I’ll be in Colorado from June 15th -23rd. I’ve birded in the state a handful of times but this unfortunately won’t be a birding trip. That said, I’ll have plenty of time to bird as a small group of us will spend the bulk of the time camping in the front range before we head to Boulder to attend a wedding. We’re aiming to camp 2-3 nights near Red Feather Lakes in Larimer County then re-locate to Caribou Townsite (outside of Nederland) in Boulder County for 2 more nights. I should also have some time to bird while we’re in Boulder for a few days.
I’ve been researching on eBird but also wanted to ask if anyone would be able to recommend any particular sites in either of the three locations? I’m interested in most of the typical species folks are after in the Rockies. My only possible lifers are Pinyon Jay and Boreal Owl so not planning on finding either. I know the jays are few are far between, nomadic and easier in winter, but I believe I have a better chance with them than the owl. I know people are tight-lipped with owl details but I’ll also have my ear opened for Flammulated and Saw-whet and would welcome any recommendations and sites and strategy.
Lastly, there is an outside but realistic chance that I could make a run up towards Pawnee National Grassland for my lifer Chestnut-colored Longspur and Mountain Plover. I see e-Bird reports from near Briggsdale from this year and would love to have any tips and details on how I might connect with these species. I will most likely wake up early and make a run to Boulder to be back by late lunch. I really wish I had more time and I’d love to explore the park and dig deeper for other goodies (Sharp-tailed Grouse and Baird’s Sparrow in Soapstone Prairie). But alas, I have to keep reminding myself that this is not a birding trip. So if I do make a run for CCLO and MOPL, time will be of the essence.