2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Backpacker Magazine – April 2003

10 Best Bird Watching Hikes In America

Spring is for the birds. Here's where to find a flock near you.

by: T. Edward Nickens

Copper River Delta

In late April and early May, the Copper River Delta near Cordova hosts 6 million squawking visitors--the largest gathering of shorebirds in North America. Throughout the year, about 20 million shorebirds and waterfowl will take a rest break or nest here. But the birds are just one of many amazing sights. The Copper River is Alaska's fourth largest and drains all the wild mountains in the southeastern corner of the state, including the Wrangell, St. Elias, and Chugach ranges. Best bet: Take a multiday float trip, then head for the hills, where hundreds of miles of trail and several backcountry cabins await.

guides:Trails Illustrated maps Prince William Sound-Eastand Prince William Sound-West (800-962-1643;; $10 each).

contact: Chugach National Forest, (907) 743-9500;

Assateague Island National Seashore

This barrier island may be famous for its wild horses--and the hordes of summertime tourists--but it's pleasantly quiet during the springtime arrival of migrating birds. Off the coast of the Delmarva Peninsula, the island includes 37 miles of dunes, marshes, beach grass, and pine forest with room to roam. Backcountry camping is allowed, and a handful of trails will take you to prime viewing spots for tricolored and little blue herons, great and snowy egrets, pelicans, clapper rails, osprey, loons, American oystercatchers, and dozens of songbird species.

guides: Assateague Island Handbook (available from contact below; $8). A free map is available at the park headquarters.

contact: Assateague Island National Seashore, (410) 641-1441;

Acadia National Park

More than 250 bird species, including half the warblers found in the United States, can be seen along Maine's battered coast. Rugged cliffs above the ocean offer great views of shorebirds, while a handful of freshwater lakes, salt marshes, and a dozen forested mountains harbor trails that will let you see and hear the park's land birds. Acadia's best birdwatching is from May to September. Look for ruby-throated hummingbirds in the low branches of trees or shrubs. Or, beginning in May, attend a guided peregrine falcon watch or bird walk (for more information, contact the park).

guides: Hiking Acadia National Park, by Dolores Kong and Dan Ring ($17). Trails Illustrated map Acadia National Park #212 (800-962-1643;; $10).

contact: Acadia National Park, (207) 288-3338;

Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Address 1:
Address 2:
Email (req):

Reader Rating: -


Your rating:
Your Name:


My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

What brand boots?
Posted On: Aug 29, 2014
Submitted By: HuntersHikes
Hiking on rocks
Posted On: Aug 29, 2014
Submitted By: Silock
View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site

Follow BackpackerMag on Twitter Follow Backpacker on Facebook
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions