[Tweeters] Adventurers wanted!

Eugene Hunn enhunn323 at comcast.net
Mon Jul 15 13:42:19 PDT 2013


I've seen ptarmigan in two locations in King County, summit of Snoqualmie
Peak, a stiff climb up from Alpental, and summit of Big Snow Mtn., a very
long day or backpack from up the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River Rd. There is
one record of probable nesting on Granite Mtn. but that seems a bit on the
low side for regular breeding and I've not seen them there (but Sooty
Grouse, yes). I suspect they might also be up on Mt. Hinman above LaBohn
Gap, accessed best out of Skykomish.

Good luck. Keep an eye and an ear out for White-crown Sparrows up high.

Gene Hunn

Petaluma, CA

From: tweeters-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu
[mailto:tweeters-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Tim Brennan
Sent: Monday, July 15, 2013 10:51 AM
To: tweeters at u.washington.edu
Subject: [Tweeters] Adventurers wanted!

Hey Tweets!

I know that there are good places to go in the state for high country birds
like White-tailed Ptarmigan and Spruce Grouse, but in the spirit of
always-trying-to-find-a-harder-way, I'd really like to do some exploring for
these birds in King County.

Just a few problems:

1) There are only two extremely sketchy county records for Spruce
Grouse in the county, and Ptarmigan are up there. but there haven't been any
reports of birders finding them in the last couple years that I know of.

2) I've never been up hiking in the Alpine Lakes area and would
probably get lost before getting eaten by a bear while falling off of a
cliff - that is at least my wife's best guess.

3) Having never seen either of these target birds, I can't exactly say
useful things like "That looks like good Spruce Grouse habitat - let's go
over there!". I'm not sure I could pick a spruce tree out of a line-up for
that matter.

4) I'm sure I'm missing something else..

So I'm hoping to make my way into the Alpine Lakes area - maybe even up
towards the Pacific Crest, but still in King County - on the weekend of
August 16-18, and am looking for maybe three other adventurous folks to
explore this underbirded area with me. All positions are currently open -
bonus if you know where you're going up there, and have some
camping/hiking/backpacking (?) savvy, if you have some knowledge of habitat
in general, and/or can pick out things like. spruce. or. grouseberry
(apparently this is a plant that grouse like. imagine that!). Oh! If you
are good with "Where's Waldo?" books, it may also help - I may have walked
right by Ptarmigan and their advanced cloaking systems many times for all I
know - my eyes are awful for things like that.

Sense of humor necessary, and please don't tell me about nice places to see
these birds in other counties - I know they're out there, but I feel like
poking around in "the backyard". Failure is an option! :D

I am working to figure out a trip plan as well, so if anyone has some
experience hiking that area this time of year and possibly birding it, I
would love to hear from you as well. Also it seems very difficult to find
a "range map" for things like spruce trees. so any leads there would be

-Tim Brennan


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