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Refreshments with Refreshing ‘Ologists: Astronomy of the zodiac with David Hurst

Monday, July 28th, 2014 by Lily, Mono Lake Intern

For many centuries a unique band of stars called the zodiac has attracted the attention of humankind as we’ve gazed into the night sky. If you, like so many others, are fascinated by the stars then please join us Wednesday, July 30th at 4pm in the Mono Lake Committee Theater & Gallery for an afternoon lecture on the zodiac. In his lecture astronomer David Hurst will shed light on why the zodiac has captivated our interest for hundreds of years. He will also offer tips on how to view these stars in the Eastern Sierra night sky. We hope to see you there!

Stars over Mono Lake courtesy of Thomas Piekunka.


Mono Lake Interns then and now: From fly pupae to moringa

Thursday, July 17th, 2014 by Julie, Mono Lake Intern

Over the years the Mono Lake Committee has attracted hundreds of young, passionate environmentalists looking for involvement in Mono Lake’s story. Whether in college, fresh out of school or like this year’s two Birding Interns, retired folks looking to help out, the seasonal staff plays a huge role in keeping the Mono Lake Committee a well-oiled machine during the summer months. I am not alone in feeling that what I have given the Committee cannot compare to what the people, experiences, and natural world in the Eastern Sierra has given me. The incredible Mono Lake story is infectious and continues to inspire me as I head further into the field of environmental studies.

The departures of seasonal staff occurs in two waves each year—in the end of August and the beginning of November. Once departed, it largely becomes a mystery where these individuals full of fun Mono Lake facts end up. Luckily, many keep in touch. One retired intern in particular is pretty much forced into keeping in touch with me. My sister Lisa Curtis was a Mono Lake Intern seven years ago (more…)

Turf wars: Los Angeles doubles down on water conservation

Monday, July 14th, 2014 by Bartshé, Education Director

If you’re a Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (DWP) residential customer and you have a lawn, now is your chance to cash in and conserve water. Currently, DWP is offering $3 per square foot of lawn if you replace your thirsty grass with California friendly plants.

DWP’s “Cash In Your Lawn” incentive is the largest for any major US city, and is twice the amount that Las Vegas offers its customers. There is no competition here—both cities are serious about water conservation and recycling and have a track record of moving in the right direction when it comes to urban water efficiency. However, three dollars a square foot (up from two dollars) demonstrates a new level of commitment that DWP is willing to go to further for conservation after three very dry years. (more…)

Mono views: From peaks to paintings

Friday, July 11th, 2014 by Erica, Mono Lake Intern

This is a unique place where animals like the tiny pika and lazy marmot dwell in rocky habitats. It is a place where visitors enjoy gazing at the tufa towers as they hike along Mono Lake’s shore. Glaciers and volcanic activity have been powerful forces shaping the landscape over time. Recreational activities in the Mono Basin include everything from hiking and mountaineering to fishing and birding.

A stunning view of Mono Lake from Mt. Dana. Photo by Erica Stephens.

Thanks to dedicated people of the past like David Gaines, who took initial action to protect Mono Lake and helped found the Mono Lake Committee, we all have the opportunity to enjoy this amazing area. As Gaines said, “The birds and the animals, trees, grasses and rocks; water and wind are our allies. They awaken our senses, arouse our passions, renew our spirits, and fill us with vision, courage and joy. We are Mono Lake.”

Here are a variety of perspectives from friends, coworkers and people I met along trails who are inspired and (more…)

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