Gaines’ Mill Battlefield, Richmond National Battlefield Park

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

On this site occurred one of the Seven Days’ Battles of Richmond. Meadows adjacent to the parking lot, which are maintained for historic purposes, are used by a variety of species that prefer open pastureland. Trails along the fields’ borders offer access to the woodland habitat. Gravel trails wind through a beautiful tract of old-growth hardwoods that may have been young saplings at the time of the battle. Massive tulip poplars, red and white oaks, and American beech dominate the canopy. The large deciduous trees make for very interesting birding in early spring before leaf-out. During spring migration, the tops of these trees may be loaded with migrating passerines. Straining to scan the treetops may give the lucky observer “warbler neck,” a condition many birders are grateful to experience after a great day of spring birding. A small creek and adjacent foodplain at the bottom of the ravine host salamanders in spring and summer.

Directions

From Previous Site on the Richmond Loop of VBWT:

Leave Vawter Street Park, and return to the intersection of Vawter Street and Laburnum Avenue. Turn left onto Laburnum Avenue and proceed 0.9 miles to US 360/Mechanicsville Turnpike. Turn left (north) on US 360 and continue for 2.9 miles to I-295. Continue south on I-295 2.5 miles to exit 34A (Rt. 615/Creighton Road). Proceed north/east 0.9 miles to SR 156/Cold Harbor Road. Turn right (east) and continue 1.7 miles to Rt. 718/Wyatt House Road. Turn right and follow this road 0.6 miles to the entrance.

Location & Directions

View on Google Maps

Site Information

  • Site Contact: Kristen Allen, Integrated Resources Program Manager; (804) 640-7919, kristen_allen@nps.gov
  • Website
  • Access: Free, Daily (dawn to dusk)

Birds Recently Seen at Gaines’ Mill Battlefield, Richmond National Battlefield Park (as reported to eBird)

  • Rock Pigeon
  • Mourning Dove
  • Turkey Vulture
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Pileated Woodpecker
  • Eastern Wood-Pewee
  • Blue Jay
  • Carolina Chickadee
  • Tufted Titmouse

Seasonal Bird Observations

Facilities

  • Interpretive Trail
  • Parking