Monday 23 April 2012: Rock Creek Trail
I set out this morning with no place in mind....drove west and thought I'd stop at Rock Creek Trail again, where I had seen the Canada Geese and their babies. I had noticed a lake on the other side of Rock Creek, but there was no obvious way to get to it (no bridge over the creek). As I approached what I thought was the END of the trail (Evergreen Parkway), I noticed that there was an overpass that would take me to the other side near the lake, so off I walked. When I got halfway over the overpass, I noticed a small pathway (on the other side of a stone wall), so I hopped over the stone wall, and proceeded down into a beautiful meadow. While I stood there, I kept seeing Blue Heron's flying and landing in a stand of huge fir trees in front of me. I could see probably 4 different birds, landing and sneaking into the branches...I am sure this is a ROOKERY!! How excitiing to have discovered this, and I'll be back soon to watch for more photo opps.
Then I retraced my descent into the meadow and returned to the overpass when I discovered on the other side of Evergreen Pkwy. another extension of Rock Creek Trail. The above photo was taken in that area. This path is just gorgeous and winds through both deep forest and lovely lowland wet areas, but they have raised trails through any watery areas. It is a beautiful trail, and the birding is abundant. I saw flickers, robins, sparrows, woodpeckers, finches, and hawks.
When I returned home, I decided to see exactly where this trail goes...and while reading various hiking/birding sites, I came across a wonderful online resource called the WILLAMETTE VALLEY BIRDING TRAIL GUIDE. This is an amazing resource, and a great way to see the area. It is grouped into loops to hike, with all of the major birding sites, descriptions of how to get there, and what to see.