[Tweeters] Birding Tieton River Nature Trail (Yakima County) Today

Lonnie Somer mombiwheeler at gmail.com
Sat Mar 26 20:08:30 PDT 2022

Hi Tweeters,

My wife Wendy and I hiked along the Tieton River Nature Trail today from
11:00-3:00 or so.The Trail is located off of Hwy 12 a few miles east of
Naches and can be accessed across the highway from the Oak Creek Wildlife
Area (spotted 2 SAY'S PHOEBES near the parking area). Definitely felt like
Spring, with the temperature in the mid-60s and lots of birds about.
Less than 5 minutes from the gate (very annoying to access if you're
wearing a pack; it's like a giant dog door flap) at the trailhead, we heard
a CANTON WREN singing from the cliffs. LEWIS'S WOODPECKERS were very
common along the trail wherever there were oak trees, and N. FLICKERS and
STELLER'S JAYS were very vocally announcing their territories. We spotted
a pair of GOLDEN EAGLES about an hour into the hike soaring above the
cliffs, and 3 TURKEY VULTURES soaring by at different times. On the way
back I heard chittering vocalizations above us (sounded like laughing imps
from Hell) and spotted 3 WHITE-THROATED SWIFTS mixed in with a few
VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOWS. I hadn't realized that they showed up this early in
Washington. This section of the trail is located roughly across the river
from the cliffs at the eBird hotspot labeled 'Hwy 12--WTSW cliff at Oak
Creek' where they can be easily seen at the pull-out after they've arrived
for the season. On the way out we watched some of the rock climbers
working their way up the basalt columns on the cliffs; 2 curious C. RAVENS
circled above them for several minutes also checking them out.

Good birding,

Lonnie Somer
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