11973
Arizona
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.
Program No. 11973RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,299
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6 days
5 nights
15 meals
5 B 5 L 5 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
Arrive at Portal Peak Lodge
Portal, AZ
D
Portal Peak Lodge

Activity note: Orientation follows dinner. This will be an opportunity to find out about schedules, program activities and answer any questions you may have regarding the program.

Dinner: Dinner served at Lodge at 6:00 PM. The restaurant will serve home cooked nutritious meals. This will be an opportunity to enjoy the company and camaraderie of new friends. The Lodge staff is very friendly, courteous and helpful.

Evening: Orientation immediately following dinner. The group leader will review the week's itinerary, discuss what the birding species you can expect to see and introductions will be made . This is a remote area so be aware cell phones do not get reception and internet is not always available . This will be a week to leave the cares of daily life behind and enjoy the natural beauty of this area.

DAY
2
Wildlife Viewing at Chiricahua Mountains & Cave Creek
Portal, AZ
B,L,D
Portal Peak Lodge

Activity note: Explore Cave Creek Canyon where the Elegant Trogon nests.

Breakfast: Breakfast served at 6:30 AM. Start your day with a delicious home-cooked breakfast. The coffee is always on. You may want to take an early morning walk around the Lodge grounds to observe the birds and wildlife.

Morning: The Birding Adventure begins. Walk along Main Street starting at the Portal Peak Lodge and Store and enjoy the many bird feeders and hummingbird feeders. Arrangements have been made to visit some of the local feeders. Fourteen species of hummingbirds can be seen (Berylline, Violet-crowned, Lucifer, Broad-billed, White-eared, Blue-throated, Magnificent, Plain-capped Starthroat, Black-chinned, Costa’s, Anna’s, Broad-tailed, Calliope, and Rufous). There has been a Great Horned Owl nesting by the Portal Library for years.

Lunch: 12:00 noon lunch is served. The group will return to the Lodge for a hot lunch. Following lunch the group will be refreshed and ready for an afternoon of birding.

Afternoon: Following lunch the birding adventure resumes at Portal-Paradise Road. This road starts out in a dry chaparral area just above Portal. Keep an eye out for mid-elevation bird species. About two miles up you will notice a change in habitat to oak-juniper. Visitors from around the world travel to the Chiricahuas to view the magnificent elegant trogon bird in its surroundings. This area is home to 330 species of birds which include 14 species of hummingbirds and 10 species of owls. Our group will be continously on the lookout for the elegant trogon which nests in this area.

Dinner: Dinner served at 6:PM. Time for a home cooked meal prepared for the group. As this area is remote all of the group meals will be served at Portal Peak Lodge. The meals will be varied, prepared in the Lodge kitchen and most special request can be accommodated. This will be an opportunity to review the birding list and enjoy the company of new friends.

DAY
3
Rodeo, NM Among Chiricahua Mountains & Peloncillo Mountains
Portal, AZ
B,L,D
Portal Peak Lodge

Activity note: Travel to the San Simon Valley to learn about and view the desert birds.

Breakfast: Breakfast served at 6:30 AM. Breakfast served at 6:30 AM. Start your day with a delicious home-cooked breakfast. The coffee is always on. You may want to take an early morning walk around the Lodge grounds to observe the birds and wildlife

Morning: This morning the group will travel to San Simon and Rodeo. While passing through Rodeo be on the look out for Inca Doves, Gila Woodpeckers, and Great-tailed Grackles.

Lunch: 12:00 PM lunch served at Portal Peak Cafe. Return to the Lodge for a hearty lunch. This is a time to refresh and prepare for an afternoon of birding.

Afternoon: Field trip resumes after lunch with Mountain birding.This afternoon will be another opportunity to find the Elegant Trogons.

Dinner: Dinner served at 6:00 PM. The Lodge will once again provide a home-cooked meal. After dinner the group will have an opportunity to relax around the dinner table and review birding lists.

