Sequoia Audubon Society
                              San Mateo County, California

Sequoia Audubon Field Trips

SAS Field Trip
Sweetwood Group Camp, Half Moon Bay. Trip led by Malia DeFelice & Chris Hayward (on the far right.) Photo by Malia DeFelice


Visitors and guests are welcome!

  • All trips are open and suitable for beginners unless specifically marked.

  • Trips marked as Beginner's Trips include advice on binoculars and telescopes, and a short open-ended discussion on birding and the environment.

  • It is always a good idea to check with the field trip LEADER for confirmation on trips beyond the immediate area in case of last minute changes.

  • Note that some trips require reservations, see the individual descriptions for requirements.

  • Further information may be obtained from the listed Trip LEADER or from fieldtrips@sequoia-audubon.org.

  • A description for the event icons can be found at the bottom of the page.

  • This listing also includes trips and events not sponsored by Sequoia Audubon Society - listed for your information, only.

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

Recurring Activities

Field TripFIRST WEDNESDAYS

Weekday Walks and Field Trips with Donna Pomeroy on the First Wednesday of every month to some places we may not normally bird and usually in San Mateo County. For all trips carpooling is preferred. Contact Donna to arrange if a carpool location is not already suggested. Rain cancels trips.

Trip details found in dated listings below.

Leader: Donna Pomeroy dpom@comcast.net

2016

Don't forget to check Other Activities for field trips of interest not sponsored by SAS.

Field Trippelagic trip feePelagic season!

Though these are not Sequoia Audubon Field Trips, July marks the start of the Pelagic Trip season which runs roughly from July – October. The best way to see seabirds that rarely visit land, is to book a pelagic trip!

Alvaro's Adventures will be running trips out of Half Moon Bay. Visit Alvaro Jaramillo's website for more information http://alvarosadventures.com/boat-trips/pelagics/

Debi Shearwater will start her Shearwater Journey's pelagic trips out of Half Moon Bay in August. Information for Debi's pelagic trips can be found here: http://www.shearwaterjourneys.com/

 

Field TripSeeking Vagrants at Point Reyes National Seashore
Saturday & Sunday; October 1 & 2

(Trip Full With Waiting List)

Join us for spectacular birding at one of the best locations in the country! In early October fall migration is in full swing, and this is peak time for arrival of vagrant species that may have been blown off course. Our trip will focus on looking for any vagrants that have been previously reported, as well as visiting most of the well-known vagrant "traps" to find our own! Certain species of wood warblers reliably appear every fall: American redstarts and Palm, Blackpoll, Prairie, and Chestnut-sided warblers are some of the most "common" vagrants, but almost anything can turn up. With a supporting cast of returning winter visitors, this is an amazing place to spend a fall weekend! This trip will start with dinner on the evening of Friday Sept 30.

Due to the extremely low availability of hotel rooms in early October, please confirm your participation to Adam Dudley (Adam.Dudley@iCloud.com) by August 22 at the latest.

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Field TripSan Francisco Botanical Garden
Sunday, October 2, 8:00am - 11:00am

Combined walk with Golden Gate Audubon & San Francisco Botanical Garden, Ninth and Lincoln, San Francisco. Join the Golden Gate Audubon Society monthly walk. We will stroll around the garden, admiring the plants and birds. This is an easy walking tour and could be suitable for wheelchairs (contact the leader for more info). This month we will be hoping for migrants.

Directions: Take Hwy 280 north to 19th Avenue. Go north on 19th Ave, then right on Judah, and left on Ninth. Cross Lincoln into the Park and park on the street. The entrance will be on the left.

Leader: Ginny Marshall ginnybirder@sbcglobal.net

Field TripPescadero State Beach
Wednesday, October 5, 9:00am - 12:00pm

We will meet at the furthest end of the second (middle) parking lot for Pescadero State Beach. This is the parking lot just south of the creek mouth. It does not require a fee. We will spend some time looking for shorebirds and seabirds from the bluff, then drive a short distance to another part of the park to look for landbirds. There is a wide variety of habitats in this park and we will hope to see quite a few species. Scoes will be very useful on this trip, so bring one along if you have one. Expect cool and breezy weather here, but warmer when we go inland.

Directions: From Half Moon Bay, take Highway 1 south, about 15 miles toward Santa Cruz. As you approach Pescadero, you will see extensive marsh on the east side of the highway and the second parking lot will be on your right, just after you cross the bridge over Pescadero Creek mouth.

Leader: Donna Pomeroy dpom@comcast.net

Field TripEdgewood County Park
Sunday, October 9, 8:00am (hike will last 3-4 hours)

Explore this gem of a park with Susie Hons. Hike through oak woodlands and natural meadows. Look for California Thrasher, Wrentit, Oak Titmouse and Western Bluebird year round. Hike 3-5 miles with some hills.

