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Southwest Piedmont


Crossing the Blue Ridge and descending down its eastern flank, visitors will traverse a crumple of rolling foothills; the beginning of the Piedmont. Access points to the foothills abound around Rocky Mount with several parks offering fields, forest and seasonal wetlands. This easternmost portion of the wildlife watching trail is one of the most exposed areas of open pasture and regenerating forest. This is the domain of the red-tailed hawk and the blue grosbeak, with prairie warblers and field sparrows gathering where the fields gradually change to forest. Several of the streams trickling down from the Blue Ridge have been dammed here to form reservoirs. The largest of these reservoirs, Smith Mountain Lake, holds thousands of acres of open water. In winter, these reservoirs hold numerous waterfowl, and they attract unusual species year-round. The loop ends in the east at the Dan River in Danville, which holds damsel- and dragonflies less commonly found at the higher elevations further west. The river is also a great spot to search for migrant waterfowl and resident herons.

Loop Map




Altavista Area Chamber of Commerce

Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce

Bedford City & County Dept. of Tourism

Danville Parks, Recreation & Tourism

Danville Pittsylvania County Chamber of Commerce

Franklin County Commerce and Leisure Services
5404839292 x24

Smith Mountain Lake Chamber