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For the Birds

Photo: Tania Thomson/Shutterstock

Thanks to its place on the Pacific flyway, Washington contains some of the best bird-watching in the country—and annual bird-based bashes that celebrate their arrival.

Skagit Eagle Festival
During winter the Skagit River hosts one of the largest concentrations of bald eagles in the continental U.S. Concrete, Rockport, and Marblemount celebrate our national bird in January with a month of float trips and interpretive programs. concrete-wa.com

Port Susan Snow Goose and Birding Festival
In February, a blizzard of up to 100,000 snow geese blankets the Stillaguamish and Skagit River deltas near Stanwood. Accompany naturalists by foot or shuttle to catch a gander of the geese. snowgoosefest.org

Grays Harbor’s Shorebird Festival
Observing tens of thousands of sand-pipers and plovers is a sure thing at this April event in Hoquiam. Between bird-watching forays, dabble at a birding marketplace and nature fair.  shorebirdfestival.com

Othello’s Sandhill Crane Festival
More than 400,000 lesser sandhill cranes cram the channeled scablands surrounding Othello each spring. After crane spotting, attend a seminar, art program, or naturalist program. othellosandhillcranefestival.org

Puget Sound Bird Fest
In September celebrate Puget Sound’s birds in Edmonds. Take a guided beach or marsh walk, sound cruise, photography workshop, or native plant garden tour. pugetsoundbirdfest.org

Welcome the arrival of sandhill cranes at Ridgefield (p. 94) in October with a guided hike or paddling tour along the Columba River’s snaking sloughs. Afterward migrate to a salmon bake, live bird show, or storytelling  session. ridgefieldfriends.org/birdfest


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