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Western Bird Watching | Utah and California Spots

Great Camping & Western Bird Watching in Utah & California

Birding, or bird watching, is a popular hobby all over America. Western bird watching is especially popular due to the diverse ecosystems that line this part of the United States. Did you know that Salt Lake City is one of the best western bird watching locations to observe upwards of 250 species of birds – all in one place? The Great Salt Lake is visited by 3-6 million birds each year. Some stay to nest, others are just passing through. One thing is for sure though: it’s a sight to behold for birdwatchers everywhere. The Great Salt Lake is an important resting point for migratory birds on their way to South America, which is why so many of them come to stay.

Utah Camping & Western Bird Watching


western bird watching

Yellow-headed Blackbird at the Great Salt Lake, photo courtesy of

But the Great Salt Lake isn’t the only place in Utah that hosts a number of bird species- Cache Valley is a wonderful place to observe raptors and there are even a few marshland areas to observe waterfowl in the area as well. Logan Utah has several nearby roads with areas to pull over so there’s plenty of opportunity to stop for awhile and just observe the avian life in the area. Up in the mountains, there’s opportunity to observe songbirds as well!

You don’t have to head out to Southern Utah to go bird watching, though. Salt Lake City itself has several areas to check out the local bird life. Miller Bird Refuge is only a few blocks away from our Salt Lake City budget campervan rental depot. This small park within the city is perfect for taking a relaxing stroll, and is home to a few different species of birds.


Western Bird Watching in California

Utah isn’t the only place rich for western bird watching though. California has more recorded bird species than any other state in the contiguous United States. California is home to a wide variety of habitats- from ocean shoreline, to marshland, to high altitude desert, California basically has it all when it comes to western bird watching. Picking where to start can be difficult, with such an array of options it’s no wonder!

Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary in Northern California hosts up to 300 species of birds. If you’re looking to visit one place with the most diversity, Arcata Marsh is definitely the stop for you. For those ocean lovers, this is a good spot to hang out near the shore while observing the local bird life. The visitor’s center has plenty of information about the local species, and information on the latest sightings as well.

western bird watching

Arcata Marsh, photo courtesy of

California Camping & Western Bird Watching

If you’d like to do some camping while you’re enjoying some western bird watching, Yosemite National Park is another great place to observe California’s birds. Late spring through summer is the best time to visit, as some of the higher elevation roads can be shut down due to snowfall. The elusive Black Swift can be found in Yosemite’s lower elevation areas- though it’s a tricky bird to spot! We have a budget campervan rental depots in San Francisco and another in Los Angeles which are with 3 hours of these great California birdwatching and camping locations.

Lost Campers can provide you the vehicle to get you to all these great birding places and more, all while sticking to a budget. Summer reservations are coming in fast- be sure to get your reservation confirmed soon!

USA Campervan Travelogues | Travel Videos | Travel Photos

California Travelers Photos and Travel Videos

USA Campervan Travelogues

The following is a cool collection of USA campervan travelogues from our customers and friends.  Some of the greatest places for US campervan travel we have learned about has been from videos and photos submitted to us by our amazing customers.

Check out these inspiring camping adventures through out  California.  Please also check out our other blog posts with great campervan camping tips for California, Utah,  Joshua Tree  & Death Valley and more that are great resources for planning a fantastic camper van road trip.

Epic California Coastal Adventure & Yosemite Camping

A millennial couple’s California road trip from San Francisco, along the Northern California coastline, Gold Country foothills and Yosemite camping adventure in a Lost Campers campervan. Awesome high definition images of the coast, Yosemite and nature you will love.  This video will leave you with a longing for adventure.

Special thanks to Matt & Kristin Fowler with M&K Photography for sharing their grand adventure.


Big Sur Campervan Camping Adventure with Lost Campers

Two groups of friends on a laid back California Big Sur campervan “glamping” adventure to a secret free ridge top camping spot high up in Lost Padres National Forest in 2 Lost Campers campervans. This secret road is called Nacimiento-Fergusson Rd, Big Sur, CA    This video defines the fun and simplicity of camper van life on the road.


Family Friendly Campervan Trip to the California Redwoods

These photos and camping recommendations were submitted by a mother-daughter travel team of their June 2015 camper van adventure from San Francisco to the Redwoods. Special thanks to Shana Miller & Sami Watters for these fun photos and family friendly recommendations.


USA Campervan Travelogues
Two Happy Campers

Traveling with my young daughter of 7 years old was fun and easy with a Lost Campers camper van. Sami and I had everything we needed to camp in comfort and explore the Redwoods and coast line.

We camped in State Parks along the way. I booked our campsites ahead of time to avoid any hassle with trying to find a spot. All of the State Park campgrounds were great, however my favorite was definitely MacKerricher State Park, it was really beautiful and close to the ocean.

USA Campervan Travelogues

Sand Art in the works, MacKerricher State Park


 Our California Campervan Trip Highlights

  • Pier  39 was a great afternoon excursion for some lunch and to watch the sea lions lounge about on the pier
  • We visited 2 aquariums during our adventure: The Ocean World Aquarium in Crescent City and Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco. Both were really fun. Sami’s favorite moment: “Petting the sharks at Ocean World, it was so cool!”
  • The lighthouses were really fantastic, however, for Point Reyes lighthouse, be sure to plan accordingly as the access to  stairs and lower chamber of the lighthouse is only open Friday thru Monday. Battery Point offers another beautiful light house with amazing views as well
    USA Campervan Travelogues

    Point Reyes National Seashore, California

  • Fern Canyon was a beautiful place to take a leisurely hike and the fact that Jurassic Park was filmed here made it all the more exciting for a little girl who has a huge imagination and a passion for dinosaurs! We followed up our visit to Fern Canyon with a screening of Jurassic World in Crescent City
  • Eureka- it is a very cool little city to take a stroll and do some shopping. I recommend the restaurant at  Lost Coast Brewery, the pub style food was delicious!
  • Driving the Pacific Coast Highway, the views are incredible

A few more fun photos of our California campervan trip:

USA Campervan Travelogues

Dinner Lost Campers Style

USA Campervan Travelogues

Sami’s Napping Nook





USA Campervan Travelogues

Chandelier Tree, California

USA Campervan Travelogues

Toes in the Sand


USA Campervan Travelogues

Feeling free as a bird on the Pacific Coast Highway


Check Out Shana and Sami’s Campground Itinerary Here:

 If you want to have your awesome USA campervan adventures too, check out our campervan openings in our Los Angeles, San Francisco or Salt Lake City offices here today.

*Note to recent and future Lost Campers customers- We’d love to learn about your camper van experience and adventures.  Please share your USA campervan travelogues with us and get a chance to win a Free Campervan rental. Send it via email at :

This USA Campervan Travelogues blog post was a collaborative effort by “Tourism Tim” Warren and Launi Haygood. Above all special thanks to our amazing customers for their contributions:

Matt & Kristin Fowler

Shana Miller & Sami Watters