Crawfish Valley

Description

Elevation: 2403 ft.

Crawfish Valley is a spectacular spanse passing through some of the least disturbed habitat in southwest Virginia. The valley is a mixture of mature riparian woodland along Reed Creek flanked by hardwood forest along the adjoining hillsides. This area is interspersed with shrubby meadows and marshland in several low-lying areas. The diverse habitats produce an equally amazing diversity of birds. Ruffed grouse and wild turkey are constant voices heard beside the road and are often seen walking along it. This is especially true during early summer when the adults are joined by the year’s young. Great selections of warblers inhabit the valley, including northern parula, blue, golden-winged, black-and-white, Blackburnian warblers, American redstart, ovenbird, and common yellowthroat. Many more woodland species maintain a strong presence in the Valley.

The site’s level terrain and restricted access road make this an ideal area for handicapped access. Additionally, the entrance road eventually becomes a trail that crosses the Appalachian Trail and then descends into Bear Creek Valley.

Directions

Location: End of SR 625/Strawberry Rd, Rural Retreat, VA 24368

This site can be easily accessed using FR 727. After 6.0 miles, the road is gated, prohibiting further motorized access, but provides an ideal path for walking, bicycling or horseback riding.

From I-81 near Christiansburg/Pulaski, continue south. Take exit 60 toward Rural Retreat/SR 90 and turn right (northeast) onto SR 680. After 2.4 miles, turn left (north) onto SR 625 and then left to continue on SR 625. In 4.1 miles, keep left to stay on SR 625 followed by Strawberry Rd. Follow this road to a parking area.

From the previous site on the Big Walker Mountain Loop of the VBWT:

From the Dark Horse Hollow Picnic Area, continue south on US 52 for 0.9 miles to SR 680. Turn right on SR 680 and travel west 5.2 miles to SR 625. Turn right on SR 625 and continue 6.0 miles until the gravel road ends in a parking area.

Site Information

  • Site Contact: Mt. Rogers National Recreation Area: 276-783-5196, email Brittany.phillips@usda.gov
  • Season:
  • Access: Daily, sunrise-sunset; admission free

Seasonal Bird Observations

Facilities

  • Bike Trails
  • Hiking Trails
  • Parking