today at mono lake

the mono-logue

mono lake live

live webcam images

calendar of events

Member-only content is enabled for all users in this directory while we upgrade our login method.

click here to log in to other parts of the Website
 

register
login help


The Mono-logue


Major Categories   Search Blog:

The Mono-logue

Summer 2015 Mono Lake Newsletter now available online

June 1st, 2015 by Arya, Communications Director
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

Newsletter-2015-SummerThis is the first time in 37 years that we have featured the Milky Way on the cover of the Mono Lake Newsletter. Tufa and Milky Way, by photographer and Mono Lake Committee member Thomas Piekunka, is not only a stunning view of the night sky over Mono Lake, it was shot without artificial light. Knowing that the photograph was taken with sensitivity for the subject—without disrupting wildlife (people included) with bright lights at night—makes it that much more beautiful.

That idea, that knowing more about something can make it more beautiful, is actually a pretty good theme for this issue of the Mono Lake Newsletter. Let’s face it, drought doesn’t look good on Mono Lake. Dusty exposed lakebed and weak trickles of water in cobbled creek channels are hard to see. With the final snowpack numbers in we’ve had to face up to some stark realities about what the coming summer is going to mean for the Mono Basin—a potential two-foot vertical drop in lake level not being the least of it.

Today the lake is at 6,379 feet above sea level. Without the Mono Lake Committee, the lake would be at 6350′. That’s not only 29 vertical feet of water, it’s the difference between a landscape with a recovering ecosystem, and one without. So, when I look out at Mono Lake knowing it could be that much worse, I can still see a landscape that has undoubtedly stalled out, but is, in the bigger scheme of things, on the road to recovery. Mono Lake has protections in place and a dedicated group of people who really, really care about it, work for it every single day, and are determined to figure out the best things for it no matter what the circumstances. I’m pretty sure there is extra beauty in that.

Maybe you should come see for yourself—walk the shoreline, check out the night sky, or scout out some water and follow the lead of the dipper below.

American Dippers are North America’s only truly aquatic songbird, and catch their food underwater by swimming and walking on the bottom of streams. A family of dippers takes up residence along Lee Vining Creek each summer—if you listen closely you can hear them singing and see them diving for food and feeding chicks. Photo courtesy of Marie Read.

American Dippers are North America’s only truly aquatic songbird, and catch their food underwater by swimming and walking on the bottom of streams. A family of dippers takes up residence along Lee Vining Creek each summer—if you listen closely you can hear them singing and see them diving for food and feeding chicks. Photo courtesy of Marie Read.

Join us every Friday and Sunday morning at Mono Lake County Park for free bird walks

May 29th, 2015 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

This post was written by Sandra Noll, Birding Intern in 2014, 2015, & 2016.

Bullock's Oriole. Photo by Erv Nichols.

Bullock’s Oriole. Photo by Erv Nichols.

The season’s County Park bird walks officially began on May 17 with a record 46 species! As usual, the spring walks have been highlighted by bird species in migration from southern wintering grounds to northern nesting sites. It’s an exciting time of year because you never know what you might see. This year the variety and number of species has been higher than usual due to storms and snow in the high country pushing more birds down into the Mono Basin.

A few of the species seen on the first two walks include: … more »

Mono Lake island closure and Osprey closure in effect

May 25th, 2015 by Robbie, Restoration Field Technician
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone
An Osprey on its nest atop a tufa tower in Mono Lake. Photo by Erv Nichols.

An Osprey on its nest atop a tufa tower in Mono Lake. Photo by Erv Nichols.

As Mono Lake lovers know, Mono Lake is critical habitat for millions of birds. Many of these birds stop by on migration for the shrimp and fly soup buffet, but there are a few that have made Mono Lake their annual summer home getaway to nest and reproduce.

California Gulls are one of the most iconic seasonal residents. Gulls nest out on Mono Lake’s islands, laying eggs and raising chicks to fledging there during each summer. The “island closure” takes effect from April 1st to August 1st in order to protect the thousands of gulls and their chicks, so people must stay at least one mile away from … more »

Mono Lake’s wet May keeps on keeping on

May 23rd, 2015 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone
Clouds have covered the Mono Basin for much of the last three weeks. Mono Lake on May 20. Photo by Arya Degenhardt.

Clouds have covered the Mono Basin for much of the last three weeks. Mono Lake on May 20. Photo by Arya Degenhardt.

