Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Trail at Granite Reef Rec. Site

An easel awaits its artist with a view of Red Mountain.

Yellow-rumped Warbler (Dendroica dominica)

No, I haven't taken up painting.  On my last visit to the Granite Reef Rec. Site two artists were there each capturing their own perspective of the tilted strata of Red Mountain.  What a great place to sit and paint, under shady mesquite trees with a cool breeze coming off of the Salt River.  Well its also a great place to bird especialy now that the weather is heating up.  You can see and hear a lot by just sitting in one spot.  Eventually birds start zipping by, or darting down out of all the trees, or swooping out and back over the river.
After sitting awhile I saw that a shady trail winds along the shore so I headed downstream through the mesquite bosque to check it out.  The trail is not the most accessible, but it wasn't meant to be. If you are in a powered wheelchair or a manual you will  need help to get over a few spots, but its not bone-jarring, the majority is smooth.  I managed to catch a nice view of a Yellow-rumped Warbler, for once capturing an image revealing its head, chest, belly, tail, and wingbars, instead of the usual blurry image of a yellow-feathered butt flying away!
Tiny toad found on the trail.
Birds seen (April 2nd, 2011) - Bullock's Oriole, Phainopepla, Yellow-rumped Warblers, Ring-necked Ducks, Redheads, Coots, Blue Heron, Great Egret, Turkey Vultures, Northern Cardinal.  Heard or seen  by other more experienced birders - Lucy's Warbler, Bewick's Wren, Gray Flycatcher, Orange-crowned Warblers.  No Vermilion Flycatcher here, but reported at Phon D Sutton.

Its best to come early in the morning, on weekdays, as more people are here on weekends fishing or kayaking and soon kids will start tubing down the Salt River. 

Remember - you'll need a Tonto Pass to park here.  Click HERE for places to purchase a Tonto Pass. 

1 comment:

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