Directions: Take 280 to Edgewood Rd. in San Carlos. Go east down Edgewood to the park entrance on the right. Meet at the Nature Center.

Leader: Susie Hons susieturtlewings@mac.com

Field TripFitzgerald Marine Reserve
Saturday, Oct 15, 9:00am - 11:00am

Some of the best birding can be found right near the parking lot in the willows by the road and in the cypress trees by the picnic tables. So that is where we will start! We will then proceed down to the beach area to scan for seabirds and shorebirds. From there we will take a leisurely walk into the park itself where there is a mix of good riparian habitat and a dense stand of conifer trees which should have some good migrant warbler possibilities. We will have the option of walking down to the beach via the stairs at the south end of the park. Our trip back to the parking lot will be along the bluff top where we will have good views of the ocean and birds passing by.

Directions: Meet at the Fitzgerald Marine parking lot. Fitzgerald Marine Reserve is located west of Highway 1 in Moss Beach, 7 miles north of Half Moon Bay, and 21 miles south of San Francisco. From Highway 1 at Moss Beach, turn west on California Avenue and proceed to the parking lot at the end of the street. The Reserve's main entrance is at the end of California Avenue. On weekends, allow 45 minutes to reach the Reserve from the intersection of Highways 280 and 92. There are restrooms at the parking lot.

Leaders: Malia DeFelice and Chris Hayward. Contact: malia.defelice.sas@gmail.com or 650-346-2009 (call if you are running late or lost). Heavy rain cancels.

Field TripFiloli Estate (RSVP required)
Saturday, October 22, 8:30am - 12:00pm

Filoli Estate is the property of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. We have been invited for a morning of birding at this beautiful site on the edge of the San Francisco Watershed land. The grounds of Filoli have a beautiful formal garden surrounded by large oaks and trails leading to riparian, redwood and farm habitats. Over 96 species of birds have been found here. Reservations are required because this trip is limited to 20 people maximum (sorry, no children under 14). Participants may remain after the field trip to walk through the house and/or formal gardens at no charge. No food or picnicking is allowed but light food and beverages at the Cafe are available for purchase and the gift shop will be open.

Directions: Take Hwy 280 to the Edgewood Road exit; go west. Turn right/north on Cañada Road and drive approximately one mile to the entrance of Filoli. We will meet in front of the Visitors Center.

Call Sue James 650-348-0315 to reserve your spot.

Leaders: Sue James and Martha O'Neal Heavy rain cancels.

Field TripRadio Road
Wednesday, November 2, 9:00am - 12:00pm

The ponds at Radio Road are productive year-round for waterbirds of all kinds. In winter, there are a large number of ducks and shorebirds that rest and feed here. This location is a favorite among bird photographers. Bring binoculars, cameras, and scopes if you have them. This location is mostly flat and we will never be very far from the cars. It is wheelchair accessible. No restroom is available at this location. We will meet at the parking lot for the dog park.

Directions: Radio Road is located at the northeastern end of Redwood Shores Parkway. From US 101, take exit 411 to Redwood Shores Parkway and head toward the bay. In a few miles, look for the tall electrical towers just past a slough on your right. There is a sign there that says "SBSA 1400 Radio Road." Turn right at this sign; you are now on Radio Road. You come to a stop sign; in front of you are the ponds of Radio Road; to your right is the Dog Park. Turn right and you will reach the main parking lot for Radio Road.

Leader: Donna Pomeroy dpom@comcast.net

Field Tripbeginner and family walk feeCoyote Point County Park
Saturday, November 12, 9:00am - 12:00pm

We will meet in the parking lot by the Yacht Club and walk trails at a leisurely pace. We will bird the fresh- water marsh, the shoreline out to the harbor entrance and the trail through the eucalyptus grove to the grassy area above the museum - about 1 1/2 miles all told. High tide is 9:55am so we will be there at a good time to see shorebirds close-in as the tide recedes.

Directions: Take Hwy 101 and follow the signs to the park. There is an admission fee of $6 per vehicle. Beginners welcome! Heavy rain cancels.

Leader:Sue Cossins (susancossins@gmail.com) and Martha O'Neal (monealbirds@att.net)

Field TripWavecrest, Half Moon Bay
Sunday, November 20, 9:00am - 12:00pm

The focus on this trip will be on raptors. The grasslands of Wavecrest are an important wintering grounds for a variety of species of raptors, especially White-tailed Kites, Northern Harriers and Red-tailed Hawks; as well as Red-shouldered Hawks and American Kestrels. The numbers of these birds here are impressive! We will also walk down to the bluffs overlooking the ocean and look for shorebirds and waterbirds. Expect cool and breezy weather. Scopes will be useful here, so bring one along if you have one.

