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KEARNEY, NEBRASKA

Migration of the Sandhill Cranes: A World-Class Experience

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Birding

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Road Scholar
Program #7346RJ
6 Days | 5 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderate
While all of our learning adventures offer extraordinary value, our "Best Value" programs were rated by our participants themselves who thought their dollar went particularly far.
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Elevation Note
NO

Itinerary for Mar 16 — Mar 21, 2014

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Type: Hotel

Description: Within walking distance to restaurants.

Contact info:
104 Talmadge
Kearney, NE 68847 USA
phone: 308-698-3003
web: www.microtelinn.com/

Facility amenities: Free High Speed Wireless Internet Available In All Areas Free Local and Long Distance Calls Guest Laundry Free 24hr Self Serve Business Center 32 inch Flat Screen TV including Most major TV Channels including CNN, Fox News, HBO and ESPN Free Use of Printer, Copy and Fax Machine Non Smoking Rooms Exercise room with TV, Treadmill, Stair Climber, Egrometer and Gym-In-A-Bag Interior Corridors Elevator Microwave, Fridge and Sofa Bed Available In Some Rooms Disability Accessible Rooms- TTY Telephones and Auxiliary Aids Available Wheelchair Accessibility Pet Friendly Property Clock/Radio, Coffee Maker, Hairdryer and Workdesk Available in All Rooms Meeting Room With High Speed Internet Access Audio Visual Equipment- TV/DVD In Meeting Room Wake Up Call Service 24hr Front Desk Free Local Newspaper Available / USA Today Available Dataports, Message Alerts and Modem or Second Phone Line Security Features include Electronic Lock, Extra Lighting, Smoke Detectors, Sprinkler System and Safe Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call hotel for information
Call hotel for reservations

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, March 16 - 3:00-5:00 PM check in at hotel, meet at 5 pm in h...
3:00-5:00 PM check in at hotel, meet at 5 pm in hotel lobby for introductions followed by dinner

Afternoon: 3:00-5:00 PM check in at hotel, meet at 5 pm in hotel lobby for introductions followed by walking to dinner.

Dinner: Dinner at local restaurant

Evening: Welcome meeting, introductions, and important information about the Program

Lodging: Microtel Inn Hotel

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Within walking distance to restaurants.

Contact info:
104 Talmadge
Kearney, NE 68847 USA
phone: 308-698-3003
web: www.microtelinn.com/

Facility amenities: Free High Speed Wireless Internet Available In All Areas Free Local and Long Distance Calls Guest Laundry Free 24hr Self Serve Business Center 32 inch Flat Screen TV including Most major TV Channels including CNN, Fox News, HBO and ESPN Free Use of Printer, Copy and Fax Machine Non Smoking Rooms Exercise room with TV, Treadmill, Stair Climber, Egrometer and Gym-In-A-Bag Interior Corridors Elevator Microwave, Fridge and Sofa Bed Available In Some Rooms Disability Accessible Rooms- TTY Telephones and Auxiliary Aids Available Wheelchair Accessibility Pet Friendly Property Clock/Radio, Coffee Maker, Hairdryer and Workdesk Available in All Rooms Meeting Room With High Speed Internet Access Audio Visual Equipment- TV/DVD In Meeting Room Wake Up Call Service 24hr Front Desk Free Local Newspaper Available / USA Today Available Dataports, Message Alerts and Modem or Second Phone Line Security Features include Electronic Lock, Extra Lighting, Smoke Detectors, Sprinkler System and Safe Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call hotel for information
Call hotel for reservations

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, March 17 - Rowe Sanctuary Viewing Blinds and Crane viewing i...
Rowe Sanctuary Viewing Blinds and Crane viewing in surrounding countryside

Breakfast: Microtel Breakfast Buffet including hot and cold items

Morning: In the very early morning hours we will experience our first “crane rise” as the “gray sandbar islands” of the Platte River turn into clouds of Sandhill cranes leaving their roost sites. Pre-dawn crane music turns into a crescendo of wake-up calls as the cranes awaken and leave their riverine roost sites. We will have reserved blinds at Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary for prime views of the cranes in areas along the river’s edge. With an expert crane naturalist from Audubon, we will experience the almost deafening chorus and clamor of tens of thousands of cranes taking flight toward the cornfields and prairies where they will forage during the day..

