Hastings Creek

The crossing offers expansive views of a variety of creekside habitats, each with its own distinctive characteristics. In spring the upstream portion of the creek is filled with thick layers of glaciered ice that build up from winter’s continual freezing of the spring waters that flow year-round into the creek. This late flow of melt water attracts waterbird species long after other areas are ice-free. Driftwood collects in the deeper pools around the road crossing, carried in by wind-driven storm tides. Beaver and river otter are likely to be found here and insects hatch in the racks of logs, attracting many birds. West of the bridge, on the elevated gravel pit that is a remnant of past road construction, the semipalmated plover often comes to pick at the exposed gravel. The surrounding steeper slopes are home to eastern yellow wagtail and bank swallow where the silty cap of soil above the gravel is exposed and used for nesting. The south edge of the gravel pit overlooks the lower portion of the creek—a relatively wide, braided delta where it exits to Norton Sound—and the mix of waterfowl, shorebirds, gulls, terns, and songbirds is constantly changing as summer advances. This is one location where an unusual species, the stilt sandpiper, has been seen more than once.

Getting There

Coordinates
Latitude: 64.4558
Longitude: -165.10142