Reporter Name – Steve Pilson
How many people showed up? – 16
We met up at Peninsula Park, and then went for a leisurely paced 2.5 mile ride to the Vanport Wetlands, where we saw Red-winged and Yellow-headed Blackbirds, tons of Swallows, Killdeers, a family of Pied-billed Grebes, ubiquitous Mallards, and a few Ruddy Ducks. Then we went on towards Smith and Bybee Lakes which is significantly flooded from the high flows of the Columbia River backing into the Willamette. On the way, we saw an unknown owl, a Great Blue Heron, an osprey, a Yellow Warbler, and a Bullock’s Oriole. Didn’t see as many birds there at Smith and Bybee, but did hear quite a lot, including the distinctive rising swirl of a Swainson’s Thrush.
Several people had to peel off at this point, and we finished up on a portion of the Columbia Slough trail where a Black-headed Grosbeak serenaded us with his slurred and fast song. Three of us made the ride’s final destination of tacos in St. Johns, and then we rode over to Mississippi St for the Cirque du Cycling via Willamette Blvd.
Good turnout for early on a Sunday morning during PP and great weather for birding. Many participants learned a lot more about birds and the natural areas they can visit in North Portland.
— This is part of our ongoing coverage of the the 2011 Pedalpalooza, which runs through June 26th. View the full calendar at ShiftoBikes.org.