Sunrise light on a grove of tufa towers emerging from the water of Mono Lake with soft green and dusty-red wild grasses in the foreground, Canada geese in the shallow water with reflections of the rocky towers, and desert hills in the distance.

Restoration work begins next to Mono Lake and Tioga Lodge

If you have driven by Mono Lake in the last week, you might have seen trucks and heavy equipment working just east of Highway 395 below the Tioga Lodge.

Restoration work has begun just east of Highway 395 below the Tioga Lodge, on a site that was damaged by illegal work in October 2016. Photo by Elin Ljung.

Restoration work has started to rehabilitate the site from damage caused by illegal grading and rerouting a stream from its original channel in October 2016.

Heavy machinery operators are using backhoes to sort debris piles into pieces of wood that can be chipped for mulch, and pieces that are too large to be chipped. The large pieces will be incorporated into the restoration in other ways. Photo by Elin Ljung.

Heavy equipment is sorting, shredding, and turning 30 debris piles left in the project site for the last two years into mulch. The debris piles represent an opportunity to restore biomass and nutrients to the project area. After this work is complete, the heavy equipment will be gone, and the project will next focus on returning Post Office Creek to its original channel as it flows to Mono Lake below the highway. Restoration work will continue over the next several years and includes active monitoring of restoration progress for five years. Stay tuned for more detailed information as it becomes available.

A bobcat with a masticator is used to chip small pieces of wood into mulch. Photo by Elin Ljung.