Flock to the River Valley, North Alabama Birding Trail
Sites along the Trail Bird Sightings Special Events Press Room Tourist Information
Northwest Loop

1 - Mallard Fox Creek Wildlife Management Area - Kiosk Site


2 - Wheeler Dam - South Landing


3 - Joe Wheeler State Park


4 - Town Creek Marsh


5 - Leighton Ponds


6 - Wilson Dam Visitor Center - Kiosk Site


7 - Wilson Dam Rockpile Recreation Area


8 - Tennessee Valley Authority Reservation


9 - Key Cave National Wildlife Refuge - Kiosk Site


10 - Natchez Trace Parkway - Rock Springs Nature Trail


11 - Waterloo


12 - Natchez Trace Parkway - Colbert Ferry


13 - Freedom Hills Wildlife Management Area Walking Trail


14 - Bankhead National Forest - Central Firetower - Kiosk Site


15 - Bankhead National Forest - Sipsey Wilderness Trailhead


51 - Cypress Cove Farm

Central Loop
Northeast Loop
Sites Along the Trail
Northwest Loop
The Northwest Loop of the North Alabama Birding Trail winds its way back and forth across Wheeler, Wilson, and Pickwick Lakes, as it takes in an impressive variety of habitats and leads visitors to some great birding. A main focus of the loop is three large reservoirs along the Tennessee River. Wilson Dam and Waterloo, in particular, have been noted across the state for impressive congregations of winter birds such as waterfowl, eagles, and gulls, as well as a long list of rare or vagrant species to the state.

Another site along this loop noted by avid birders is Leighton Ponds. This assemblage of flooded sinkholes is one of the best sites for shorebird migration anywhere in interior Alabama. Farther downstream the historic Natchez Trace crosses through the far northwestern corner of Alabama offering a wooded scenic byway complete with Barred Owls and Wild Turkeys. The nearby Rock Springs Nature Trail is renowned for its concentrations of fall migrating hummingbirds. Each year, hundreds of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are joined by rare visitors from farther west.

If all this were not enough, Bankhead National Forest hosts some of Alabama's last great wilderness areas providing extensive forested habitats for migratory and resident birds. Habitats in the national forest range from hemlock-cove hardwoods in lush canyons to fire maintained pine and oak woodlands. Visitors can look forward to concentrations of wood warblers, including Cerulean, as well as numerous vireos, nuthatches, and woodpeckers.

Add to these incredible avian attractions an area rich in history and culture. From the early Native Americans who left us their mysterious mounds to the trials and tribulations of the Civil War, this area has a great deal to offer. Enjoy world-renowned southern hospitality, and be sure to drop by the Coon Dog Cemetery for a bit of local flavor impossible to find anywhere else.