Sequoia Audubon Society
                              San Mateo County, California

Sequoia Audubon Field Trips

SAS Field Trip
September 25, 2021 — First field trip at Pillar Point Harbor (in almost 2 years)


Pre-registration is required for all field trips!

Because of the pandemic, we have made some changes to our field trip protocols and may need to make more changes in the future to respond to future public health orders, or other changes in conditions.

The full protocols and full descriptions can be found on the front page of the October 2021 Newsletter. Please read the full protocols in the newsletter. Very briefly they are:

  1. Advance registration and field trip size limit: SAS is currently requiring RSVPs for all field trips and is limiting the trip size. We are using Eventbrite as our reservation platform. Please no drop-ins.
  2. COVID Vaccination Required to Participate: SAS field trips are open to individuals who have been vaccinated against COVID-19.
  3. Participants required to sign liability waivers to participate: SAS is now using a electronic Waiver and Photographic Release Form that is sent to participants about a week before the event that is easily signed on your computer, tablet, or smartphone.
  4. Social distancing: SAS requests all field trip participants be mindful of the CDC recommendations on field trips and take it as the responsibility of each participant to consciously try to adhere to social distance recommendations as much as practicable, as the COVID-19 virus omicron variant is known to be easier to transmit between people than other strains of the virus.
  5. Trip cancellations: If the weather is bad enough that you don't want to go on a field trip that day, chances are your trip leader doesn't want to go either! Field trips will typically be cancelled for heavy rain, but not for light mist. SAS now cancels field trips if the Air Quality Index is 150 or more at the location.

Note: All phone numbers are for Area Code 650, unless otherwise stated.

2022


August 2021, San Mateo County COVID Update

Registration required for all field trips. See description for links &/or restrictions.

Field Trip Wednesday, January 12, 2022
Pillar Point Harbor (9:00 – 12:00)

Join us to look for a variety of wintering and resident birds while walking on easy, fairly level, dirt trails. Pillar Point is a hot spot for birding year-round. We should find a variety of wintering and resident birds. Most of the walking will be on fairly level dirt trails, but if time permits, we may hike up onto the bluff top for a better view out to sea. Scopes will be useful here, so if you have one, bring it along. A primitive restroom is available at the parking lot. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: The harbor is located just west of SR 1, 18 miles south of San Francisco and 4 miles north of Half Moon Bay. From SR 1, turn west at the stoplight at Capistrano Road and continue along the north side of the harbor to Prospect Way. Turn left onto Prospect, then a brief jog right on Broadway, to an immediate left on Harvard Avenue. Proceed through the boat yards to the end of Harvard Avenue, then turn right onto West Point Avenue, which curves around a marshy area and heads uphill to an Air Force Radar Facility. Meet at the "West Shoreline Access", popularly known as the parking lot to Mavericks, just below the radar station. (coordinates 37.501721, -122.496785).

Leaders: Donna Pomeroy. dpom@comcast.net.

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Trip Sunday, January 16, 2022
Pescadero Marsh State Nature Preserve (8:00 – 12:00)

Join us for a walk on an easy dirt trail to look for wintering ducks, wading birds including the elusive rails, raptors and land birds. Pescadero Marsh Nature Preserve is both an important wintering ground and breeding area for a wide variety of birds. Sequoia Audubon Society was involved in the initial preservation of the marsh and continues to look for opportunities to partner with the California State Parks Department to protect and enhance the marsh. Bring binoculars and dress in layers. Depending on trail conditions we may walk along the newly-constructed trail along Pescadero Creek. Restrooms are available at the nearby Pescadero State Beach parking area, but not at the trip meeting parking location or in the marsh. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: Take SR 1 towards Pescadero. Turn east onto Pescadero Creek Road, and then turn into the dirt parking lot on the north side of the road just east of the SR 1/Pescadero Creek Road intersection. (coordinates 37.259763, -122.412122).

