Central VA – Parking Lot Closure – Route 311/McAfee Knob




The McAfee Knob/Route 311 parking area along the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) in Catawba will be closed starting on Thursday, November 30 (NOBO mile 710.5). The lot is being closed to allow for the construction of a new pedestrian footbridge over Route 311, which will allow visitors to more safely access the A.T. northbound from this lot. The project is being done in partnership with the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the Virginia Department of Transportation, the National Park Service, the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club, Roanoke County, and the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission. 

The parking lot is expected to remain closed for the project until late 2024. Visitors should plan to park elsewhere. Parking is prohibited along Route 311.  

A safe pedestrian right-of-way will be maintained for A.T. hikers during the project. Visitors should follow all directions from posted signs and construction crews and stay out of the immediate construction zone.  

To access the Fire Road, visitors should follow the A.T. for approximately 0.2 miles from Route 311 to where the Trail intersects the Fire Road; do not try to access the Fire Road directly from Route 311. 

Alternative parking options to access McAfee Knob include the following (see map below). Drivers should pay close attention and only park where designated by signs. Towing is enforced. 

  • Catawba Sustainability Center (5061 Catawba Creek Road). No overnight parking.  
    • Round trip to McAfee Knob: ~10 mi. via the Catawba Greenway. 
  • Catawba Community Center (4965 Catawba Creek Road). No overnight parking.
    • Round trip to McAfee Knob: ~10.5 mi. via the Catawba Greenway.
  • Limited parking is available along the shoulder of VA 864/Old Catawba Road. Visitors should respect the posted “No Parking” areas and use caution when walking from their vehicle to the Trail along the sharp curves of this road. 
  • McAfee Knob Shuttle (Picks up at the I-81 Exit 140 Park & Ride and drops off at Route 311). Overnight parking is allowed at the park and ride. 
    • The final day for the 2023 shuttle service is November 27. The shuttle will resume service again in March 2024. 
    • During service, the shuttle runs starting at 7:00 a.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from March through November.  
    • Visitors are encouraged to book tickets in advance. 

Visit the Roanoke Appalachian Trail Club’s website for additional parking options to access other VA Triple Crown destinations and for more information about visiting the VA Triple Crown area. You can also contact us. 

We will update this notice throughout the project as more information becomes available. 

Click on map to enlarge.