Hassayampa River Preserve is 50 miles (56 minutes) from Roundhouse. It’s a north Maricopa County hotspot that hosts many rarities and has large swaths of riparian areas. It is part of the Maricopa Regional Parks so it accepts the annual pass I bought a few weeks back.
I visited it twice last weekend in hopes of seeing a few target birds that have been recently reported (Cassin’s Finch, Townsend’s Solitaire, Ovenbird, Winter Wren, Rose-breasted Grosbeak).
On the first visit, I really was just getting my bearings and tried to walk the entirety of the trails. I managed many of them, and saw some good species but nothing spectacular.
On the second visit (with Marie), we saw a near-record-late Swainson’s Thrush, the Cassin’s Finch, and a very localized in the state Red-shouldered Hawk.
The trails here are incredibly well shaded throughout, with a lot of mesquite and cottonwood.
After the quick visit, we headed into Wickenburg, an old gold mining town, where we wandered a bit and had a lunch outdoors.
Hassyampa is a straight shot across Carefree Highway from Roundhouse and is a very pleasant one hour drive away. I’ll be back often and hope to have better birds and pictures to share.