"The most-photographed location on the Blue Ridge Parkway" read the travel brochure. Mabry Mill is located at mile marker 176 (near the town Meadows of Dan) along the 355-mile parkway that connects the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and Mount Mitchell State Park in North Carolina. Ed built the nearly century-old Mill and he and Lizzy ground corn for the neighbors.
The grist mill still works, and you can still buy stone-ground cornmeal and buckwheat flour. The Mill is the centerpiece of a blacksmith shop, a wheelwright shop, and sawmill that are open for brief periods each day.
A trail through the wooded area follows the flow of water to the mill wheel. There is one bench along this trail, and we must have spent half an hour there just listening to the birds in this very tranquil setting.
In addition to the vistas along the Parkway, there are some overlooks along the way that have different styles of fences. Sometimes these simple fences present some interesting sights in and of themselves. These three scenes just caught our eyes as we journeyed along this winding drive.
It's early in July and the roads and stops along the Parkway do not seem as crowded as we would have expected.
By the way, for those following the Smoke on the Mountain barbecue competition, the Grand Champion was Jack's Old South. Jack's also won the whole hog competition, and Barnyard Roasters won the ribs category. The team we followed, Natural Born Grillers, won the pork shoulder competition.