Archive - Oct 2011
After 18 years of seeking out every aspen grove in the Eastern Sierra, I thought I had found them all: Rock Creek and Lundy, McGee and Bishop, Convict and North Lake. Even the lesser known areas like Molybedenite and Birchim and the Parker Bench and the Little Walker.
Been there, done that.
Boy, was I wrong.
This past weekend, the crowds that can turn Lundy Canyonâ€™s tiny trailhead and one-lane road into a virtual Disneyland in the fall color season defeated me and I spun north like a compass, seeking solitude and gold.
If you donâ€™t live in Mammoth Lakes and your roads get plowed, the bridges you travel over are intact and the lawns of your community parks are green, you should give thanks to Mono Countyâ€™s Public Works Department.
Every public works department is the backbone of a county, a lifeline for all of the countyâ€™s unincorporated residents.
Mono County is no different.
It might begin with something as simple as an insult. â€śYouâ€™re fat.â€ť â€śYou canâ€™t do anything.â€ť â€śYou are ugly.â€ť
â€śNobody likes you.â€ť
The abuse might worsen; getting ganged up on, being hit, being beaten up.
It might get even worse; midnight texts that denigrate, insult, terrify. Emails that do the same. In a world of instant and constant communication, the end of the school day is no relief.
It all might sound like no big deal. After all, â€śkids will be kids,â€ť right? They will grow out of it, right?
Theyâ€™re just words, right?
The Inyo National Forest is announcing the opening of a new, personal use fuelwood cutting area in the June Lake Loop. This area is located on the north side of Highway 158 across from the Fern Lake Trailhead. You must have a valid 2011 personal use fuelwood permit to collect dead and down material only. Permittees must park along the shoulder of Highway 158 during collecting activities, and are not permitted to drive off-road for firewood retrieval. All other wood cutting regulations are in effect.
Two firms investigating potential wind energy in eastern California have withdrawn their requests to install monitoring towers on public lands. The firms proposed to install 200-foot-tall wind monitoring towers for three-year testing periods to collect wind speed and direction data and other weather information.
Thick black clouds are already crashing against the grey bulk of Mt. Dana when we begin the run down the mountain. The wind whips past, running fast from the coast, pushing the first winter storm of the season west up Yosemite Valley, whirling around the base of Half Dome.
Pine needles fall in masses, covering the bare ground with a carpet of sienna gold. The air is thick with the smell of snow and rain and the sun, hot enough to go shirtless only a few hours ago, has gone home. This new cold bites hard. Thunder rumbles to the south.
Itâ€™s time to go.
Rock Creek Canyon, high above Toms Place resort, which is about fourteen miles south of Mammoth Lakes, is one of the Eastern Sierraâ€™s most spectacular canyons. Filled with dozens of lakes and ponds, fed by some of the highest mountains in the Sierra, itâ€™s a backcountry hikerâ€™s dream. And it just so happens to also have one of the best aspen shows for early fall viewing, which, in this odd, odd, weather year, is about what time of the year the trees think it â€” and itâ€™s not like you can argue with a tree.
Itâ€™s been an odd and wonderful fall.
Aspens and cottonwoods, still summer-lush with the life given to them by the record-breaking winter, met one of the warmest falls in many years. In no hurry to go dormant again after being buried alive for nine months, the trees held their green far into October, much to localâ€™s confusion and delight.
The summer, so late in coming, seemed like it would never end.
No one complained about it, either.
Our deepest condolences to longtime local Stacy Corless, who lost her sister, Lisa, on Oct. 16. Our hearts go out to Stacy and to all of Lisaâ€™s friends and family. â€¦
Steve Searles is irked.
Itâ€™s not the wildlife which is making his spine crawl but rather the decision of a certain public agency to shut down and lock up public facilities in the Lakes Basin.
The Mammoth Lakes Town Council adopted the Town of Mammoth Lakes Trail System Master Plan and certified the Trail System Master Plan EIR at Wednesdayâ€™s town council meeting.
If there had been any opposition to the new trails plan, the public had one last chance at the meeting to speak up.
With all the public meetings held over the past several years about generating a new and improved trails system plan, it was apparent that all had been said and done.
When the state of California voted to reroute many prisoners who would have gone to state prison to county jails late last year, alarm waves cascaded through all the stateâ€™s 58 counties. Although the state assured the counties it would fund this â€śrealignmentâ€ť of responsibility and that the only prisoners released in such a manner would not be violent or sex offenders, local county officials were not reassured.
Rumors of a "bear mauling" in the northern part of Mono County are just that, rumors, according to the Mono County Sheriffs Department. Here's what really happened, according to the sheriffs department:
On Tuesday, Oct. 11, at approximately 2:30 pm, Mono County Sheriffâ€™s Department dispatch received a call regarding a reported bear attack near the Twin Lakes area in Bridgeport.
Inyo County officials are seeking a missing California man whose vehicle may have been parked in the Buttermilk climbing and bouldering area above Bishop since July.
The man, Richard John Malten, 64, is from Oregon House, Calif. He is described as 5â€™ 8â€ť, 144 pounds, with curly brown hair and brown eyes.
According to the Inyo Register, a missing personâ€™s report was filed last week by Malten's ex-wife.
According to the sheriffâ€™s department, what is believed to be Maltenâ€™s 2001 maroon Jeep utility vehicle has been found. It may have been parked in the area, unattended, since July.
â€śWelcome back, Ziggy!â€ť Thatâ€™s Ziggy, the much-beloved, black cat that belongs to Crowley Lake residents Fred and Patti Stump. Ziggy disappeared early last weekend and still wasnâ€™t back Monday morning. As any Eastside cat owner has learned, after three days of being missing, itâ€™s rare for a cat to come home again around here. But on Monday morning, Patti Stump decide to try again, and tapped on the closed shed door of a neighborâ€™s place. A hearty and cranky â€śmeowâ€ť answered her, and Ziggy was found. Awww. â€¦