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October 15th, 2010

Bearproof curbside bins are working, except when humans use them

October 15, 2010

The reaction to Mammoth Disposal’s bear-proof curbside containers apparently is mixed.

Mammoth Lakes Planning Commission chair Tony Barrett on Wednesday said he’d heard from unhappy customers.

The question was if the BearSaver contraptions work as promised, and Dan Dawson rose to the device’s defense.

A member of the town’s Wildlife Committee, Dawson said the only problems he’d heard of were caused by stupid humans.

“You can’t give ‘em all night,” he said in reference to bears who have tried to break into the bins.
“They’ll figure it out and get in.”

John Nathan Adams, track coach and snowboard instructor, becomes fourth victim of Aug. 9 Bishop crash

October 15, 2010

John Nathan Adams, the popular track and snowboarding coach who was hospitalized after the horrific Aug. 9 triple-fatal crash in Bishop, died on Saturday as a result of his injuries, his family announced.

On Friday, Adams’ family posted a notice on the website CaringBridge.com that family members had decided to end Adams’s life support at Renown Regional Medical Center in Reno.

He passed away surrounded by his family.

Summer wilderness visits hit 10-year high

October 15, 2010

Visits into the wilderness areas of the Inyo National Forest hit a 10-year spike this past summer, according to Nancy Upham, the information officer of the forest.

“There were more days full on more trails than in the past 10 years, even some of the more obscure trails,” she said.

Upham said wilderness permits at the Wilderness Reservation offices in both Bishop and Mammoth were off the charts. Though the Forest Service does not do an actual count at campgrounds, anecdotal evidence suggests that the campgrounds were jammed all summer, too.

Blame Game in the county schools

October 15, 2010

When the Eastern Sierra Unified School Board learned it was facing a $2.5 million deficit earlier this year, it should not have found that out at a figurative “two minutes to midnight.”

The economic writing has been on the wall for years, now.

But it did, and in three months, it cut dozens of teachers and classified staff, without the time to give the issue the in-depth kind of analysis such a radical move deserves.

Tricky Senate special election looms

October 15, 2010

There’s something special about this Special Election.

Four candidates are competing for the job of State Senator, District 1, including one Democrat and three Republicans.

Old rules still govern this Special Consolidated Primary Election to fill the seat of the deceased Senator Dave Cox.

Voters will close an era of partisan history when they mark their ballots during the November election.

State Senate candidates speak out

October 15, 2010

 

Four candidates are vying for the California State Senate seat that was vacated upon the death of  Senator Dave Cox (R) last year.  District 1 stretches from Mono County northward along the Nevada border all the way to Oregon, including nine complete counties plus parts of three more. 

Mammoth ski team hits the snow, in Chile and Mt. Hood

October 15, 2010

With the ski season just over the lip of the horizon, Mammoth’s top junior skiers are on the snow, sharpening their edges, training hard and reaching for the stars.

First among the athletes was Bryce Eller, who this month returned from 14 days in Chile, where he joined eight members of the U.S. Development Team for on-snow training in La Parva.

It was, said Mammoth Mountain Ski Team coach Kevin Francis, more than just an enlightening experience. It was grueling, disciplined and technical, all rolled into a single two-week camp.

Red rover red rover, bring Mars right on over

October 15, 2010

The search for life on Mars got up close and personal for Lee Vining students when a group of NASA scientists test-driving a Mars rover robot prototype got rained out last week and decided instead to drop in on Lee Vining High School.

Rover and all.

Congress takes a break, and so does the Bodie Hills brouhaha

October 15, 2010

An effort by Mono County’s U.S. Rep. Buck McKeon to remove the Bodie Hills from their current status as a Wilderness Study Area (WSA) is on hold, after Congress adjourned early this month without voting on the bill.

Mono County District 4 Supervisor Bob Peters, who recently brought a resolution to the county supervisors asking to release the Bodies Hills from WSA protection, got the news last week,

Eastern Sierra still not out of the smoke

October 15, 2010

Although the air has cleared somewhat since the big winter storm last week, Mammoth and Mono County residents are still waking up to hazy skies, something relatively unusual for this time of year.

It’s due to two main factors: a strong high pressure ridge, or stable air mass, hanging over the area, and smoke from the still-burning Sheep Fire and some pollution coming from down south.

“Although the Sheep Fire is mostly out, it’s still putting out some smoke and it’s blowing directly toward us,” said Jon Becknell, an air quality specialist for the local Great Basin district.

Inyo names Upchurch replacement

October 15, 2010

The Inyo National Forest has a new supervisor.

It’s an interim position, but the new supe has plenty of interesting experience and ought to stir things up around here.

She is Kit Mullen, currently the district ranger for the Hat Creek District of the Lassen National Forest in Northern California.

According to a press release from the Inyo National Forest, she will be the interim or acting forest supervisor after the recent departure of Supervisor Jim Upchurch.

Tricky Senate special election looms

October 15, 2010

There’s something special about this Special Election

Four candidates are competing for the job of State Senator, District 1, including one Democrat and three Republicans. But voters will close an era of partisan history when they mark their ballots during the November election to replace the late Dave Cox.

In June, voters agreed to change those rules by approving Prop 14 which calls for open primaries to begin January 1. Meanwhile, the old-fashioned rules make for some interesting political speculation.

Yosemite employees could be stationed in Lee Vining Canyon

October 15, 2010

Overcrowded housing in Yosemite National Park could become an economic boon to Lee Vining, if a plan to put park employee housing at the lower end of the canyon at the current forest service site there goes forward.

But that’s only if the project is designed to environmental and aesthetic problems, according to Lee Vining residents who attended a meeting Wednesday night on the subject.

One business owner, who wished to remain anonymous, said the mood of the 30 or so residents at the meeting was “cautiously optimistic.”

Husky Volleyballers win quick, then fall short

October 15, 2010


The Mammoth Husky volleyballers went the distance against Vasquez on Saturday, but fell short in a five-game match at Mammoth High School.

And it wasn’t just in games – it was in the closeness of the scores.

The Huskies, coming off a quick, three-game victory over Desert Christian on Friday night, took the first game against Vasquez, 25-17 but dropped the next two, 22-25 and 12-25.

“I think we were surprised at how well Vasquez played,” said coach Megan Guffy. “They’ve certainly improved since the last time we played them, and it caught us off guard.”

Huskies try for bounceback against Lucerne Valley

October 15, 2010

The Mammoth Huskies return home tonight after what seems much longer than two weeks on the road.
And this time, they play against a team whose name does not begin with “B.”

That may not seem like a big deal, but after the Huskies lost to the Bishop Broncos, 59-6, two weeks ago, and 50-6 to the Boron Bobcats last week, a name like Lucerne Valley has a nice ring to it.

The Huskies, 2-3 on the year and 0-1 in conference, play the 1-4 Mustangs tonight in a 7 p.m. game at Gault/McClure Stadium, with the junior varsity game set for 4 o’clock.

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