Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Finney Lake

After our car trip to San Diego, we returned to Borrego Springs for the last day of the WIN gathering. Instead of joining them at the next planned stop, we decided to visit one of my very favorite winter spots - Finney Lake. Located just off California route 111 between Calipatria and Brawley, Finney and neighboring Ramer Lakes are part of the Imperial Wildlife Area. The lakes were created in 1954 as habitat for migratory birds. At dawn (which I never see) and dusk flocks of birds fly overhead. During our short walk yesterday, we saw herons, egrets, cormorants, mallards, ruddy ducks, cinnamon teals, and the ever present American coots. Last year there were lots of white pelicans, but we didn't see any this time. In the past, we have even taken the kayaks out to paddle among them. I just love it!

I also love the fact that you can park right at the edge of the lake. (Free, but no amenities, of course.)

As is the case with everything in life, there are a couple of down sides. First, hunting is allowed. I can't help but think this is like shooting fish in a barrel, but I think hunting fees support the wildlife area. Maybe it wouldn't exist at all without the hunters, so I have to live with it. The other fly in the ointment (literally) are the flies! The area is surrounded by cattle feed lots which generate some interesting odors and an abundance of flies. However, the aroma and flies are not bad enough to discourage this wildlife enthusiast.

Here are a couple of shots from last year's visit.
Pelican coffee clutch

Finney Lake

Now for the sad news. We were only able to stay one night because of an absolute deal breaker - mosquitoes! Million of them all over the screens as soon as the sun set and somehow they got in and attacked me (not Ron, of course.) We couldn't believe it. We had never seen mosquitoes there in the past. Because it has been warmer than usual, maybe they haven't died off. Whatever the reason, they chased me away from my favorite place and we joined back up with the WINs at unique Slab City. More about that later.


  1. The sunset photo is absolutly stunning. Thanks for posting it. Sorry to hear about the mosquitos. We tried to get a volunteer position at Imperial. If it comes through in 2010, I hope there are no mosquitos then.

  2. Yup, its hard to understand how they have wildlife areas and allow hunting. The poor animals read the signs, and think they're safe, but then they get shot.