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Posts Tagged ‘summer’

Lundy Canyon: Gem of the Sierra

Friday, August 11th, 2017 by Jenny, Birding Intern
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We hope you can join us for one of the new Lundy Canyon bird walks this year—on Saturdays at 7:30 am. There is so much to see in Lundy Canyon, it really is one of the gems of the Eastern Sierra. I’ve put together this collection of photos from the 2017 season so far, and hope it inspires you to join us!

Lundy Canyon is home to some of the Eastern Sierra’s best birds, wildflowers, and waterfalls along Mill Creek, which flows down the canyon and into Mono Lake.

White rein orchid (Plantanthera leucostachys) blooming along Mill Creek in Lundy Canyon. Photo by Jennifer Rieke, August 6, 2017.

Nestled in the eastern escarpment of the Sierra Nevada, Lundy Canyon is a high-elevation canyon rising from Lundy Lake at 7,858 feet above sea level to the 11,770-foot Black Mountain.

Thanks to significant runoff this year, the Lundy Lake dam spilled over. Photo by Robbie DiPaolo, June 27, 2017

Due to its high elevation, healthy riparian ecosystem and unique microclimate, Lundy Canyon offers a rich diversity of bird species. In spring and summer you can find a wide variety of breeding birds—from hummingbirds to Golden Eagles.

Calliope Hummingbird (Selasphorus calliope) sitting in her nest on the branch of a quaking aspen. Photo by Nora Livingston, May 27, 2017.

The aspen and willow trees surrounding Mill Creek provide excellent habitat for songbirds such as flycatchers, vireos, and a myriad of warblers.

Yellow Warbler (Setophaga petechial) singing. Photo courtesy of Nicholas Kronick, June 9, 2017.

The presence of pine trees in the area brings many of the classic Sierra Nevada specialties including tanagers, grosbeaks, finches, nutcrackers, and woodpeckers.

Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens). Photo courtesy of Nicholas Kronick.

This Rose-breasted Grosbeak is a favorite rarity found in Lundy Canyon. Photo by Sandra Noll, June 6, 2017.

Thanks to the huge snowpack in the Sierra this year, the flowers in Lundy Canyon are blooming like crazy!

Alpine lily (Lilium parvum). Photo by Jennifer Rieke, August 6, 2017.

Western monkshood (Aconitum columbianum). Photo by Jennifer Rieke, August 6, 2017.

Crimson columbine (Aquilegia formosa). Photo by Jennifer Rieke, August 6, 2017.

Fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium). Photo by Jennifer Rieke, August 6, 2017.

Sierra angelica (Angelica lineariloba). Photo by Jennifer Rieke, August 6, 2017.

Lundy Canyon is also known for its resident bighorn sheep population—a rare but exciting sighting!

Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep on a talus slope in Lundy Canyon. Photo by Erv Nichols, May 29, 2017.

You may also get to see an American pine marten—a tree-climbing weasel that is diurnal (active during the day) in the summer months.

The American pine marten hanging in an aspen tree. Photo by Erv Nichols, July 15, 2017.

If you are interested in geology, there is much to admire in Lundy Canyon.  Few areas offer better examples of granite intrusion into the ancient red and black metamorphic slate.

Did you know that Lundy Canyon was covered by glaciers that scoured out the canyon? The Lundy Canyon glacier was between six and seven miles long, and about 1,000 feet deep! Keep your eyes out for hanging valleys, glacial lakes, and moraines while hiking in Lundy Canyon.

Lundy Canyon’s ancient metamorphic rock is some of the oldest in the Sierra. Photo by Jennifer Rieke. August 6, 2017.

Next time you visit the Mono Basin, take a hike up Lundy Canyon and enjoy the many wonders it has to offer. It’s not too late—fall is a great time to see the aspens change color. Or, join us for a Lundy Canyon bird walks every Saturday at 7:30 am.

Be sure to stop in to the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore for up-to-date trail information and to record any wildlife sightings.

Learn more on a Mono Lake Committee field seminar

Monday, August 7th, 2017 by Andrew, Digital Engagement Coordinator
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Have you ever wanted to learn more about the birds that migrate through the Mono Basin, experience Mono Lake by moonlight, learn about the ecosystem impacts of recent fires, or find the best places to see the aspen leaves turn gold in the fall? Mono Lake Committee field seminars offer something for everyone—whether you’re just here for a short time and want to spend a half day with an expert instructor or if you’ll be here longer for one of our three-day seminars. There are still over 20 field seminars you can register for through October. Read more about all the seminars that still have space below.

August

There are still over 20 field seminars you can register for through October, including Geology of the Mono Basin with Greg Stock. Photo by Andrew Youssef.

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The day I knew

Thursday, August 7th, 2014 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Erica Stephens, 2014 Mono Lake Intern.

Making the long journey up Highway 395 north to the Mono Basin and Eastern Sierra was always the highlight of my summers growing up. Originally from Southern California, I am used to palm trees, sirens whizzing by, crowds, malls, and a Starbucks on every corner. Everyone always seems to be on the move and everywhere you go, places are bustling with business. I come from this sort of lifestyle and consider myself to be a true California beach bum from the Long Beach area.

Erica leading a program for visitors along the Fossil Discovery Trail in Dinosaur National Monument in 2010. Photo courtesy of Erica Stephens.

Yet the city life was not all I was accustomed to since I was fortunate enough to have had an amazing outdoor education experience at Camp Hi-Hill during the fifth grade. (more…)

Tioga Pass scheduled to open Saturday

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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This post was written by Julia Runcie, 2011 Mono Lake Intern.

According to National Park Service representatives, Tioga Pass into Yosemite National Park will open this Saturday, June 18th, at 8:00am.

Due to an immense snowpack and a late, chilly spring, the road has remained closed far longer than normal, and thousands of visitors will be relieved to find their drive over the Sierra made shorter and the beautiful Tuolumne Meadows area open at last.

Please continue to check the latest road report from CalTrans, as conditions may change at any moment and we have no guarantee that the pass will actually open as planned.

For a look at the Tioga Pass opening and closing dates since 1933, check out this spreadsheet on the Mono Basin Clearinghouse.

Summer may finally be here!

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