Visiting the Upper Great Plains is a unique and fabulous trip. We’ll be in the rocky canyons near Bozeman to prairie grasslands in northeastern Montana. Glacial potholes and sloughs, broad areas of grassland, and canyons with scrubby growth will be our lot on this tour.
This is Big Sky country with wide, expansive views and crystal blue skies. At times you might even feel like you are in the Wild West. Lewis and Clark ventured here more than 200 years ago. And did I mention Montana is HUGE? Our itinerary is pretty large, too. But I think you’ll find the locations and birding are more than worth the effort.
So much is possible here in such an interesting mix. Almost 300 species of birds have been report here during the last week of June in eBird. This includes 20 species of waterfowl and nearly 30 species of shorebirds, not to mention a goodly number of sparrows and flycatchers. Stately Trumpeter Swans will be on bodies of water. Long-billed Curlews will be feeding along shorelines with brightly-colored American Avocets and clean-cut Black-necked Stilts. Cinnamon Teals may be on the ponds and Western and Eared Grebes may be on some of the lakes. Ferruginous Hawks and Golden Eagles might delight us in the blue skies above. The color of blue that you see on a Mountain Bluebird makes you feel like the light is coming from the inside! We might get lucky with any number of specialty birds of the Plains like Baird’s Sparrow, Sprague’s Pipit, Lark Bunting, Mountain Plover, or Chestnut-collared or McCown’s Longspurs. A couple of the prairie dog towns may produce a sighting of a Burrowing Owl, too. This will be a delightful trip!
Glacier National Park Extension
Glacier National Park is recognized as the “Crown Jewel” of our National Park System. Straddling the Continental Divide in northwestern Montana, the watershed flows into three oceans… Atlantic, Pacific and Arctic! While hiking through Glacier we will be treated to countless mountain peaks, alpine lakes and the few remaining glaciers in the lower 48. This time of year can offer astounding displays of wildflowers. Wildlife abounds in the park and sightings of Mountain Goats, Mountain Lions and Black Bears are regular and we may even see a Grizzly! The scenery in the park is beautiful, and with the long summer days, sunsets and sunrises are often spectacular.
Although we will eat meals as a group, meal costs are not included.