The outstanding feature of Brush Mountain East Wilderness is its rugged and unspoiled terrain close to Blacksburg and Roanoke, Virginia. The area includes the north side of Brush Mountain, which rises nearly 1,600 feet from Craig Creek to the ridge top. The Appalachian National Scenic Trail (A.T., FT #1) ascends via a beautiful route with views along the steep mountain face. The escarpment gives a dramatic backdrop to the views from VA 621 along Craig Creek, and provides the foreground for the view from the Audie Murphy Monument lookout near the top of the ridge. The southern boundary excludes the A.T. on the ridge, the Audie Murphy Monument, and the gravel road that provides access to the monument from the southwest and stops short of the Roanoke County line along the ridge. To the north, an electric service line along Craig Creek is the boundary, leaving a narrow buffer zone along VA 621. Brush Mountain is held up by a layer of Devonian sandstone, but the more friable strata on the north side have formed into many small drainages, leading into about 15 tributaries of Craig Creek. There are stands of large sugar maples, white pines, white oaks and hemlocks along some of the drainages, while the common trees on the drier ridges are Table Mountain pine and chestnut oak. Carolina hemlock occupies the rocky heights. About fifteen percent of the forest is considered old growth.
Trail information is available on National Geographic-Trails Illustrated Map # 787 (Blacksburg-New River Valley).
Brush Mountain East 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 Brush Mountain East 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.
Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 - Public law 111-11 (3/30/2009) An act to designate certain land as components of the National Wilderness Preservation System, to authorize certain programs and activities in the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture, and for other purposes.