December 4, 2007

Mattamuskeet and the Outer Banks or "Are we in LA yet?"

Our drive from the mountains of western Virginia to eastern North Carolina brought many changes. We left behind the vistas, the mountain side farms and cabins, the cold and drove through flatter and flatter land. Both Sam and I remarked as we drove along how if we didn't know it, we would think we're back in Louisiana. Flat land farms, cotton fields, cotton remnants on the side of the road, live oak trees dripping in moss, marshy waterways, plenty of people in boats fishing, and cypress trees.

We were headed for a campground on the Lake Mattamuskeet. The area is known for it's populations of winter birds - mainly ducks, snow geese and tundra swans.

The view from the campground was so beautiful at sunset and sunrise I totally forgot to get pictures of the campground itself. The campground was nothing much to speak of but was run by the nicest couple. We didn't have to pay till we left. The payment on the laundromat was on the honor basis, just leave your money in the tupperware container. We were given a handful of local tourist info when we arrived.

The next two days were spent birding. One day at Lake Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge in the rain and the other on Pea Island on the Outer Banks. We racked up 63 different species of birds in the 2 days we were there without trying too hard.

The sunrises and sunsets in this area were spectacular. More pictures of birds to come...