Leader: Ginny Marshall. ginnybirder@gmail.com.

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Trip Thursday, January 20, 2022
Hayward Regional Shoreline (9:00 – 12:00)

Join us for a walk on an easy, level trail in a variety of habitats. The eucalyptus, fennel and coyote bush near the start for this walk often yield interesting land birds. The bay shoreline is home many species of wintering ducks and shorebirds, and we will time our arrival there about 2 hours before high tide in hopes of observing feeding shorebirds moving towards shore as the tide comes in. Bring a spotting scope if you have one. Restrooms are available in the parking lot. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: We will meet at the westernmost parking area at the west end of West Winton Ave, about 0.2 mile west of 3010 West Winton Ave (coordinates 37.646450, -122.146903). West Winton Ave can be reached by going north on Clawiter Road from SR 92 in Hayward, or by going west on West Winton Ave from I-880. Additional parking is located east of the meeting area.

Leader: Don Pendleton Co-Leader: Donna Pomeroy dpom@comcast.net

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Tripmotor tour Saturday, January 29, 2022
Raptors of San Benito County (8:30 – 3:00)

Let's explore the backroads of San Benito County in search of Golden Eagles, Ferruginous Hawks, Prairie Falcons (with other possibilities). San Benito County is a great area for wintering raptors. Bring lunch, liquids, and a scope if you have one.

As parking is limited along roads during this trip, participants on this trip need to be willing to carpool with other participants (we need to limit to 4 cars total on trip route). All trip participants are required to have completed COVID 19 vaccinations. Reservations required.

Directions: Meet at the Catholic Church (7290 Airline Highway (SR 25)-coordinates 36.787133, -121.316453) in the small town of Tres Pinos, San Benito County, south of Hollister. From San Mateo, allow about 2 hours driving time, Hwy 101 south to Hwy 25; follow Hwy 25 through Hollister to Tres Pinos. The large Catholic Church is on the right. Park in the lot farthest from there. Take advantage of bathroom facilities in Hollister before you drive to Tres Pinos.

Leader: Leslie Flint.

For Reservations: Doug Pomeroy, Sequoia Field Trip Coordinator: sequoiafieldtrips@gmail.com.

Field Trip Thursday, February 3, 2022
Pescadero State Beach and Marsh State Nature Preserve (8:30 – 12:00)

Join us for a moderately strenuous bird walk in search of wintering and resident birds of the rocky shoreline, sandy shoreline, adjoining ocean, and in the marsh. Pescadero State Beach includes bluff areas where we will look for wintering shorebirds, and briefly check the ocean waters for grebes, loons, scoters, and perhaps find a pelagic bird wandering near shore. Then we will look for shore birds of the sandy coastline including the snowy plover (a federally threatened species). We will then head towards the Pescadero Marsh Nature Preserve and bird as much of the area as time allows. The Pescadero Marsh Nature Preserve is an important wintering ground and breeding area for a wide variety of birds. Bring binoculars, and a spotting scope could be useful if you have one.

This is a moderately strenuous trip as the bluff areas are steep and uneven, and the sandy coast area requires walking on sand so have footwear you don't mind getting sandy. Restrooms are available in the Pescadero State Beach parking area, but not in the marsh portion of the walk. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: Take SR 1 south towards Pescadero. Go past the first (north) Pescadero State Beach parking lot, go over the SR 1 bridge over Pescadero Creek, continue approximately 0.2 miles, and turn west (right) into the second (middle) Pescadero SB parking lot and meet near the restrooms. (Approximately coordinates 37.265503, -122.412076). If you get to the third (south) Pescadero SB immediately west of Pescadero Creek Road, you have gone too far.

