A Travellerspoint blog

Day 16: Goat Lake!!

Sawtooth Mountains, ID

semi-overcast 91 °F

Today, my mom, Pearl, and I hiked up to the pristine Goat Lake in the Sawtooth Wildnerdess Area of central Idaho. We were inspired to do this hike because my dad led us on this exact same hike four years ago, “senza mamma” (without mom). So my mom took us instead this time!

Read the trip from four years ago here: https://worldbirding.travellerspoint.com/210/

The temperature difference on the trip today ranged from 28 degrees at 6:10am in which was absolutely brutal to hike for the first hour. By the end of the day, it ended up topping out at 91 degrees, a difference of over 60 degrees! That’s what happens in the mountains!

Beautiful views on the way up:


Then, I spotted this amazing, rare AMERICAN THREE-TOED WOODPECKER which we first heard drumming quite loudly:

Mom and Pearl! :)

Goat Falls, a beautiful break to admire this masterpiece of mother nature in between the rocky, scrambling ascent straight up a hillside that comprised the last part of the hike.

Goat Stream leading from the lake:

We made it!!!!! MY FAVORITE PLACE IN IDAHO! I even managed to swim in this glacial-fed lake which was quite an accomplishment considering it was bone-rattingly cold. I stayed in for less than a minute!

The local pair of nesting PEREGRINE FALCONS even put on quite a show of screaming and diving for us, which was awesome! A spectacular show of nature with the fastest animals on earth!

Indian Paintbrush:


After grabbing refreshing milkshakes at Smiley Creek Lodge after the hike, we stopped near the top of Galena Pass and I spotted some cool mountain forest finch species, including these male CASSIN’S:

And the female:


Bird-of-the-day for today is the American Three-toed Woodpecker due to its rarity, and runner-up to the Peregrine Falcons for their amazing courtship display!

Good birding,
World Life List: 951 Species

Posted by skwclar 20:28 Archived in USA

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