Directions: Meet at the west end of Wavecrest Road by the ball fields. Wavecrest Road is 1.5 miles south of Highways 1 & 92 in Half Moon Bay at the intersection with the red double-decker bus at Cameron's Pub and Inn.

Leader: Leslie Flint lflint@earthlink.net

Field TripPescadero State Beach and Environs
Saturday, November 26, 9:00am - 1:00pm

Work off those Thanksgiving meals with a long, but easy, hike exploring the Pescadero Marsh area! We will meet at the northernmost end of the second (middle) parking lot for Pescadero State Beach. This is the parking lot just south of the creek mouth. It does not require a fee. We will spend some time looking for shorebirds and seabirds from the bluff. We will then drive a short distance to a dirt parking lot at the intersection of Hwy 1 and Pescadero Road where we will journey into the marsh and walk along trails which will allow us to view waterfowl, herons, egrets, raptors and other marsh birds up close and personal. If time and energy allows, we will head over to Water Lane to look for land birds. Water Lane takes us to the "back" of the marsh and is a great spot for warblers in fall and winter. There are a wide variety of habitats in this park and we will hope to see quite a few species. Expect cool and breezy weather here, but warmer when we go inland. Restrooms are located at the first parking lot.

Directions: From Half Moon Bay, take Highway 1 south, about 15 miles toward Santa Cruz. As you approach Pescadero, you will see an extensive marsh on the east side of the highway and the second parking lot will be on your right, just after you cross the bridge over Pescadero Creek mouth.

Leaders: Malia DeFelice and Chris Hayward. Contact: malia.defelice.sas@gmail.com 650-346-2009 (call if you are running late or lost) Heavy rain cancels.

Field Tripbeginner and family walk Bedwell Bayfront Park, Menlo Park
Saturday, December 3, 10:00am - 1:00pm

If you are just starting to dip your toe in the duck pond and would like to learn about ducks, shorebirds, what the Pacific flyway is and how our region features in it, then join us for an early winter look at what birds have arrived so far. There should be land birds to see, too. This trip is for beginning birders and those trying to remember the ID skills they learned last winter.

Directions: Take Marsh Road exit from Highway 101 and go Bay-ward straight through traffic light at Bayfront Expressway and Haven Avenue into the park. Meet in the parking lot (by the restrooms). Entrance is free.

Leader:Chris MacIntosh cmaci@sbcglobal.net, 650-839-1523.

Field TripPillar Point Harbor
Wednesday, December 7, 9:00am - 12:00pm

Pillar Point is a hot spot for birding year-round. We should find a variety of resident birds and wintering shorebirds. 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.

Directions: The harbor is located just west of Coast Highway One, 18 miles south of San Francisco and 4 miles north of Half Moon Bay. From Coast Highway One, 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.

Leader: Donna Pomeroy dpom@comcast.net

Field TripCowell-Purisima Trail
Saturday, December 10, 9:00am - 12:00pm

This morning's field trip will explore Cowell-Purisima Trail. We will be looking for raptors and grassland birds like sparrows and meadowlarks. Ocean views provide good seawatching opportunities for sea birds. This area features the coastal terrace prairie habitat, similar to Wavecrest and Blufftop parks further north in Half Moon Bay. At the turnaround point of our walk, there is a good riparian area where we can search for wintering warblers. This trip would be especially appropriate for photographers - both new and experienced - because of the sweeping vistas and hawks in flight. The plan is to walk a 4-mile roundtrip to the creek and back. The walk is flat except for the last descent into the creek area and return ascent back to the flat trail. There are restrooms at the parking lot. Heavy rain cancels.

Directions: meet at the parking lot on California Route 1, about three miles south of 92, across from Bob's Produce Stand.

Leaders: Malia DeFelice and Chris Hayward. Contact: 650-346-2009 (call if you are running late or lost) Heavy rain cancels

Field TripBest of San Mateo Bayside Winter Birding (RSVP required)
Saturday, December 10, 12:00pm - dusk

Join us for spectacular winter birding in San Mateo County! Early December is peak time to see most of the wildfowl, shorebirds, raptors and songbirds that spend the winter with us. The exact itinerary will be flexible and based on birds that have been reported over the previous few days. But expect to visit sites such as Redwood Shores and Foster City Lagoons, Nob Hill Pond, Radio Road, and Coyote Point, finishing the day at Bair Island around dusk. Birds such as Short-Eared Owl, Barrow's Goldeneye, Harlequin Duck, Greater White- Fronted and Cackling Geese, Eurasian Wigeon and Loggerhead Shrike may join our more regular winter visitors. This trip can be combined with the morning SAS trip to Cowell-Purisima Coastal Trail (led by Malia DeFelice and Chris Hayward) or enjoyed on its own.

Leader: Please register your interest with Adam Dudley at Adam.Dudley@iCloud.com. Trip limited to 14 participants.

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

 

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