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Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail

Mountain Music Loop

Description

The New River starts deep in the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern North Carolina and continues north. These waters flow through the heart of bluegrass and county music's beginnings, where, most times of the year, you can still hear the banjo and fiddle music playing. The New continues on, into West Virginia where it merges with the Gauley River to form the Kanawha. This river continues on to the Ohio River, the Mississippi, and then the Gulf of Mexico. The New provides a fantastic venue for wildlife watching by car, foot, boat, bike or horse. In addition to the river traversing into Virginia here, the Mountain Music Loop brings visitors close to the roots of American folk music. Here in the small town of Fries and the City of Galax, the fiddlers come together each year to show off their talent and compete for the title of "best muscian" for a year. This loop also has ample opportunities to explore the local wildlife, beginning with 57 miles of trails in the New River Trail State Park and extending to a half dozen boat ramps along the New River in Grayson County. Look for a variety of open country birds along the trails and banks of the river while exploring this loop. Check the river itself for waterfowl, shorebirds and raptors such as osprey. The small number of forested parks in the region should be explored for resident forest birds as well as a variety of warblers and vireos in migration. Damsel- and dragonflies, and butterflies are plentiful along the river with the multitude of boat ramps providing easy access to moist riversides and open grasslands.

Loop Map

Services

Blue Ridge Travel Association
276.619.5003
info@virginiablueridge.com

Carroll County Chamber of Commerce
276.728.5397
carrollchamber@aisva.net

City of Galax
276.238.8130
drobinson@galaxcity.org

Galax-Carroll-Grayson Chamber
276.236.2184
email@gcgchamber.com

Grayson County Tourist Information Center
276.773.3711
grayson@ls.net

The Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail Program recommends checking the following Web sites for lodging, restaurants and other service providers:

Virginia Accomodations Virginia Green