The summer monsoon rains turn Southeastern Arizona’s mountains and deserts a surprisingly verdant green. During this “second spring,” witness up to 14 species of hummingbirds, hear grassland sparrows singing on territory, and spot breeding birds of Mexican affinity just outside your door. Watch varied and plentiful birds, butterflies, and dragonflies with guide, author, and local resident Bob Behrstock, who offers his expertise and sense of adventure. Walk in cool, shaded canyons cloaked in oaks and mixed conifers. These are perfect for mid-day hikes; during the early mornings and evenings we explore desert and grassland terrain.

Spend two nights south of Tucson at Amado, where we explore lush canyons of the Santa Rita Mountains and nearby Arivaca Cienega, part of the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge. Traveling south and east, we visit legendary birding sites such as Kino Springs, The Paton Center for Hummingbirds in Patagonia, The Nature Conservancy’s Ramsey Canyon Preserve, and an excellent wetland area at Whitewater Draw. We’ve booked four nights at the delightful Casa de San Pedro from which we explore cool, lush canyons of the Huachuca Mountains in search of Mexican Spotted Owl, Red-faced and other warblers, butterflies, dragonflies, and more. In the surrounding Sky Island foothills, we find promise of hummingbirds galore at both public and private feeding stations.

Naturalist Journeys, LLC is an official permittee of the Coronado National Forest, following Leave No Trace principles. We also abide by the ABA's Code of Ethics for birding.

Tour Highlights

  • Travel with expert Bob Behrstock, who eagerly shares his knowledge of Southwestern natural history
  • Explore Southeastern Arizona’s biodiversity at its peak (we time this meticulously)
  • Enjoy two delightful lodges that treat us with special meals and hospitality
  • Visit Old Bisbee, with its mining history and eclectic locals
  • Experience many photo opportunities — colorful birds and other wildlife abound

Photo credits: Banner: Montezuma Quail by Peg Abbott; Broad-billed Hummingbird by Evelyn Earlougher; Harris's Hawk by Peg Abbott; Butterfly by Mahlon Hale; Cactus Wren by Peg Abbott; Vermillion Flycatcher by Steve Wolfe; Black-chinned Hummingbird by Peg Abbott; Elegant Trogon by Peg Abbott; Arizona Sister by Mahlon Hale.