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You’ve Never Seen The Blue Ridge Mountains Look Quite Like This

The Blue Ridge Mountains are among the most iconic sights in Virginia. Said to have formed more than 400 million years ago, the Blue Ridge is considered one of the oldest mountain ranges in the world. Featured in songs, written of in poetry and displayed in nearly every photographic collection representing Virginia, these blue-hued peaks are near and dear to every Virginian’s heart.

The Shenandoah Valley, another of the most acclaimed areas in the state, is formed in part by the Blue Ridge. Shenandoah National Park sits at the northern tip of the valley, and while its beauty is unhindered by development, the night skies have changed over time as nearby cities like Harrisonburg and Charlottesville have grown and created light pollution.

However, in the summer of 2015, a rare phenomenon occurred. Following a series of summer storms that relentlessly pounded the east coast, storm clouds gathered in just the right formation to block much of the light pollution over the valley. The result was a nearly unhindered view of the Milky Way swirling above the Blue Ridge Mountains.

The following video was shot in Shenandoah National Park and first aired on BBC Earth as part of the SKYGLOW project, a crowdfunded effort to examine the effects of light pollution. Special thanks go out to the talented photographers and production teams that put this breathtaking piece together.

All we ask of you is that you sit back and enjoy the view.

SHENANDOAH REVERIE from Harun Mehmedinovic on Vimeo.

We hope that you’ve enjoyed this rare view of the Virginia night sky as much as we have. Let us know what you think, or better yet, share one of your favorite “Blue Ridge moments” in the comments below!

Anna Strock
Virginia staff writer for Only in Your State, freelance writer and journalist. Even though Anna has lived other places, somehow Virginia is where she always seems to land.