60 miles today from Ozona to Iraan
I did make one significant birding detour today. I looped off of I-10 for around 20 miles to check a spot from which Gray Vireo was reported a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, I did not really have sufficient information in hand to bird the area efficiently. As a result, I did not stay very long, and I left without even a whiff of the bird. I could not afford to hang around the area any longer because of the quickly rising temperatures. However, this detour was still very productive from both a bird and a scenery standpoint. I was able to flush both Lark Bunting (#357) and Scaled quail (#358) from the roadside of Route 290. I managed a few serviceable looks at each, but I hope to find a few more cooperative individuals in the next few weeks. I also managed to add 3 other desert species in Bushtit (#359), Pyrrhuloxia (#360 - pie-roo-locks-e-ah), and Bullock's oriole (#361). All 5 of today's new birds were added from the bike on my detour along Route 290. I wish I had had more time to search for the vireo, but bypassing it to avoid the punishing heat was the smart decision. I will have more cracks at this bird in Arizona and New Mexico. Once I get out of this heat I will try to take and post more bird pictures. Right now its all about making miles west. Here's a leftover Lark sparrow from 2 days ago.
Today was also the first really spectacular scenery through which I have passed this year. I did not realize that I had spent the morning riding across one of the flat topped plateaus until I suddenly dropped off of it into the Pecos River Valley. From there I snaked around more plateaus until I reached Iraan several hours later. I think I should see more of the same tomorrow on my ride to Fort Stockton.
Sign at the gas station in Sheffield (a town through
which I passed today). $4.05? I could care less!