Conservation & Preservation Groups

Conservation Groups

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The Roanoke Region is committed to protecting our lakes, rivers, wetlands, air, and mountains to ensure future generations the ability to enjoy it, but we can’t do it alone. Join one of these groups and help make a difference in the outdoors community.

Find Conservation Groups


  • Blue Ridge Land Conservancy Expand Collapse

    The Blue Ridge Land Conservancy has helped preserve over 20,000 acres of land and 60 miles of streams since its founding in 1996. The group promotes and holds conservation easements, permanent legal agreements that protect what makes western Virginia such a special place to work and play.

    The Blue Ridge Land Conservancy  is a 501(c)3 non-profit.

  • Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation Expand Collapse

    The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation is the primary fundraising partner, 501(c)(3), for the Blue Ridge Parkway, providing support for initiatives along the 469-mile route, including historical and cultural preservation, environmental protection, visitor amenities, and educational outreach. Since the Foundation’s start, our Community of Stewards has invested more than $12 million toward Parkway initiatives and programs.

    The Blue Ridge Parkway needs your support to ensure it remains the magnificent park we all know and love. Join us in our mission to help protect this remarkable place. Donate or Volunteer, the Parkway needs you!

  • Clean Valley Council Expand Collapse

    The Clean Valley Council is a non-profit organization that has served the Roanoke Valley for more than 30 years. CVC provides educational programming and citizen participation events to spread the word about litter prevention, recycling, waste stream reduction, stormwater pollution prevention and protecting our natural resources.

    CVC provides educational resources and programming for the school systems, the public, and the municipalities in the cities of Roanoke and Salem, the counties of Botetourt and Roanoke and the town of Vinton. The group hosts and sponsors several regional litter cleanup events and e-waste collections each year.

  • Float Fisherman of VA Expand Collapse

    The Roanoke Valley Chapter of the Float Fishermen of Virginia is a varied group of boaters that includes rafters, kayakers and canoeists. The group floats the rivers, streams and waterways of Virginia and works to preserve and protect these important natural resources.

  • FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Expand Collapse

    FRIENDS is a non-profit, volunteer organization that is dedicated to preserving and protecting the Blue Ridge Parkway, a national treasure. FRIENDS programs focus on preservation, protection and education. Saving Parkway Views is the organization’s signature project.

    Volunteers help preserve the beauty of the Blue Ridge Parkway and have a lot of fun while doing something great for the environment and the Parkway’s future.

  • Pathfinders for Greenways Expand Collapse

    Pathfinders is a group of citizens who represent the trail users of the Roanoke Valley for non-motorized trail uses, with a vision is to have all area trail users meet and work together on projects that would benefit the community.

    • Promote and encourage development of a greenway network in the Roanoke Valley
    • Educate citizens and officials on greenway benefits and value
    • Raise and receive gifts, donations and grants for greenways
    • Organize volunteers to assist with greenway development and maintenance
  • Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club (RATC) Expand Collapse

    The Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club (RATC) is a recreational hiking association of volunteers who preserve and improve the Appalachian Trail as the nation’s premier, continuous, long-distance footpath. Founded in 1932, the club is celebrating  90 years of service and adventure on the Appalachian Trail.

    The RATC is an all volunteer 503(c) nonprofit Appalachian Trail (AT) trail maintenance organization. The club maintain 120 miles, 16 Shelter/Privies and 53 bridges on the Appalachian  Trail from Lick skillet Hollow in Giles County, VA to Black Horse Gap in Botetourt County, VA. This includes Virginia’s “Triple Crown”, i.e., Dragon’s Tooth, mcafee-knob-shirtMcAfee Knob and Tinker Cliffs. McAfee Knob is the most photographed spot on the AT with approximately 50,000 hikers visiting each year. Virginia’s “Triple Crown” has become a destination hike and draws visitors/hikers from all over the USA.

    Show your support for the Appalachian Trail by purchasing a McAfee Knob t-shirt. All proceeds from shirt sales will be utilized by RATC to continue our mission to maintain, protect and preserve with an emphasis on Virginia’s Triple Crown, i.e., Dragon’s Tooth, McAfee Knob and Tinker Cliffs.

  • Roanoke Valley Bird Club Expand Collapse

    Welcome to the Roanoke Valley Bird Club! The club meets at 7 pm every second Monday of the month September through May. Guests are always welcomed! Meetings take place at the Roanoke Council of Garden Clubs Building, 3640 Colonial Ave, Roanoke, Virginia 24018 in the Cave Spring area, south Roanoke county.

