Birding the Balsams

Brevard, NC, USA

VB
115 reviews
Jul 20, 2021
Group size: 4 - 10
Birding the Balsams
Brevard, NC, USA

115 reviews

Jul 20, 2021
Group size: 4 - 10

About this trip

  

A relaxed day of birding from roadsides, gravel roads and overlooks with a minimal amount of walking. Weather at the higher elevations can be unpredictable – rain gear and a light jacket are recommended.


The Blue Ridge Parkway winds through the Appalachian Mountains from Virginia into North Carolina, skirts the southern end of the Black Mountains, then weaves through the Craggies, the Pisgahs and the Balsams before ending in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. We will head south and visit various locations in the Blue Ridge, looking for some of the area’s most exciting birds such as many species of warblers, vireos and several hard-to-identify Empidonax flycatchers. We will probably head as far as Heintooga Overlook, one of the most reliable areas for Red Crossbills in the last few years. Least Flycatchers can be common near the Masonic Monument where their “che-bek” calls can be a clue to their whereabouts. At the higher elevations the mountains are cloaked with spruce-fir and northern hardwood forests mixed with heath balds of Catawba rhododendron and mountain laurel. 


Typical breeding birds of the higher elevations include Common Raven, Brown Creeper, Dark-eyed Junco, Winter Wren, and Red-breasted Nuthatch. Hermit Thrush and Red Crossbill can be found as well. The Appalachian race of the hardy Northern Flying Squirrel, closely related to the more familiar Southern Flying Squirrel of lower elevation broad-leaved woodlands, also occurs at this elevation. 

Leader: Kevin Burke

What’s included

  • 1 birding guide
  • lunch
  • transportation

Your Organizer


VB
Ventures Birding Tours
115 reviews
Small travel company based in Asheville, NC, specializing in birding & nature tours both locally & worldwide.

Reviews

This was a great day. Clifton navigated some unexpected logistics (unposted road closure) and made a full day with tons of stops he was familiar with. I am only a year into birding and added 13 species to my list. He was the most experienced person I have ever birded with, able to ID tons of birds by ear then spot them.
By Rebecca D for Avery County, NC - County Birding on 13 Jul, 2021
This was a great trip. Kevin Burke is a wonderful trip leader. He makes every effort for everyone to see the birds. He works hard to make sure everything runs smoothly.
By Bill W for Maine - Puffins, Boreal Birds, & Spectacular Scenery 2 on 11 Jul, 2021
The tour and tour guide were excellent in every way. Kevin our guide did everything in his power to to assist all participants throughout the trip to make the most enjoyable and fun trip possible.
By Alan's Email L for Maine - Puffins, Boreal Birds, & Spectacular Scenery 2 on 03 Jul, 2021
You should be aware that this trip was cancelled by Ventures Birding, and I have a credit with them for the full amount paid.
By Kathleen S for Michigan - Kirtland's Warblers & The Upper Peninsula on 26 Jun, 2021
The scenery alone made me want to go there, plus the unusual plants. And the birds1 Enjoyed the presentation.
By barbara r for Lions, Penguins and Proteas, A Virtual Tour of South Africa on 16 Jun, 2021
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