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Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail

Site Information

  • Site Contact: Chief Ranger; (434) 392-3435
  • Site Access: Free, open daily 8 am - dusk
  • Visit Website

Facilities

Environmental Study Area Hiking Trails Parking Picnic Restrooms

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Other Trails Nearby

Site PHP07: Sailor's Creek Battlefield State Park

Description

Sailor's Creek is best or perhaps worst known for April 6, 1865, the so called “Black Thursday of the Confederacy” when the Confederate Army under General Robert E. Lee suffered a massive defeat and lost over 7,700 men. This battle heavily influenced his surrendering to General Grant at Appomattox 72 hours later. On the edge of the battlefield the Overton-Hillsman House still stands almost 150 years later. At the time of the battle, the house served as a field hospital. Today, the house serves as a visitor center and provides a great start for exploring the woods and fields of the battlefield. Starting near the house, check the treetops for singing eastern bluebirds and American goldfinches. Occasionally northern flickers come by in noisy family groups and red-tailed and red-shouldered hawks can be seen soaring overhead. Check the numerous woodpiles for northern mockingbirds and house wrens, which will often sit out in the open and berate their watchers. These open fields are also excellent spots to look for butterflies. Search around the woodland edges for hackberry emperors and in the more open areas for viceroys and brilliant red-spotted purples.

Directions

From Sandy River Reservoir, go north on Rt. 640 for 0.7 miles to US 460. Turn right (east) for 2.1 miles and then turn left (north) on SR 307. Follow SR 307 for 2.7 miles to Rt. 617. Follow Rt. 617 north approximately 2.7 miles to the Hillsman House.

Loop Map