Amphibolite Mountains and Elk Knob Game Land and State Natural Area

Boone, North Carolina

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The Amphibolite Mountains of northwestern North Carolina form a large chain containing some ten peaks stretching from Rich Mountain near Boone in the south to Mount Jefferson and Phoenix Mountain in the north. Most of the area is privately owned, with roadside birding opportunities. There are, however, several public lands including Mount Jefferson State Park, the Nature Conservancy’s Bluff Mountain and Peak preserves, Elk Knob State Natural Area, Elk Knob Game Land, and Howard’s Knob Park. Habitats: Northern hardwood forest, balds, open country and other early successional habitat. Key birds: Summer: Broad-winged Hawk; Yellow-bellied Sapsucker; Least Flycatcher; Veery; Canada, Chestnut-sided, Blackthroated Blue, and Golden-winged Warbler (including Brewster’s hybrids); Rose-breasted Grosbeak; Indigo Bunting; Scarlet Tanager; Vesper Sparrow. Winter: Golden Eagle; Horned Lark; Lincoln’s Sparrow. Year-round: Ruffed Grouse; Common Raven; Red-breasted Nuthatch.
Birding North Carolina

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Birding North Carolina

by Edited by Marshall Brooks and Mark Johns (Falcon Guides)

The Amphibolite Mountains of northwestern North Carolina form a large chain containing some ten peaks stretching from Rich Mountain near Boone in the south to Mount Jefferson and Phoenix Mountain in the north. Most of the area is privately owned, with roadside birding opportunities. There are, however, several public lands including Mount Jefferson State Park, the Nature Conservancy’s Bluff Mountain and Peak preserves, Elk Knob State Natural Area, Elk Knob Game Land, and Howard’s Knob Park.

Habitats: Northern hardwood forest, balds, open country and other early successional habitat. Key birds: Summer: Broad-winged Hawk; Yellow-bellied Sapsucker; Least Flycatcher; Veery; Canada, Chestnut-sided, Blackthroated Blue, and Golden-winged Warbler (including Brewster’s hybrids); Rose-breasted Grosbeak; Indigo Bunting; Scarlet Tanager; Vesper Sparrow. Winter: Golden Eagle; Horned Lark; Lincoln’s Sparrow. Year-round: Ruffed Grouse; Common Raven; Red-breasted Nuthatch.

©  Edited by Marshall Brooks and Mark Johns/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Birding
Nearby City: Boone
Trail Type: Several options
Best Times: Best during spring and fall
Local Contacts: Mount Jefferson State Park, Elk Knob State Natural Area, Howard's Knob Park
Driving Directions: Directions to Amphibolite Mountains and Elk Knob Game Land and State Natural Area

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Apr 2018