Flag Rock Recreation Area
Norton's Mountain Masterpiece
Flag Rock is located in Norton, Virginia, just over an hour's drive from Abingdon. The thousand-acre park includes 25 developed acres and a variety of outdoor adventures, including mountain biking/hiking trails, fishing, canoeing/kayaking, and rock climbing. It also has an 18-site campground, playground equipment, bathhouses with hot and cold water, and picnic shelters.
For spectacular mountain views, head to Flag Rock overlook, or continue up on the mountain to High Knob Observation Tower, where you can view up to 5 states on a clear day.
The town of Norton is centrally located in the historic coal region of Southwest Virginia and Norton is the smallest incorporated city in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Alcoholic beverages prohibited.
A sanctuary for Green Salamanders and...Woodboogers?
Flag Rock Recreation Area is designated a sanctuary for the Green Salamander (Aneides aeneus). The Green Salamander is the only species in Virginia that is "arboreal," meaning that it climbs trees. During summer months, these creatures ascend high into the forest canopy, where their bright green color helps to blend in with leaves and lichens. Unique, suction cup-like toe tips help Green Salamanders climb to heights well above the other species found in the area.
If you run across a Green Salamander's path, please enjoy it at a distance without handling or disturbing it. Salamanders can be harmed chemicals on human skin.
Flag Rock Recreation Area is also a designated sanctuary for another, more mythical creature.
After part of an episode of Animal Planet's "Finding Bigfoot" TV show was filmed in Norton in 2011, the city decided to declare itself a Woodbooger Sanctuary. The city has embraced this mythical creature, with local businesses selling "Woodbooger" merchandise and the establishment of the "Woodbooger Festival."
Visit the Woodbooger statue at the entrance to Flag Rock, and get your picture taken with the legend himself.