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Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail

Site Information

  • Site Contact: (540) 999-3433, james_atkinson@nps.gov
  • Site Access: Daily, sunrise-sunset; admission fee
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Facilities

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Site MSD09: Frazier Discovery Trail

Description

Elevation: 2852 ft. The Frazier Discovery Trail is a relaxed 1.3-mile loop taking the visitor to several picturesque overlooks on Loft Mountain. The trail passes through woodland of varying ages providing diverse species habitats. As you slowly climb the trail keep an eye out for eastern towhee rustling in the leaf litter. In the late summer, the adults are joined by their brood of curious young that will often hop into view. Another retiring skulker that may appear is the gray catbird. These are more often heard as they give their characteristic meowing from inside a dense bush. Warblers such as black-and-white, hooded and worm-eating should be listened and watched for. Depending on the time of year they may be singing or foraging with the more numerous Carolina chickadees and tufted titmice. The numerous flowering plants encountered along the trail entice a variety of butterflies. Search through the myriad of dark swallowtails for the slower flying red-spotted purple; or carefully inspect every bloom for the inconspicuous skippers, blues and hairstreaks.

Directions

From Rapidan Wildlife Management Area, return to Skyline Drive and turn south. Follow Skyline Drive 13.4 miles to the Loft Mountain Visitor Center. The trail begins across the street from the visitor's center.

Loop Map