This summer, I was lucky to join VENT’s Camp Cascades, which travels from Coastal Washington to the Mt. Rainier area of the Cascades Range. It was awesome to see the birdlife in some of the various habitats that Washington has to offer, and to hang out with the other 12 young birders there (10 of which I already knew). Highlights of this trip definitely included the family of White-tailed Ptarmigans that we saw on Mt. Rainer, the Tufted Puffins and Marbled Murrelets of coastal WA, Lewis’s Woodpeckers, Hepburn’s Gray-crowned Rosy-Finches, three Sapsucker species, and my lifer Sooty Grouse. I also learned a ton from Michael O’Brien, who has led this camp for the past few years with his wife Louise, as well as Glen Davis, who stepped in just this year and was an amazing teacher throughout the trip.
All in all I loved the experience, and would recommend this camp to any other young birders who are thinking of going. I am very grateful to the Central Valley Bird Club for offering me a scholarship for this camp, as without it I’m not sure I would have gone. Thank you to those who donated to the club and have in turn made this scholarship possible.