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Rattlesnake Canyon

Florence Sanchez
 

I hiked the trail this morning, starting at 6:30.  It was pleasantly cool then but not a lot of bird activity until the sun started to reach the Canyon.  I hiked to the head of the canyon and back.  My goal was to see if there were still Steller's Jays there, and I finally found one at the head of the Canyon where the Tunnel trail connector comes in.  Only warbler heard was a single Yellow, but there were a couple of Warbling vireos singing at various places.  House wrens were everywhere and I had at least 2 Canyon Wrens.  No Dipper, but stream conditions are sure good for one this year (though the stream is crossable).  I had 2 Ash-throated Flycatchers near tin can meadow and a flyover of what appeared to be a Phainopepla.  Several Black-headed Grosbeaks were seen and heard.

There was also a lot in bloom, mostly in the pink and yellow spectrums.  Pink flowers included lots of Clarkia ungiculata, Checkerbloom, and a few wild roses in tin can meadow.  Yellow to orange flowers included Bush monkey flower, Golden Stars, Golden Yarrow, and Deerweed. For color relief, there was also a lot of the red Keckiella (Honeysuckle Pentstemon) and white Common Yarrow.  And of course, the non-native Rockroses that have established themselves firmly on the first part of the trail were also in bloom.

Florence Sanchez