North Carolina county #94 Uwharrie National Forest - Kings Mountain Point
After visiting the Thornburg Tract, I headed deeper into Uwharrie National Forest to Kings Mountain Point, which is a peninsula out into Badin Lake. The road turns into a well maintained dirt and gravel road for about a mile before becoming paved again for the parking lot. It was still raining and therefore empty.
I spent some time with my scope looking at some gulls and Pied-billed Grebes. It was good to get more practice with it, but unfortunately there were no ducks out there. The lake and sky were very gray.
The rain started to let up a bit, so I brought the scope back to my car and finally got to take my camera out for walk. I did manage to get a bunch of photos of birds, and what started as a slow visit picked up pretty quickly. There were a number of House Finches and American Goldfinches out, along with a Ruby-crowned Kinglet and Pine Warbler. White-throated Sparrows starting singing and a couple of Carolina Wrens made some of their noises (they have so many of them).
My favorite of the land birds was a brave White-breasted Nuthatch who allowed me to photograph him.
Shortly after, I noticed some movement on the water. There were gulls circling and some birds on the water that were not Pied-billed Grebes. I believed them to be Horned Grebes – they were at some distance and the shape of their head with some white on it reminded me of them. However, when I got home I found photos of Common Loons. Next time, I think I will attach my scope to the backpack so that I can get better looks. Common Loons are pretty uncommon for inland North Carolina. I don’t see those gulls in the Piedmont much either – there were both Herring Gulls and Bonaparte’s Gulls. These were all pleasantly unexpected to me.
While I was looking at a couple of Great Blue Herons flying around and a Belted Kingfisher on the far shore, I noticed three or four deer walking through the forest on the opposite side. Quite a risk for them to be coming into view as deer season begins.