Birders on the hunt in Washington County Parks.
Birders on the hunt in Washington County Parks.

Guided morning bird hikes kick off the new year with hike during WinterFest Jan. 21

A rotating schedule of bird hikes throughout Washington County Parks is on the schedule in the new year, with the first one part of WinterFest Saturday, Jan. 21, at Lake Elmo Park Reserve.
Meet at the Nordic Center at Lake Elmo Park Reserve at 9 a.m., with parking at the Nordic Center trailhead.
Learn to identify the birds that call the St. Croix Valley home and contribute to citizen science data collection by completing bird count surveys with the guide. The surveys collected will assist the county’s Natural Resources team and related work in conjunction with the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Fund grant. 
The one-hour guided hikes take place on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.  
Dates and locations include:

  • Feb. 11 at Lake Elmo Park Reserve, meeting at the Nordic Center Foyer, with parking at the Nordic Trailhead Lot;
  • March 25 at Big Marine Park Reserve, meeting at the playground, with parking at the Playground Lot;
  • April 8 at Lake Elmo Park Reserve, meeting in the Nordic Center Foyer, with parking at the Nordic Trailhead Lot;
  • May 20 at St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park, meeting at the Hilltop Pavilion Lot, with parking at the same lot;
  • June 3  at Lake Elmo Park Reserve, meeting at the Nordic Center Foyer, with parking at the Nordic Trailhead Lot;
  • July 8 at Pine Point Park, meeting at the Trailhead Kiosk, with parking in the main parking lot;
  • Aug. 5 at Big Marine Park Reserve, meeting at the playground, with parking at the playground lot;
  • Sept. 9 at St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park, meeting at the Hilltop Pavilion Lot, with parking in the same lot;
  • Oct. 14 at Big Marine Park Reserve, meeting at the playground with parking in the playground parking lot;
  • Nov. 18 at Pine Point Park, meeting at the Trailhead Kiosk, with parking in the main parking lot; and
  • Dec. 9  at Lake Elmo Park Reserve, meeting at the Nordic Center Foyer, with parking at the Nordic Trailhead Lot.

For Washington County park locations, see www.co.washington.mn.us/parks. Under park locations, find a county map with park contact information; search “guided bird hikes” on the county website for more information.
The hikes will traverse turf, gravel, and paved trail depending on trail conditions. Participants should bring binoculars and dress for hiking and the weather. This program is free with a parks vehicle permit ($7/day or $30/annual) and is open to guests of all ages and abilities. ADA accommodations can be made as needed. All minors must be accompanied by an adult.
For questions, call 651-430-8370 or email at parks@co.washington.mn.us.
Find Washington County Parks on Facebook at Washington County Parks | Official and on Twitter @WashCtyParks and @WashCtyTrails.

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