Category
Nature-viewing

First Annual Mountain Bird Festival in Ashland


On the Mountain Bird Festival's 'target' list, the beautiful Mountain Bluebird. Photo by David Hodkinson

The beautiful Mountain Bluebird is on the festival’s target list. Photo by David Hodkinson

Mountain Bird Festival hosted by the Klamath Bird Observatory

Ashland, Oregon, May 30 through June 1, 2014

Mountain Bird festival offers 3 days of guided bird walks and keynote presentations with half-day and full-day field trips both Saturday and Sunday.

Klamath Bird Observatory will host this community conservation event in the spring of 2014 in Ashland, Oregon. The festival combines a celebration of nature with the stewardship ethic needed to ensure thriving landscapes for humans and wildlife. Every person who participates in this festival will become a significant steward of the science that drives bird conservation.

Extend your stay and enjoy more of Ashland and its surrounds: wineries, theaters, hiking, art galleries, restaurants.

The mountain birds of interest migrate through the Siskiyou and Cascade mountains, many viewing areas are easy driving distance from the town of  Ashland, Oregon.  The ‘target’ list includes: Redhead, Common Merganser, Mountain Quail, nesting Sandhill Cranes, nesting Osprey, Ferruginous Hawk, Swainson’s Hawk, dancing Western and Clark’s Grebes, Wilson’s Snipe, Black Terns, Great Gray Owl, Western Screech-Owl, Vaux’s Swift, Calliope Hummingbird, Prairie Falcon, Lewis’s Woodpecker, Red-breasted Sapsucker, Williamson’s Sapsucker, White-headed Woodpecker, Hammond’s Flycatcher, Dusky Flycatcher, Cassin’s Vireo, Mountain Chickadee, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Townsend’s Solitaire, Mountain Bluebird, Hermit Warbler, MacGillivray’s Warbler, Nashville Warbler, Green-tailed Towhee, Vesper Sparrow, Yellow-headed Blackbird, Lazuli Bunting.

Southern Oregon Lavender Trail Festival


Lavender Fields Forever Farm in the Applegate Valley

Lavender Fields Forever Farm in the Applegate Valley

Instead of tending the inn’s garden today, my friend Peggy enticed me out to play tourist in the and check out the lavender farms in the Applegate Valley area.

Peggy has been anxious to pick lavender and replenish her dried flower arrangements.  I have been wanting to familiarize myself with the farms and view the gardens. The Southern Oregon Lavender Trail Festival allowed us to indulge in our desires.

Lavender farming is a relatively new thing in the area.  Four farms are up and running; and there are 2 additional farms starting up in 2014.

The two farms that most favorably impressed us were: Lavender Fields Forever and Applegate Valley Lavender Farm.  Thankfully they are the ones closest to Jacksonville!  I like the idea of giving people something else to do while wine tasting — inserting a lavender farm or two between the tasting stops.

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Walk or bike Crater Lake E. Rim Dr. June 22 & 23


THIS WEEKEND ONLY: Crater Lake’s East Rim Drive Opens for Non-Motorized Recreation

June 22 and 23, 2013 East Rim Drive circling Crater Lake will be open to non-motorized traffic only.  Early snow melt allows the park to offer this rare opportunity to enjoy Crater Lake at a slower and quieter pace for pedestrians and bicyclists.

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Grizzly Peak: so many flowers and more to come!


On Grizzly Peak, Siskiyou Onion

On Grizzly Peak, Siskiyou Onion

Hiking Grizzly Peak

One of my all time favorite hikes is up on Grizzly Peak.  Northeast of Ashland, Grizzly Peak is the tallest peak viewable from the Chanticleer Inn.

This hike affords great sweeping views: From the car park view Mt. McLoughlin and on a clear day the peaks surrounding Crater Lake. Then from the trail, the entire Rogue and Bear Creek Valleys. Further west and south on the trail you can see Mt. Ashland, Emigrant Lake, Pilot Rock and Mt. Shasta.

The trail is about fairly easy, 5 miles round trip, some elevation gain but not at all difficult. Directions to the trail head.

The Flowers of Grizzly Peak are best part!

From spring to late summer, the flowers are too many to count and each kind is wonderful.  Trail runs through forest, meadows and rocky outcrops: each area is packed with a variety of flowers.  The blooms rotate through the entire season. One can hike Grizzly Peak every two weeks and see different bouquets.

