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Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail

Site Information

  • Site Contact: (434) 977-4209 chamber@ntelos.net
  • Site Access: Free, Daily
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Facilities

Food Lodge Parking

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Site MTJ04: Rockfish Gap Hawk Watch

Description

Elevation: 2102 ft. This site is popular among local hawk-watchers who congregate in the fall with lawn chairs at hand to watch the spectacular flight of migrant hawks. This is a site where volunteers annually count migrants from mid-August to November. Broad-winged hawks fly over in the greatest numbers, but other hawks, such as sharp-shinned, Cooper's, and red-tailed hawks, can also be seen. Peregrine falcon, American kestrel, and even merlin, are also seen in migrating flight. In addition to the raptors, songbirds, common nighthawks, swallows, and even insects such as butterflies and dragonflies have been observed here in migratory flight.

Directions

From Lake Albemarle, return to Rt. 614/Garth Road and turn left. Continue on Rt. 614/Garth Road for 1.4 miles to Rt. 810 at White Hall. Turn left on Rt. 810 and follow it 4.5 miles south to Crozet. In Crozet, follow Rt. 810 into SR 240 south 1.4 miles to US 250. Turn right on US 250 and follow it 1.3 miles to I-64. Go west on I-64 for 7.6 miles to its intersection with US 250 and Skyline Drive. Turn south into the Inn at Afton. West of the Inn's parking lot (an extension of the parking lot) is an open paved area atop a grassy hill.

Loop Map