Ready for Colombia

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind. We finally finished working on the van and it looks awesome, in our unbiased opinion. We are really happy with how it turned out (check out the birding mobile page for more photos and updates) and we cannot wait to be in Colombia. In other exciting news Josh’s article is out in The American Birding Associations Birder’s Guide Magazine. Check out his article about finding the rarest of the rare birds in Middle America. http://bg.aba.org/i/477970-mar-2015/12

Before we hit the road we could not resist a quick trip to the San Francisco Bay Area to visit our favorite haunts. We had incredible weather and enjoyed it immensely. Birding at Pigeon Point, San Mateo County, CaliforniaWhen we got back to San Diego we had just a few days to wrap everything up and head to Houston to ship the van. En route we stopped in Tucson to visit friends and see a few birds. We both were on a mission to see Bendire’s Thrasher which has sort of been my nemesis bird. A quick check of eBird showed that Bendire’s Thrasher’s are seen with some regularity west of Tucson on Mile Wide Road west of Saguaro National Park. By the time we made it out to the area the wind picked up but I could hear a faint song of a thrasher in the distance. As we walked closer we found the culprit sitting high in a mesquite tree singing away. A double and triple check of the field marks revealed a Bendire’s Thrasher! Nice!

I even managed to get a decent recording despite the strong winds by using the van as a wind shield (another nice feature of the new birding mobile). We also stopped for a quick walk in Saguaro National Park. We saw all of the local highlights including Gilded Flicker, Pyrrhuloxia, Cactus Wren, Rufous-winged Sparrow, Ladder-backed Woodpecker, and Black-throated Sparrow.

Gray Vireo photographed in Sagurao National Park, AZ

Gray Vireo photographed in Sagurao National Park, AZ

We were also rewarded with a migrant Gray Vireo! Not a very common sighting out in the desert.

Chiracahua Mountains

Chiracahua Mountains

We bid farewell to all in Tucson and made a pit-stop in the Chiracahua Mountains before starting the long 2-day drive to Houston. The Chiracahuas never disappoint; what a lovely place. We were treated to several Arizona Woodpeckers and a few first of spring Painted Redstarts, a Blue-throated Hummingbird as well as Green-tailed Towhee, Yellow-eyed Junco, Bridled Titmice, and more.

I am really glad we got a little bit of birding in before the long grueling drive to Houston. As soon as we arrived we met the shippers and started the paperwork. We worked with Horizon Auto Shipping to ship the van and everyone at Horizon was super helpful. We will post more shipping details for those interested when the whole process is finished. But in bigger news, We loaded the van into a container today and said goodbye to our birding mobile until Cartagena, Colombia.

We will be arriving in Cartagena on the 29th and will pick up the van on the 5th.  Then let the birding adventures begin!

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7 Comments on Ready for Colombia

  1. gborgmann // March 20, 2015 at 9:36 pm //

    now the great photos will start coming in -unbelievable how crisp they look and so life like and also will have to start looking up all the strange birds you guys come across.

    halo Columbia -adios USA (well for the time being anyway

    Like

  2. ey guys … welcome to Colombia and hope we cross-paths while you bird in our country!..
    PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE in getting in touch for anything you might need!!!
    saludos

    Diego.
    COLOMBIA Birding
    diego@colombiabirding.com
    cel: 314 896 3151

    Like

  3. Kathi Borgmann // March 20, 2015 at 10:33 pm //

    Diego, We would love to meet up with you and go birding. We will be in touch once we land in Colombia. We are so excited!

    Like

  4. Janet Gawthrop // March 21, 2015 at 12:16 am //

    Here’s wishing you safe travel and a quick and uneventful delivery of your van in Cartagena.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Mary Ann Good // March 21, 2015 at 12:38 pm //

    Josh & Kathi, hope your baby arrives safely–quite the feat of do-it-yourself retrofitting! Now the rewards begin! Must have been a bit nerve-racking, altho certainly exciting, seeing it loaded up. I can’t wait for the adventures to resume!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. mimi beck // March 21, 2015 at 7:54 pm //

    Wow, that is one tight fit in the container! Here’s wishing the beast a bon voyage and safe arrival—

    Like

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