Getting Here

ROANOKE RIVER BRIDGE CLOSURE - April 19, 2021 - Spring 2022


The Roanoke River Bridge, at Milepost 114.7, on the Blue Ridge Parkway will be CLOSED for a major rehabilitation project starting on Monday, April 19, 2021. The closure is expected to be in place through spring of 2022.

As a result, there will be no access to Explore Park via the Blue Ridge Parkway South from VA Route 24 in Vinton at Milepost 112.

Instead, travelers can access Explore Park (Milepost 115) from the Blue Ridge Parkway North from US220 at Milepost 121.

Blue Ridge Parkway - Roanoke River Bridge Project DETOUR MAP (PDF)


By the Blue Ridge Parkway


General: from I-81 take 581S (which turns into 220S) about 13 miles from the interstate to the Blue Ridge Parkway North to milepost 115; approximately 7 miles to Explore Park. Follow the Roanoke River Parkway and the signs to the park entrance. 
 


Vinton & Downtown Roanoke: Take Rt. 24 to parkway South

Eastern Virginia: take 460W to Blue Ridge Parkway South to Explore Park exit at milepost 115. 

West Virginia: take I-77 South to I-81 North to I-581 South (turns into 220 South) to Blue Ridge Parkway North to Explore Park exit at milepost 115. 

D.C. Area: take I-66 West to I-81 South to I-581 South (turns into 220 South) to the Blue Ridge Parkway North to Explore Park exit at milepost 115. 

Eastern North Carolina: take I-40 West to 220 North (or may take 77 North) to Blue Ridge Parkway North to Explore Park exit at milepost 115. 

Western North Carolina: take I-40 East to I-77 North to I-81 North to I-581 South (turns into 220 South) to Blue Ridge Parkway North to Explore Park exit at milepost 115. 

View the Latest Parkway Road Closures from the National Park Service

NOTE: NO COMMERCIAL VEHICLES ARE ALLOWED ON THE PARKWAY


EXPLORE PARK ALTERNATE ENTRANCE DIRECTIONS


From Downtown Roanoke: Off of I-581 North take exit 6, turn left onto Elm Avenue, to third stop light. Turn right on 13th Street (changes to Bennington Ave. along the river), follow to the round about at the intersection with Riverland Road (Route 116) circling clockwise all the way around the intersection to head eastbound. Immediately take next left turn onto Rutrough Road (Route 658); continue 4.5 miles to the Explore Park Service Entrance on your left just past the little stone church. 

On a phone or GPS navigation system: List your destination as 3900 Rutrough Road SE. Roanoke, VA 24014 or Call the Explore Park Visitor Center at (540) 427-1800.

ExploreParkLogo-small
Explore Park Map 2021 w BRP Closure

To Avoid the Blue Ridge Parkway



From Downtown Roanoke: Off of I-581 North take exit 6, turn left onto Elm Avenue, to third stop light. Turn right on 13th Street (changes to Bennington Ave. along the river), follow to the round about at the intersection with Riverland Road (Route 116) circling clockwise all the way around the intersection to head eastbound. Immediately take next left turn onto Rutrough Road (Route 658); continue 4.5 miles to the Explore Park Service Entrance on your left just past the little stone church.

On a phone or GPS navigation system: List your destination as 3900 Rutrough Road SE. Roanoke, VA 24014



To Rutrough Point (Roanoke River Access)



From Downtown Roanoke: Off of I-581 North take exit 6, turn left onto Elm Avenue, to third stop light. Turn right on 13th Street (changes to Bennington Ave. along the river), follow to the round about at the intersection with Riverland Road (Route 116) circling clockwise all the way around the intersection to head eastbound. Immediately take next left turn onto Rutrough Road (Route 658); continue to the end of Rutrough Road, which dead-ends at the Roanoke River and Back Creek.

By the Blue Ridge Parkway: Take the Blue Ridge Parkway from Routes 220, 460, or 24 and follow the signs to Virginia’s Explore Park at milepost 115. Turn onto the Roanoke River Parkway, which is the entrance to Explore Park. Upon entering Explore Park stay to your right on the service road until you reach Rutrough Road. Take a left onto Rutrough Road and follow to the end. Rutrough dead-ends at the Roanoke River and Back Creek.