The eagles have landed

Marblemount, Rockport locations offer raptor-sighting opportunities; Interpretive Center open in Rockport
(posted 1.14.10)

Nobody told the bald eagles the Upper Skagit Bald Eagle Festival had been canceled indefinitely. The mighty raptors are back in the area again, feasting on the remains of spawning salmon.

In Rockport, the Skagit River Inter-pretive Center is open again, thanks to generous support from Puget Sound Energy and the City of Burlington.

Bald eagle enthusiasts can spot the birds virtually anywhere along the Skagit River east of Sedro-Woolley, but, as usual, Marblemount and Rockport seem to be especially hot spots.

In its 17th season, the Eagle Watchers program, a partnership between Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest and North Cascades Institute, will have volunteers stationed on weekends at three sites on the Skagit River through Jan. 31:

  • Milepost 100 rest area
  • Marblemount Fish Hatchery
  • Howard Miller Steelhead Park, Rockport

Eagle Watchers volunteers provide information about eagles, salmon and the Skagit River at outdoor information tables at these sites. Volunteers will be outfitted with binoculars and spotting scopes to give visitors a close look at the birds.

In a typical winter season, 3,500 rafters, 1,000 anglers, and more than 10,000 people visit to view eagles along the upper Skagit River.

For more details, contact the Mt. Baker Ranger District at 360.856.5700.

Interpretive Center offers info, speakers, guided walks
Thanks to financial support from Puget Sound Energy and the City of Burlington, the Skagit River Interpretive Center will be open Dec. 11 through Feb. 14, on Fri., Sat., and Sun., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Bald eagle information, plus speakers and guided walks will be available. For details, call 360.853.7626 or e-mail More information also is available online at

The Sardis Raptor Center will present live bird shows on Jan. 30, at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for seniors and children.

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