Popular Birding Places
   Uintah County
Uinta Mountains, looking south from Notch Mountain    by Merrill Webb  ©Merrill Webb
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Ashley Creek in Vernal

Description: There are several different places where birders can get close to the cottonwoods and scrub vegetation along the creek. None of these access points is a real big area - it's mostly "spot" birding rather than taking a walk.

Directions:   (Three access points, all in Vernal)
   - One access point is where North Vernal Avenue crosses the creek.
   - Another is where 1500 West crosses it.
   - A third is on 1500 East just north of 500 North. This is mostly private land so just bird from along the road near that intersection.

Some birds you might see: Black-headed Grosbeaks, Cedar Waxwings, Bullock's Orioles, Yellow Warblers, Spotted Towhees, Lazuli Buntings, Song Sparrows, and Gray Catbirds.

(Information provided by "Cynwren")

     eBird Data:   |  Remember the Maine ParkMcConkie Ranch RdStensgard's Pond | 

Dinosaur National Monument   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Dinosaur National Monument (Colorado) |
                          |  Quarry SectionGreen River CG  |  Chew RanchJosie Morris Cabin |
                          |  Split Mountain GorgeIsland Park Rd |

Aspen Nature Trail   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Hwy 191 -- Aspen Nature TrailHwy 191 -- Little Bush Creek |

Dry Fork Trail, Flume Trail  (lowland riparian forest)    [Utah Birding Trails]

Directions:  Go west on 500 North Street (UT 121) in Vernal to 3500 West Street and turn north.  This road leads to Dry Fork Canyon.

There is a new trail along Dry Fork creek, on BLM land between the cattle guard and the Forest Service boundary. This has always looked like great habitat for birding, especially in the spring, but access was kind of a hassle because of traffic on the road and activity in the many small camping areas on the east side of the creek. The trail is on the west side of the creek and is much more pleasant walking. The diverse vegetation and riparian habitat should make it a great spot for seeing migrants as well as a pretty diverse group of residents and breeders. I know from past experience that flammulated owls occur in the area.

Dry Fork Trail - I call it that because it parallels Dry Fork Creek - but it's called the Flume Trail on all the signs because it leads to an historic flume site several miles past the Forest Service boundary. It's a nice hike and gets into fairly thick coniferous forest further up. Blue and ruffed grouse can be seen on some of the upper parts of the trail. The lower part is probably the best overall birding though, since it has the most diverse vegetation and more riparian influence due to some springs in the area. (Kathy Paulin)

Birds: Mourning dove, White-throated swift, Broad-tailed hummingbird, Hammond's flycatcher, Cordilleran flycatcher, Plumbeous vireo. Warbling vireo, Mountain chickadee, Red-breasted nuthatch, Canyon wren, Swainson's thrush, American robin, Cedar waxwing, Yellow warbler, Yellow-breasted chat, Green-tailed towhee, Black-headed grosbeak

Dry Pond

Directions:  From UT 40 (about 14 miles SW of Vernal), go south on the road leading to Ouray (UT 88). After about 8 miles, turn right on the road to Randlett. Go less than 3 miles and turn left on the Pelican Lake turnoff. Go about 2 miles to where the road takes a sharp turn to the left. The pond is on the right side of the road.

     eBird Data:   | 

Flume Trail (see Dry Fork Trail)

     eBird Data:   |  Flume Trail |

Green River Campground

Directions:  Go north of Jensen on UT 149 about 7 miles to the west entrance of Dinosaur Nation Monument.  The Green River Campground is about 4 miles from the entrance station. (The path going north to Split Mt. Campground is good for birding)

     eBird Data:   |  Green River CG  |

Hy Slaugh's Pond

Location: 1800 E. 5000 S. in the Davis area of Ashley Valley [near Naples].

     eBird Data:   |  Stensgard's Pond |

Jones Hole Trail

Directions: Traveling North on Highway 191, turn east onto 500 North Vernal and travel 42 miles to Jones Hole Fish Hatchery. The trail starts down at the bottom of the Hatchery. Just follow the water.



Josie Morris Cabin   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Josie Morris Cabin

Leidy Peak

Directions: Directions: From about 21 miles north of Vernal on US-191, turn west on FR-018 (The Red Cloud Loop Road).  It's about 10 miles to the Oaks Park road (FR-024) and another 5 miles to the junction of FR-043.  At the junction with FR-043 take the "Hacking Lake" road.  The trailhead is about just beyond Hacking Lake.  (The total distance from US-191 is about 24 miles).


Montes Creek Reservoir   [Utah Birding Trails]

Directions:  Go about 2 miles east of Roosevelt on US 40.  Turn north on Montes Creek Road and go about 3 miles to the reservoir.  (Montes Hollow in on the west end of the reservoir and Lynn Haslem Reservoir is on the east end).

     eBird Data:   |  Little Montes Creek WMA  |  Bullock ReservoirCottonwood Reservoir |

Ouray National Wildlife Refuge

Directions: Go west of Vernal on US 40/191 and turn south on UT 88.  Go 12 miles to the refuge.



