Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Eagles, More Eagles and a Few Other Birds

Time sure flies when you're having fun, huh? It's been about 7 months since I did a photo blog. Working part time and hiking with Hazel dog have taken up most of my time. I'm not complaining as life is very good! I have taken my camera on occasion when Hazel and I go hiking but I didn't get enough pics to do a blog. So I consciously took a break from photographing wildlife and had a very fun summer into fall into winter!

I looked at my schedule for this week and today( Wednesday) looked like a great day to go to Barr Lake and say hi to the eagles. They are around in the summer but the wintertime is the best time to see them. So I got Hazel and the kitties taken care of and headed out with coffee in hand to see what the day would bring!

I was on the trail less than 5 minutes when I spotted this eagle........

I walked past the owl nest box and saw this eagle flying by......

This is the sweet view of the rockies!

I saw a few blue jays before getting this pic. This one was imitating the call of  
a red tail hawk! I kept looking to see where the hawk was before realizing this guy was doing it!!! Hilarious!

Who doesn't think chickadees are the cutest!

I headed towards the gazebo and spotted this eagle along the way.

From the gazebo you can see the eagle nest that has been occupied for many, many years!

These eagles were in the tree along the boardwalk to the gazebo....

I hung out at the gazebo for quite awhile enjoying the show!

Canada geese were everywhere...

There were dozens of common mergansers......

And even a few pelicans......

Ring-necked ducks flew by....


And northern pintails......

 There were at least a dozen more eagles sitting out on the ice but they were too far away for a decent pic. So I headed back and found this cute squirrel......

Barr Lake has a beautiful nature center and quite a few bird feeders. So I went to check out who was there.

This kestrel was enjoying the sunny day!

And the juncos were having breakfast...

The squirrel was enjoying breakfast too....

 I had spent about 3 hours at Barr Lake, so it was time to head home.

I was on 63rd St just before Nelson road and spotted this red tail. So I pulled a quick 
U turn and was able to get some nice pics!

Well, it was a very fun morning! Enjoying Nature on a beautiful day in Colorado is priceless!
Thanks for reading! And feel free to share with friends!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Third Time is the Charm!

Somehow I scored four days off in a row. Sweet! So the plan was to go for a hike with Hazel and take my camera along. Monday morning turned out to a be a rainy day, so we did a quick hike at coot lake without the camera and headed home to enjoy the rainy day from my couch. It looked like Tuesday would be a good day to hike and photograph but when I got up it was cloudy and rainy again. I definitely was not complaining as we always welcome moisture around here. But it wasn't ideal for photographing so we did a quick hike again and
headed home.......  

Now it's Wednesday and just spectacular! The rain had cleaned the air a bit from all the wildfires. So Hazel dog and I headed over to the eagle trail for a fun hike and some wildlife photographing too.

There's an osprey nest on 55th St a bit off the road. Lucky for me, one of them was sitting on a telephone pole!

The nest is not in a good place for pics as you can see. So that's why I was happy to see one of them close by and ready to pose for pics.

After enjoying the osprey, we hit the trail for a fun hike!

It was definitely a spectacular morning!

The meadowlarks were singing up a storm!

We were heading towards the horse ranch when I spotted a bird crossing the trail. Hmmmm I wasn't sure what kind of bird it was but I've learned over the years to shoot pics and ask questions later. OMG! It was a virginia rail !!!!!! This is a very secretive bird that calls freshwater marshes home. I couldn't believe my luck as this was my first sighting ever! The rail disappeared as quickly as it!

There are quite a few prairie dogs on this trail. Lucky for me, Hazel does not chase wildlife! She doesn't chase prairie dogs, rabbits or deer. So she makes the perfect photographing companion! Yup, she is the perfect dog!

We had just hiked through the west end trailhead when I spotted a small bird. Score! A blue grosbeak! I got a few pics of this beautiful bird years ago but they were not the best quality. Today that all changed! Best pics I've ever gotten of this colorful bird!

           The western kingbirds were singing all along the trail. Finally one posed for me!

             We made it to the small pond so Hazel could getting some swimming time!

This is the view from the swimming pond! 

 After Hazel got some swimming time, we hiked back up towards the trailhead. This is the spectacular view from the top of the ridge! wow!

Well, what a fantastic morning hike we had today! It was worth waiting for!
Thanks for reading!

Monday, May 21, 2018

Hiking With Hazel

The original plan was to go for a hike with my sweet Hazel dog and do some photographing on Sunday. Saturday was a rainy day and according to the weather folks, it was gonna clear for Sunday. Nope! Woke up to a cloudy and rainy Sunday. So we went with plan B and just did a fun hike at Coot lake in the rain without the camera. 

Monday was looking promising for our hike/ photographing wildlife, so that was the new plan. I woke up to a spectacular day, so got the kitties fed, packed up the camera and we headed out for a fun morning!
I thought the boulder valley ranch loop might be fun. Hazel could be off leash and there was a good chance of seeing some wildlife, especially birds.

Oh yeah, We barely started our hike and the western kingbirds welcomed us with their song!

 Then the bullock's oriole appeared! These guys are so beautiful! They arrive in early May, build their nests, have their young and head south in August. So I always enjoy seeing these amazing birds!

The bunnies were everywhere! Most dogs would chase them but not Hazel. She really is the perfect hiking partner. She doesn't chase prairie dogs, bunnies or even deer. The only thing she chases is her tennis ball. Thank Dog for that because you can get a fine of up to 1000$ if a ranger sees your dog chasing wildlife. 

The wildflowers are blooming everywhere!

I could hear the yellow headed blackbirds calling down at this small lake. But it's a protected area, so we continued on........

A couple of these sparrows were enjoying the beautiful morning! I'm gonna guess they are chipping sparrows but it's only a guess.

We were just getting ready to hike down the steep hill when this meadowlark started singing his heart out! It is the most beautiful sound!

We finally made it to the small pond where Hazel could cool off and get her swim on!

We were leaving the pond when this female red-winged blackbird posed so nicely!

This whole area is quite populated with prairie dogs but just north of the pond is a great area to get pics of them.

Whenever I stopped to get pics, Hazel would just sit next to me and patiently wait for me. Yup, she is the perfect hiking dog!

We got to the northside of the main trail and saw this sign. Then I realized they had these signs about every 100 feet along the trail. Really? Seems a waste of money to me. There are signs at the trailheads reminding people about dogs chasing wildlife. And even with all these signs, I guarantee people still allow their dogs to chase the P dogs.....

I spotted this meadowlark but he wasn't singing. He had a mouthful of yummy breakfast to enjoy!

We were almost back to the trailhead when we passed this cute family of prairie dog pups.

Back at the trailhead, I decided to walk part of the trail we missed. Sweet! Mr. bullock's oriole appeared and posed so nicely for me!

Well, what a fun morning Hazel and I had! Monday might be my new favorite day to go out photographing with my dog! The trails were very quiet and it was a great way to start the week!
Thanks for reading!