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Plumas Yellow Rail continues; directions, recording

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  • Chris Conard
    Folks, The Yellow Rail continues as of 7/10/10. It was calling steadily from 4:30 to 5:00pm, but was quiet when I returned by the location ~6pm, though I
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 11, 2010
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      Folks,

      The Yellow Rail continues as of 7/10/10. It was calling steadily from 4:30
      to 5:00pm, but was quiet when I returned by the location ~6pm, though I
      didn't wait long.

      If you are unfamiliar with the area, it is easy to miss the road to Willow
      Lake, as I did initially. From Chester, take Feather River Drive northwest
      from Hwy 36. At 0.7 mi stay left at fork and road becomes Chester-Warner
      Valley Rd. In 5.5 mi stay left at the junction with the road singed for
      Drakesbad (Warner Valley Rd goes right, Section Old Red Bluff Rd goes left,
      which is the one you want). In 0.3 mi turn right on the dirt road with an
      easy-to-miss sign for Willow Lake (there is an arrow and you can barely read
      "Willow Lake"). The road is narrow and a little rough in places, but can be
      taken by a passenger car. It ends at a campground and the trail heads out
      from the north end of the campground. The rail spot is about 200 m beyond
      the end of the open water in the lake, and you will find the previously
      noted crossed sticks and, hopefully, hear the rail calling.

      I have some sound-only video of the Yellow Rail here (
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/conardc/4784572170/) as well as the video
      placed on a map of the location. More shots of the general area are here:
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/conardc/

      It is a beautiful area and well worth the trip. I had made a last-minute
      decision to go somewhere and gravitated to this spot. Just as I had gotten
      my fill of the rail sound, I heard John Trochet call my name (when I got
      home I had a message from him wondering if I might ride up with him. Oh
      well). We then walked north to the first clump of willows where we flushed
      a Sooty Grouse and saw a couple of Willow Flycatchers. He continued into
      the National Park on the trail and I looked briefly and unsuccessfully for
      the sedge sprite, then checked out Domingo Springs a couple of miles west of
      the Willow Lake dirt road on Section Old Red Bluff Rd. John found a
      Black-backed Woodpecker on his walk (the second time in the day that I
      should have gone with John) while I failed to find the reported pair at the
      Domingo Springs campground (near site 10?), though it was getting quiet as
      the sun went behind the ridge, and hoped-for photo-ops had vanished. Of
      modest note at the campground were about 8 Evening Grosbeaks. Another nice
      spot.

      Chris Conard
      Sacramento


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