Mt. Piños Field Trip: Sat., 16 June, 8 a.m. Reminder
Mt. Piños is a great area for mountain birds such as Clark’s Nutcracker, White-headed Woodpecker, Mountain Quail, singing Green-tailed Towhees and Fox Sparrows, Pygmy & White Breasted Nuthatches, Cassin’s & Purple Finches, Lawrence’s Goldfinches and the ever-elusive Calliope Hummingbird. We’re always on the lookout for one or more of the released California Condors who are again fully licensed to fly. We will bird early, then look for butterflies. If the wildflowers are out in force, we’ll have a good chance of finding the Calliope. We may also drive over to Mt. Abel to take a look at “Shirley’s Seep” – an oasis for thirsty birds in dry years – located about 1/2 way up the road.
This trip is scheduled as a day trip, but you can camp Saturday night at McGill campground located about 1/2 way up the Mt. Piños road, and which opened on Memorial Day weekend. Same goes for Mt. Piños campground, about a mile farther up the road.
Our famous leucistic Anna’s Hummingbird (M.Block)
Family Guide: Lots of driving; lots of walking; days can be sunny & hot or cloudy & cool. Small patches of snow may still be present.
Mountain Adventure Pass Not Needed: The Forest Service Ranger Station for the Mt. Piños area (661-245-3731) says we don’t need a pass for this area for this time of year, only for snow season which is now officially over.
Call the leader no later than Friday, 6/15 if you’re coming. If they don’t know you’re coming, they won’t wait for you if you’re late.
[Directions] Allow 90 minutes travel time from downtown Santa Monica.
Take I-5 north to the Frazier Park exit. Go west on Frazier Mountain Road for about 6 miles. The name then changes to Cuddy Valley Road. Continue northwest about 6 miles to the intersection of Cuddy Valley and Mil Potrero Roads. Park in the large pull-off area about 100 yards past this intersection. (Do not expect us to meet you at the top of Mt. Piños!) We will briefly bird this area, then continue up the mountain or drive over to Mt. Abel. Even if you are not camping, this is an all-day trip, so gas up your car, wear layers and bring food and water. If you are camping, McGill & Mt. Piños campgrounds have no water, but do have new bathrooms. If you have an FRS radio, bring it along tuned to Channel 11, privacy channel 22.
Meet at 8:00 a.m. Leader: Mary Prismon (310-457-2240).