Boreal Forest Birding at 5F

Deer hunting season ended yesterday! With the hunters out of the woods I drive north into the Pagami Creek Forest Fire Region. I had wanted to visit this wilderness area before snow made the 18 mile logging road impassable. Upon arriving at Tomahawk Road I was pleased to discover the hunters had driven the road post blizzard and packed down enough snow that my Subaru Outback could venture into the deep forest. Arriving at sunrise I was presented with a Winter Wonderland. The storm from a few days ago had plastered the pines with ice and snow. Even though it was cold this morning (5F), there was not an ounce of wind. The scene a beautiful. Thus began a few hours of exploring this remote wilderness.

On the way home as the temperature climbed into the 20’s I discovered hundreds of Pine Grosbeaks alighting on Lake County Hwy #2 to find gravel for their gizzards. Thankfully, this road receives very little traffic and I was able to take a few photographs. One of my favorite birding locations is the abandoned railroad a few miles south of Greenwood Lake. This location did not disappoint with many birds including Canada’s new nation bird, the Grey Jay … also known as the Canada Jay. It beat out the Common Loon and Canada Goose. The jay was considered the underdog, or should I say underbird.

Here are a few of the Pine Grosbeak images from this morning

A Failure to Communicate!
y3-m11-sand-river-pine-grosbeak-01-disagreement y3-m11-sand-river-pine-grosbeak-02-disagreement y3-m11-sand-river-pine-grosbeak-03-disagreement

Gravel Getting
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Airborne!
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My Subaru and another view off Tomahawk Road (10 years older than me!)
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Dawn Reflections
tomahawk-trip-river-reflections

Canada’s New National Bird … the Grey Jay!
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4 thoughts on “Boreal Forest Birding at 5F

    1. Grey Jays stay up in the Northland throughout the winter, but may push a tiny bit south if conditions are too severe. The Sax-Zim Bog area which is a bit north of Duluth has Grey Jays all winter long (and in the Summer)

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