Cave Creek Canyon Birding At Portal

Boasting awe-inspiring landscapes and some of the richest wildlife diversity in the nation, it’s easy to see why Cave Creek Canyon is a mecca for both birds and birders alike.
Rating (5)
Program No. 11973RJ
6 days
Starts at

At a Glance

One of the premier birding areas of the U.S., Cave Creek Canyon’s proximity to Mexico and unique highland habitat produce a rich mix of species. The Chiricahua Mountains provide a migration corridor above the surrounding desert and rise through seven life zones. Providing a wide range of ecosystems, it is one of only two sites in the U.S. where the Elegant Trogon nests and is home to 16 varieties of hummingbirds. Join a birding professional for daily field trips in our exploration of the mountains.
Activity Level
Outdoor: No Sweat
Walking up to one mile at a time; getting in/out of vans. Elevations of 8,000 feet.
Small Group
Small Group
Love to learn and explore in a small-group setting? These adventures offer small, personal experiences with groups of 10 to 24 participants.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Journey to the San Simon Valley to view Bendire’s Thrashers and Inca Doves before searching local mountains for Mexican Chickadees and Painted Redstarts.
  • Visit Cochise Lakes and the Willcox Playa, a habitat for waterfowl and shorebirds and a popular destination for birders.
  • Dazzle in the spectacular views — and spot high elevation birds — during a field trip to Rustler Park, located high in the Chiricahuas.

General Notes

All Road Scholar birding programs have a maximum participant-to-instructor ratio of 14:1 in the field. This program has a ratio of 8:1. We adhere to the American Birding Association’s Code of Ethics. Learn more at http://www.aba.org/about/ethics.html
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Matt Brown
Matt Brown has been a birding enthusiast from a young age! In elementary school, Matt taught birding ID to his fellow classmates. He went on to study psychology at Syracuse University before moving to Arizona in 1998 to pursue his passion of bird watching and bird leader. Locally, Matt has worked for the Nature Conservancy, Patagonia Lake State Park, Road Scholar and local birding and butterfly festivals. Since 2002, Matt has owned the Patagonia Birding & Butterfly Company offering custom birding and butterfly programs.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image
Malcolm Chesworth
View biography
<%= Bio %>
Profile Image
Matt Brown
View biography
<%= Bio %>
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Davis and Russell's Finding Birds in Southeast Arizona
by Davis, William A. and Stephen M. Russell
Birding Arizona
by McMillon, Bill
A Birder's Guide to Southeastern Arizona
by Lane, James A.
Trogons of the Arizona Borderlands
by Taylor, Richard Cachor
Mountain Islands and Desert Seas: A Natural History of the U.S. Mexican Borderlands.
by Gehlbach, Frederick R.
Field Guide to the Birds of North America. Third Edition.
by National Geographic Society
Shrubs and Trees of the Southwest Uplands
by Elmore, Francis H.
Flowers of the Southwest Deserts
by Dodge, Natt

Click here to provide website feedback
Website Feedback