Monday, June 20, 2016

Mattamuskeet NWR

I think it was writing about how I get sea sick that made me wake up Saturday morning at 06:30 with Vertigo!! OH boy everything was spinning...I dragged myself out of the motel, no way I wanted to pay for another day so up and out I went barely able to stand up straight..I headed East on 264 slowlyyyy from Wilson I didn't get far till I Had to stop.  I found Goose Creek State Park that sits on the northern shore of the Pamlico River ... the sign said sites 1 & 4 are open (small 13 site primitive campground) I parked in 4 got in my bed and fell instantly asleep.  Awoke 2 hrs later feeling much better! Got up stirred around had some lunch and then drove up to the Ranger station to pay...
Them..."Site 4 is reserved"
Me..."Sign says its open"
Them..."Oh it must have been reserved last night, and the Ranger didn't mark it as Reserved"
(the online reserve thing won't allow a reservation unless its 24 hrs in advance, so there is no way it could have been reserved the prior night it had to have been done 24 hrs ago) 
Me ..."so I will take #1 then"
Them..."sorry someone just came in and took #1"
Me..."So you got nothing"
Them..."we're sorry"

This reservation system, for me personally is a PIA--can't they keep at least half for walk ins? So its like this: if I screw up and don't reserve, Im screwed, If they screw up and don't mark it as reserved,  Im still screwed..either way Im screwed?
I was feeling too poorly to argue so I left.  Glad I took this photo of the campsite when I woke up... it was a pretty site...

site #4 Goose Creek CG
LOTS of red headed woodpeckers this one surprised me, not a great focus but look at the perfection of red, white, and black.  

red headed wood pecker

So getting sick sort of messed things up, I had to rearrange some plans, I ended up not going to Pungo Unit of Pocosin NWR, or Alligator NWR Must go back as Black bear and Red Wolf are in those refuges!!
Mattamuskeet NWR was not too far up the road, I thought I had a 45 min drive from the motel I was wrong!! I had mis-calculated and it took me an hour and 45 mins to get there from the motel, and counting the 2 hrs I stopped and slept, and all the other messing around I got there at 3 pm. Mattamuskeet is located on Albemarle-Pamlico Peninsula in Hyde County, NC.  Mattamuskeet Lake is NC's largest lake and located in the NWR.  Hwy 94 divides the lake into 2 bodies of water.

On the Wildlife Drive, which is only a couple miles, it was windy! Some Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets, Glossy Ibis, White Ibis, Little Blue Heron, and Canada Goose,  all present  in the canals  and in the mud. 

gr egrets

snowy egret, little blue heron, glossy ibis, female grackle

snowy egret
imm white ibis

canada geese

Saw several deer out grazing and moving from one spot to another...look closely in this photo..

 Fosters Tern, Red Winged Blackbirds, Eastern Kingbird, lots of common and boat tailed Grackles, and Osprey, are a few more of the birds I saw and was able to catch a shot of...

Fosters Tern

red winged Blackbird


common grackle

Pettigrew SP CG

The wind got worse so I headed north on 94 to find Pettigrew State Park and hope for a camp site! Found a note on the board, site #10 and 12 are open SO I took site 10...

more on that in next post!
Eleanor Roosevelt: You must do the thing you think you can not.


  1. I think those online reservations are just another way to make money and I really don't think it's fair especially when no one shows up and the space remains empty. It should be first come first served. You pictures are great such beautiful birds.
    Sorry you woke up on the topsy side but after a 2 hr nap you felt better until you lost your nice site.

    1. The Ranger at the Pettigrew where I did stay on Saturday told me, its to keep the Staff from handling the money!! SO its all about money no surprise..BUT he added its so people won't drive for hours from another state and not have an open site, but that is what it is creating so to me, No reserve is the best way or at least KEEP half open! Most of the larger parks do that. Smaller ones could keep 2 open at least!

  2. Vertigo is horrible, you were brave to drive with it. I hate being ill away from home, just a man thing thing I expect, women just get on with it.. Great pictures as usual, and fantastic to see all those large waders together.

    1. Hi Dave I pulled to the side of the road many times and made only slow progress, unfortunately you can't just park anywhere you will get the tap on your window-
      The numbers of Egrets was high I'd say at least 100!

  3. Oh man, vertigo sounds terrible. Glad you pulled through and managed to see some great stuff! I think that photo with the egrets has a Reddish Egret in it. Awesome Red-headed Woodpeckers too, very jealous.

    I saw you mention Casey had vestibular disease in your other post.. A few years ago Jake had it while I was at work with him (at doggie daycare) and it TERRIFIED me. Carried him to the car and drove the few blocks to the vet who was one of our daycare customers and he immediately recognized it as vestibular. I thought it was a seizure or something. Glad to hear Casey is okay!

    1. I couldn't find any pink on the end of the bill that's why I didnt mention it, I think it could be a little blue? I've only seen Casey have one attack it happened at 9 pm...I knew what it was because I had been in the vets office one day when a lady brought her dog in, and he had vestibular. Casey's episode was gone by morning...he slept all through the night and when he got up he was fine...I HOPE he never has it again. SO Scary looking-hope Jake never has it again either.

  4. Why do I feel you're going to say you were chased out again? I agree about the reservation system. Fine if they want to reserve half, but they should keep half open for us free spirits. ;-D

    1. Exactly!! The only bright note was I got to take my 2 hr nap, and have my lunch FREE! HA.


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