Medium-sized sandpiper. Long, greenish legs. Long neck. Long bill, drooped at the tip. White rump. Gray tail. Wings plain, without white stripe. Breeding plumage heavily barred on the underside, with dark blotches on the back, and chestnut cheek patch. Nonbreeding plumage all gray on back with lighter belly.
Juvenile similar to nonbreeding adult, but browner, with scaly back with light edges to feathers, and thin streaks on chest.