Leader: Nelle Lyons. nelle.lyons@parks.ca.gov

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Tripfee Wednesday, February 9, 2022
Coyote Hills Regional Park, Fremont (9:00 – 12:00)

Join us to look for water and land birds along boardwalks and easy trails. Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont has a great mix of habitats including freshwater marsh, brackish marsh, and grassland where we will look for wintering and resident birds. Several restrooms are available at the park. There is a $5 per vehicle day use fee. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: The park is located at 8000 Patterson Ranch Road, Fremont. Meet at the parking area near visitor center.

Leader: Donna Pomeroy. dpom@comcast.net

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Tripbeginner and family walk Saturday, February 12, 2022
Bedwell Bayfront Park (10:00 – 12:00)

Join us for a family and beginner-friendly, 1-2 hour beginner/refresher bird walk. Wintering shorebirds and waterfowl will be present. Raptors, egrets and LBBs (little brown birds) can usually be seen as well. Restrooms are in the parking area. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: From US 101 in Menlo Park take Marsh Road east (SR84 East). Then continue east on Marsh Road into Bedwell Bayfront Park when SR84 turns south and meet at the parking lot near the restrooms. (Approx. coordinates 37.487403, -122.177287)

Leader: Doug Brown dduggy3@yahoo.com

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Trip Saturday, February 19, 2022
Pillar Point Bluff County Park (8:00 – 11:30)

Join us for a bird walk on a moderate dirt loop trail with a short but steep descent to look for wintering and resident birds. This small County Park has only been open since 2011. It has sweeping views of both the agricultural land and the ocean, with an uncrowded trail system. There is a nice mix of birds here including resident California Thrashers. There is a restroom in the parking lot. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: Meet at the Pillar Point Bluff parking lot on Airport Street, across from the Half Moon Bay airport on the west side. (Coordinates: 37.51177, -122.50117)

Leader: Donna Pomeroy. dpom@comcast.net

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Tripfee Friday, March 4, 2022
Pilarcitos Creek Mouth and Coastal Beaches (9:00 – 12:00)

Gulls, gulls, gulls! Join us for a moderately strenuous walk on sand beaches and coastal bluffs to practice our gull identification skills. Gulls are easy to see. For the most part, they sit there right in front of you. But for all their ease of viewing, their variety of plumages can sometimes make identification overwhelming. In the month of March there is a potential to see 7 species of expected gulls on our San Mateo coastside and the chance of something rare! Our goal is to view and learn the field marks of the common gulls we expect to see at this time of year. Bring binoculars, cameras are recommended if you want to keep photographic examples of the gulls we identify. Spotting scopes can be useful, but we expect to have one or more available if you do not want to carry one.

Wear footwear you don't mind getting sandy, and bring rubber boots if you have them in case we need to cross several inches of water to get to a gull flock during the trip. Dress in layers, it can be cold and windy this time of year. Restrooms will be periodically available at parking areas near the beaches. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: From SR 1 in Half Moon Bay take Kehoe Ave west to the T-intersection with Pilarcitos Ave. Turn north (right) and proceed to the intersection of Pilarcitos and Wave Avenues. Park either on the dirt parking area just north of Wave Ave or on the adjoining streets (approximate coordinates 37.477785, -122.446624).

Depending on where we find gulls we may also visit nearby state beaches which have a $10 day use fee, that is good for all local state beaches all day. Frequent State Park visitors may consider purchasing a pass: www.parks.ca.gov.

Leader: Malia DeFelice and Chris Hayward. maliakai@coastside.net

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Trip Wednesday, March 9, 2022
Nob Hill Pond and Redwood Shores (9:00 – 12:00)

Join us for an easy walk on mostly level ground to an excellent site to view a variety of ducks and other waterbirds. Time permitting, we may check some other birding sites nearby. Bring spotting scopes if you have them. Restrooms are available in the nearby shopping center. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: From US 101 in San Carlos, take the Redwood Shores Parkway exit east from Hwy 101, past the Nob Hill shopping plaza, turn right on Bridge Parkway, then almost immediately turn right at Tiller Lane. Follow Tiller Lane, take a left on Spar Drive to the cul-de-sac where we will meet. Park nearby if necessary. (Coordinates: 37.52302, -122.24819).

