A Mecca For Naturalists
The Piedra River collects most of the water from Colorado’s largest wilderness area, the Weminuche, running from permanent snowfields in the high mountains through subalpine meadows down into forests of gigantic ponderosa pine. The landscape along this trail is quintessential Colorado, but the nature here is spiced with elements of the southwest: Grace’s Warblers abound in the pines, and you may spot the spectacular Arizona Sister butterfly. In the Piedra River itself, if you are lucky, you might be treated to the frolicking of a family of endangered otters. On a summer night in the forest, Flammulated Owls may hoot at your campsite from four or five directions, while poorwills sing their names over and over in the moonlight. Southwest Colorado is a mecca for naturalists from around the world, and if you visit, you’ll see why.