This morning, I joined my wife, daughter and grandson for a hike at Roxborough State Park, southwest of Metro Denver. Adorned with spectacular rock formations from the Cretaceous, Permian and Pennsylvanian Periods, it is one of the most scenic preserves in Colorado.
Though rain was threatening, we completed a two mile loop through the Park. Mule deer, often abundant at Roxborough, were represented by a single, small herd; birding, on the other hand, was rewarding as always and I spotted a fair number of scrub jays, canyon wrens, broad-tailed hummingbirds, Say's phoebes and spotted towhees along the trail. A lone golden eagle circled above the Park, kestrels hunted from the sandstone ridges and the season's first flocks of white-throated swifts and violet-green swallows strafed the open meadows. Signs of coyotes and fox were evident but those nocturnal hunters remained out of sight, as did the black bears and mountain lions that may be encountered at this fabulous refuge.
As we completed our hike, light rain began to fall, soon mixing with sleet. The fickle weather of a Colorado spring had taken another turn and we retreated to the warm, dry confines of our vehicle. No doubt, we'll return to this natural wonderland many times in the coming year.