The rugged and remote mountain terrain of Barbours Creek Wilderness drops down the southeastern slope of Potts Mountain to Barbours Creek along the southern boundary. Elevations range from about 3,800 feet on the mountain to about 1,700 feet at the creek. The wilderness is comprised of hardwood forest interspersed with yellow pine where the slopes face south and west. Some hemlock and white pine grow in the drainages, including the major cross-wilderness waterway, Lipes Branch, which contains native brook trout. More than 160 species of birds have been identified here.
About two miles of trail exist in the wilderness. A major wildfire burned in the wilderness and adjacent lands in April 2012. Visible evidence of the effects of this fire are evident throughout the wilderness.
Barbours Creek Wilderness is located in Craig County in southwest Virginia. It is managed by the U.S. Forest Service as part of the Eastern Divide Ranger District of the George Washington & Jefferson National Forests.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Barbours Creek Wilderness.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.