Skip to main content
  • Mountain Lake Conservancy at the Lodge, Pembroke, VA
  • Book Now

Welcome to the Mountain Lake Conservancy

Mountain Lake Conservancy is a non-profit organization founded to preserve our 2,600-acre woodland playground. The conservancy is integrally tied to Mountain Lake Lodge by protecting its resources, providing educational programs and providing recreational opportunities.
Mary Moody Northen grew up spending time on the property and later became the property owner. The beauty of the property and her love for it led her to establish a non-profit to manage the property and to stipulate in her will that the property be maintained in an ecologically sensitive manner.
Pearisburg Basketball Court Groundbreaking
Embark on a journey of natural discovery at the Mountain Lake Nature Center. Immerse yourself in a variety of experiences, from guided hikes to reptile presentations and hands-on nature crafts. Click the link to view our weekly schedule. 

Our Mission 

The Mountain Lake Conservancy's mission is to further Mary's desire to forge bonds between people and nature in Mountain Lake's unique environment. The conservancy provides a holistic stage through educational and recreational activities that make your experience a memorable one. Our natural settings, accommodations, activities and programs are developed and integrated to support this mission.  
Trails & Outdoor Recreation in Virginia Lodge
Trails & Outdoor Recreation

Trails & Outdoor Recreation

The approximately 2,600 acre Mountain Lake property is located in a saddle between Salt Pond and Doe Mountains is an ideal place for outdoor recreation. Our property is open to the public so not just lodge guests are able to enjoy its special character. Being open to the public also creates more year round use.

The unique setting of our property provides users with a variety of terrain, forests and beautiful vistas of the surrounding region. Currently, the outdoor recreation opportunities on our property include hiking, mountain biking, trail running, cross-country skiing, show shoeing, geocaching, an aerial adventure course, and wildlife viewing.   
Forest near Virginia Lodge


Our property is naturally forested with a mix of upland hardwoods and pine. There is little evidence of harvesting in the past 70 years, and the average age of the mature trees present is greater than 90 years old. Species composition varies according to the site conditions, but the majority of the forest is an upland hardwood species mix of oaks and maples. 

Our property's forest conservation resources are as critical, if not more so, than the defining feature of Mountain Lake itself. 
Background & Ecological Significance of Pembroke, Virginia
Background & Ecological Significance

Background & Ecological Significance

The section places the conservation value of our property in a state and regional context as well as describing the basic ecological characteristics of the property. The bulk of the property ranks as having outstanding and very high ecological integrity based on the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation's (DCR) Virginia Natural Landscaping Assessment (VNLA) (DCR, 2007) 
Natural Heritage in Pembroke, Virginia
Natural Heritage

Natural Heritage

The Natural Heritage programs a comprehensive effort to save Virginia's native plant and animal life and the ecosystems upon which they depend through inventory, conservation information provision, protection, and stewardship. Natural Heritage Resources (NHR) are defined as the habitat of rare, threatened, or endangered plant and animal species, rare or state significant natural communities or geologic sites, and similar features or scientific interest.
Scientific Research in Virginia Lodge
Scientific Research

Scientific Research

The Mountain Lake Conservancy and Lodge property has historically been and is currently the site of a lot of scientific research. A significant factor to this research being sited on the property is the wealth of natural and conservation resources described throughout this plan.
Stream Ecology of Virginia Lodge
Stream Ecology

Stream Ecology

Water is a critical conservation resource for the Mountain Lake Conservancy and Lodge property. Water is important both on and off the property. It is critical to the Property's ecosystems and character, but also important because water that originates on the property serves a variety of downstream uses.
Birds in Virginia Lodge
Bird Species & Habitat

Bird Species & Habitat

Bird populations on Salt Pond Mountain and the Mountain Lake Lodge property are closely associated with topographical and altitudinal variation. They have been studied here and in other parts of the Mountain Lake region for over a century by many observers. The range in elevation of approximately 600 meters between the summit and base of Mountain Lake allows for much diversity in flora and fauna communities and bird populations.
History of Pembroke Virginia Lodge


Discover the colorful history of our 2,600 acre nature preserve - a playground for families, romantics and adventurers seeking a peaceful escape in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Our story dates back to 1751, through the filming of the film "Dirty Dancing" to the recent rebirth of the Mountain Lake Lodge.


Our mission is carried out through collaborative work with local business, non-profit groups, universities and government agencies.

Our partnerships include:

  • RU Dept. of Recreation, Parks & Tourism
  • Wild Earth Hoops
  • Virginia Department of Forestry
  • Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
  • Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation - Division of Natural Heritage
  • Virginia Tech Biology Department
  • Virginia Tech Entomology Department
  • Virginia Tech Fisheries Department
  • Giles and Montgomery County Extension Offices
  • Montgomery County Parks and Recreation
  • Mountain Lake Biological Station
  • New River Valley Bicycle Association
  • New River Land Trust
  • 1 % For the Planet
  • Radford University
  • Roanoke Outside
  • Appalachian Trail Conservancy
  • Area public schools
  • Blacksburg Parks and Recreation
  • Blue Ridge Highlands
  • Blue Ridge Mountain Sports in Blacksburg
  • Eastern Native Tree Society
  • Eastern Divide Ranger District, USFS
  • Giles County
  • Virginia Tech Forestry Department
  • Virginia Tech Science Outreach Programs
  • AmeriCorps
  • Area University Service Oriented Sororities and Fraternities
  • 4-H Youth Development
  • New River Valley Chapter of the Virginia Master Naturalists
Mountain Lake Lodge Located at Room and Reservation Inquires:
For all other inquiries, please contact us at:
Be the first to get the latest resort specials and events at Mountain Lake.
Book Now Back to top