Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Field Trip to Pattee Canyon

For two days in a row have visited Crazy Canyon (part of US Forest Service Pattee Canyon Recreation Area [USFS-Pattee Canyon webpage]). Another review of site from the Missoulian Newspaper Hiking guide.

Target today being lichen discovery. However, this area is also excellent for birds, butterflies, and wildflowers (photos below) in other seasons. The paved road going into the area is usually well maintained even during winter. This allows wildlife watchers to find 'higher elevation' species almost year round.
Green Comma
Common Camas
Gray Jay
Today heard one/two pine grosbeak (Pinicola enucleator) calling (courtesy of xeno-canto webpage):
Clouds prevailed on both days, but temps were above freezing. Time flies by when intensely focused on the ground, especially moss on downed timber. Below are three photos of lichen (Cladonia genus) photographed today. You can do this too, give it a try :-)