White Mountains Online

Wildlife Viewing Hints in Arizona's White Mountains


What's better than watching wildlife from a comfortable window in your cabin? Watching wildlife in Arizona's White Mountains can be a truly exciting adventure. So many places ~ you'll need more than one winter, spring, summer or fall to see everything!!!

Hints to help you in your adventures:

1. Bring a pair of binoculars. Scanning lakes, bluffs, and fields is greatly enhanced by the use of binoculars. A spotting scope, which has greater magnification powers, would be helpful too!

2. Wear quiet, darker-colored clothes! Fleece, leather, and wool are much quieter than nylon or "noisy" clothes; dark colors blend in better with the landscape.

3. If you want to know just what you're seeing, bring along field guides. What if you only saw silhouettes of waterfowl? Or only the color on a wing as they were flying away? Did you just see an immature bald or golden eagle? Field guides help you identify what you're seeing and when or where you should see it.

4. Have fun and enjoy what nature has to teach you. You may not see an elk, but you may see its tracks and other sign. Where was it going? Was it running? You may miss a bald eagle, but you may see a fish carcass it fed on. Was it a big fish, or small? Why do nuthatches hop down trees head first?

Don't chase wildlife!5. Last, but of most importance, remember to respect every wild animal's need for their own space. Chasing after wildlife just to get a better view only stresses out the animal and makes them have to work harder to survive the winter climate. Some may not return to a previously quiet area if they've been harassed. That's another reason why binoculars are so important ~ you can get a good glimpse of the animal while maintaining your distance!

Places to go, Birds to meet.....


  1. Woodland Lake Park
  2. Jacques Marsh (Porter Mtn. Rd., left on Juniper)
  3. Billy Creek (access on Pinecrest, across from El Rancho)
  4. Scott's Reservoir

Show Low

  1. Pintail Lake (3.5 miles north on Hwy. 77)
  2. Fool Hollow Lake

Around the White Mountains

  1. Lee Valley Reservoir
  2. Greer Valley
  3. South Fork of the Little Colorado River
  4. Sipe White Mountain Wildlife Area (off 191 south of Springerville
  5. Wenima Wildlife Area (off 180/60 junction north of Springerville)
  6. Lyman Lake State Park
  7. Springerville Marsh
  8. Williams Creek Fish Hatchery


  1. San Pedro River, near Sierra Vista
  2. Ramsey, Carr, and Sheelite Canyon, Sierra Vista
  3. Chiricahua Mountains, from top to bottom, including Cave Creek area near Portal
  4. Madera Canyon, Santa Rita Mountains, south of Tucson
  5. Sonoita grasslands
  6. Wilcox Playa and surrounding Wilcox area, especially in winter for sandhill cranes and wintering raptors
  7. Lower Colorado River near Yuma, especially in fall, winter, and spring
  8. Painted Rocks Reservoir and Gila River near Gila Bend
  9. Hassayampa Preserve near Wickenburg
Written by & published with the permission of: Sue Sitco, Information & Education Program Manager, Arizona Game & Fish Department, HC 66, Box 57201, Pinetop, AZ 85935 (520) 367-4281