The Scout Camp Loop Trail is a lovely 2.2 mile hike northwest of Terrebonne. It is not particularly birdy. I logged 11 species on my trip, and the top eBird list for this site is only 17. (eBird calls this site Scott Camp Loop Trail, a typo that I hope will be corrected soon.) Despite the low diversity, it was well worth it to spend a few hours along this stretch of the Deschutes River.
The first .4 mile is through some juniper/sage steppe, which actually held the greatest bird diversity of the hike. The trail then descends into the canyon.
This Rock Wren was singing up a storm, but insisted on doing so from a high backlit perch.
With the recent high temperatures and lack of rain, most of the vegetation on the slopes was dried to a crisp. But the Blazing Stars were in full bloom, in defiance of the harsh conditions.
Down at the river’s edge was a lush ribbon of greenery.
Several Mule Deer were taking advantage of the lush growth.
Aside from the Violet-green Swallows flying over the water, the most common bird along the river was Yellow-breasted Chat. There were at least six individuals working the riparian corridor.
I don’t study butterflies much, but this Two-tailed Swallowtail was a new one for me.
Whenever I visit eastern Oregon I am especially on the lookout for herps. This pair of Common Side-blotched Lizards was the only herp sighting of this hike, but the species was new to me.
Here is the female, whose colors are more muted.
The male was really colorful, with blue spots on the back and orange underneath.
Another look at the male. The two didn’t seem to mind my presence. I think they were more interested in each other.