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New River Trail State Park – Galax


Elevation: 2300 ft.

This site marks the beginning of the New River Trail. The entire trail runs along the New River for 57 miles to Pulaski. For a large part of this journey, the trail follows the disused Norfolk & Western railroad bed, making it an ideal trail for walking, bicycling or horseback riding. The trail cuts through rolling pastures and hardwood forest clusters, crossing numerous old trestles en route. The portion of the trail in Galax follows Chestnut Creek to the New River. In this area the habitat is primarily open, composed of regenerating fields ranging from planted corn to scrubby woodland. Signs of the area’s history abound in the numerous long-standing buildings and fences popping out of the weeds almost everywhere you look. In this setting many open country bird species flourish. The habitat along the trail is also visited by a variety of warblers and raptors during spring and fall migration.


From Hillsville, take Exit #14 off of I-77 onto US 58/US 221. Follow US 58/US 221 for 10.2 miles into the City of Galax. Parking for New River Trail State Park is on the left next to the red caboose.

Location & Directions

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Site Information

  • Site Contact: 276-699-6778
  • Website
  • Access: Fee, Daily

Birds Recently Seen at New River Trail State Park – Galax (as reported to eBird)

  • Mourning Dove
  • Turkey Vulture
  • Red-shouldered Hawk
  • Blue Jay
  • American Crow
  • Carolina Chickadee
  • Tufted Titmouse
  • Carolina Wren
  • European Starling
  • American Robin

Seasonal Bird Observations


  • Bike Trails
  • Camping
  • Fee
  • Accessible
  • Hiking Trails
  • Interpretive Nature Program
  • Phone
  • Picnic
  • Restrooms