Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Iowa to the Rockies

Yellow-headed Blackbird

We left Wisconsin and crossed the Mississippi River into Iowa and drove across miles of farm fields, (our RV never got bogged down as we were on the road). Along the way were pockets of marsh where Yellow-headed Blackbirds gave their screechy call.

Dickcissels should become Iowa's state bird as they were everywhere calling their name.

Red-headed Woodpecker

Yellow-billed Cuckoo

The Muddy Missouri - "Too thick to drink and too thin to plow"

We stopped mid-way through the state at Clear Lake State Park and the next day drove to DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge which is half in Iowa and half in Nebraska with a Missouri River Oxbow dividing it.

We drove across Nebraska settling into Swanson's Lake State Park.  The campsite we chose surprised us with three baby Screech Owls right above us.

Swainson's Hawk

Broad-tailed Hummingbird in Montane Golden Banner

We drove to Rocky Mountain National Park and found a campsite at the Moraine Campground the first night and Glacier Basin the second.   More new birds and flowers; and Elk were quite abundant in the meadows plus we could hear them bugling.

Fairy Slipper Orchid

Mountain Bluebird

Mountain Chickadee

Red Crossbill

Elk Herd in the Moraine Meadow

We walked early at Bear Lake before the National Park crowds got there. Peaceful, tranquil, and amazing (plus cold and snow) and lots more birds.
Bear Lake 

Red-naped Sapsucker

Violet-Green Swallow

Audubon's (Yellow-rumped) Warbler

Pygmy Nuthatch

We moved to Elk Meadow RV Park for the weekend near Estes Park to avoid the crowds and catch up on laundry, emails, etc.  Nearby were Black-billed Magpie broods making a racket for more food.
"Feed Me"  Baby Magpie says

Western Aster

Bull Elk at the campsite

THE END - for now; as we have half the park to go with the alpine area and the western side of the continental divide.

So wonderful to see all that God has created in this part of the U.S.

Love & Prayers,  Ida & Ty Baumann

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