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The 0.23 miles of glory that is Virginia State Route 79

Virginia State Route 79 is a 0.23-mile Primary State Highway which serves to connect Interstate 66 and Virginia State Route 55 near the community of Linden.  Virginia State Route 79 is located in Warren County along Apple Mountain Road.  Despite only being 0.23 miles long the alignment of Virginia State Route 79 is a signed access point to Shenandoah National Park.  A large Park & Ride lot can be found at the southern terminus of Virginia State Route 79.  

Part 1; the history of Virginia State Route 79

Modern Virginia State Route 79 appears as aligned between Route 55 to Route I-66 in the 2003 Virginia Route Index Book

According to the current iteration of Virginia State Route 79 is the third time the number has been assigned. references the current iteration of Virginia State Route 79 as likely having been added during 1980 as a connecting route between Interstate 66-Virginia State Route 55. notes the short distance of the current Virginia State Route 79 as being unusual for a Primary State Highway and suggests a more appropriation designation would have been Virginia State Route 55Y.  

The current Virginia State Route 79 appears to have been added as part of the construction of Interstate 66 between US Route 340 east to US Route 17 near Delaphane.  The US Route 340-US Route 17 segment of Interstate 66 was completed by August 1979.  Apple Mountain Road was part of the construction of Interstate 66 in the US Route 340-US Route 17 corridor at what is now Exit 13.

Despite the unusually short length of Virginia State Route 79 is not the shortest Primary State Highway.  A complete list of Primary State Highways in Virginia under one mile can be found below:

Part 2; a drive on Virginia State Route 79

From Interstate 66 westbound traffic can access Virginia State Route 79 via Exit 13.  All signage from Interstate 66 westbound displays Virginia State Route 79 co-signed as "To Viriginia State Route 55."  Traffic departing Interstate 66 onto Virginia State Route 79 is advised it can be used to access Skyline Drive of Shenandoah National Park.  

Virginia State Route 79 terminates at Virginia State Route 55 at a Park & Ride lot located behind an Exxon station.  

From Virginia State Route 55 eastbound Virginia State Route 79 northbound is co-signed as "To Interstate 66."


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