Oak Creek Canyon is normally a great place to bird this time of year as many species are migrating through. We will start the trip at the Huckleby Trailhead which is a few miles up Schnebly Hill Road. There is a large parking lot there which attracts a lot of the juniper habitat birds. Then we will go to Indian Gardens to pick up birds along Oak Creek Canyon and the Cottonwood and Sycamore environment. We will also stop at the Encinita picnic area which has a mixed vegetation spot underneath the west cliffs of Oak Creek Canyon. If we have any time left the group can decide whether or not to do a fourth area which charges an extra $7 per car which is not covered by the Sedona or Senior Pass.
The meeting places will be at Fry’s Electronics at 31st Avenue and Thunderbird in the northeast corner of the parking lot at 7 a.m. and McDonald’s at Carefree Hwy and I-17 at 7:30 a.m. Please let me know which location you would like to meet.
Please bring a lunch. Return time will be around 2:30 p.m. from Sedona.
Difficulty: Rated 2
Dear Friends of Sonoran Audubon Society and Invited Friends of Friends: The SAS ANNUAL BIRD WALKS AND PICNIC AT HORSESHOE RANCH is Saturday April 27, 2019 from 8:00 AM to about 1 PM. We’ll be in the shade on the lovely campus of the Horseshoe Ranch complex using one of the full-service houses as our base of operations. HORSESHOE RANCH is a AZ Game & Fish inholding in the Agua Fria National Monument on Bloody Basin Road (Directions below). Come on out-RAIN or SHINE!
The Bird Walks: Start times: 7:30 AM: Depending upon attendance, there will be one or more of these hikes below. Guides may (or may not) be: Jim “Plants for Birds” Consolloy, Tice (“AZ Audubon”) Supplee, Bob “McBob” McCormick, Karen “Still Learning the Birds” LaFrance, Andree’ (“Super Volunteer”) Tarby and others.
Silver Creek Hike—NEW ROUTE: Lower Silver Creek to the confluence with the Upper Agua Fria River and back to cars parked at the restrooms—should be some good sightings and avoids the hot 1/2 mile walk to get to the upper Silver Creek’s “good parts.” Tice Supplee will be your guide.
A Maybe Hike: Indian Creek from the Ranch, possibly with Bob “McBob”. This is truly a hike, so appropriate footwear, hats and water are required.
Around the Ranch Easy Walk OR The Big Sit Not-A-Walk: Yep: around the Ranch—big trees full of birds… A Golden Eagle flew right over a few years ago! And last year we had the curlew in the field next to the picnic area…all day. Bring your lawn chairs & look for birds from your catbird’s seat. Little exertion required.
The Agua Fria Ford Big Sit: The ford at Horseshoe Ranch can be very “birdy” so you can bring your chairs and watch for birds there. We plan to have a “guide” with you to find the right “perch”.
The Picnic: SAS will provide The Main Course—hamburgers, veggie burgers and kielbasa on the grill—plus Soft Drinks and water, condiments and utensils. Please bring a side dish or dessert for pot luck.
Bring your boots, hats, sun screen and binocs!…AND, for hanging out doing the Big Sits and for eating, lawn chairs. There will likely be Plants for Birds raffles courtesy of Jim and Tom.
RSVP BY WED APRIL 24th to Karen at 602-809-3360 or firstname.lastname@example.org OR to Donna, email@example.com so SAS has an accurate count of attendees for food planning purposes. Many of you have signed up at the recent SAS meeting or have already replied to the above persons so no need to repeat…. SEE YOU SOON!
Directions: Drive north toward Flagstaff on Route 17 out of Phoenix to the Bloody Ba-sin Road exit #259 about 50-60 miles from Phoenix. Drive EAST on BB Road for six miles. The dirt road is probably OK for regular cars; just go slow in some places as there may be rough spots with all the rain lately. As you come over the rise at about Mile 6 and see the Upper Agua Fria River/big trees below in the valley you will also see the Ranch complex across the river. Turn LEFT into the Ranch Road, drive OVER (through!) the stream (yes, it is the river) and up into the Ranch yard to park.
Actual time and details TBA
Actual time and details TBA.