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Deer migration season in the Eastern Sierra

September 25th, 2016 by Gabrielle, Project Specialist
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Dear travelers and locals alike,

If you’ve ever spent time driving Highway 395, especially during fall or spring, you’ve most likely had the chance to see one of the Eastern Sierra’s many mule deer.

Family of mule deer enjoy a beautiful day at County Park. Photo by Sandra Noll.

Family of mule deer at County Park. Photo by Sandra Noll.

These beautiful animals are part of the Round Valley mule deer herd. Every spring they migrate to higher elevations to give birth and feed on the foliage of alpine meadows, returning each … more »

Mono Lake winter photography field seminars

September 21st, 2016 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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This coming winter we are pleased to offer two winter photography field seminars for the first time! Winter at Mono Lake is a very special season, and both these seminars will combine the snowy, foggy, icy photographic conditions with the full and nearly-full moon lighting up the nighttime landscape.

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

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

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The Forgotten Season • January 13–15, 2017 •
Full Moon in February • February 10–12, 2017 •
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Registration will open on Saturday, October 1 for Mono Lake Committee members only, and on November 1 for non-members. To sign up, call (760) 647-6595 or register online. … more »

Mono Lake Mobile expansion—check it out

September 20th, 2016 by Andrew, Digital Engagement Coordinator
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If you can’t make it to South Tufa for one of the weekend 1:00pm guided tours, don’t despair; there is Mono Lake Mobile! Visit the Mono Lake Mobile site on your cell phone and learn about everything from the legal battle to save Mono Lake to the lives of the brine shrimp and alkali flies that inhabit the lake.

Whether you are visiting the shore of the lake during a quiet December afternoon or you just want to escape to Mono Lake from home, monolakemobile.org is the place to go. Photo by Andrew Youssef.

Whether you are visiting the shore of the lake during a quiet December afternoon or you just want to escape to Mono Lake from home, monolakemobile.org is the place to go. Photo by Andrew Youssef.

You can even take a complete self-guided tour of the South Tufa area, narrated by yours truly, and supplemented by dozens of photos and animations. If you’re listening to … more »

Fall walking tours at South Tufa

September 20th, 2016 by Andrew, Digital Engagement Coordinator
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Summer is certainly winding down at Mono Lake—our seasonal staff is beginning to migrate away, the temperatures are getting cooler, and there are already some hints of fall color in the mountains.

Free walking tours at South Tufa happen at 1:00pm on Saturdays and Sundays during the fall. Photo by Santiago Escruceria.

Free walking tours at South Tufa happen at 1:00pm on Saturdays and Sundays during the fall. Photo by Santiago Escruceria.

The guided tour schedule at South Tufa also changes in the fall. Free walking tours are offered on Saturdays and Sundays at 1:00pm through October. If you will be in town during the weekend come learn about the fascinating natural and political history of the lake during this quieter time of the year.

Owens River Fire update: Monday morning

September 19th, 2016 by Gabrielle, Project Specialist
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The Owens River Fire has grown to 6,000 acres and is now 20% contained. Four uninhabited outbuildings have been destroyed.

Air crews work hard to contain the Owens River Fire. Photo by Justin Benttinen. Courtesy of InciWeb.

Air crews work hard to contain the Owens River Fire. Photo by Justin Benttinen, courtesy of InciWeb.

Firefighters are working hard to protect additional structures and contain spot fires along the western flank. Today’s weather remains hot and dry with a chance of increased wind from the southwest. The Big Springs Campground and Clark … more »

Owens River Fire

September 18th, 2016 by Gabrielle, Project Specialist
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Just over a month since the Clark Fire, another fire has erupted in the area.

Smoke From the Owens River Fire on Saturday 9/17. Photo by Bartshe Miller.

Smoke from the Owens River Fire on Saturday, September 17. Photo by Bartshe Miller.

