Here's an update on the status of BRPW closings:

The North Carolina section from the NC 80 access north to Linville is now open. The Parkway still remains closed from NC 80 south to Mount Mitchell.

If you are traveling south-to-north this means you'll have to exit the BRPW at Asheville and then pick it back up via NC 80.

Two detour choices (both are equally interesting rides). Both are described from south-to-north; if traveling north-to-south, reverse (duh!).

#1. 19/23 north from Asheville (also signed as "Future I-26 West") to 19E, through Burnsville & then NC 80 South back to the Parkway. This is the fast sweepers' route, relatively speaking.

#2. I-40 East to 70 East, to 80 North at Marion. This is the tight & twisty route, again, relatively speaking.

You can still ride to Mount Mitchell from Asheville, but once you get there you'll have to back-track to Asheville and then pick up the detour to continue north. (There is a gravel road which drops north to Barnardsville from the Craggy Gardens picnic area; suitable for GS types and madmen on street bikes without linked brakes.)

Parkway officials hope to open the NC 80 to Mitchell stretch by April 29th.

I also understand that there will be a short detour set up near Blowing Rock May 1 -August 25 for a bridge repair.

Ride it before the "season" begins at the end of May, preferably in the middle of the week (unless you have a thing for Winnebago bumpers).

There you have it.