William L. Finley Wildlife Refuge

April 19, 1986

Our exploratory trip to this wildlife refuge began at McFaddens Marsh and there we observed greater yellowlegs, redwinged blackbirds, and marsh wrens. Next we drove up to the north entrance of the refuge and saw the historic Failing Cottage which used to be the stage coach stop on the Applegate Trail. This restored building will be opened to the public in June. The brightly painted red barn is also being readied to display old farm machinery.

New informational signs and booklets were available at the start of the Woodpecker Trail. Our destination for lunch at the end of this one mile nature loop trail was a large wooden observation platform building around a huge oak tree. What a perfect place for lunch overlooking the valley!

While we were enjoying the warm sunshine and peaceful surroundings, the public use officer came up with a new sign to install. He told us about the problems of feeding the geese, and that the Dusky population is down to 12,000. It has been as high as 49,000. Problems with bears at their nesting site in Alaska is partly to blame.

After lunch we took off for the Grey Creek Swamp Loop Trail. Walking through the lush, green, wooded Maple Knoll, the leader was saddened by the thought that this favorite spot will not be maintained because of lack of funds.

A relaxing stretch out along Beaver Pond ended a great day in the sun for Larry Bennet, Barb Elsen, Joella Ewing, Mary Huey, Corinne Hunt, Ted Jozwiak, DeWana McCracken, John McCracken, John McManigal, Mary Millman, Virginia Prouty, Bryant and Lucille Mitchell, Suzanne Stuessy, Art Wild, Aggie Wild, Lois Yoshishige, and leader Dot Leland.

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