North Park – Worth The Drive

Illinois River.

Took a day in the high country today. Started out early. There never quite seems to be enough time. Might have to go up and spend a few nights sometime soon.

Drove through the Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Pretty quiet except for these White-tailed Prairie Dogs.

 

Took a long walk through the extensive Sage Brush Steppe country hoping to find Greater Sage Grouse and White-tailed Jackrabbit.

All I found was these.

 And these.

 Along Willow Creek, Illinois River and other riparian areas are thick Willow Carrs.

I need some of this willow for projects. But it sure has lovely color in winter.

 This very old sign was in a State Wildlife Area near the old Kinnikinik Store.

Look closely. Only one bullet hole. That’s pretty amazing.

 I can always find Townsend’s Solitaire’s here. Always singing.

 Further down the canyon, along the river I stopped and meandered along side roads where there were big  stands of pines, fir, spruce and junipers.

Found this cutie – Brown Creeper.

And Oh Happy Day!

Golden-crowned Kinglet. Three of them. Look at the back of it’s head. There is a tiny bit of red.

I spent a delightful half an hour with these beauties that never stopped chit-chatting to each other. They were quite curious about me too. This was my first opportunity to photograph these little gems. An absolute treat.

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