Monday, April 2, 2018

Just got back...

Just got back ... from a very nice wildlife-viewing drive up Blacksmith Fork Canyon.  We saw lots of deer on the north side of the steep hill just south of the Hardware Ranch visitor center, 35 to 40 of them in quite a small area.  Most exciting to me: we saw our first Northern Harrier of the year, in their classic low-and-slow hunting pattern over the big meadow about a half mile west of Hardware Ranch visitor center.  A bit further west we got a great view of two Sandhill Cranes, browsing along the edge of a meadow about 100' away from us.  All three of those viewings were high quality: as much time as we wanted, relatively close, and unobstructed sight lines.  We watched the harrier for about 15 minutes – it's not easy for me to tire of watching that effortless stunt flying.  That's not my photo at right, but I wanted to show the light coloration.  Later in the year the Northern Harriers are distinctly darker; this one surprised us with how pale it was.

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