The recent rains pretty much decimated the snow cover in Jackson and Jefferson. So with minimal skiing we chose to hike these past few days instead.
Yesterday we hiked Ethan Pond, in a blustery 10 degree day, crossing as many streams as one would in summer (without the risk of mosquitoes!). Very few birds were found but one grouse startled us (at high elevation 2600 feet) but fluttering into dark/dense forrest. Suspect Spruce but nothing definitive from our visual contact.
Today in a balmy 20-26 degree we hiked Mud Pond/Pondicherry/Moose alley, with even less snowpack on the ground. Hightlights were the 42 evening grosbeaks that joined the few chickadees as we hiked out. And another 2 mystery grouse fluttering/startling us from the trail (without any views).
As we drove back through Gorham this afternoon ( stopping at the wine/liquor outlet) we noticed a few perched birds that rapidly grew to a very large flock of Pine Grosbeaks in 3 different trees. Best guess in the high 60’s -but a part of the flock had already moved on before we counted.
Merry Christmas Eve(ning) to all, and good birding!
Jeanne-Marie Maher and Michael Pahl