Lunch: Local restaurant "brunch"

Afternoon: We learn by an expert lecture about the Sandhill Crane's behavior and its influence on our culture, and the arts. Then we take a Field trip to "Loafing Areas" called this due to the Cranes settling in and feeding, relaxing in surrounding farmer's corn and grain fields. As we angle our way back through farm fields and roads, we have a chance to watch crane behavior in detail. Watch for pair bonding activities, dancing, strutting, feeding, resting, and other flock dynamics.

Dinner: Dinner at local restaurant

Evening: After a very early start and a long day, free to relax and prepare for tomorrow's adventure

Lodging: Microtel Inn Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Within walking distance to restaurants.

Contact info:
104 Talmadge
Kearney, NE 68847 USA
phone: 308-698-3003
web: www.microtelinn.com/

Facility amenities: Free High Speed Wireless Internet Available In All Areas Free Local and Long Distance Calls Guest Laundry Free 24hr Self Serve Business Center 32 inch Flat Screen TV including Most major TV Channels including CNN, Fox News, HBO and ESPN Free Use of Printer, Copy and Fax Machine Non Smoking Rooms Exercise room with TV, Treadmill, Stair Climber, Egrometer and Gym-In-A-Bag Interior Corridors Elevator Microwave, Fridge and Sofa Bed Available In Some Rooms Disability Accessible Rooms- TTY Telephones and Auxiliary Aids Available Wheelchair Accessibility Pet Friendly Property Clock/Radio, Coffee Maker, Hairdryer and Workdesk Available in All Rooms Meeting Room With High Speed Internet Access Audio Visual Equipment- TV/DVD In Meeting Room Wake Up Call Service 24hr Front Desk Free Local Newspaper Available / USA Today Available Dataports, Message Alerts and Modem or Second Phone Line Security Features include Electronic Lock, Extra Lighting, Smoke Detectors, Sprinkler System and Safe Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call hotel for information
Call hotel for reservations

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, March 18 - A grand circle trip through the Rain Water Basin ...
A grand circle trip through the Rain Water Basin and Water Fowl Protection area

Breakfast: Microtel Breakfast Buffet including hot and cold items

Morning: After breakfast, we drive south to Harlan County Reservoir with its excellent habitat for viewing a variety of waterfowl, shore birds, and resident raptors. There may be an opportunity to view from a distance a Greater prairie Chicken Lek along the drive.

Lunch: Lunch is at a small town diner.

Afternoon: We drive through wetlands and ponds of the famous Rainwater Basin, one of the west’s most important areas for migrant waterfowl. Depending upon season and weather conditions, the sheer number of birds in these wetlands often defies the imagination in a wet year. We hope to find over a dozen species of waterfowl, and with luck we’ll find some of the thousands of wintering Snow and Ross’ Geese and perhaps a few White-fronted Geese still lingering there.

Dinner: Dinner tonight is on own to sample Kearney restaurants.

Evening: Free time for reflection on the days activities.

Lodging: Microtel Inn Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Hotel

Description: Within walking distance to restaurants.

Contact info:
104 Talmadge
Kearney, NE 68847 USA
phone: 308-698-3003
web: www.microtelinn.com/

Facility amenities: Free High Speed Wireless Internet Available In All Areas Free Local and Long Distance Calls Guest Laundry Free 24hr Self Serve Business Center 32 inch Flat Screen TV including Most major TV Channels including CNN, Fox News, HBO and ESPN Free Use of Printer, Copy and Fax Machine Non Smoking Rooms Exercise room with TV, Treadmill, Stair Climber, Egrometer and Gym-In-A-Bag Interior Corridors Elevator Microwave, Fridge and Sofa Bed Available In Some Rooms Disability Accessible Rooms- TTY Telephones and Auxiliary Aids Available Wheelchair Accessibility Pet Friendly Property Clock/Radio, Coffee Maker, Hairdryer and Workdesk Available in All Rooms Meeting Room With High Speed Internet Access Audio Visual Equipment- TV/DVD In Meeting Room Wake Up Call Service 24hr Front Desk Free Local Newspaper Available / USA Today Available Dataports, Message Alerts and Modem or Second Phone Line Security Features include Electronic Lock, Extra Lighting, Smoke Detectors, Sprinkler System and Safe Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call hotel for information
Call hotel for reservations

