Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail

Site Information

  • Site Contact: (540) 999-3433,
  • Site Access: Open daily, sunrise to sunset; admission fee required along Skyline Drive.
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Site MSD10: Beagle Gap, Shenandoah National Park


Elevation: 2523 ft. Designated primarily as a hawk-watching site, in the fall look for numerous broad-winged hawks as they fly southward to their wintering grounds. Other hawks, such as sharp-shinned, Cooper's, and red-tailed hawks are also observed in the fall months. Osprey and bald eagle might be seen later in the fall. Look for migrant falcons, such as peregrine falcon, American kestrel, and even merlin, as well. The open vista can also be conducive for distant views of other wildlife. Pulling out a spotting scope and surveying the surrounding forest may produce views of bobcat, coyote, red fox and black bear.


Return to Skyline Drive and continue south about 20.4 miles to Beagle Gap Area on the left. To return to the interstate, continue south on Skyline Drive for 4.5 miles to the end of Skyline Drive and the beginning of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Take I-64 east to the Thomas Jefferson Loop or west to the Forest Trails Loop.

Loop Map