Stewarts Creek Wildlife Management Area

Important Notices

COVID-19 & the VBWTBefore heading out to visit a site on the Virginia Bird & Wildlife Trail, be sure to check if that site has any COVID-19 policies or closures in place. This information is typically posted on a site's own website.

Description

Elevation: 1544 ft.

Perhaps Stewarts Creek is best known among locals for its high quality native brook trout fishing. This 1087-acre wildlife management area is located along the Blue Ridge Mountains and includes both the North and South forks of Stewarts Creek. Clear mountainside waters rush over rocky outcrops overlooked by extensive rhododendron thickets. The younger lowland creek bottoms, where not heavily vegetated by rhododendron, are wooded with yellow birch, tulip poplar, and several species of magnolias. Older, mature-growth forests at higher elevations are primarily composed of oaks, hickories, and maples. This is an excellent area to spy a diversity of wildlife. Canada warbler can be found in rhododendron thickets. In the woodlands at lower elevations, look for hooded and black-and-white warblers, American redstart, and wood thrush. In the more mature forests of upland areas, listen and look for black-throated blue and black-throated green warblers, scarlet tanager and veery. Wild turkey, ruffed grouse, white-tailed deer, and gray squirrel are abundant at Stewarts Creek; the elusive red fox may be seen as well.

Notes:

  • To Access the Site: A Restore the Wild Membership, Virginia hunting license, freshwater fishing license, boat registration, or an access permit is required.
  • Hunting could be occurring at this site April 1 – May 31 and September 1 – February 28th, except on Sundays. If you are visiting this site during hunting seasons, please wear blaze orange or blaze pink for safety.

Directions

The area is located about seven miles southeast of Galax, just south of the Blue Ridge Parkway. To reach the upper parking area, take the Blue Ridge Parkway and turn south on state route 715, then left on Route 975 to its end. The lower parking lot can be conveniently reached from Interstate 77, exiting at State Route 620. Go northwest on Route 620, turn left on Route 696, then turn right onto Route 795. Department Trailblazer signs indicate the correct route to both parking areas.

Location & Directions

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Site Information

  • Site Contact: VA Dept. of Game & Inland Fisheries Region 3 office: 276-783-4860; BirdingTrail@dgif.virginia.gov
  • Website
  • Access: Daily. Restore the Wild Membership, hunting license, freshwater fishing license, boat registration, or an access permit is required.

Seasonal Bird Observations

Facilities

  • Information
  • Parking