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Tour Suffolk Virginia
MainTour Hampton Roads Vacation Adventure
[ Suffolk VA / Dismal Swamp NWR /


Suffolk

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Great Dismal Swamp

Great Dismal Swamp, about 223,000 acres located in the southeastern corner of Virginia and also the northeastern corner of North Carolina is a large area of forested wetlands that have been altered by drainage and repeated logging operations. The most common feature is forest peat solils and a dense undergrowth of briars and vines threaded by a network of manmade canals and ditches, many of which have been grown over to resemble giant green tunnels. The Great Dismal Canal is the oldest man-made waterway in the country.

Wildlife Refuge - In 1974 about 107,000 acres was set aside as a refuge for plants and wildlife. The log fern, one of the rarest of American ferns, is found more commonly in Great Dismal than anywhere else. Over two hundred species of birds are seen here and many nest here. The swamp is home to black bear, bobcat, deer, otter, bats, raccoon, mink, gray and red foxes and squirrel. There is also an abundance of reptile and amphibian creatures living here. Birds are most active in the spring and mammals are most active in early summer.

History: George Washington was one of the first to lead commercial logging operations into the swamp. Logging roads, logging, wildfires and drainage over the last two centuries have severly disrupted the natural hydrology of the area. Logging removed natural stands of cypress and white-cedar trees that have been replaced by other types.

Recreation: In the middle of Great Dismal is a 3,100 acre natural lake, Lake Drummond (with an average depth of about 6 feet). Fishing and boating are permitted yearround on Lake Drummond. A Virginia fishing license is required and access / boat ramp is found alongside US-17 near the Feeder Ditch. Deer hunt in fall. Biking and hiking are permiited on unpaved roads only. A boardwalk trail is found near Washington Ditch.

Virginia Adventure Guide
Including Chesapeake Bay, the Blue Ridge & Shenandoah Valley By Leonard Adkins
This highly detailed travel guide covers the entire state, from Virginia Beach to the Blue Ridge Mountains to the Great Dismal Swamp. All the best hikes, canoe trails, whitewater routes, from an author who has hiked the Appalachian Trail from start to finish three times!

MainTour Hampton Roads Vacation Adventure
MainTour Virginia USA Vacation Adventure
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