Oxbow Pond     [Utah Birding Trails]

Directions: The oxbow pond just South of the Green River bridge on the new Bonanza highway (UT 45). Just across the bridge you'll find a gravel pit on the right (west) side of the road -- the pond is on the far side of the pit. Access is good most of the year. (Michael Weber)  
This is a good one - a great variety of birds (waterfowl, marsh birds and songbirds) can be seen there especially in the spring. (Kathy Paulin)

     eBird Data:   |  SR45 & Green River Oxbow Pond |

Pariette Wetlands   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Pariette Reservoir & Wetlands |

Pelican Lake

Directions:  Go west of Vernal on US 40/191 and turn south on UT 88.  Go 8 miles to 6000 South Street and turn right to the north end of the lake.PelicanLake.htm



Red Cloud Loop   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Dry Fork / Red Cloud LoopTaylor Mountain RoadOak Park Reservoir |

Red Mountain  

It's a bit of a hike to get up to the ponderosa, but once you're there it's worth it for the view and the birds. (Michael Weber)

Directions: Take 2500 West north out of Vernal. It becomes the Taylor Mtn. Road. The 2-track leading off it is maybe 0.5 mile past the Forest boundary. (Kathy Paulin)
   The short but steep access is from the north (go up Taylor Mountain road and shortly after the Forest boundary, you'll see the dirt track leading off toward the red bluffs). Longer but not so steep is to follow a 2-track up the SW flank of the mountain. (Michael Weber)

Comments: Right now [fall], the trees are full of nuthatches (both red and white breasted). They're at least as numerous and easy to see as the mountain chickadees, maybe even more so. It would be a good spring hike too, since in the breeding season, mature ponderosa pine stands are one of the most productive forest types around for song birds - second only to riparian areas for total number of species (based on some point count surveys the Forest Service has done around here). (Michael Weber)

Rojo Trail: This is on the SW flank of Red Mountain just north of Vernal.  Habitat is PJ, sage and mountain brush at the lower end with some ponderosa pine as you go higher.  The trail follows a (usually) dry wash with potholes and occasional pockets of riparian vegetation for about a mile before branching off to an overlook point. (Kathy Paulin)

Birds: mourning dove, white-throated swift, northern flicker, gray flycatcher, ash-throated flycatcher, American crow, mountain chickadee, juniper titmouse, white-breasted nuthatch, rock wren, American, robin, blue-gray gnatcatcher, Virginia's warbler, black-throated gray warbler, spotted towhee, chipping sparrow, Brewer's sparrow, Cassin's finch  (Kathy Paulin)

     eBird Data:   |  Taylor Mountain Road |

Remember The Maine Park

Directions:  Go north on US 191 (Vernal Avenue) to Maeser Highway (500 North) and turn left.  Go 4 miles to 3500 West and turn right following the signs to Dry Fork Canyon.  Go 3.7 miles to the park on the right side of the road.

Comments: Peregrines sometimes nest on the cliff face above the park. (Kathy Paulin)

     eBird Data:   |  Remember the Maine ParkMcConkie Ranch RdStensgard's Pond |

Split Mountain Campground

Directions:  Go north of Jensen on UT 149 about 7 miles to the west entrance of Dinosaur Nation Monument.  The Split Mountain Campground is about 2.5 miles from the entrance station. (The path going south to Green River Campground is good for birding)

     eBird Data:   |  Split Mountain Gorge  

Steinaker Reservoir - north end   [Utah Birding Trails]

This stand of cottonwoods isn't very big but it can be productive. (Kathy Paulin)

Directions: The reservoir is located a few miles north of Vernal on SR 121. (Don DeCamp)

Description:  Park Officials have added a raised walkway that extends approximately 200 yards through various stands of riparian and wetland habitats. The place is very well maintained and the source of a multitude of bird sightings.  (Don DeCamp)

To bird the stand of cottonwoods at the north end of Steinaker Reservoir: Park at the beginning of the new trail they're constructing, just off the highway (there are some new outhouses there and the beginnings of interpretive signs). Follow the graded trail around the end of the reservoir, and when it ends bushwhack on to the next little parking lot and outhouse. From there, you can walk back on the paved road and watch for desert birds, or retrace your steps thru the riparian.
   Spring birds I've seen there: gray catbird, Virginia's warbler, yellow-rumped warbler, Wilson's warbler, yellow warbler, willow flycatcher,  lesser goldfinch, Am. goldfinch, lazuli bunting, Bullock's oriole, western tanager, Swainson's hawk, Cooper's hawk, long-eared owl, spotted and green-tailed towhees, song sparrows, red-winged and yellow-headed blackbirds, chipping sparrows, Brewer's sparrows, tree, barn and violet-green swallows, more... There were two active owl nests there last year, and I think the Cooper's hawk  nested too. Plus lots of ducks and some marsh birds. This fall [1998], the trees seem to be full of red-naped sapsuckers [little explosion in 1998 -- not necessarily typical]. (Michael Weber)

     eBird Data:   |  Steinaker SP  | 

Stewart Lake WMA   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Stewart Lake WMA  |  Jensen Bridge |

Taylor Mountain Road   [Utah Birding Trails]

     eBird Data:   |  Taylor Mountain RoadDry Fork / Red Cloud LoopOak Park Reservoir |

Wyasket Bottom Road   [Utah Birding Trails]

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