Life Outside Summer 2018 - 22

¾

The Details:

Top Three Flies: For
smallmouth bass, try dragonfly
and damselfly poppers or
nymph patterns of these
creatures.
Interesting Birds: Tanger
says a pair of bald eagles nest
on this section and share the
sky with ospreys. Numerous
species of warblers populate
the wooded banks.
Access Points: Put in is at
Blue Ridge Parkway's Roanoke
River Trail on river right. The
river right take-out is via
wooden steps at Rutrough
Point in Explore Park at the end
of Rutrough Road.

ROANOKE RIVER
OVERLOOK TO
EXPLORE PARK
(3.1 miles)

Bruce Ingram is the author of five books on river fishing and floating,
bruceingramoutdoors@gmail.com.

SELDOM SEEN
Mo Byrd of Salem surfs one of the
Class II rapids on the Roanoke Overlook excursion.
ABOVE: This view is from the Blue
Ridge Parkway toward the Roanoke
River below Niagara Dam.

Williams describes the whitewater on the Niagara
Dam trip as "crazy, wild," and warns that only expert
paddlers should undertake it. He also suggests that
if anglers want to avoid the whitewater, then they
should fish the tail end of this section by putting in
at Explore Park and paddling upstream. That way,
fishermen can still check out some of the best spots
but avoid the dangerous rapids below the dam.
Revercomb proclaims that the only urban area
with more intense whitewater is Richmond at the
fall line where Class III and IV rapids pock the
James. And Tanger says the Class III Texas Tavern
Rapid is the most challenging of the trip's drops,
but three or four others rate as Class IIs. Consider
portaging any or all of these rapids if you have the
slightest doubt about your paddling ability.
The put-in, to say the least, is interesting.
"There are 206 steps down a steep, ½-mile trail
from the parking lot to the river," continues Tanger.
"The Blue Ridge Parkway, the National Park Service,
Friends of the Rivers of Virginia, and the Pathfinders
combined to plan this access."

Q

22

Summer 2018 \\ LifeOutside Magazine



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Life Outside Summer 2018

Life Outside Summer 2018 - 1
Life Outside Summer 2018 - 2
Life Outside Summer 2018 - 3
Life Outside Summer 2018 - 4
Life Outside Summer 2018 - 5
Life Outside Summer 2018 - 6
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Life Outside Summer 2018 - 44
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