The Last Lap

by AJ 15. March 2013 21:32

Hmmmm... it is now Wednesday and I intend to be home by Friday but am still in Arizona.  It's time to drive!  Leaving Willcox about 8:30 I dead-head east to Deming, NM and catch the shortcut to Hatch.  It was tempting to stop and buy a bunch of Hatch chili peppers but what would I do with them all?  North through Albuquerque, Las Vegas, and Raton.  The weather was great and I really enjoyed the drive through Raton Pass.  Prior to hitting the town I saw numerous pronghorns grazing in the grasslands.  Going through the mountains I was intrigued by all the signs warning of deer, elk, and bear but wasn't lucky enough to see any of these critters.  The New Mexico side of the pass is beautiful, but once one crosses into Colorado the scenery becomes spectacular.  There had obviously been a significant snowfall not so long ago.  It was getting dark by time I got to Colorado City (680 miles) so it was time to stop for the night.  This was the view from my motel.

The next morning it was off to Nebraska.  After getting through Colorado Springs and around Denver it was smooth sailing.  Once I reached Ogallala I took a short break and birded Lake Ogallala where the most significant bird was probably a Horned Grebe. There was also a good movement of primarily Snow Geese moving to the northwest.

Next stop was Sutherland Reservoir where the light was miserable and few birds outside of some geese and Mallards were identified.  Pushing further east, seeing a few cranes and large numbers of geese, I stopped for the night in Kearney,NE and spent the twilight hours watching Sandhill Cranes coming in from their feeding fields.  Another 500 miles under the belt.

The last stretch saw many flocks of geese flying overhead - mostly Snow Geese but also some Canadas.  The last stop was in Iowa and Lake Manawa SP.  Not all of the eagles have left yet.  This guy had a nice fish for lunch.

Home in time to pick up the mail and another adventure comes to a close.


Birds | Travel

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