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, March 19 - Visit and walk at Platte River Visitor Center and...
Visit and walk at Platte River Visitor Center and Evening fly-in of Cranes on Platte River at Rowe Sanctuary Blinds

Breakfast: Microtel Breakfast Buffet including hot and cold items

Morning: We visit the Platte River and the Whooping Crane Trust Visitor Center. After viewing the Cranes from a nearby observation deck, we will have an exiting visit from naturalists and rescued birds of the Raptor Recovery Center - Helping Nebraska's raptors. The birds they will bring are injured raptors that are being rehabilitated for release back into the wild. Learn and experience first hand their work. Then learn by lecture about the Central Flyway and the importance on preservation of Whooping Cranes and the related protection of the flyway.

Lunch: Local restaurant

Afternoon: We return to Platte River and Audubon Rowe Sanctuary. First we explore the sanctuary grounds then learn from staff about Crane Behavior. Then we move into our specially reserved blind to witness the evening fly-in of the cranes and their Roosting Time in the late afternoon-early evening.

Dinner: Box dinner at Rowe Sanctuary prior to sunset viewing of the Sandhill Cranes .

Evening: Free time

Lodging: Microtel Inn Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Within walking distance to restaurants.

Contact info:
104 Talmadge
Kearney, NE 68847 USA
phone: 308-698-3003
web: www.microtelinn.com/

Facility amenities: Free High Speed Wireless Internet Available In All Areas Free Local and Long Distance Calls Guest Laundry Free 24hr Self Serve Business Center 32 inch Flat Screen TV including Most major TV Channels including CNN, Fox News, HBO and ESPN Free Use of Printer, Copy and Fax Machine Non Smoking Rooms Exercise room with TV, Treadmill, Stair Climber, Egrometer and Gym-In-A-Bag Interior Corridors Elevator Microwave, Fridge and Sofa Bed Available In Some Rooms Disability Accessible Rooms- TTY Telephones and Auxiliary Aids Available Wheelchair Accessibility Pet Friendly Property Clock/Radio, Coffee Maker, Hairdryer and Workdesk Available in All Rooms Meeting Room With High Speed Internet Access Audio Visual Equipment- TV/DVD In Meeting Room Wake Up Call Service 24hr Front Desk Free Local Newspaper Available / USA Today Available Dataports, Message Alerts and Modem or Second Phone Line Security Features include Electronic Lock, Extra Lighting, Smoke Detectors, Sprinkler System and Safe Deposit Box

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call hotel for information
Call hotel for reservations

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, March 20 - Morning and evening visits to Fort Kearney State ...
Morning and evening visits to Fort Kearney State Park and its river spanning observation platform; special presentation of injured raptors by Raptor Recovery Nebraska.

Breakfast: Microtel Breakfast Buffet including hot and cold items

Morning: The morning will be spent learning about various birding techniques including Mist Netting/Banding and Field identification-birding at Fort Kearney State Park; hike/bike trail. We also will visit the recreated Fort Kearney to learn about it's role in the expansion of the Frontier.

Lunch: Local restaurant

Afternoon: We visit the University Nebraska Kearney campus for a lecture by Professor of Ornithology on Birds and Avian Conservation. After an early dinner, we return to Fort Kearney State Park to venture out at sunset to watch the cranes come into roost from the former railroad and now the walking bridge over the Platte River.

Dinner: Local restaurant

Evening: Free for packing and reflection.

Lodging: Microtel Inn Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, March 21 - Check out after Breakfast or by 10 am.
Breakfast: Microtel Breakfast Buffet including hot and cold items

Morning: Depart anytime after breakfast. Check out by 10:00 am.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
Currently selected:Prices Starting At:
Mar 16 — Mar 21, 2014 waitlist only  

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
13 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners
11 Expert-led lectures
8 Field trips
2 Hands-on experiences

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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