Journey to Knife Ridge in the northern Glass Mountains (28 Sep 2007)

Observers: Chris McCreedy, Justin Hite, and Paul McFarland
Email: cmccreedyatprbodotorg
Verification: MONO
Remote Name:
Date: 09/30/2007
Time: 07:44 PM -0400


Driving in the Glass Mountains, Paul had noticed a knife-sharp ridge of tuff that divided Wet Canyon on the east and one of the Dexter drainages to the west. He always wanted to explore it, and so beginning from the Taylor Canyon road, we descended this sublime spine on Friday afternoon. Though it was cold and cloudy, we found the ridge held several birds. To our surprise, it also held six conifer species: Lodgepole, Jeffrey, Limber, and Pinyon Pine, White Fir, and Sierra Juniper. The birds included all three species of nuthatches (Pygmy, Red-breasted, and White-breasted), occasionally all in the same flock. Mountain Chickadees, Oregon Juncos, and Chipping Sparrows were the highest on the ridge. As we descended, we found a few Gambel's - dramatically fewer than what you find in the valleys right these days. A lone Willow Flycatcher warmed our hearts, and Townsend's Solitaires sang us their high lonesome knife ridge songs. We caught brief views of a Townsend's Warbler, and Brown Creepers, as they will, creeped. Altogether a great day - the director of Friends of the Inyo has a great sense of where to spend a Friday afternoon.