Drive, some blocking the roadway. Park maintenance crews were able to clear the roadways, the visitor center parking lot, entrance road, and walkways in the days following the storm. All of the park sites have reopened, including the Visitor Center, the National Cemetery, and the full length of Lee Drive.
Even with the park sites and roads fully open, many downed trees and limbs will remain along the roadsides within the park and along park hiking trails. The larger downed trees and limbs require equipment and crews beyond the park’s capability. Contractors, along with funding, are being lined up to process the remaining storm damage. The challenge has been compounded by residual storm damage remaining from the January snowstorm which had not yet been removed by contractors. Much of this damage also interferes with regular maintenance of roadside and trail vegetation.
We are working as quickly as possible to resolve the numerous challenges caused by the storm damage. We appreciate the patience of our neighbors and visitors as we work on processing downed trees and limbs and restoring normal maintenance operations throughout the park. Please use caution when driving and hiking throughout the park, especially along the hiking trails. For the most current updates and alerts on park operations, please visit www.nps.gov/frsp.