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Big Morongo Canyon Preserve Field Trip
April 28 @ 8:30 am - 11:30 am
(Thomas Guide:((SB 616-J5) / GPS: 34.050398, -116.570646)
Rating: Easy (Flat boardwalk)
This is a Day Trip or an Alternate Friday/Saturday Outing
Day Trip to Big Morongo: 8:30 am Saturday, April 28, 2018 Big Morongo Canyon Preserve is always a spring hot spot and a favorite PAS field trip. In the caretaker’s yard, several hummingbird and seed feeders will attract many birds for your enjoyment. Birds often found here are Western and Summer Tanagers, Vermilion Flycatchers, Yellow-breasted Chat, and several other more uncommon species. Picnic tables and restrooms are available. Bring a lunch for an after birding picnic lunch at the bird feeders.
Directions to Big Morongo: (for GPS Users the address is 11055 East Dr, Morongo Valley, CA 92256): From Escondido, proceed north on I-15 approx. 36 miles to the I-15/I-215 split in Murrieta. Change to I-215 north and continue about 30 miles to Hwy 60 east. Take Hwy 60 east approx.18 miles and merge with the I-10. Then continuing east on I-10 approximately 40 miles to Hwy 62 . Go north on Hwy 62 about 12 miles to Morongo Valley (a small town). About a mile or two into town, look for signs for Big Morongo Canyon Preserve. Turn right (south) on East Drive, a dirt road, to the Preserve. The parking lot is just beyond the caretaker’s house. Allow 2+ hours travel time from Escondido
Alternate Outing to Whitewater Canyon Preserve & Big Morongo:
Friday & Saturday, April 27 & 28, 2018 NOTE: ROOMS ARE IN HIGH DEMAND IN YUCCA VALLEY SO BOOK EARLY
Friday morning will be spent at Whitewater Canyon Preserve with a 9:30 am arrival and a Class One walking tour around the area looking for local birds, California bighorn sheep, and admiring the huge trout that are stocked in several ponds at this location. Bring a lunch for a picnic at the tables near the trout ponds. Restrooms are available.
We will then make our way to Yucca Valley in hopes of checking in to our hotel.
We are recommending the Best Western Joshua Tree Hotel & Suites at 56525 Twentynine Palms Highway, Yucca Valley 92284 (760) 365-3555 (NOTE: this is not the Best Western Gardens Hotel in the city of Twentynine Palms). We found last year the Travelodge (760) 365-3311, which we have historically used, was in need of a lot of deferred maintenance, but still is serviceable if you prefer to choose it. The Best Western is a recently built facility that provides a scrumptious buffet breakfast (for birders, it conveniently starts at 6:00 am). We will assemble in the lobby at 3:00 pm on Friday, for a tour to Black Rock Canyon Campground in search of the Scott’s Oriole, the Pinyon Jay, and Gambel’s Quail. We will return to our motels in time to scrub up for a 5:00 pm happy hour at the pool, followed by a 7:00 pm dinner at La Casita located at 57154 Twentynine Palms Highway, Yucca Valley, CA 92284, just a 1.5.miles East of the Best Western on the immediate corner of a strip mall. On Saturday morning, plan your day to arrive at Big Morongo at 8:30 am. It is just a ten minute drive from the Best Western. Best to have purchased your picnic lunch the night before at the supermarket in the same strip mall as La Casita.
Directions to Whitewater Preserve: (For GPS users the address is 9160 Whitewater Canyon Rd, Whitewater, CA 92282): From Escondido, proceed north on I-15 for approximately 36 miles to the I-15/I-215 split in Murrieta. Change to I-215 north and continue about 30 miles to Hwy 60 east. Take Hwy 60 east approx.18 miles and merge with the I-10. Then continuing east on I-10 approximately 20 miles to exit 114 from I-10 E and proceed 5 miles North on Tipton Rd. to the Preserve parking lot. Allow 2 hours travel time from Escondido.
PLEASE ADVISE DOUG WALKLEY AT firstname.lastname@example.org AFTER YOU HAVE MADE YOUR HOTEL BOOKING Leader: Doug Walkley 310-387-8190
Photos: Big Morongo
Further Information on Location – Here