This wasn't a new bird for my life list, but I haven't seen one in nearly two years. That first view was a close but quick encounter at the St. George Winter Bird Festival in January 2009, but because this bird is so beautifully marked, it was easy to identify even then. This past weekend, I was able to watch it for several minutes as it probed along the edges of the sandbar. I had very satisfying, close-range views, as the bird was only about 35 feet away. Given that an arm of the very frigid river separated us, the snipe was utterly unconcerned with my presence, and only flew off down the waterway after it had probed all areas of the sandbar that looked promising.
I'd initially gone birding hoping for a lifer, and while I didn't see anything new, who can be disappointed with such an unexpected surprise?