A week ago, at mid-month, we excitedly were tallying up the already-record-making Mono Basin precipitation totals for May and the rise in Mono Lake. Who would have thought that it would keep raining and snowing—especially during the driest year of one of the worst droughts on record?

Well, it has kept raining and snowing! … more »

It’s Tioga Pass flip-flop season … it’s open

May 22nd, 2015 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

At the risk of sounding like a broken record … Tioga Pass reopened this morning!

It’s currently pouring rain in Lee Vining, however, so make sure to check weather conditions and road conditions before you travel. Given Tioga Pass’ track record this spring, it could close at any moment.

It’s Tioga Pass flip-flop season … the pass is closed

May 21st, 2015 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

Tioga Pass has just closed again because of the predictions for snow tonight and into tomorrow. It has been raining on and off all day here in Lee Vining, with fairly cool temperatures, so we’re not surprised to see the pass close. We’re having an unseasonably cool and rainy May this year, so Tioga Pass will likely close and reopen several more times depending on the weather. Remember to check road conditions before you travel!

Caltrans Hwy 395 rockfall project report #4

May 20th, 2015 by Robbie, Restoration Field Technician
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

Caltrans-rockfall-update-graphic

Caltrans has released the fourth road report for the Lee Vining Rockfall Safety Project on Highway 395 along Mono Lake just north of Lee Vining.

Lee Vining Rockfall Safety project update #4

Capture 4

Updates are also posted regularly on Twitter and Facebook.
Click here for all project updates and background.
Text from the official update is below.

Caltrans-rockfall-update-graphic … more »

Trail Chic fashion show fundraiser: July 24, 2015

May 19th, 2015 by Arya, Communications Director
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

trail-runner-hiker-web

When: Friday, July 24, 2015 7:30pm
Where: Lee Vining Community Center

Trail Chic is a fashion show fundraiser for the Mono Lake Committee’s Outdoor Education Center Access Fund. Entrance to the event is free, and our friends from Barefoot Wine & Bubbly will be pouring wine and bubbly (for a donation) and there will be a silent auction with an affordable selection of wines and outdoor gear.

And then, there are the fashions … in years past we’ve had climbers, cyclists, snowboarders, birders, woodsmen, aliens, tufa towers, invasive plant species, pirates, research biologists, and small dogs. You’ll have a good chance of seeing gold lamé, glitter, feathers, and sequins mixing with polypro, hiking socks, binocular straps, zip-off pants, farmer’s tans, and the like walking the pine cone-lined astroturf runway. Something magic happens when you put it all together with some groovy music, so we hope that you’ll be there to join in the fun.

It’s Tioga Pass flip-flop season … now it’s open

May 18th, 2015 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

Tioga Pass has reopened after last week’s stormy weather. We’re having an unseasonably cool and rainy May this year, so Tioga Pass will likely close and reopen several more times depending on the weather. Remember to check road conditions before you travel!

Wet weather causes Mono Lake to rise

May 15th, 2015 by Greg, Information & Restoration Specialist
Share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone
After the storm clouds cleared last Friday, Black Point had turned white under 14 inches of new snow. Photo by Lisa Cutting.

After the storm clouds cleared last Friday, Black Point had turned white under 14 inches of new snow. Photo by Lisa Cutting.

With May only half over, we have measured almost three inches of precipitation in Lee Vining—surpassing the usual total for all of April-September. This May has already beaten the previous records of 2.23 inches measured in May 1989 and 2.74 inches measured in May 1994. It has also been cold, with over 16 inches of snow already beating the 14.6 inches measured in May 1994. At Cain Ranch, it is already the third-wettest May since 1931.

As Rush Creek above Grant Lake Reservoir nears record-low flows for May, record highs for precipitation are welcome.

A cold May with 400% of average precipitation is very good news for Mono Lake. Reduced evaporation helps slow the declining lake level, and direct precipitation on the lake a week ago raised the level about a tenth of a foot. It now stands at 6379.0 feet above sea level, about a tenth of a foot higher than it was on May 1st. Mono Lake is projected to drop a tenth of a foot this month, but it is now looking like it will remain steady, and it could even have a net rise if the last half of the month is wet.

The Mono-logue is powered by Wordpress
Subscribe to entries with RSS or by Email. Subscribe to comments (RSS).

Find us on Facebook

 

Follow us on Twitter

 

Print this page
print

search | contact us | site map 
 

MLC Logo

© 2018 mono lake committee
The Mono Lake Committee is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.