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Fall 2018 Mono Lake Newsletter now online

Friday, November 9th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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At the 40th anniversary storytelling roundtable held during the Defense Trust Weekend, listening to Sally Gaines, Martha Davis, Geoff McQuilkin, and Peter Vorster reminisce about the early days of the Mono Lake Committee, I had a sudden, clear thought:

What we’re doing—all of us, every day at Mono Lake—is defending the public trust.

The roundtable was held at the brand-new Pioneer Solar Pavilion in Hess Park, a project brought to life by the (extra) ordinary people of Lee Vining, who believe in a better future for Mono Lake and all who love it. They’re defending the public trust.

During the early days of the Committee’s efforts to save Mono Lake, even before the legal argument that the lake should be protected for the public good was articulated, Sally and David and the other founders were defending the public trust. (more…)

Registration open for 2019 Mono Lake winter field seminars

Thursday, November 1st, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Registration is now open for the three winter field seminars taking place in January and February next year! Use the mobile-friendly registration system to sign up from your phone or tablet wherever you are.

South Tufa, pre-sunrise. Photo courtesy of Chris Decker.

The winter seminars include: Mono Lake by Moonlight, January 18–20, 2019 with Joe Decker; Winter Starry Skies Over Mono Lake, February 1–3, 2019 with Joe Decker; and Winter Ecology of the Mono Basin, February 9, 2019 with Nora Livingston.

If you’d prefer to call and sign up, we’re here answering the phones Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 5:00pm: (760) 647-6595. We hope to see you here this winter!

Mono Lake winter field seminars in 2019

Thursday, October 18th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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This coming winter we are pleased to offer three field seminars to take advantage of this very special season—two winter photography seminars and one winter ecology seminar!

Early morning light sifts through bands of poconip ice fog at Mono Lake. Photo courtesy of Joe Decker.

___________________________________________

Mono Lake by Moonlight
January 18–20, 2019 • Joe Decker

Winter Starry Skies Over Mono Lake
February 1–3, 2019
• Joe Decker

Winter Ecology of the Mono Basin
February 9, 2019
• Nora Livingston
___________________________________________

Registration will open on Thursday, November 1 at 9:00am. To sign up, call (760) 647-6595 or register online. (more…)

Mono Basin Scenic Area Visitor Center closed temporarily

Monday, October 15th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Effective Tuesday, October 16, the Mono Basin Visitor Center will be closed due to a wasp infestation that is affecting employee and visitor safety. The closure will be in place until the pest control can address this problem.

The Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore is open 9:00am–5:00pm, every day. Please stop by to get information about the Eastern Sierra, fall color recommendations, Yosemite information, and to browse our selection of books, gifts, apparel, and art. You can also call us at (760) 647-6595 and we can answer your questions over the phone.

Update: As of November 1, 2018, the Visitor Center is closed for the season.

Highway 120 reopens; Yosemite Valley closed indefinitely

Tuesday, August 7th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Today at 2:30pm, Yosemite National Park administrators and fire managers reopened Highway 120 (Tioga Road) through the park.

Firefighters are working to suppress the Ferguson Fire, which is burning in and near Yosemite National Park. Photo courtesy of NPS.

However, as the Ferguson Fire continues to burn near and in the park, the current park closures have been extended indefinitely.

Closed areas (more…)

Mudslides close the June Lake Loop (Highway 158)

Saturday, August 4th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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On July 31 Caltrans closed Highway 158, the June Lake Loop, due to mudslides that occurred earlier that day. The closure remains in place and there is no estimated opening date.

On July 31, a short, powerful rainstorm brought mudslides and debris down on Highway 158, closing the June Lake Loop. Photo courtesy of Caltrans District 9.

The road is closed between Silver Lake and Grant Lake Reservoir, from roughly the Frontier Pack Station to the Aerie Crag parking area. Through passage around the loop is not available, but (more…)

Tioga Road (Highway 120) is closed; Yosemite is accessible from the east

Thursday, August 2nd, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Caltrans closed Highway 120 at Crane Flat at 2:47am due to the Ferguson Fire.

The east side of the Tioga Road is open, from Highway 395 to the eastern entrance to Yosemite National Park and beyond that to Tuolumne Meadows. But through passage along Highway 120 is not possible—travelers must use alternate routes to get from one side of the Sierra Nevada to the other.

Always check road conditions before you travel, and in this season of major fires across California and the west, check the air quality for your destinations as well.

August 7 Mono County meeting to examine new DWP water extraction efforts

Wednesday, August 1st, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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If you live, work, or play in the Eastern Sierra, put next week’s Mono County Board of Supervisors meeting in your schedule and please plan to attend:

• Tuesday, August 7 at 10:00am •
Mono County Courthouse, Bridgeport (in-person)
Town-County Conference Room, Minaret Mall,
CAO Conference Room, Sierra Center Mall,
Mammoth Lakes
(by video conference)

This past spring, the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (DWP) provided ranchers in the Long Valley and Little Round Valley area next to Crowley Lake new proposed leases with no irrigation water—a proposal, in effect, to dry up approximately 6,400 acres of agricultural lands in Mono County.

These areas have been irrigated for more than 70 years, so removing the water would be a major change in land use and a surprising attempt to extract additional water from Mono County. Local concerns are numerous and include increased risk of wildfire, desiccation of wetlands, damage to important habitat for sensitive species such as the Bi-State Sage Grouse, and undermining the local agricultural and tourism-based economy.

Mono County has been corresponding with LA Mayor Eric Garcetti about the leases and lack of water—see those letters, maps, and a summary of the issue here. The Board of Supervisors meeting is your chance to make your thoughts, concerns, and opinions known, and Mono Lake Committee staff will also be attending—we have been advising Mono County about this issue given our long history with DWP. For more information call (760) 647-6595 or email Lisa Cutting, Eastern Sierra Policy Director.

Mud and rock slides in Lundy Canyon

Thursday, July 26th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Last Friday, July 20, torrential rain in Lundy Canyon caused several mud and rock slides, which closed the road west of Lundy Lake Resort. There is currently no vehicle access to the trailhead, and no estimated opening date for the road.

Looking west up Lundy Canyon from the top of the largest rock slide that occurred on July 20, 2018. Photo courtesy of Mary Ljung.

(more…)

Information Center & Bookstore summer hours begin Thursday

Sunday, June 10th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Starting on Thursday, June 14, the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore will be open from 8:00am to 9:00pm every day.

Starting on Thursday, June 14, the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore will be open from 8:00am to 9:00pm every day. Photo by Erv Nichols.

Stop by to pick up a Mono Lake T-shirt, buy maps for your next hike, find gifts for friends and family, watch The Mono Lake Story half-hour film, select some postcards to help remember your trip, or get information about canoeing, hiking, camping, lodging, restaurants, and more. We look forward to seeing you soon!

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