Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 21:23 EDT

Chimney Rock Dedicates Reopening of Elevator inside a Mountain June 29

June 26, 2012

CHIMNEY ROCK, N.C., June 26, 2012 /PRNewswire-iReach/ — Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park, one of the Southeast’s most popular outdoor travel destinations, will dedicate its modernized elevator and upgrades to the signature Outcroppings trail and other amenities at 11 a.m. on June 29, 2012 in Chimney Rock, North Carolina. The 26-story, state-of-the-art elevator provides access to the 315-foot-tall renowned Chimney for guests of all abilities and ages. The upgraded Outcroppings trail to the Chimney offers guests an easier hike, scenic views and more places to rest. Also, the Sky Lounge Gift Shop & Deli and Park rest rooms were renovated to be made wheelchair accessible.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120626/CG30661)

Chimney Rock is the only state park in the Southeast with an elevator inside a mountain. The Park offers 75-mile scenic views overlooking Lake Lure and a 404-foot waterfall featured in The Last of the Mohicans. Admission rates are $15 adult, $7 youth (ages 6-15) and free for kids under 6. For hours and directions, visit chimneyrockpark.com.

“Our commitment upon the purchase of Chimney Rock was continued stewardship of its natural resources and improvement of its facilities for visitor safety and enjoyment, and these projects contribute to that effort,” said Lewis Ledford, North Carolina State Parks Director.

“Nowhere else in the Southeast can you ride an elevator inside a 535-million-year-old mountain, only to step or roll out to see stunning 75-mile views of mountains and a lake. Here you can lose your breath on the views, not the hike,” said Mary Jaeger-Gale, General Manager, Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park.

A Marvel Inside a Mountain. Originally opened in 1949 as the tallest elevator in North Carolina, it took eight and a half tons of dynamite to blast the Park elevator’s 258-foot-high shaft and 198-foot-long tunnel through solid granite. In 1988, all but the car of the original elevator was replaced with then state-of-the-art, moisture-proof equipment. During the past 18-months, essentially every part of the elevator was again replaced or upgraded including the original car. A new backup generator has also been installed to ensure reliable service during power outages. The elevator’s 26-story evacuation stairs were also replaced.

Upgraded Hiking Trail and Amenities. The wooden stairways on the Outcroppings trail that climb 315 feet to the iconic Chimney were rebuilt, a project that involved zip lines and four helicopter operations to transport materials. The upgraded hiking trail is wider with a gentler slope and more resting places, making it physically easier for guests to hike and enjoy stunning views. The renovated Sky Lounge Gift Shop & Deli offers more regional handmade crafts, “made in the USA” products and grab ‘n’ go food options.

Prepare to Be Elevated at Chimney Rock. Ancient geological features like Devil’s Head and the Opera Box, scenic hiking trails, 75-mile views, guided hikes and rock climbing draw visitors from around the world. The 404-foot Hickory Nut Falls is one of the tallest waterfalls of its kind east of the Mississippi River. In 2011, GeoParent named Chimney Rock one of the top 5 “best summer activities for families” in North Carolina.

Since N.C. State Parks purchased the Park in 2007 from the Morse family, they have invested $5.1 million in improvements at Chimney Rock, mostly provided by the N.C. Parks and Recreation Trust Fund.

About Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park is a developing international tourist attraction located 25 miles southeast of Asheville on Highway 64/74A in Chimney Rock, N.C. It has been recognized as one of the Southeast’s most popular travel destinations for more than 100 years. A destination for travel groups, motor coaches and families, the Park hosts special events and educational programs for schools, homeschoolers, scouts and summer camps. Call (800) 277-9611 or visit Chimney Rock’s website at chimneyrockpark.com.

Media Contact:

Matt Popowski Chimney Rock Management, LLC, (828) 625-9611 ext*(star)812, prandevents@chimneyrockpark.com

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SOURCE Chimney Rock Management, LLC

Source: PR Newswire