Over the past year, I’ve discovered a hidden gem among a primarily developed area known as the Gilbert Riparian Preserve. The preserve is 110 acres big, contains 8 ponds and claims to have over 200 species of birds residing in the preserve. The best part is, it is free and open to the public.
This week’s post is a brief introduction to the preserve with photos from my initial visit last spring. Next week, I’ll post photos from my most recent visit.
1 of 8 ponds located in the preserve.
Towards the north end of the preserve is an observatory and a small lake for urban fishing.
Small lake at north entrance.
The plant life is mostly native desert plants, including cotton, cacti and succulents.
There are numerous walking trails making the Gilbert Riparian Preserve a great option for peaceful walks. But watch out, there are a few ground dwellers running around the preserve, including this rattlesnake who was making his own path through the preserve.
There are maps available, as well as plenty of signs displaying the latitude and longitude- in case you get lost.
There are many areas within the preserve that mimic a wetland. Some of the larger birds, like egrets and herons, congregate in these areas.