Many types of birds can be found in Great Basin National Park and the surrounding area. A large variety of birds can be seen in the many different habitats encountered between the town of Baker (5,280 feet elevation) and the end of the Scenic Drive (10,000 feet elevation). Many birds such as the Common Raven, Northern Flicker and the American Robin, can be found in more than one type of habitat.
Ask for a bird checklist at one of the visitor centers, which lists of all the birds found in Great Basin National Park. If you see any birds listed as "uncommon" or "not found" on the current checklist, please report it to a ranger!
The following is a listing of a few of the birds and some of the areas with easy access where they may be found.
On your drive up from Baker, in the sagebrush grasslands, you might see:
If you are lucky, you could also see birds such as ducks and other waterbirds flying overhead, moving from one pond to another. Some of these include:
Great Blue Heron
During the winter, a lucky sighting could include a bald eagle on a telephone pole.
At dusk or dawn during the summer, stop and listen for the whinnying of a common snipe, the call of a great horned owl, or the "bull-bat" roar of a common nighthawk. Watch out for the "copper penney colored" eye of a common poor-will reflecting in your headlights - they often see the roadway as the perfect place for their habit of "flycatching" from the ground.
As you enter the pinyon-juniper woods and stop by the Lehman Caves Visitor Center, you may also start seeing:
Broad-tailed, Black-chinned, and Rufous Hummingbirds
At Baker Creek Campground, the mixture of sagebrush, pinyon-juniper, and stream-side plants brings in:
Black-chinned and Broad-trailed Hummingbird
A walk through the Ponderosa pines along Lehman Creek, in Upper Lehman Creek Campground may reveal:
Downy and Hairy Woodpecker
At Wheeler Peak Campground, and along the Alpine Lake Loop, aspens and limber pines attract a variety of birds, including:
On occasion, you may find Red Crossbills if you are lucky.
A hike to the small glacier takes you through the ancient bristlecone pine forest to an area where very little vegetation exists. In the vicinity of the glacier and the rock glacier below, one can usually find the "Black" form of the Rosy Finch, as well as Rock Wren, and the ubiquitous Raven.
100 Great Basin National Park
Available 8:00 am - 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday.
Closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Day