DAY
4
Cochise Lakes & Willcox Playa- View Waterfowl & Shorebirds
Portal, AZ
B,L,D
Portal Peak Lodge

Activity note: Today the group will leave the Mountain for a scenic drive to the small historic community of Willcox, AZ, home to famed singer/entertainer Rex Allen. Located near Willcox are Cochise Lakes and the Willcox Playa. This is habitat for waterfowl and shorebirds. Enroute to the Lakes the group will be looking for Chihuahuan birds and hawks.

Breakfast: Breakfast served at 6:30 AM. Start your day with a delicious home-cooked breakfast. The coffee is always on. You may want to take an early morning walk around the Lodge grounds to observe the birds and wildlife

Morning: The journey begins after breakfast. The group will leave the Mountain for a scenic drive to the small historic community of Willcox, AZ, home to famed singer/entertainer Rex Allen. Located near Willcox are Cochise Lakes and the Willcox Playa. This is habitat for waterfowl and shorebirds. Ruddy Duck, Lesser Scaup, Ring-necked Duck and Cinnamon teal use Cochise Lakes on their spring migrating journey.

Lunch: The group will enjoy the local cuisine of Willcox, AZ.

Afternoon: The birding continues after lunch. There are many birds to view and wildlife to observe. Early In the afternoon the group will start the return journey to Portal Peak Lodge. There will be an opportunity to view many birds along the way.

Dinner: Dinner served at 6:00 PM. The Lodge has prepared a home cooked hearty meal for the group to enjoy. It has been a full day of birding while enjoying the beauty of the area. Following dinner the group will once again review birding lists. Rest will be welcomed.

DAY
5
Wildflower-Carpeted Medows of Rustler Park
Portal, AZ
B,L,D
Portal Peak Lodge

Activity note: View many high elevation birds at Rustler Park.

Breakfast: 6:30 AM breakfast served. Start your day with a delicious home-cooked breakfast. As each day offers new findings, you may want to take an early morning walk around the Lodge grounds to observe the birds and wildlife

Morning: All day birding field trip for a day of High Elevation Birding and a visit to Rustler's Park. Continuing up the road you will reach Onion Saddle. Species at this altitude include the Mexican Chickadee, Red-faced Warbler, Olive Warbler and Red Crossbill.

Lunch: Boxed lunch served in field. There are so many birds to observe, natural beauty to enjoy and the excitement of wildlife that the group will enjoy a boxed lunch.

Afternoon: Birding continues following lunch. At the top of the Mountain is Rustler Park. Many high elevation species can be seen here. Spring and fall migration may bring mixed flocks of Townsend’s, Hermit, Yellow-rumped, Grace’s, Olive and Red-faced Warblers. Many wildflowers should be in bloom.

Dinner: Dinner served at 6:PM. Return to the Lodge for an evening meal. Following dinner the group will review the birding list while relaxing around the dinner table. The clean mountain air and a full day of birding will make for a good night's rest.

DAY
6
Program Concludes
Portal, AZ
B,L

Activity note: Cave Creek Canyon is a birder's paradise. The beauty of this remote area will be forever in your memory.

Breakfast: Breakfast served at 6:30 AM. Start your last program day with a delicious home-cooked breakfast. The coffee is always on. You may want to take an early morning walk around the Lodge grounds to observe the birds and wildlife.

Morning: Field trip to scenic Cave Creek. The group will return once again to this area of stunning vistas of the ragged cliff faces which are themselves marked with numerous caves. Nestled in the canyon this rich forest supports a diverse range of wildlife and birds. This should be another opportunity to spot the Elegant Trogon. One could visit this magnificent area daily and never witness all that the mountains have to offer. Memories will stay with you for a lifetime. In fact, you may hear the Canyons calling you for a return visit.

Lunch: 12:00 PM lunch is served. The Lodge will serve a farewell lunch. This week you have witnessed the wonders of nature and seen many species of birds. The week has gone by very quickly but the memories will linger for a lifetime. Program concludes following lunch.






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