• Welcome to BirdForum, the internet's largest birding community with thousands of members from all over the world. The forums are dedicated to wild birds, birding, binoculars and equipment and all that goes with it.

    Please register for an account to take part in the discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.
Feel the intensity, not your equipment. Maximum image quality. Minimum weight. The new ZEISS SFL, up to 30% less weight than comparable competitors.

Birding Montana from May 29-June 5, 2021 (1 Viewer)

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
Wanted to know what hotspots I can/should try in and around Yellowstone and Glacier National Park, my main targets are game birds, woodpeckers and owls as these are the families I have very little of in my life list, alongside attempting to see some boreal/montane species like Varied Thrush, Canada Jay and Black Swift.

Any recommended hotspots I should try in the region? The main parks are Yellowstone and Glacier National Park and I'm basing around Emigrant & Kalispell.
 

BobP63

Active member
United States
I lived in Kalispell a little more than 30 years ago and frequented Glacier Nation Park probably about a dozen times. Back then I was much more interested in viewing our four legged friends rather than birding, but I can tell you having the chance to view Big Horn Sheep, Elk, Grizzly Bears, Mountain lions, etc was fantastic. So while I can't provide insight into birding locations I highly recommend dedicating part of your visit to observing the creatures you'll likely not get to see anywhere else. Good luck and enjoy!
 

Ratal

Well-known member
Wanted to know what hotspots I can/should try in and around Yellowstone and Glacier National Park, my main targets are game birds, woodpeckers and owls as these are the families I have very little of in my life list, alongside attempting to see some boreal/montane species like Varied Thrush, Canada Jay and Black Swift.

Any recommended hotspots I should try in the region? The main parks are Yellowstone and Glacier National Park and I'm basing around Emigrant & Kalispell.

If you are in Kali, do NOT miss Owen Sowerwine Natural Area! As for Kali & Black Swift, Morrel Falls & Lodgepole Falls (Bit further but still, doable and easy access) - Good places to get to grips with this elusive bird! As for Varied Thrush, North of Whitefish is a ski resort. Head up there is a great idea. (Big Mountain)
 

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
I lived in Kalispell a little more than 30 years ago and frequented Glacier Nation Park probably about a dozen times. Back then I was much more interested in viewing our four legged friends rather than birding, but I can tell you having the chance to view Big Horn Sheep, Elk, Grizzly Bears, Mountain lions, etc was fantastic. So while I can't provide insight into birding locations I highly recommend dedicating part of your visit to observing the creatures you'll likely not get to see anywhere else. Good luck and enjoy!
Haven't heard much of the mammal watching in Glacier outside of the Mountain Goats in Logan Pass (which is closed off at this time), but I hope to connect with most of the mammals as well between Glacier and Yellowstone, since I love birding, but I'm going with family, and it's a lot easier to get them excited for megafauna than it is for a Pipit or a Longspur.
 

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
If you are in Kali, do NOT miss Owen Sowerwine Natural Area! As for Kali & Black Swift, Morrel Falls & Lodgepole Falls (Bit further but still, doable and easy access) - Good places to get to grips with this elusive bird! As for Varied Thrush, North of Whitefish is a ski resort. Head up there is a great idea. (Big Mountain)
Thank you for the spots, I wasn't sure where to aim for these species, especially for Varied Thrush (and Canada Jay) since they've nemesis bird(s) after I missed them in Oregon in 2019.
 

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
As for Woodpeckers and Owls, Inside North Fork Road. Make sure you equipped with a good vehicle for the rougher parts.
The vehicle I have is an SUV, so I'll have to see the access capabilities, but for those 2 groups, I'll try as much as possible.
 

qwerty5

Well-known member
United States
The vehicle I have is an SUV, so I'll have to see the access capabilities, but for those 2 groups, I'll try as much as possible.
I don't know a lot about the birding in Glacier, since I wasn't a big birder when I was there, but an awesome place to go is Bowman Lake. You have to drive up a mountain on a gravel road, and the view at the top is incomparable. There was almost no other people there when we were there in July, so I expect you should have the place to yourself. There are hiking trails around the lake and I imagine you could see several birds. The scenery is awesome and shouldn't be missed. This picture doesn't do it justice:
 

Attachments

  • 5-13-15--6-30-15 1201.JPG
    5-13-15--6-30-15 1201.JPG
    3.6 MB · Views: 5

lgonz1008

Well-known member
United States
I don't know a lot about the birding in Glacier, since I wasn't a big birder when I was there, but an awesome place to go is Bowman Lake. You have to drive up a mountain on a gravel road, and the view at the top is incomparable. There was almost no other people there when we were there in July, so I expect you should have the place to yourself. There are hiking trails around the lake and I imagine you could see several birds. The scenery is awesome and shouldn't be missed. This picture doesn't do it justice:
If I have access to that area, I'll give it a shot, my family would love this view
 

qwerty5

Well-known member
United States
If I have access to that area, I'll give it a shot, my family would love this view
I'm sure they will, it's extra special if you don't like areas with hundreds of people milling around and posing for selfies right in the middle of your view. It might still be closed due to snow idk.
 

Oldnintheway

Well-known member
Ninepipe National Wildlife Refuge is not far in Ronan. While there don't miss the National Bison Range in Moese. And as always check the ebird reports for the area and your target species. Another note about Glacier N.P., IMO the East side is far more interesting than the West when the Going to the Sun road is not open. I'd make my way over to St Mary and into Many Glacier-Swift Current if you can.
 
Last edited:

Users who are viewing this thread

Top