Leader: Donna Pomeroy. dpom@comcast.net

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Tripfee Thursday, March 17, 2022
Francis Beach (8:30 – 11:00)

Join us for an easy, wheelchair-accessible birding field trip along the Coastal Trail, north from the Visitor Center at Francis Beach to Dunes Beach and back. We will look for resident birds and winter visitors. Depending on participant interests and abilities, we may also go out on the beach to look at shorebirds, gulls, and birds on or flying over the ocean. Plan layers as cool temps and morning fog can change to sunshine and moderate breeze, and wear shoes you don't mind getting sandy if you want to go on the beach. There are several restrooms on the route. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: From SR1 in Half Moon Bay take Kelly Avenue west to the end of the road and meet at the Half Moon Bay State Beach Visitor Center, 95 Kelly Avenue. The daily permit fee is $10.00 and can be used to visit any other local state park the remainder of the day. Frequent State Park visitors may want to buy an annual or special state park pass. Visit www.parks.ca.gov

Leader: Nelle Lyons. nelle.lyons@parks.ca.gov

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Trip Sunday, March 20, 2022
Burleigh Murray State Park (8:00-12:00))

Join us for a leisurely 3-4 hour walk of 2-3 miles in this bird-rich gem on a level gravel ranch road leading to the historic barn. Many of the resident birds will be singing and thinking about nesting now, as they try to get a jump on some of the migrants which will nest here. We will pay special attention to identifying the songs of these residents, as well as hoping to spot some early migrants, while saying farewell to wintering birds which will soon depart for breeding areas further north or at higher elevations. Pit toilets are available at several locations along the trail. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: Take SR1 south from Half Moon Bay and then turn east on Higgins Canyon Road and meet at the lower parking lot for the Johnston House at 110 Higgins Canyon Road. (coordinates 37.451099, -122.423599). Due to limited parking we will carpool and caravan from the Johnston House to Burleigh Murray, which is 1 1⁄2 miles further up Higgins Canyon Road.

Leader: Ginny Marshall. ginnybirder@gmail.com

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Field Tripfee Saturday, March 26, 2022
Olompali State Historic Park, Novato (9:00 – 12:00)

We'll walk on level trails in oak woodlands as we look for resident birds and early spring migrants. We will also look for wintering birds preparing to migrate north, and potential early returning spring migrants such as Hooded Orioles, Pacific-slope Flycatcher, Ash-throated Flycatcher, Warbling Vireo, and maybe Black-throated Gray Warbler. Pacific Wren is also possible.

At the park access road, the park entry fee is $8.00 cash only – exact change required. The day use permit can be used to visit other local state parks for the remainder of the day. Consider purchasing a multi-use day pass at: www.parks.ca.gov. Rain or AQI over 150 cancels.

Directions: The park is accessible from both the Northbound and Southbound lanes of Highway 101. Exit at Atherton Ave./San Marin Dr. and follow posted directional signs to the park. The park address is 8901 Redwood Blvd., Novato.

Leader: Rich Cimino. yellowbilledtours@gmail.com

Registration limitedeventbrite link

Submit Field Trip content by writing or replying to SequoiaFieldTrips@gmail.com
Thank you! Doug Pomeroy, SAS FIeld Trip Chair

Additional Field Trips will be added as the information becomes available.

Legend of Field Trip Symbols

Field Trip Wildlife Viewing

fee Fee required for part or all of this event

out of area trip Trip beyond local area, perhaps including an overnight stay

volunteer opportunity Volunteer Opportunity

beginner and family walk Beginner/Family walk

nature walk or viewing Nature Walk or Viewing

pelagic trip Pelagic (Ocean) Trip

motor tour Motor Tour. May include car pooling.

wheelchair accessible Wheelchair Accessible

bicycle Birding by Bicycle

 

2022 S.A.S.