Louise and I drove down and birded Onondaga Cave State Park before driving across the Meramec River and exploring the Huzzah WMA. 

We stopped in the Cave Shop and visited with Mike Miller, State Park Naturalist. Mike and I were part of a bird survey team at Don Johnson State Park some years ago. The cave is a bat sanctuary and is close for the winter. 

It was a beautiful day but not all that birdy, but somehow the natural beauty of the area more than compensated for the lack of birds. See ebird for Onondaga list.

7.5 miles of the Ozark Trail meanders through the Huzzah WMA. There are also about ten area access trails. I do recommend you carry a compass as some of these trails can be hard to locate. Huzzah WMA has very good roads that connect the whole area. Some of these roads are terminal roads as much of the area is boarded by the Meramec River and two of its tributaries, the Huzzah and Courtious Creeks. The whole area is mostly upland deciduous forest but there are some old fields, glades and three riparian zones. For those of you that are rock hounds there is an ample supply of interesting geology.

Habitat restoration is on-going. We noticed some hillside that had been cleaned and opened, when combined with controlled fires it has created large areas of open woodlands habitat.

Lots of camping sites so bring your tent or RV and hang out for a couple of days.

Deer season and turkey season are close at hand; be very careful. Seeing that I was raised in the neck of the woods I recommend you wear some hunter orange clothing especially through Nov and December. Be safe.

Onondaga Cave SP has good facilities but Huzzah does not. Bring everything you might need.

Mike Doyen
Rolla, MO

Bird by bird I have come to know the earth.
Pablo Neruda.


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