The Hutchinson Unit of Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge contains two miles of trails through gorgeous meadows, hardwood forests, and softwood forest. There is also a lookout platform that oversees the grasslands. All trails and platforms are handicap accessible. To experience the full diversity of habitat that this Refuge Tract has to offer, take the Greenfield Farm Road trail into the Daingerfield Loop trail through to Paula’s Point Loop, which ends with a scenic view of Mount Landing Creek.
The Hutchinson Unit’s tall structure grasslands provide plenty of opportunities to see migratory and grassland breeding birds including dickcissels, bobolinks, northern bobwhite, and eastern meadowlark, as well as various butterflies. Additionally, white-tailed deer and rabbits can be watched from the lookout platform. Warblers, woodpeckers, and a variety of woodland songbirds, including scarlet and summer tanagers, may be observed in the forested areas. While at the fishing pier and boat lunch area, look for belted kingfisher, bald eagle, and the occasional muskrat.
Canoes and kayaks can be launched from the boat launch next to the pier for further exploration of the marshes of Mount Landing Creek.
A trail map is available via the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
Note: There are visitation restrictions during the fall deer hunting season. Check the Refuge’s website for more information.
Physical address: 19180 Tidewater Trail, Tappahannock, VA 22560
From US 360 in Tappahannock turn right onto Church Lane (US-17). Continue on Church Lane (US-17) for 2.6 miles (note the road name changes from Church Lane to Tidewater Trail) before making a U-turn. In 500 feet turn right on the gravel road to access the refuge unit.
Location & DirectionsView on Google Maps
- Site Contact: (804) 333-1470, Rappahannock@fws.gov
- Access: Free. Open sunrise to sunset, all week, including holidays. Visitation restrictions during hunting season - check Refuge website for more information.
Birds Recently Seen at Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Hutchinson Unit (as reported to eBird)
- Northern Bobwhite
- Mourning Dove
- Yellow-billed Cuckoo
- Chimney Swift
- Great Blue Heron
- Black Vulture
- Turkey Vulture
- Acadian Flycatcher
- White-eyed Vireo
Seasonal Bird Observations
- Hiking Trails
- Kayak/Canoe Launch
- Observation Platform
- Boat Ramp