Discover the fabulous world of raptors right in East County’s backyard
By Josh Stotler
September 19, 2022 (Alpine) -- As I hike along the dirt trail, the morning fog rolls through the canyon. A hawk swoops from a branch and glides gently by. I am in awe as this amazing creature effortlessly soars by me, heading for the sun-drenched rock just to my left. It is a treat to see this animal up close and I’m lost in the moment, completely enveloped in the East County back country. This is no chance encounter though; I am at Sky Falconry, a 40 acre ranch located in the hills of Alpine.
When I arrived at the property earlier in the morning, the fog was heavy and the diffused sun rays were shining through the oak trees. I was warmly greeted by Kirk Sellinger and Denise Disharoon, the owners of Sky Falconry. Dressed exactly as one would envision a raptor handler to look (think Dr.’s Sadler & Grant from Jurassic Park) they quickly made me feel at home. As the other participants arrived and shuffled toward the circle of benches, we filled out a waiver and it was time to learn about these amazing birds.