Another shrew etc.

I’m having really good luck with shrews recently. Here are directions to a Trowbridge’s Shrew site on Olympic Peninsula:
– From Hwy 101 4 miles E of Pt Angeles turn left on Old Olympic Hwy (look for a very small sign that says Old Olympic Hwy), then left on Gasman Rd. Look for a faint crosswalk on the pavement (if you get to Juan de Fuca Way turnoff, you’ve missed it). The crosswalk marks Pacific Discovery Trail. Walk left (west) for less than a minute. The shrew lives in the man-made boulder wall on the left side of the trail. If you walk right (east), you cross a swampy area where I found a long-dead Townsend’s Mole; try looking for live ones.

Deer Park Rd. to the summit of Blue Mt. is a less-touristy alternative to Hurricane Ridge in Olympic NP. It’s really good for night and dawn drives (Townsend’s Chipmunk, Keen’s Mouse, weird reddish Snowshoe Hare, etc.) and ends in Olympic Marmot habitat.

The area along the border of Lava Beds Nat’l Monument and Tule Lake NWR currently has insane densities of California K-rats: last night I often had 10-20 in my car headlights at the same time. Juveniles freeze if you point your flashlight at them, and can be petted a bit. Other mammals included Great Basin Pocket Mice (along the main N-S road in Lava Beds), Deer Mice (along the wildlife loop in TLNWR), and another Trowbridge’s Shrew (near the entrance to Skull Cave). Please don’t drive faster than 20 mph there, or it will be carnage. There are Big Brown Bats, California and Little Brown Myotis in the caves in Lava Beds at night.

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