This page is under construction, to help you have adventurous self-guided bird and nature watching experiences in the New River Gorge National Park & Preserve, and opportunities to learn about the rich geographical and cultural histories of WV Appalachia.
Please be patient and check back for updates.
Links open the New River Gorge National Park site pages in new windows. Contact the Park if you have questions.
National Park & Preserve Visitor Centers
Canyon Rim Visitor Center is located on US Rt 19, north of Fayetteville, at the north end of the New River Gorge Bridge: 162 Visitor Center Road, Lansing, WV 25862.
Thurmond Depot, Grandview Visitor Center, and Sandstone Visitor Center are all bird watching locations.
A Few of Our Favorite Bird Watching Scenic Drives, Destinations, and Trails in the New River Gorge National Park
New River Gorge Bridge: Easy. Moderate to strenuous when climbing back up the boardwalk steps. Modern facilities available during Visitor Center open hours.
Take in the breadth and depth of the gorge that holds one of the oldest rivers in the world. A short hiking trail descends into the gorge on a wooden boardwalk with two observation decks; a fully accessible ramp provides access to the upper observation deck. A "hacking" program released Peregrine Falcons in the gorge with hope to re-colonize this and other portions of their historic range in central-Appalachia. In recent years, Peregrines have occasionally nested in the bridge structure.
Target birds: Peregrine Falcon.
Fayette Station: Drive and walk. Easy. Modern facilities available during Visitor Center open hours; facility located at river level.
Spectacular views and habitat changes, from the rim of the Gorge to river level then up to the rim on the other side!
Target birds: Louisiana Waterthrush, many wood warblers, and a variety of migratory songbirds.
Nuttallburg: Drive and walk. Easy to strenuous depending on the trail you choose. A vault toilet is located at the trailhead parking area.
Explore the ruins of one of New River Gorge's most prominent mining towns. Starting from the top of the New River Gorge, descend to near river level, taking in different habitats.
Target birds: Black-throated Blue Warbler, Black-throated Green Warbler, Baltimore Oriole, Yellow-throated Warbler, and Swainson's Warbler.
Grandview: Easy to strenuous depending on the trail you choose. Modern facilities available during Visitor Center open hours.
Featuring five hiking trails and really grand views.
Target birds: Grasshopper Sparrow, Horned Lark, Golden-winged Warbler, Killdeer, Upland Sandpiper, and a Bald Eagles nest.
Sandstone Falls: Drive and walk. Easy yo strenuous depending on the trail you choose. Modern facilities available during Visitor Center open hours.
A scenic riverside drive to the largest waterfall on the New River. Use caution when nature watching by the river.
Target birds: swallows, Bald Eagle, Osprey, waterfowl, wood warblers, and a variety of migratory songbirds.
Burnwood Trail: Easy. Restroom located at trailhead.
The trail follows the edge of an open field, through the forest and rhododendron thickets, and returns to the field.
To reach the trailhead, park at the Burnwood Day Use Area across U.S. Route 19 from Canyon Rim Visitor Center; the trailhead is located just past the restroom facility.
Canyon Rim Boardwalk: Easy and Strenuous (lower overlook). Modern facilities available during Visitor Center open hours.
This boardwalk offers scenic views of the gorge and New River Gorge Bridge. An easy walk on a fully accessible ramp leads to the first viewing point, while 178 steps descend to the lower overlook.
The trail starts at the Canyon Rim Visitor Center parking lot off U.S. Route 19.
Long Point Trail: Moderate. Restroom located at trailhead.
Traverse field and forest on the way to a rock outcrop called Long Point where you'll see panoramic views of the Gorge and Bridge. Most of this trail gently descends through the forest, with one steep section just before you arrive at the point. CSX railroad tracks are visible on both sides of the river; the cliffs of the "Endless Wall" and Wolf Creek draining in to the New River are visible across the Gorge. Caution: unprotected cliff edges.
To get to the trailhead from U.S. Route 19, follow WV16 south through the town of Fayetteville. Turn left on Gatewood Road (sign indicates Kaymoor and Cunard). Follow Gatewood Road for 1.9 miles, then turn left on Newton Road. The trailhead parking area is 50 yards on the left.