We headed out on a beautiful spring Fri afternoon in the Birkhead Mountain's Wilderness of Uwharrie National Forest in central NC for two nights on a short, or long trip depending on your age, of approx 7 miles.
We parked at the Robins Branch trail head and headed out at 3:00 PM. It was a great day to start a hike in the mid 70's and sunny. After hiking for about 1.5 miles we stopped for a short rest, snack, and play session on a bunch of large boulders off the side of the trail. My son really loved climbing on them with me, looking for hand and footholds he could pull up on. His main objective was always to be taller than his dad of course :) While here we saw a quick glimpse of a very large lizard. I have no idea what kind it was but it was over a foot long and fast.
We continued on down the trail towards Robins Branch creek where we camped for the night about 2 miles or so in. On the way we stopped to catch a toad.
Around 10PM that night a huge storm came rolling in. I woke up in the nick of time to throw the rain fly on the tent. It was really a wild storm. Lightening and thunder all around us. Rain beating down, etc... Somehow the little guy managed to sleep through it all :)
The next morning we were up bright and early and hit the trail around 7:30AM or so. Right away we came across a turtle crossing the trail which we checked out for a few minutes. We continued to hike for the morning until about 11AM. We then took a little afternoon siesta and played on some more rocks I saw off the trail until about 1PM. Here we caught another toad, a cricket, and a caterpillar.
We hiked on to the next camp around Hannah's Creek. We arrived there around 3:30PM with plenty of time to explore the creek and other wildlife in the area. Here he caught a frog, a crayfish, a snail, and we saw a crazy hummingbird that kept dive bombing us while chirping madly for a couple minutes. That night he helped me build a small fire and we toasted some marshmallows to eat.
The final morning we woke up to another storm rolling through around 7:30AM. We ate breakfast in the tent and broke camp around 9:30AM in the pouring rain. It was a slow start but once we got moving the final day he was really hiking fast. Almost my normal walking speed :) On the way out we caught another toad in the rain.
We made it back to the car in time for some hot soup and hot cocoa for lunch.
It was a great trip and my son absolutely loved it. He cant wait to go again. All he could talk about was all the animals we saw. Total animal count for the trip: 6 toads, 2 frogs, 2 lizards, 3 crayfish, 1 turtle, 1 crazy hummingbird, 1 snail, 1 cricket, and 1 caterpillar.