Friday, March 20, 2015

Sandpiper Trail at Grays Harbor National Wildlife Refuge

The entrance to the Sandpiper Trail.
When Wayne and I flew to Bowerman Field in Hoquiam, Washington, we took a hike on the Sandpiper Trail into the Grays Harbor National Wildlife Refuge.

In March, we saw resident seagulls and ravens, and a few ducks. Using our ears instead of our eyes, we did hear some blackbirds in the cattails, and a few twittering songbirds. They must have been the first early spring arrivals to take up residence in the willow thickets.

Willow catkins in bloom.

Even though we didn't see lots of birds, we did experience the willow tree catkins in bloom. Many had already fallen to the ground, so I think we caught them just in the nick of time.

The Sandpiper Trail is a boardwalk leading over the marshy flats heading out to the Bowerman Basin portion of Grays Harbor.

It's one way in, but the end loops around the point with expansive views of the main harbor.

It's well maintained and brush has been trimmed back to make walking safe and easy.

Wayne and I stopped at the water's edge to relax in the warm sunshine on the park benches, and to view the birds up close with the telescope.

With it's help, I could tell that the ducks were Pintails. They were congregating out on a sandbar along with the gulls and ravens.

It must have been a seafood buffet. No squabbling needed.

The Sandpiper Trail begins on the north side Bowerman Field. It can be easily accessed by pilots walking along the airport road. For people arriving from town, there's parking outside the gate on Airport Way. It's free and open from sunrise to sunset. Wayne and I plan to return later in the spring when the plants are all green, and the birds have all returned. Stay tuned. -- Margy


  1. A great trail - love it when I see Pintails - I think they are among my favorites.

    1. It was an unexpected find at an airport destination. Usually birds and planes don't mix very well. Comox on Vancouver Island is similar. - Margy


Thanks for stopping by. Comments, questions, and suggestions are always welcome. - Margy