03 Aug Saturday Field Trip – Chalome Valley
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Pronghorns and elk and birds, oh my! We might even throw in bobcats if we’re lucky! Yellow-billed Magpies! All kinds of raptors, including Red-tails, Ferruginous Hawks, both Bald and Golden Eagles, Kestrels and Prairie Falcons are to be expected! Rough-legged Hawks are a possibility! Will this be the year that we see a condor? How about dickie-birds: Two or three woodpeckers, nuthatches, both phoebes, a couple of towhees, lots of sparrows, pipits and larks, bluebirds, maybe even a roadrunner! Who will spot a Red-throated Pipit? Or a longspur? Plus you get to cross a bridge between the North American and Pacific Plates along the San Andreas fault! Who could want more? (Maybe lunch in the Parkfield Café? Their motto is “Be here when the Big One happens.”)
Meet in the Walmart parking lot, Ashlan and Blackstone, at 6:45 to leave PROMPTLY at 7:00. We will carpool as much as possible for this FAS favorite. Pit stops will be in Kettleman City and Parkfield. Bring your books, binoculars, scope if you have one, lunch if you don’t want to try the café, and plenty of water. Dress for the weather! We will go rain, shine or fog. Walking will be minimal and flat. Depending on the weather, an alternate route home is over the hill to Coalinga with the possibility of Mountain Bluebirds. Varied Thrush has been seen on that route.
Map to meeting place: