[birding] Pine Mountain OFO family birding weekend July 20-22

Joel Geier joel.geier at peak.org
Mon Jul 16 16:33:23 PDT 2007

Hi folks,

Some of you may have seen this on OBOL, but thought I'd pass it on for
the rest who might be looking for something interesting to do next

These "family birding weekends" put on by Oregon Field Ornithologists
(OFO) are fairly low-key as birding events, more like camping trips in
good birding spots with assorted outdoor/naturalist activities (fairly
unstructured). Non-OFO members are welcome to join; I think there is a
small fee of $15/carload (or for a few bucks more you could just join
for other membership benefits).

These weekends are geared for kids which is why they're called "family"
weekends. Birders without kids are also welcome to join, so long as you
don't mind being around kids and sometimes doing things at their pace
(or, as some grownups do, form small groups to make your own birding
forays around the area).

Pine Mountain is a working astronomical observatory, and popular with
amateur astronomers who are often very generous about letting visitors
view planets, nebulae and such which they've lined up in their

Birdwise, it's a good place to see birds of ponderosa pine and juniper-
sagebrush habitats. Red crossbills, Clark's nutcrackers, white-headed
woodpecker, pygmy nuthatches and the like can be seen at close range by
sitting quietly near a dripper near the astronomers' residences, which
is the only watering spot for miles around. Common poorwill can often be
found on an evening walk. A stock tank at the case of the mountain draws
sagebrush species such as Brewer's sparrows from miles around (this time
of year it can be good for studying the differences between young
Brewer's and young chipping sparrows).

The web link from Judy below gives more info. The description of the
campground as "primitive" is perhaps a bit too stark since there are
picnic tables, fire rings, and fairly modern pit toilet-type restrooms,
and lots of good tent sites under the pines. However, there is no water
available in the campground -- we usually haul in 5-10 gallons in jugs.

Happy birding,

Judy Meredith wrote:

> Birders
> Just a reminder that OFO has a family weekend coming up
> next weekend. Get details at the link below. The wildfires in 
> eastern Oregon are about 75 miles away from this location 
> so not to worry. Event is free to OFO members but if you
> use the PMO telescopes they ask a modest donation of $5 
> per person. 
> A fun time is anticipated of course! Saturday  evening is a
> pot luck together but the rest of the meals are on your own. 
> Ask me if you have any questions. 
> Judy Meredith
jmeredit at bendnet.com

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