This day was one of the funnest days of our trip. We covered a lot of miles and saw some stunning scenery.
We left Ely, NV, and started heading to Utah. Before we left the area, I had Tim stop again at the Comins Lake. It was such a great place for birding.
This morning I saw completely different birds than I had seen the evening before. Which I loved!
After birding for a short while, a Great Blue Heron came flying in. I love these elegant birds.
He wasn’t too sure about me walking along the shoreline. So he flew to the other side of the lake. I captured a few photos in flight. When I was editing the photos, I saw an elusive warbler flying in the photos as well. Looked like a Yellow Warbler – so bright! Wish I could have gotten some good photos of that warbler.
I also saw a tiny bird feeding along the edge of the reeds. It’s obviously a juvenile. But I had a heck of a time identifying this bird. My conclusion is that it’s a juvenile Virginia Rail. But if someone knows the correct identification of this bird, I’d appreciate knowing.
Too soon we were on our way. I never want to leave a good birding spot! We started heading further south. One of our planned stops on this trip was Cathedral Gorge State Park. It’s a small park comprising about 1600 acres, but just beautiful! We had a good time exploring all the small slots formed in the rocks. I could easily spend a day investigating all the cracks and crevices. Very unique!
Tim spotted a lizard among the formation. Yay!
We next headed east toward Utah. We headed up a scenic highway called Cedar Canyon that was truly breathtaking at every turn. We climbed very quickly with some steep grades at times. One of the most scenic highways I had ever seen.
We soon had gone from 4,800 foot elevation at Cathedral Gorge to 10,000 feet. The views were so expansive!
I saw on the map that there was a National Park just ahead of us: Cedar Breaks National Park. Of course we just had to stop in. And I am so glad we did. Just breathtaking!!!
The views looking down into that canyon were breathtaking. I would have loved to see what the views looked like from down in the bottom of that canyon.
While there I saw (and heard!) and Clark’s Nutcracker. These birds are big and loud. Sadly it flew away before I could get a photo.
Further up the road was another turnoff that showed a different view of the park.
At the parking area of Cedar Breaks there were lots of wildflowers with butterflies busily feeding. Along with the familiar butterflies, I actually got a new one!
Heading down the other side of the mountain, we saw a beautiful lake, mountain meadows and small ponds.
We stopped at one pond that was full of ducks. As we watched the ducks an osprey flew over looking for some lunch. He circled a couple times but didn’t see anything worth trying for and flew away.
We finally made it off that mountain and to our destination of the Zion Mountain Ranch. It’s an actual working buffalo ranch. The buffalo were there but way far away. I had hopes of seeing them up close before we left.
We stayed in a private cabin overlooking the horse pasture. A very peaceful setting.
Tomorrow we see Zion!
P.S. I just learned this was my 100th post!!! 🙂