Sherman & Wasco Counties

I went on a bit of an adventure yesterday out to Sherman and Wasco Counties.  I started with a three hour hike at Deschutes River State Recreation Area, an awesome park I blogged about last April.  Like my previous trip, the dogs were stoked on our hike:

Ok so Jake was tired at this point, but Ralph was stoked.  We started our hike along the river trail and found several of each goldeneye swimming...

Barrow's Goldeneyes

From the river trail we headed up to the middle trail and eventually to the upper (can't recall the name) trail, led by the sounds of Canyon Wrens.  A Rock Wren was singing from a...rock...

Canyon Wrens were singing from the canyon walls- I have heard them many times before but had never gotten a visual.  Yesterday I was determined to find one and I did!  Too far for good photos, but here's one anyway:

Yay!   I can finally count it as a lifer.  We eventually made it to the peak of the trail (I think) and sat down to take a rest.  Jake actually fell asleep on the trail while I took some scenery shots...

After the park we headed west to drive down 97 and then 216 to Wasco County.  The drive was beautiful and I finally saw my first Oregon Northern Shrike!

My reason for driving so far south was to visit Victor Road, an area I had visited last July.  Someone (actually a customer at my work!) had found a flock of wintering Tricolored Blackbirds along this road, possibly the same ones seen last summer at nearby Juniper Flats Road.  They were quite easy to find.  I almost had a nice comparison shot of a Tricolored and a Red-winged but the Tri would not cooperate and then they both flew off.

Here are a few of the Tricoloreds...

On the other side of the road it looked like a horse was getting its eyes gouged out by Red-wingeds...

Here's one last zoomed in shot of the Tricoloreds, so you can see how different they look from the Red-wingeds while on the ground...

 Now, the real bird of the day was the Rough-legged Hawk.  I saw at least 8, probably more.  Some were super skittish and some let me look right up at them. 

The last bird of the day was along 216 on my way home- a Prairie Falcon!

 Such an excellent day for birds!  Good times!


  1. Wow dang, that is an excellent day of birding! Un-shaven Legged Hawks are tops, and a very nice prize in Arizona, though perhaps your Triangle Blackbirds are the most enviable.


  2. Wow! What a great day. Love the Rough-legged Hawk shots and the Prairie Falcon looking at you is so intense! Looks like a very good day of birding.

  3. What a great day for you and the dogs. Love the hawk shots and the cute wren. Pretty scenery shots too, great post!

  4. So many awesome shots, Jen! The Prairie Falcon is beautiful and the shot of the Blackbirds in-flight is cool. The Rock Wren picked an appropriate perch:)

  5. Nice tricoloreds! It's funny, but that Prairie falcon looks just like the shot of yours that is in the book. Those guys really like power poles.

    1. Funny! I believe all the ones I have seen have been on power poles- all four of 'em haha.


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