It's just like clockwork. When the snow finally reaches the lakes and fields of Mat-Su Valley's Glacier View area, massive flocks of snow geese take to the skies and start heading southward. This is just one of many bird species that spend their summers in Alaska and swing through the Valley on their way out in the fall. The trumpeter swan is another local favorite, and if the snow geese have already started their departure the swans can't be too far behind.

As a hopelessly addicted birder, for me this is one of the greatest features of the Mat-Su Valley. With it's ample farm fields and waterways, the Valley plays host to hundreds of migratory bird species every summer. What a perfect way to conclude those sunny months on a high note! During this same week about five years ago, I was sitting in my backyard watching the logs crackle in our little campfire we had built for the boys. Even though night had already fallen I could hear ample honking calls of numerous flocks of geese as they flew overhead using the darkness for cover.

I love it here.

If you find yourself in the Mat-Su Valley this week, be sure to step outside around sunset to catch a glimpse of these large flocks. Just last night I stood in my driveway for a half hour, counting the snow geese. I got to at least 2000 birds before it got dark. I bet you could beat that!