Hit the trails at one of the top mountain biking destinations in Virginia's Blue Ridge, America's East Coast Mountain Biking Capital. We're a key part of the area's Silver-Level Ride Center designation from the International Mountain Bike Association. Enjoy 14 miles of trails including 9 miles of purpose built bike trails.
BACKGROUND: Explore Park’s existing 14 miles of trails are already some of the area’s top biking destinations and a key part of the Virginia’s Blue Ridge region Sliver-Level Ride Center designation from the International Mountain Bike Association. Trail improvements are a central feature of the park envisioned in our recent Adventure Plan, combined with other developments including hiking, camping, horseback riding, whitewater canoeing, and an aerial adventure course. Over the past year Roanoke County has worked with some of the nation’s top consultants including Kay-Linn, Applied Trails Research and Trail Solutions to develop recommendations for trail development at the park.
OUR FOCUS: We envision Explore Park as the starting place for individuals and families seeking adventure and enrichment in the outdoors. As such, the initial focus of the Blue Ridge Mountain Bike Center will be creating a place where beginning riders can get started with the sport and develop the strength, stamina and skills to advance. We plan to work with local enthusiasts to create and maintain more advanced trail options as the park continues to develop.
FUNDING: In January 2019, the Roanoke County Board of Supervisors accepted $323,484 in funding from the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Recreational Trails Program for the construction of mountain bike trails and a trailhead at Explore Park. This funding will be combined with a 25% match from Roanoke County, as well as additional capital funds and sponsorship revenue to build a destination facility.
PHASE 1: The initial development will consist of 8,550 linear feet of new and rehabilitated mountain bike trails, plus a trailhead and parking area. Most of the trails will be single track with natural surfaces, but some will have optional skill features made of rock or other natural materials. The core skills area will contain several concentric loops of varying skill levels, including one beginner level trail with an aggregate surface. Estimated timeline for completion – Summer 2019.
PHASE 2: Roanoke County is currently seeking partner organizations and sponsorships to construct a signature asphalt pump track, which will be located centrally in the core skills area. The pump track will be surrounded by a progressive set of low-to-ground balance features, mellow rollers, berms and natural feature obstacles such as rocks and logs. Estimated timeline for completion – Fall 2019.
PHASE 3: The next phase calls for the development of flow trails and intermediate skills features. Using the new trailhead as a central circulation point, we plan to develop several one-direction downhill single-track routes taking advantage of the natural rolling hillscape within the park. Roanoke County will work with local mountain bike enthusiasts for design guidance as these trails are developed. Estimated timeline for completion – 2020.