George Washington and Jefferson National Forests

George Washington And Jefferson National Forests

George Washington and Jefferson National Forests

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The George Washington and Jefferson National Forests are U.S. National Forests that combine to form one of the largest areas of public land in the Eastern United States. They cover 1.8 million acres (7,300 km²) of land in the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia, West Virginia, and Kentucky. Approximately one million acres (4,000 km²) of the forest are remote and undeveloped and 139,461 acres (564.38 km²) have been designated as wilderness areas, which eliminates future development.


George Washington National Forest was established on May 16, 1918 as the Shenandoah National Forest. The forest was renamed after the first President on June 28, 1932. Natural Bridge National Forest was added on July 22, 1933.

Jefferson National Forest was formed on April 21, 1936 by combining portions of the Unanka and George Washington National Forests with other land. The border between the two forests roughly follows the James River. The combined forest is administered from its headquarters in Roanoke, Virginia.

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