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Free guided hikes offered to view wintering bald eagles

December 14, 2009 | 12:35 pm

A bald eagle in a tree. Bald eagles migrate annually to the Cache Creek Natural Area in Northern California's Lake County each October, where the raptors stay until mid-April.

To celebrate the majestic birds return to the area, the Bureau of Land Management is hosting free guided hikes to view the wintering bald eagles on most Saturday's in January and February.

The walks will take place at 10 a.m. on Jan. 16, 23 and 30, and Feb. 6, 13, 20 and 27.

Those interested in participating should contact the BLM Ukiah Field Office at (707) 468-4000 to reserve a spot for a specific date. Early reservations are recommended as each trek is limited to 25 people and space fills up quickly.

The four-mile hike takes about three to four hours and does include a steep, 600-foot climb in the first mile.

Participants should wear sturdy hiking boots and dress for cold weather. They should also bring binoculars (most eagle sightings are from a distance), water and lunch, as none will be provided.

Hikes will be canceled if it is raining.

--Kelly Burgess

Photo: A bald eagle in a tree. Credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

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