Indian paintbrush Grizzly Peak

 

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Wildflowers on Jacksonville Woodlands Trail


A Vine found on the Jacksonville Woodlands Trail

An orange honeysuckle (Lonicera ciliosa) vine found on the Jacksonville Woodlands Trail

A Day Trip on the Jacksonville Woodlands Trail

Yesterday, friends and I spent an afternoon in Jacksonville.  This is my first time exploring the Jacksonville Woodlands trail system — loved it!

Jacksonville, a darling historic town, is less than 30 minutes from Ashland.  Each time I visit it seems to get better.

The shops are fun to poke around in, but in deference to my [male] friend, instead of antique, toy, and cooking shops, we went for a quick hike through the Jacksonville Woodlands trail system.

The trails switch back and forth above the Britt Festival.  Any number of trail heads are easily accessed near downtown. The hillside is full of native Madrones, Oaks, and lots of little native wildflowers. Spring is the best time to see the wildflowers. The trail is well shaded and would be a great respite from the summer heat.

On the Jacksonville Woodlands trail a Triteleia ixioide in the Lily family, its common names are Golden Brodiaea and Pretty Face.

Triteleia ixioide in the Lily family, its common names are Golden Brodiaea and Pretty Face.

Increasingly there are wine tasting rooms cropping up in downtown proper … recommended by many is Quady North on California St.

One of my favorite eateries is C St. Bistro (closed Sundays).

 

 

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Spring flowers at Emigrant Lake


bed and breakfast ashland oregon

Purple-eyed Grass at Emigrant Lake

Stay at a Bed and Breakfast Ashland Oregon, hike the hills and marvel at the spring flowers

The early spring flowers are blooming on the valley floor.  They look so delicate and sweet.  In reality they are hardy perennials.

Picture here is Purple-eyed Grass. At the Chanticleer Inn Bed and Breakfast in Ashland Oregon, the related Blue-eyed Grass is abound in the south facing flower beds.

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Baby Fawn at the door of the Chanticleer Inn


At the door!

Chanticleer Inn: a deer nursery!

It’s fawning time in Ashland.  A doe left a fawn at the front door — literally on the Chanticleer Inn B&B’s porch.

Mother deer will leave the fawns in order to browse and feed, and will later return to them.

Most of the time, the fawn is safely sequestered in tall grass or under a bush. Being so new fawns have no scent for predators to catch a whiff of, and the spots help camouflage the baby.  The deer in Ashland are so accustomed to humans, they leave them on sidewalks, in alleys, and now apparently at front doors.

The fawn is just left of the door in the corner.

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Oregon Wildflowers


Oregon Wildflowers Klamath Fawn Lilies

Oregon Wildflowers, Klamath Fawn Lilies

My favorite Oregon Wildflowers Hike at Grizzly Peak

First time I’ve been to Grizzly Peak this early in the year, only a few are starting to bloom: Trillium, Klamath Fawn Lilies, Fritillaria pudica, and Lomatium.

After the most recent late-spring snow melts, there will be more Oregon wildflowers to see! I can barely wait to get back to my favorite hiking trail.

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Bird Taxonomy and Diversity Class


Birding Klamath with Pepper Trail, PhD.

“Bird Taxonomy and Diversity”

Birding Klamath

Audubon's Warbler photo by David Hodkinson

Dates: June 23rd and 24th, 2012, Tuition: $100

Location: Ashland, OR

Instructor: Pepper Trail

Description: Hone your identification skills and explore the relationships among groups of birds in this lab and field course. On Saturday, join Pepper Trail, Ph.D., for a day in the lab at SOU, where you’ll refresh your taxonomic know-how, look at identifying characteristics, and discuss their ecological significance.

On Sunday, the class will travel to the Klamath Basin, one of the richest birding sites in Oregon, to practice identifying species in the field.

Pepper Trail, PhD has studied bird behavior and conservation around the world with the support of the National Geographic Society, the Smithsonian Institution, and other groups. He works as the ornithologist at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Wildlife Forensics Lab in Ashland.
For more information go the Siskiyou Field Institute’s website.

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Siskiyou Field Institute: Ecological Restoration, 5/12/12


Date: May 12th, 2012

Location: TBA  Instructor: Luke Ruediger  Tuition: $50
Naturalist Certificate

Description: If you’ve read about local ecological restoration projects and wondered how they actually work, you’ll want to take this class. Students will visit a forest restoration site in the Upper Applegate Valley, where forests have been thinned to increase health and resilience; and then visit a prescribed burn on National Forest lands. While onsite, class discussions will cover topics including fire ecology, forest restoration, indigenous land management, land stewardship, historical ecology, and forest ecology.

For more information on this Siskiyou Field Institute class, click here

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