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Rush Creek roars: Taking on Grant Lake’s spill

July 15th, 2010 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Julia Runcie and Hannah Doherty, 2010 Mono Lake Interns.

Normally when the two of us head down to Rush Creek on Tuesday afternoons it’s an easy wade through ankle-deep water to reach the eastern bank. We hike through a willow thicket to a very old and overgrown utility road, and then the hunt begins for the six piezometers, or groundwater gauges, that hide in the brush on either side of the trail. At each piezometer we extend a tape measure deep into the throat of a PVC pipe until it hits water, and we record the depth. It’s often a struggle even to catch sight of the pool at the base of each pipe. But last week was different. … more »

Grant Lake Reservoir spills

July 12th, 2010 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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On Saturday July 3rd, Grant Lake Reservoir began spilling for the second time since the year 2000–it also spilled in 2006 after filling up in 2005.

Inflow is dropping as the melting snow runs out, although the warm weather is melting higher elevation snow, which could maintain high inflow for a few more days. Outflow is declining as well after peaking this morning at about 460 cfs (cubic feet per second). The spill peaked at 171 cfs on Thursday and Friday last week, but LADWP was still increasing the flow in the MGORD (Mono Gate One Return Ditch) until this morning. LADWP installed pumps at the spillway in order to ensure it would … more »

Mono Lake County Park boardwalk is OPEN

July 10th, 2010 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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The County Park boardwalk has reopened; go for a visit today! Photo by Arya Degenhardt.

The County Park boardwalk has reopened; go for a visit today! Photo by Arya Degenhardt.

The recently-burned Mono Lake County Park boardwalk has been reopened to the public after last week’s fire. State Park crews replaced the burned section with new boards and applied a coat of linseed oil to the entire boardwalk, which will protect it from the Mono Basin’s dry weather and harsh sun. So head down to County Park and take a stroll to the lakeshore to enjoy the multitudes of birds, sweeping views, and the reopened boardwalk!

State Park crews respond quickly to Mono Lake County Park burn

July 8th, 2010 by Lisa, Eastern Sierra Policy Director
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Just four days after the fire occurred, California State Park construction crews started repairing the fire-damaged boardwalk at Mono Lake County Park. Saturday’s fire charred a section of boardwalk approximately 45 feet long and an acre of adjacent meadow vegetation. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The burned section of the boardwalk at County Park, which is being replaced this weekend. Photo courtesy of Dave Marquart.

The burned section of the boardwalk at County Park, which is being replaced this weekend. Photo courtesy of Dave Marquart.

Update: the Boardwalk reopened ahead of schedule on Friday July 9 at 4:00 pm Currently, the boardwalk is closed due to unsafe conditions and to … more »

Mill Creek is flowing mighty high!

July 8th, 2010 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Sarah Melcher, 2010 Mono Lake Intern.

Water cascades over the Lundy Lake Reservoir spillway on its way down Mill Creek to Mono Lake. Photo by Sarah Melcher.

Water cascades over the Lundy Lake Reservoir spillway on its way down Mill Creek to Mono Lake. Photo by Sarah Melcher.

I grabbed the flow meter and eagerly drove out to Lundy Canyon, where our beloved Mill Creek runs in its complicated course to Mono Lake. As the intern assigned to monitor Mill Creek this summer, I got to be one of the first people to see Lundy Lake Reservoir spill into the usually less-than-full creek bed.

Typically, Mill Creek is diverted at Lundy Lake to the SCE power plant. Some of that water is then diverted for delivery to water rights holders, but … more »

A warm, dry, and windy June

July 6th, 2010 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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We’ve just posted Lee Vining weather data for June 2010 on the Mono Basin Clearinghouse. It was a windy June, with an average wind speed of 4.7 mph–the highest average wind speed since 2001’s 5.1 mph (2005 came close with 4.6 mph). The maximum wind speed of 47 mph was unremarkable.

It was also warm at night in June. The lowest minimum  temperature of 37.6 F was the highest since 2003’s 40.6 F (unofficial data). The average minimum temperature … more »

The one and only pay phone in Lee Vining

July 6th, 2010 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
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The pay phone at the Tioga Gas Mart, at the corner of Hwy 120 and Hwy 395, is the only pay phone “in” Lee Vining.

When I arrived in Lee Vining 15 years ago, there were at least five pay phones in town (there were also about four restaurants that no longer exist). Cell phone reception is … more »

Ghosts of the Sagebrush Tour coming up

July 5th, 2010 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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sagebrushghosts

Get ready for the seventh annual Ghosts of the Sagebrush Tour on July 30-31, a two-day event that will explore the year 1940 in the Mono Basin! Enjoy dinner and dancing on Friday night, and then head out into the field on Saturday for a tour of aqueduct facilities that … more »

Artist reception for Robb Hirsch

July 5th, 2010 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Rosanne Catron, 2010 Information Center & Bookstore Manager.

Join the Mono Lake Committee and friends on Saturday, July 10 from 2:00–5:00pm for an artist reception for photographer Robb Hirsch. Robb’s exhibit, “Mono Basin & Beyond: Sublime Moments in Nature,” is now on display in the Mono Lake Committee gallery.

Trained as a biologist, Robb HirschTufa and Earth's Shadow, Robb Hirsch developed an intimate relationship with the natural world during annual childhood visits to Yosemite. Robb’s images are known for their compelling subjects, careful compositions, and fine light.

Come meet the photographer, enjoy light refreshments, and see Robb’s work.

Fire burns a section of the Mono Lake County Park boardwalk

July 4th, 2010 by Bartshé, Education Director
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Early in the afternoon on July 3 smoke was reported coming from beneath the boardwalk below Mono Lake County Park. Local Lee Vining volunteer, Inyo National Forest, and Bureau of Land Management firefighters quickly responded. Forty five feet of boardwalk and one acre of grass and willows were destroyed before the blaze was contained. The cause of the fire is under investigation and the boardwalk is closed until further notice. Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve staff  say the boardwalk will have to be rebuilt through the burned section. There is currently no estimate on when repairs might be completed.

If you have questions, or if you have information that may be of interest regarding this fire, call the Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve at (760) 647-6331.

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