    Speakers present on a wide range of bird-related topics, with photographs, video presentations and occasional live bird exhibits. The bird club also leads regular field trips to areas of interest with great birding! Meetings and field trips are free and you do not have to be a member to attend these events. Guests are always welcomed. Meetings also cover field sightings of birds in the Roanoke area. After the meeting we gather for refreshments.

    Club members receive a monthly newsletter, our source of information about upcoming programs and field trips as well as the latest in birding facts and news.  Members may also attend overnight field trips sponsored by the Virginia Society of Ornithology.

    For more information see


    Library Birding Backpacks  – a project of the Roanoke Valley Bird Club

    Did you know you can now check out birding backpacks at your local Roanoke County, Roanoke City, Salem and Botetourt County library just like a book? Birding backpacks are a great way to get started in birding.  Ask at the reference desk!

    These backpacks put high-quality adult binoculars, guides and information into your hands including ideas for birding with children. This could be the start of a great lifelong hobby. Every Library Birding Backpack includes:

    • Adult binoculars.
    • Birding field guides
    • Great information to get you started in birding
    • Tips for birding with children
    • Directions to birding hot spots in the Roanoke Valley and Botetourt
    • Information about popular birding apps



    Birds are found everywhere. Start right around your own backyard and neighborhood. To see a wider variety of birds, try looking along creeks, in wetlands, fields and along the edges of and in woods. Remember birds are most active early morning and late afternoon. Check out these birding hotspots in our region for varied habitats.

    Roanoke City, Roanoke County and Salem

    Carvins Cove Natural Reserve: 9644 Reservoir Road, Roanoke, VA 24019. contains more than 12,000 acres of mixed forest, a 630 acre reservoir, picnic area, and 60 miles of trails that are good for viewing spring and fall migrants as well as birds that live here year-round. The boat landing is a good area to look for waterfowl and hawks. There is a small fee for a vehicle pass.

    Bent Mountain Center: 10148 Tinsley Lane, Bent Mountain, VA 24059 A trail behind the Center leads to a large swampy area with a boardwalk that gets you out into the wetlands. This area is good for willow flycatchers as well as yellow warblers, common yellowthroats, catbirds, and more.

    Greenways in Roanoke City, Roanoke County, and Salem: The Greenway network includes over 400 miles of paved and natural surface trails. The Roanoke River, Tinker Creek and Wolf Creek Greenways are especially good for spotting a wide variety of birds.

    Mill Mountain Park: 2198 Mill Mountain Spur, Roanoke, VA 24014 Walk the trails around the top of Mill Mountain, including the Wildflower Garden. Go early in the morning or early evening when there are fewer people and more bird activity.

    Roanoke Mountain Day-Use Picnic Area: Located on Blue Ridge Parkway milepost 120.4 onto Mill Mountain Spur Road The road around the former campground is good for observing a variety of birds. Owls and woodpeckers have been seen and heard here.

    South County Library Trail: 6303 Merriman Road, Roanoke, VA 24018 Use the steps behind the library down to the trail that includes a 900-foot-long boardwalk through a natural wetland. This is an excellent area for birding. Take a connecting trail to Starkey Park for additional variety of habitat.

    Botetourt County

    Botetourt Center at Greenfield: Located off of Route 220 North, about 4 miles north of Exit 150B on I-81. Take a left at the entrance to Greenfield Education and Training Center. Park in the second lot on the right. Then walk the cinder surfaced Cherry Blossom Trail along the pond towards the dam at the far end. This pond is excellent for ducks and other waterfowl in season, and there are usually a wide variety of birds in the vegetation on either side of the trail.

    Harvey’s Knob Overlook: Located at milepost 95.5 on the Blue Ridge Parkway This is a good place to observe thousands of hawks and eagles migrating in the fall. During that time there often are expert birders present conducting a bird census who are happy to share their knowledge. Bring a chair and a snack and stay for a while.

  • Sierra Club: Roanoke Chapter Expand Collapse

    Since 1892, the Sierra Club has been working to protect communities, wild places, and the planet itself. The Sierra Club is the oldest, largest, and most influential grassroots environmental organization in the United States. The Roanoke Group posts events and issues on its website.

  • Trout Unlimited Expand Collapse

    The Roanoke Chapter of Trout Unlimited is a diverse group of more than 265 people with the common interest of pursuing the Trout Unlimited mission to “conserve, protect and restore North America’s trout and salmon fisheries and their watersheds.”

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