Rabbit Valley and Brewster Ridge

· Grand Valley

Rabbit Valley and Brewster Ridge

Aliases: Brewster Ridge

Right on the Utah border, this remote ridge is among the best desert birding spots in the state of Colorado. The highest value target here is a very local population of Scott’s Oriole (look in areas of spare pinyon-juniper woodland on ridges), but Gray Vireo is common, as are Black-throated Sparrow, Ash-throated Flycatcher, and Loggerhead Shrike. Less common but possible are Cassin’s Kingbird, Long-billed Curlew, and Burrowing Owl. If you venture here at night, listen for Long-eared Owls and watch the road for the charismatic Ord’s Kangaroo Rat. Reptiles are abundant and varied here as well; look for species such as the colorful collared lizard.

County: Mesa

Habitat: Sagebrush, Pinyon-Juniper Forest,

Directions: Take I-70 west to Exit 2. For Rabbit Valley, turn left and go south, several different roads take you through the area. Four-wheel drive with decent clearance is recommended if you plan to go very far. For Brewster Ridge, turn right of I-70, then at the trailhead for the 'Trail Through Time,' turn left, paralleling I-70 as you climb a gravel road that tops out on a ridge above I-70. Begin looking here for Black-Throated Sparrow, then stay right into the scattered junipers and look for Scott's Oriole. If you don't spot orioles here, come back out of the juniper area and proceed north until you come to the paved M.8 Road (old US 6&50, the main road to get to Salt Lake, Reno, or Las Vegas before I-70 was built). Turn right (east) to 1.8 Road, turn left, and go a mile of so and turn right on 2 Road which takes you up Brewster Ridge. Once you reach the top, take 2.8 Road north out Brewster Ridge and look for Scott's Orioles near scattered junipers. You should be able to find a Mockingbird in this area as well. Four-wheel drive is not necessary for Brewster Ridge in dry conditions. All bets are off if there's been significant recent rain, or if you are receiving significant rain.

Delorme: 42 B1-C1
Roads of Colorado: 80 B1-B2

Dates of Access: Open all year
Hours: Any
Ownership: BLM
Admission: Free

Restrictions: None

Parking: Roadside
Lodging: None

Handicapped: No
Handicapped Access: Limited car birding

Elevation: 5040

Latitude: 39.18451113
Longitude: -109.0178275

Amenities

RestroomsNo
Drinking FountainNo
Gravel TrailsNo
Paved TrailsNo
Platform/BlindNo
BoardwalkNo
ConcessionNo
Visitor CenterNo
Gift ShopNo
PrimitiveYes
Camping
Picnic
HuntingNo
FishingNo
2015-03-16T15:02:57-06:00

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