Oregon micro-trip, April 29-May 1

I have two vacancies on a weekend trip to NW California – SW Oregon. The cost is $300 pp plus your share of expenses (car rental, food and fuel). The plan is as follows:
1) We leave Davis at 8 pm on Friday and go to Hoopa to look for fishers. It’s a 5-hr drive from Davis, so we’ll have half the night.
(2) At dawn we go to Humboldt Lagoons area (1.5-2 hrs) to look for Western red-backed voles. Azalea groves there tend to be good for seeing moles on surface. We’ll also look for good places to re-visit on Sunday night, particularly for Sonoma tree vole nests and white-footed vole habitats.
(3) We go to Humbug Mt. area (2.5 hrs) and look for good places to set traps. In addition to Sherman and pitfall traps, I’ll bring a few tomahawk traps for Aplodontia and spotted skunk.
(4) We spend Saturday night spotlighting at Humbug Mt., then pick up the traps and go back to California.
(5) On Sunday we explore Redwood NP area, with a side trip to Oregon Caves to look for bats.
(6) On Sunday evening we return to Humboldt Lagoons area, set traps in places we’ve found on Saturday, spotlight until 1 am, pick the traps, and go back (5 1/2 hrs to Davis).
We should get some endemic shrews and rodents (voles, chipmunks, jumping mice, etc.) and probably some interesting larger mammals. If you are interested, please let me know.


  • vnsankar


    Unfortunately I’m really busy until mid-May so won’t have time to go mammal watching until then. That said, really looking forward to our Eastern CA trip!!

    Got some gen for you though on NW CA as this is one of my favorite parts of the state…

    The best road for Fisher is Red Cap Road, between the Hoopa Indian Reservation border and the Megram fire burn area around Red Cap meadow. If you have trouble finding the site on a map, just email me. A biologist I know saw 3 in day here and other people see them reasonably often! I’d drive the whole road between Orleans and Hoopa to be sure though. Also, I found an Aplodontia colony and saw a Klamath Snowshoe Hare (common a couple years ago) at a place called Box Camp (41°05’31.9″N 123°33’17.6″W). The Aplodontia colony is next to the log pile. If you have time, I also recommend Groves Prairie for the Northern Flying Squirrels and the Klamath River Canyon near Orleans for Ringtail and Spotted Skunk.

    Western Red-backed Vole is at Stagecoach Hill Azalea Preserve. There’s a short trail through the preserve where you can see them at night. Also look for moles and Northern Flying Squirrel. Someone trapped a White-footed Vole at the edge of Patrick’s Pt SP recently; I don’t know the exact site though. They seem extremely difficult to find; I don’t know any spots to look for Sonoma Tree Vole either. Humboldt Lagoons/Patricks Pt is good for most shrews, voles, jumping mice.

    I don’t know anything about Humbug Mtn so look forward to hearing about what you find there. 🙂

    • vdinets

      Thanks! Yes, we are planning to check out Orleans area and Stagecoach Hill. I saw a white-footed vole at Humboldt Lagoons many years ago, but never tried to trap there.
      By the way, Red Cap Road is famous among bigfoot enthusiasts: lots of sound recordings and a few sightings there. I am almost sorry I don’t believe in bigfoots – it would make the trip more fun.

  • vnsankar

    I was just checking my notes regarding Sonoma Tree Vole and I may have a spot for you. A biologist I talked two a couple years ago told me that Maple Creek Rd (just E of Arcata) is a good place to look for Sonoma Tree Vole – you can sometimes find nests from the road near the creek. Amazingly, a birder I know once saw a Northern Spotted Owl here, holding a twitching Sonoma Tree Vole in its beak (!) – what a sighting! It’s a good road for other rodents, with Fog Shrew, Shrew-mole, Northern Flying Squirrel, Allen’s Chipmunk, and Western Red-backed Vole common near the road too and Ruffed Grouse (very rare in CA) are easy to see too.

    I know it’s not that close to Humboldt Lagoons, but I still think it may be worth checking out (it’s along the way to Hoopa on Highway 299).

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