Yesterday was National Take a Hike Day. When we learned of this, Fred & I weren’t sure if that meant to tell someone off or to go for an exhilarating hike! Ba-doom shhh. Seriously, since we live an Out There lifestyle, once we learned of this day that was right up our alley, we decided to take a hike in the Bosque Del Apache National Wildlife Refuge.
Run by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, we first became aware of this place while watching the CBS Morning Show; it was featured in the Moment of Nature segment that runs at the end of every Sunday’s show. I’m guessing it was some two years ago that the show’s microphones were on and their cameras were running to capture the scene and sounds of tens of thousands of waterfowl that had migrated here to central New Mexico to spend the winter. Using words like “spectacular” and “magnificent” not to mention “loud” to describe this migration phenomenon is an understatement, and we never forgot about this destination that we wanted to see when we got Out There; we noted it in our journal on the Must-See Places page.
So here we are now; we routed here for a few days to be a part of the annual Festival of the Cranes that began yesterday, and to witness the start of the arrival of nearly 50,000 cranes, geese, and other waterfowl, who ‘summer’ in the northlands of Canada and the Arctic Circle. Over the course of the next several weeks they will continue to arrive here in The Bosque for their winter layover.
Fred will soon be sharing his shots of the daily morning fly-out and the late afternoon fly-in, but I wanted to make sure that our readers knew that, indeed, we took a hike yesterday in celebration of Take A Hike Day!
If you’re interested, check out this 3-minute video put together by the Friends of the Bosque: http://www.friendsofthebosque.org/videofishandwildlife.html
Finally, I’ll share a happy little fact: each year the numbers of birds that flock (pun intended) to this wildlife sanctuary has increased. For example, in 1940, just 17 Rocky Mountain Sand Hill Cranes wintered here on the refuge. Today the number of sand hill cranes calling this place ‘home’ for the winter is upwards of 17,000!