The Owens River Fire is burning north of and along Owens River Road and east of Highway 395 near Clark Canyon. The fire was detected yesterday afternoon and is thought to be human-caused. As of this morning the fire is about 4,500 acres and 10% contained; the Big Springs Campground, Clark Canyon, and surrounding ranches have been evacuated. Heavy smoke is … more »

Results are in for the 36th annual Tioga Pass Run

September 16th, 2016 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Grace Aleman, 2015 Information Center & Bookstore Assistant and 2016 Mono Lake Intern.

Last Sunday, September 11, 105 runners and 32 walkers made their way up the steep Tioga Pass, making this the largest Tioga Pass Run in the event’s 36-year history. The athletes started in front of the Mono Lake Committee in Lee Vining and finished at the entrance to Yosemite National Park, 12.4 miles and 3,165 feet of elevation later.

Athletes head up Tioga Pass last Sunday. Photo by Erv Nichols.

Athletes head up Tioga Pass last Sunday. Photo by Erv Nichols.

The first to cross the finish line for the second year in a row was Patrick Parsel of South Lake Tahoe with the time 1:27:18, two minutes faster than his time last year. For the third year in a row Jessica Francois, Lee Vining local and former Mono Lake Committee staff member, was the first female finisher with the time 1:44:19 … more »

Mono Lake Committee autumn and winter hours begin Sunday, September 18th

September 15th, 2016 by Lily, Information Center & Bookstore Manager
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Photo by Arya Degenhardt.

The Mono Lake Committee will be shifting to our fall/winter hours of 9:00am–5:00pm daily starting Sunday, September 18. Photo by Arya Degenhardt.

Starting Sunday, September 18, the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore will be reducing its hours for the fall and winter season. Our new hours will be 9:00am–5:00pm daily. We hope you’ll stop in for tips on fall color viewing and to do a little holiday shopping. See you in Lee Vining!

Refreshing ‘Ologists: ENSO, atmospheric rivers, and changing midlatitude weather

September 12th, 2016 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Grace Aleman, 2015 Information Center & Bookstore Assistant and 2016 Mono Lake Intern.

Snow at Parker Lake in April 2016. Photo by Andrew Youssef.

Snow on peaks surrounding Parker Lake in April 2016. Photo by Andrew Youssef.

Join us for the last talk of the Refreshing ‘Ologist series this Wednesday, September 14 at 4:00pm in the gallery at the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore.

This week avalanche forecaster Sue Burak will discuss how El Nino Southern Oscilliation (ENSO) affects—or doesn’t affect—above-average snowfall, and the hype behind last winter’s El Nino. She will also discuss how atmospheric rivers contribute to the amount of precipitation California receives in the cool season. Lastly, Sue will talk about how the melting Arctic is changing the weather at midlatitudes.

Many thanks to all of the wonderful presenters we’ve had throughout the summer, and thank you to everyone who has attended! Hope to see you all for our last presentation of the summer!

The 2016 Mono Lake guided bird walk season

September 7th, 2016 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Sandra Noll, Birding Intern in 2014, 2015, & 2016.

Hard to fathom that season of guided bird walks has come to an end. Erv and I led our last County Park bird walk yesterday and State Park ranger Dave Marquart led his last on Sunday. It seems we just arrived to serve our third summer as Mono Lake Committee Birding Interns!

An adult Osprey perches watchfully atop a tufa tower near its nest . Photo by Sandra Noll.

An adult Osprey perches atop a tufa tower near its nest . Photo by Sandra Noll.

It has been a great season of birds from “locals” and early spring migrants through the nesting season to, most recently, early fall migrants. These include large numbers of Eared Grebes and phalaropes beginning to stage on Mono Lake where they molt and gain weight for the final legs of their migrations to wintering areas further south. Mono Lake’s status as an internationally important bird area is especially apparent this time of year.

It has been a delight and privilege to introduce visitors from the US and around the world to this beautiful, bountiful place and the work of the Mono Lake Committee to protect, restore, and educate. And it is my pleasure to leave you with a few highlights!

… more »

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