From Fairfield, four miles north on US 89.
Grasslands and marsh bursting with birds. An Important Bird Area and Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network site. Bird watching highlight at 11,000-acre Freezout Lake is migrating flocks of up to 100,000 snow and Ross’s geese, moving through in bunches from mid-March to mid-April. For waterfowl and songbirds, best viewing is mid-May to mid-July. No fee. Hunting in fall. Commercial-use, including guided tours, prohibited.
Marsh, grasslands, shelterbelt.
Eared grebe, Franklin’s gull, common tern, Forster’s tern, black tern, cinnamon teal, tundra swan (spring, fall migrant), sora, Wilson’s phalarope, American avocet, black-necked stilt, marbled godwit, willet, Eastern kingbird, yellow-headed blackbird, vesper sparrow, savannah sparrow, clay-colored sparrow, common yellowthroat, American pipit (migrant), marsh wren.
At Freezout Lake: western grebe, Clark’s grebe, red-necked grebe, American white pelican, snow goose (feed in area fields much of day), Ross’s goose, Eurasian wigeon (migrant with American wigeon flocks), green-winged teal, red-breasted merganser (migrant), bald eagle, Swainson’s hawk, upland sandpiper (north end), great horned owl, Say’s phoebe (north end), western kingbird.
Migrating shorebirds (mid-April to mid-May, mid-July through August): greater and lesser yellowlegs, sanderling, semipalmated sandpiper, least sandpiper, Baird’s sandpiper, pectoral sandpiper, long-billed dowitcher, common snipe and red-necked phalarope.
Winter: northern shrike, rough-legged hawk; sharp-tailed grouse visible (shelterbelts); gyrfalcon (long shot); snow buntings, Lapland longspurs may mingle with horned larks.
Facilities and Services
Vault toilets, camping, excellent birding brochure. Interior roads all-weather, but county roads to west impassable when wet. All services in Fairfield.
Fish, Wildlife & Parks Region 4
4600 Giant Springs Road
Great Falls, MT 59405