Although I love bike touring, I did miss the ability to make trips out into the wilderness in search of unique birds and neat photographic conditions. Even though my wife and I only arrived home late yesterday afternoon, I was away from the house one hour before sunrise this morning (6:25 am) such that I could reach the Pagami Creek Wildfire Region which is NW of Isabella, Minnesota early in the morning (i.e. when birds are actively feeding). This area burned back in 2012 and now is a great wilderness area where one enjoys experiencing how natures rejuvenates itself.
I scored two species of birds which are difficult to find, Spruce Grouse (saw four and photographed two unique birds) and Lapland Longspurs. The longspurs are a lifer for me. To reach this forest fire area I had to drive 60 miles north of Duluth, and then follow a 20 mile logging road deep into the wilderness. It was worth the effort. I had been hoping for bright skies which had been forecast, but instead the weather delivered was clouds, temperatures just above freezing and even some light snow on the ground in places!
Here are a few pics from this morning.
Lapland Longspur (immature)