Today I found a new blog on Mike's site from a birder who lives close to the Catskills Mountains of New York.
I love the Catskills Mountains. Everyone does: they are home to Bicknell's Thrushes.
I actually spent some (very limited) time there in May 2005. Having visited New York City with my (back-then-still) girlfriend, I basically insisted on returning to Ann Arbor via the Catskills. One of my favourite bird groups are Catharus thrushes, so of course and obviously I was aiming at Bicknell's.
I was not able to gather a lot of information regarding birding in the Catskills before getting there but had found out through the Internet that a few are breeding on Hunter Mountain that were more easily accessible. So this was were we went, the Hunter Mountain resort (the link includes a photo of Hunter Mountain, which is why I linked to it).
Upon getting there we noticed that the peaks were still covered in snow and learned that the thrush was not expected to return to its breeding grounds there until late May, still two weeks away. The chairlifts also were not operating yet and it would have taken a considerable amount of time to climb the mountain on foot in the cold for a thrush that was still somewhere between the Caribbean and Florida (smart bird).
So after marvelling at the peaks for an hour or so we drove on.
But even without the thrush we found the Catskills to be a very, very nice area well worth returning to some day later in May or June. Who knows, we might just do that this year while we're in the US (again).
So, to those interested in the birds of the Catskills and beyond, here's the link.