Monday, April 8th, 2019 by Bartshé, Eastern Sierra Policy DirectorcloseAuthor: Bartshé, Eastern Sierra Policy DirectorName: Bartshé Miller Title: Education Director About: Bartshé works on Mono Basin policy issues such as protecting the integrity of the Mono Basin National Forest Scenic Area, coordinating with regional agency staff, and working with the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power and scientists on the ongoing restoration of Mono Lake and its tributary streams. He has been an Eastern Sierra resident since 1993.See All Posts by Bartshé (67) Contact Bartshé
Migrating phalaropes are a summer phenomenon to behold at Mono Lake. When tens of thousands of them arrive they gather and flock—weaving like schools of aerial fish, erupting from and falling to the surface of the lake in giant tornadoes.
Phalaropes in flight over Mono Lake. Photo courtesy of Rick Kattelmann.
Wilson’s and Red-necked phalaropes are shorebirds that rely on alkali fly larvae at Mono Lake in order to molt and double their weight in preparation for migration to South America. These graceful (more…)
Wednesday, March 20th, 2019 by Arya, Communications DirectorcloseAuthor: Arya, Communications DirectorName: Arya Harp Title: Communications Director About: Arya oversees the Committee's communications program, which includes the Mono Lake Newsletter and the Mono Lake Calendar. She loves her job because she gets to share the inspiring work of the Mono Lake Committee with members and visitors alike. Her favorite things to do in the Mono Basin include ice skating on nearby lakes, skiing the Mono Craters, and getting to smell the sagebrush when it rains.See All Posts by Arya (190) Contact Arya
It’s that time of year again, when all eyes are on the Sierra snowpack, the level of Mono Lake, and spreadsheets.
How much will Mono Lake rise or fall this year? Photo by Andrew Youssef.
Just imagining this winter’s snowpack flowing down Mono Basin streams this spring brings a gleeful sigh of relief. But … spreadsheets? Yep, because spreadsheets, forecast models, experts, and in-depth Mono Basin hydrologic knowledge, when carefully woven together, are how we figure out the big question for Mono Lake: how much is the lake going to rise or fall this year?
Thursday, February 28th, 2019 by Elin, Communications CoordinatorcloseAuthor: Elin, Communications CoordinatorName: Elin Ljung Title: Communications Coordinator About: Elin's job consists of some of her favorite things: finding typos, experimenting with layouts, and figuring out how best to communicate the Committee's work to the world. She also oversees the Field Seminar program. Elin grew up in on California’s Central Coast dreaming of the two weeks each summer that her family would spend in the Eastern Sierra, and as soon as she graduated from St. Olaf College in 2005 she moved to Mono Lake full-time. She prefers to travel at high speed on either telemark skis or a mountain bike, or be completely still, immersed in a good book.See All Posts by Elin (330) Contact Elin
Registration for the 2019 Field Seminars opens tomorrow at 9:00am to non-members. Of the 38 seminars we’re offering this year, seven have sold out already, so take a look at the list and sign up today to be sure you grab a spot!
Sign up for the En Plein Air oil painting seminar to get started painting outdoors in the Mono Basin’s inspiring landscape. Photo courtesy of Penny Otwell.
Tuesday, January 15th, 2019 by Elin, Communications CoordinatorcloseAuthor: Elin, Communications CoordinatorName: Elin Ljung Title: Communications Coordinator About: Elin's job consists of some of her favorite things: finding typos, experimenting with layouts, and figuring out how best to communicate the Committee's work to the world. She also oversees the Field Seminar program. Elin grew up in on California’s Central Coast dreaming of the two weeks each summer that her family would spend in the Eastern Sierra, and as soon as she graduated from St. Olaf College in 2005 she moved to Mono Lake full-time. She prefers to travel at high speed on either telemark skis or a mountain bike, or be completely still, immersed in a good book.See All Posts by Elin (330) Contact Elin
The complete list of all the Mono Lake Committee’s 2019 Field Seminars is now available online here. Registration opens at 9:00am on Friday, February 1.
The Mono Lake Committee’s Lead Naturalist Guide Nora Livingston will be leading 16 seminars this year, with topics ranging from birding to botany, history to geology. Photo courtesy of Bob Yates.
This year there are 38 Field Seminars to choose from, including one-day, half-day, and multi-day options. As always, the list spans many natural history, cultural history, art, and photography topics.
Sunday, September 9th, 2018 by Joslyn, Project SpecialistcloseAuthor: Joslyn, Project SpecialistName: Joslyn Rogers Title: Mono Lake Intern About: Originally from San Diego, Joslyn first discovered Mono Lake while working in Yosemite Valley. Her love for the Mono Basin was further solidified after studying Mono Lake on a UC Santa Cruz field program. Joslyn finished her degree in Environmental Studies at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and spent summer 2018 as a Mono Lake Intern; she is also staying through the winter at the Mono Lake Committee as a Project Specialist. In her free time, she can be found rock climbing, birding, or getting inspired by low impact lifestyles.See All Posts by Joslyn (17) Contact Joslyn
Friday, September 7th, 2018 by Mono Lake Committee StaffcloseAuthor: Mono Lake Committee StaffName: Mono Lake Committee Staff Title: Mono Lake Committee Staff About: The Mono Lake Committee is a 16,000 member non-profit citizens' group dedicated to protecting and restoring the Mono Basin ecosystem, educating the public about Mono Lake and the impacts on the environment of excessive water use, and promoting cooperative solutions that protect Mono Lake and meet real water needs without transferring environmental problems to other areas.See All Posts by Mono Lake Committee (506) Contact Mono Lake Committee
Jace Shuler, a junior math major at Boston College, started a study of Mono Basin glaciers when he worked at the Mono Lake Committee this summer. This post was written by Jace.
