Best bird watching trails in West Virginia

12,445 Reviews
Explore the most popular bird watching trails in West Virginia with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
Map of bird watching trails in West Virginia
Top trails (191)
#1 - Maryland Heights Loop
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
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Length: 6.6 mi • Est. 3 h 41 m
NOTE: You can't park on Sandy Hook Road anymore. You can park for this hike at the train station in Harpers Ferry. The parking lot by Harper's Ferry is small and often full on the weekends. The parking there is currently free due to CoVid, as the National Park is closed. Parking at the train station increases this hike to about 6.7 miles if you hike the upper trail. To get back to trail head use the West rail bridge to cross which is down the end of the street away from the train station. Notes on the hike: From the parking lot, you need to cross the pedestrian walkbridge across the Potomac and then turn left on the towpath after descending from the bridge. The connector from the Overlook to the highway is closed from Feb to July 31 for Peregrine falcon nesting (so bake an extra 2.2 miles to double back to the Maryland heights trailhead). Park opens at 9:00 a.m The trail from parking lot, starts by mulch pile in back. You can also take a bus from parking lot to trailhead. Scenic overlook, civil war fortifications, moderate to strenuous climb. History combined with beauty! This is a hike over well-marked trails with many interpretive signs along the way. There are some steep climbs and some rocky terrain. The hike features a spectacular overlook of Harpers Ferry and the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers. However, it doesn't come easily. The hike also includes much history. The trail passes remains of fortifications built by the Union forces in 1862 after their defeat at Harpers Ferry. There are ammunition pits, breastworks, powder magazines, and gun batteries along the trail. The remains of the main fort are at the summit of Maryland Heights. Show more
#2 - Loudoun Heights Trail to Split Rock
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
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Length: 6.0 mi • Est. 3 h 25 m
This high ground was occupied by Confederate general John George Walker during the Battle of Harpers Ferry, September 12-September 15, 1862. Loudoun Heights was also the site of a night attack made on January 10, 1864, by Col. John S. Mosby's Rangers against Major Henry A. Cole's 1st Potomac Home Brigade Maryland Volunteer Cavalry. Mosby's attack failed and ended a long run of engagements between Mosby's Rangers and Cole's Cavalry. The Battle of Loudoun Heights was a small cavalry skirmish during the American Civil War between John Mosby's Rangers and Major Henry A. Cole's 1st Potomac Home Brigade Maryland Cavalry on January 9, 1864, in Loudoun County, Virginia. Cole's Cavalry successfully defended a night raid against their camp on Loudoun Heights. The fight was one of the first engagements in which Union forces held their own against Mosby's vaunted partisans.Show more
#3 - Seneca Rocks Trail
Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area
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Length: 2.7 mi • Est. 1 h 5 m
Note: As of October 2020, users have reported that the second half of the loop is very steep and appears to be an old trail that is no longer properly maintained. Seneca Rocks Trail is a well maintained hiking trail to an observation platform with a gorgeous view of the rock faces. Benches along the trail make great places to catch your breath. The trailhead features picnic areas and a visitor center. Spruce Knob - Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area is a well known spot for seeing the Potomac River or rock climbing.Show more
#4 - Big Schloss via Wolf Gap Trail
Wolf Gap Recreation Area
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Length: 4.3 mi • Est. 2 h 26 m
The first half mile or so is a steep incline but after that it's smooth sailing. Great views of both Virginia and West Virginia. Tip: Walk passed the Big Schloss cut off and go about a half mile more to look back at it.Show more
#5 - Kaymoor Miner's Trail
New River Gorge National River
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Length: 1.6 mi • Est. 1 h 14 m
A steep hike down to the old kaymore mine. Then once at the mines you will follow an old mine rail trail through various views, waterfalls and cliffs. Be prepared for the walk back!Show more
#6 - Bear Rocks/Lions Head Loop
Dolly Sods Wilderness
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Length: 19.6 mi • Est. 9 h 18 m
It's a great hike with a huge variety of trails and terrain within the 20 miles. When you start of on Bear Rocks Trail it will wide open fields where you can see the mountains and beautiful trees and plains around you at 4,000+ feet. It stays open/no shade for 4-6 miles. Generally the ascents/descents are not difficulty as they are mixed in and not very long, but the terrain takes a little skill and focus. There are many rocks to navigate and it can be quite muddy, would not advise going for this hike in rainy weather. If you decide to make your own modifications rangers have said to avoid Dobbin Grade Trail (526, especially the eastern part, which is why this short cut back to the parking lot isn't taken) and Beaver View Trail (523). Also if you modify and go farther south and it has rained a lot, some of the rivers farther south may be difficult dangers to ford. ***LIONS HEAD- NOT CLEARLY MARKED. If you look closely you will see a trail you can take. Heading south a little after the water fall on your right you will see a Cairn on your left. If you pass this area, you will get to a rocky path and you can generally make your own path up the rock scramble to Lions Head for the amazing view. It's about .1 mile scramble, but allow time for getting lost and finding your way. ***Trails do not have blazes, cairns are very limited and inconsistent. Most if not all named/numbered trail intersections are clearly marked with a sign. Campsites are dispersed and not too difficult to find in most areas. Great spot right on the river at the intersection of 513/558 and 513/554. You can find water pretty much anywhere water/river/stream is marked. Note: it's about 4 miles on a gravel road with semi steep terrain to get up to Bear Rocks. Bear Rocks isn't actually on this trail, but you can go see them as they are adjacent right to the parking area.Show more
#7 - Spruce Knob via Huckleberry Trail
Potomac Wildlife Management Area
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Length: 11.4 mi • Est. 5 h 31 m
This is an excellent length day hike that takes around 5.5 - 6 hours round trip to the Spruce Knob summit and back. There is light bushwhacking for the first mile and typical muddy portions of trail on Huckleberry. None of the land marks are difficult to find but it takes some mental toughness to continue when there seems to be no trail at the beginning of the trek. There is parking on the turnoff to the left. Show more
#8 - Coopers Rock State Forest Loop
Coopers Rock State Forest
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Length: 4.7 mi • Est. 1 h 53 m
Coopers Rock offers activities for fishers, hikers, hunters, campers and rock climbers. Several trails wind through forest valleys, through enormous boulders, and over ridges. A 6-acre pond that is regularly stocked with trout provides fishing in season. Please note this is a series of several connecting trails that may not be well marked. Be sure to use map to guide you along the way as to not get lost.Show more
#9 - Lindy Point Overlook
Blackwater Falls State Park
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Length: 0.8 mi • Est. 21 m
#10 - Chimney Top via Landis and North Fork Mountain Trails
Potomac Wildlife Management Area
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Length: 5.0 mi • Est. 3 h
Difficult 1.4-mile climb up, but stunning views from Chimney Top make this hike well worth the effort! Landis Trail is the shortest, but steepest, path up to Chimney Top.Show more
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