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Stumpy Lake Natural Area


This 1422-acre site includes a large cypress-lined lake, a golf course, and woodlands of pine/oak/sweetgum. A trail system through the woodland contains two loops and is 1.8 miles in length. The shady lake margin produces aquatic plants such as lizard’s tail and buttonbush that provide nectar for numerous butterfly species. Birds are numerous at the lake edge and include prothonotary warbler and bald eagle. During late summer through late fall, an abundance of great egrets inhabit the area. Anhingas also occur here occasionally in summer, and in fall, the site attracts good numbers of migrating shorebirds.  The swampy section along the entrance road is excellent for dragonflies, songbirds, reptiles, and amphibians. Lucky visitors may even spot North American river otters. A raised ADA compliant fishing deck off Elbow Road provides an overlook of the lake.

To explore the area by water, an ADA compliant canoe/kayak launch is located just after the causeway entrance from Indian River Road. The launch is designated for non-motorized vessels only.

Please Note: Visitors should take care to avoid crossing the golf course fairways and greens. For safety reasons, fishing and photography should not be done on/along the causeway.


Physical Address: 4797 Indian River Road, Virginia Beach, Virginia, 23456

From the Previous Site on the Seashore to Cypress Loop of the VBWT:

From Munden Point Park, return to Princess Anne Road and turn left. Proceed about 10 miles and turn left onto Indian River Road. Continue 7.6 miles and turn left onto Elbow Road. Travel 0.1 miles and turn right, continuing on Indian River Road. Drive 1.4 miles and turn left at the Stumpy Lake Natural Area entrance. Parking is available near the canoe/ kayak launch.

Location & Directions

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Site Information

  • Site Contact: City of Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation: 757-385-0400,
  • Website
  • Access: Free, Daily

Birds Recently Seen at Stumpy Lake Natural Area (as reported to eBird)

  • Mourning Dove
  • Anhinga
  • Great Egret
  • Great Blue Heron
  • Eastern Wood-Pewee
  • Acadian Flycatcher
  • Great Crested Flycatcher
  • Eastern Kingbird
  • Carolina Chickadee
  • Tufted Titmouse

Seasonal Bird Observations


  • Accessible
  • Hiking Trails
  • Parking
  • Restrooms
  • Kayak/Canoe Launch