Riverbend Ponds Natural Area, Fort Collins, CO. Riverbend Ponds is a series of reclaimed gravel ponds east of downtown along the Poudre River. A favorite wetlands for birders, this time of year it is full of redwing blackbirds and the occasional duck. It's not unusual to see a migrating bald eagle in the fall. After a storm, or on days when there is high cloud cover, there is always an excellent chance the sun will peek under the clouds near sunset. I know from experience that on those days the light will be incredible in this natural area. It didn't let me down on my last visit.