Braley Pond


Elevation: 2049 ft.

This Forest Service Day Use Area offers pond habitats surrounded by upland hardwood forests and riparian woodlands. Typical hardwood breeders, such as wood thrush, ovenbird, and eastern wood-pewee can be found here in the summer, as well as American redstart and yellow-billed cuckoo. Great horned owl, pileated woodpecker, blue jay, black-capped chickadee, tufted titmouse, belted kingfisher, white-breasted nuthatch, and red-shouldered hawk are year-round residents. Wild turkey can be found roaming throughout the woods.

The pond attracts a diversity of aquatic insect life. Look for dragonflies such as eastern pondhawk and slaty skimmer. Widow skimmer and common whitetail may be found further away from the water. Damselflies such as Rambur’s forktail and variable dancer remain in weedy areas, often along water’s edge, while ebony jewelwings prefer more wooded habitat.

White-tailed deer are abundant throughout the property, as are eastern cottontail, eastern chipmunk, and eastern box turtle.

Note: The trails here can be narrow with steep banks.


Location Coordinates: 38.28611, -79.30194

From Staunton, VA: Follow US 250 West to Churchville. Continue West on US 250 for 10 miles past Churchville and turn right onto SR 715. This road turns into Forest Development Road (FDR) 96. Braley Pond is 1 mile off of US 250.

From the Previous Site on the Forest Trails Loop of VBWT:

Exit Elliott Knob and turn left (west) on Rt. 688/Old Parkersburg Turnpike; travel 3.9 miles to Rt. 629/Deerfield Valley Road. Turn right (north) and proceed for 3.2 miles to US 250. Go east on US 250 for 0.4 miles to its intersection with Rt. 715/Braley Pond. Turn left onto Rt. 715/Braley Pond and continue 0.3 miles to the entrance on the left.