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Wednesday
Aug012012

Bay Tree Lake State Park

Description

The most prominent feature of Bay Tree Lake State Park is a 609-acre Carolina bay lake. The main access road into the park is a dirt path that leads 0.7 miles from NC 41 to the lake. Once to the lake, visitors can experience a dense bay forest with bald cypress draped with Spanish moss. Bay Tree Lake is shallow; the deepest point is just over 7 feet. Its outline is irregular for a Carolina bay; it appears to merge with neighboring bays. Although its geological values have been degraded by earlier private development activities (note the artificially sandy bottom of the lake and shoreline), the plant communites that flourish here are a haven for many bird species. Along the path toward the lake, watch and listen for species characteristic of wooded swamps, including Blue-headed Vireo, Swainson's Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler and Prothonotary Warbler. During winter, scan the bay for wintering waterfowl. Watch overhead for Bald Eagle.

Species of Interest (Full Bird List)

Bald Eagle, Red-cockaded Woodpecker, Prothonotary Warbler, wintering waterfowl

Habitat

longleaf pine forest, moist shrubland, Carolina bay lake

Access and Parking

Bay Tree Lake State Park is designated as an Undeveloped State Park; it is a satellite park of Singletary Lake State Park. Parking is available in the grass field by the park display on NC 41. The main park road is a sandy dirt path that leads 0.7 miles from the parking area on NC 41 to the lake (foot access only). The park is open during daylight hours.

Directions

From Elizabethtown, take NC 41 east for approximately 12 miles to the parking and access area.

Google Directions

Delorme Gazetteer Page

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Bird List

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