Wonderful Prairie Birding
The Arkansas River Valley is so thickly packed with top-notch places to view wildlife that it sometimes boggles the traveler’s mind. This trail is in the middle of it all, with an immense variety of destinations squeezed into a very manageable space. Around the edges are the high plains semideserts, with miles of cholla cactus and spiky yucca plants, pronghorn herds, horned lizards, Scaled Quail and even roadrunners. A little closer in are some of Colorado’s premier reservoirs, important stopover points for migrating waterfowl and shorebirds, and the isolated groves of trees where warblers and flycatchers can “fall out” in large numbers after a hard night of migration in spring or fall. Through the center of it all runs the Arkansas River, giving life to cottonwood corridors and human settlements, and making this one of the most rewarding destinations on the eastern plains still close to the beaten path.