When I tell people that I spent the summer studying and mapping the glaciers in the Mono Basin, the question I always seem to get is, “There are glaciers around Mono Lake?” The short answer is, yes, there are, and they are of great interest to the Mono Lake Committee.
The first step of my project with the Committee was to identify what exists in the area, both in terms of glaciers and data about those glaciers. From there (more…)
Wednesday, August 29th, 2018 by Janet, Volunteer CoordinatorcloseAuthor: Janet, Volunteer CoordinatorName: Janet Carle Title: Volunteer Coordinator About: Janet has coordinated the Mono Lake Volunteer Program since its inception in 2003. As one of the first two State Park Rangers at Mono Lake (along with her husband Dave), Janet has passed her wealth of interpretive experience and knowledge of the Mono Basin to over 80 Mono Lake Volunteers, who help enrich people's visit to this important place. Contact Janet if you are interested in volunteering at Mono Lake---volunteer training takes place in early June for the summer season.See All Posts by Janet (4) Contact Janet
“Once upon a time, in a little mountain town on the edge of a big blue lake, a small group of people wanted to do something. They noticed that winter snows were less deep, and summer days were drier and hotter with forest fire smoke in the air. The group wanted to protect their beautiful lake, which depended on the snow to stay healthy.
“So the group decided to build a beautiful pavilion with a roof of solar panels, based on an idea from a town across the sea, to showcase how it is possible to have clean energy. It was a wonderful plan, but there was no money or knowledge to build something so grand.”
This is the beginning of the story of the Pioneer Solar Pavilion that was dedicated on Saturday, August 25, 2018 at Hess Park in Lee Vining.
Lee Vining’s Pioneer Solar Pavilion is a community-built gathering space that provides shade, electricity, wi-fi, shelter from wind, and information about local pioneer families. Photo by Elin Ljung.
Monday, August 27th, 2018 by Eric, Mono Lake InterncloseAuthor: Eric, Mono Lake InternName: Eric Bergdoll Title: Mono Lake Intern About: Growing up in an outdoorsy family, Eric has been mountain biking, snowboarding, and kayaking for most of his life. After taking a National Outdoor Leadership School semester course in 2015 where he learned to rock climb and whitewater kayak, he realized it was time to pursue a career in the outdoors. Eric is working on his BS in Environmental Science at the University of Pittsburgh, and leads weekly trips as the President of the Pitt Outdoors Club. This summer Eric is looking forward to exploring the Eastern Sierra while learning all about Mono Lake.See All Posts by Eric (3) Contact Eric
If you’ve ever wanted to know more about the role of fire in California, our upcoming field seminar, Fire Ecology of the Eastern Sierra, is the place to jump in. After a summer when wildfires have made news all over California and the western US, spend September 15–16, 2018 in the field with fire expert Malcolm North to learn about this powerful force. Sign up here.
The Marina Fire burns on the west side of Mono Lake in June 2016. The site of the Marina Fire will be one of the stops in this seminar. Photo by Santiago Escruceria.
It has been a hot summer for wildfires in California, and while fires are vital to maintaining healthy forests in much of the western US, many modern fires burn differently than the fires forests evolved with. What is the current wildfire situation (more…)
Saturday, August 18th, 2018 by Joslyn, Project SpecialistcloseAuthor: Joslyn, Project SpecialistName: Joslyn Rogers Title: Mono Lake Intern About: Originally from San Diego, Joslyn first discovered Mono Lake while working in Yosemite Valley. Her love for the Mono Basin was further solidified after studying Mono Lake on a UC Santa Cruz field program. Joslyn finished her degree in Environmental Studies at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and spent summer 2018 as a Mono Lake Intern; she is also staying through the winter at the Mono Lake Committee as a Project Specialist. In her free time, she can be found rock climbing, birding, or getting inspired by low impact lifestyles.See All Posts by Joslyn (17) Contact Joslyn
Changes in the Kuna glacier (left) and the Koip glacier (right) between 1985 (top) and 2014 (bottom). Photos courtesy of Jace Shuler.
Jace will discuss the status of the four glaciers in the Mono Basin—Conness, Dana, Kuna, and Koip glaciers. He has been using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and aerial photos to examine how the surface area of the glaciers has changed since 1951, as well as working on how we can use the same tools to forecast the glaciers’ future. It’s important to educate both the public and policymakers about the effects of climate change on the Mono Basin, and Jace’s work contributes to that effort.
Wednesday, August 15th, 2018 by Anna, Mono Lake InterncloseAuthor: Anna, Mono Lake InternName: Anna Boyes Title: Mono Lake Intern About: After a childhood filled with whitewater rafting, backpacking, camping, and hiking in the Utah desert, Anna left Salt Lake City to pursue her undergraduate degree at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington. Before attending Whitman, she spent a year as an au pair in Italy, worked at an outdoor education camp in Michigan, and worked on permaculture farms in South America. She enjoys good bread, alpine lakes, cross-country
skiing, and the smell of trees.See All Posts by Anna (5) Contact Anna
Mono Lake has many things that make it unique (like Artemia monica, a species of brine shrimp that doesn’t exist anywhere else in the world), but there are many other saline lakes around the world that are unique in their own way. These lakes provide important bird habitat and support similar ecosystems—some of them even have tufa towers!
The dry white lakebed shows how much Lake Aibi in China has shrunk. Photo courtesy of the NASA Earth Observatory; image by Robert Simmon and Adam Voiland using USGS Landsat data.
What sets Mono Lake apart, however, is an unrivaled level of protection and science-based advocacy. Many of Mono Lake’s sister lakes are imperiled due to agriculture, mineral extraction, climate change, and (more…)