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Alta Field Trip

by Dennis Shirley

February 4, 1999

A quick trip up Little Cottonwood Canyon to Alta by fourteen Utah County Birders on Thursday afternoon, February 4, 1999 didn’t produce a great deal of species but found our target species at Susan Thomas’ feeder. A storm was approaching the Salt Lake Valley from the west, and a bitter wind was howling in the canyon. But, in spirt of the elements, our group hunkered down around Susan’s feeder and at close range saw Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, Hairy Woodpecker, Cassins Finch, Clark’s Nutcracker, Mountain Chickadee, Pine Siskin, and Dark-eyed Junco. Not bab for 15 minutes of birding!

On our way back down the canyou, we pulled off at the LDS Church Vault parking lot and with careful searching with glasses and scopes, found a small band of Rocky Mountain Goats which winters on the perpendicular cliffs across the canyon. This was a first for many of our group.

Back in the valley, we proceeded to Dimple Dell Park at 1300 East. There, again, it wasn’t the best of weather, but we spent a short time down in the canyon park. Ther best creature wer found was a red fox – seen as it snuck away on the hillside.

Participants: Lois Clark, Milt Moody, Bonnie Williams, Tuula Rose, Reed Stone, Kay Stone, Bob Parsons, Eric Huish, LeIla Ogden, Carol Jean Nelson, Junece Markham, Judy Jordan, Lew Wilkinson and Dennis Shirley.

Species seen


Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch (Code 4)
Hairy Woodpecker*
Clark’s Nutcracker*
Mountain Chickadee
Pine Siskin
Cassin’s Finch
Dark-eyed Junco

Dimple Dell:

Black-billed Magpie
Northern Flicker
Black-capped Chickadee
Western Scrub-Jay
Ring-billed Gull


European Starling
Rock Dove

* New species for Utah County Birder’s Field Trips