Monday, February 1, 2010
The Grand Canyon
It is always nice to visit the Grand Canyon in the winter because you don't have the throngs you encounter in the summer. There was lots of snow on the ground, but as you can tell from the picture above, it was a bright blue sky day. The temp was 6 degrees when I got up at 6 AM, but by mid afternoon it had reached 40. I spent most of the day just walking along the south rim trail soaking up the magnificence of the canyon. I did not see any condors, which was always a long shot because in the winter they tend to be at lower elevations (the south rim is at 8000 ft), but 2 years ago in February I did see some.
I did get a few birds, including 5 new ones for the week, and 2 new ones for the year list, which brings the YTD total to 249. Not surprisingly the common raven (see photo above) showed up regularly, along with mountain chickadees and pygmy nuthatches. The common raven is a very hardy bird, and can live throughout the winter in the high arctic, so a little snow and cold at the GC is no big deal. Tomorrow morning I will be trying for the leconte's thrasher again before heading into California. Stay tuned!