The Fawn Brook Inn in Allenspark, Colorado has some stellar winter birds. Before getting out of the car, I saw the Cassin's Finch below (the only photo I got of this lifer). There was a large flock of finches and Pine Siskins flitting about the shrubs across from the natural spring flow. Mixed in the flock were even bigger, darker birds: Evening Grosbeak!
I have had the Evening Grosbeak on my must-see list ever since it was the American Birding Association's 2012 Bird of the Year. I was delighted to watch them at length and even capture a few poses. They don't come very close but these photos were the best I could come up with on such a sunny day in the tree branches.
Evening Grosbeaks and Cassin's Finches were my two lifers of the day but I would be remiss if I didn't mention the spectacular Gray-crowned Rosy Finch seen from the feeders. We also had Clark's Nutcracker, Hairy Woodpecker, Down Woodpecker, Pine Siskins, and two adorable Pygmy Nuthatch.
Winter birding can be challenging but on a beautiful winter's day, I'd suggest heading to Allenspark, Colorado and catching the delightful bird show.