Archive - Jun 15, 2012
Yosemite National Park Fire Managers are planning a prescribed fire in the
northwestern portion of the park near the Big Oak Flat Entrance Station on
Highway 120 (Big Oak Flat Road) on Tuesday, June 19, 2012.
The ignition of the fire is dependent on weather conditions. The total prescribed burn area will include 220 acres and be split into two units. The prescribed
area is at the optimal fuel moisture level to successfully complete the
project. This will be the first prescribed burn of the 2012 fire season.
On June 14, 2012, the Mono County Sheriff Search and Rescue (SAR) Team responded to a call for help of two hikers who had lost their trail.
A father and his 17 year-old son from Ohio went on a day hike over Mammoth Pass to the Devils Postpile National Monument. While returning to their vehicle at Horseshoe Lake, they lost the trail and were not able to find their way back.
When the axe fell on Bill Manning, it was quiet. When it fell on Dave Beck, it was even more so.
Both longtime Mammoth managers lost their positions this week as part of a town reorganization that eliminated the Airport Manager/Transit Coordinator job (Manning) and the Maintenance Superintendent job (Beck).
Rather than to wait until the July 1 budget took effect, both left immediately, with severance packages in hand.
â€śIt wasnâ€™t about politics,â€ť said Town Manager Dave Wilbrecht. â€śIt happened because our resources are so tight.â€ť
Last winterâ€™s big windstormâ€”the one that took down tens of thousands of trees in the Reds Valley/Devils Postpile Area, now has a name.
It is now known by the National Weather Service as â€śThe Devils Windstorm,â€ť and for good reason.
â€śCan you imagine being in this storm?â€ť said Rhett Milne, a NWS meteorologist who on Monday gave a lecture on the Nov. 30-Dec. 1 event at the Forest Service Auditorium in Mammoth. Milne is the â€śextreme weather events coordinatorâ€ť for Southern Nevada and Eastern California.
Considering the grand tapestry of life here on this blue-green Earth, the fate of one little animal species might not seem like that big of a deal.
After all, species go extinct every day.
But think of it from the human point of view.
How would you feel if you were a species on the very brink of extinctionâ€”only 20 or so remaining individuals in one tiny band in one place in the worldâ€” and you suddenly found you were not alone, that there were more of you out there?
For the many bird lovers out there, the biggest bird celebration of the year in the Eastern Sierra kicks off this week, as Lee Vining and the Mono Basin gear up for the 11th annual Mono Basin Bird Chautauqua.
There will be 80 different events offered by 45 different presenters Friday through Sunday, June 15-17.
Local gallery Bluebird Imaging had its official ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday evening. The gallery, owned and operated by husband-and-wife duo Kendra Knight and Aaron Horowitz, opened at its new location in the Mammoth Luxury Outlet Mall.
Itâ€™s a new venue for an established businessâ€”Bluebird Imaging has been around for six years, tucked away in the middle of the Industrial Park. In its current location, itâ€™s far easier for the public to track down (in Suite Q3 of the mall), directly adjacent to the Mono Council for the Arts gallery.
Not many people think of cattle and alfalfa as a Mono County thing. Mountains and ski lifts, hiking and snowboarding, biking and running, sure.
Those bovines you see as you drive past the airport on the way to Crowley Lake grazing in the rising sun? They are far more than something iconic and Western and rustic to look at.
Those cattle are worth millions of dollars.
Those green, verdant fields you see up by Bridgeport, back-dropped by the towering Sawtooth ridge that feed them?
The moment the road to Reds Meadow opens every summer, itâ€™s like a green light goes on. Mammothâ€™s economy jumps into hyperdrive and doesnâ€™t slow again until Labor Day.
An average of about 100,000 visitors come through Mammoth just to get to the Reds Meadow valley, many bound for the Devils Postpile National Monument. They spend about $2.8 million every summer in Mammoth and the surrounding communities.
Itâ€™s a big number and some might say Reds Meadow is to Mammoth summers what Mammoth Mountain is to Mammoth winters.
Itâ€™s not unusual that Mammoth Parks Superintendent Dennis Rottner has challenges drop in his lap.
But when those droppings are large, round, smelly, cowpies, and theyâ€™re blocking the baseball infields and outfields at the Whitmore Ballfields, thatâ€™s an udderly different situation.
â€śWe have a cow issue,â€ť Rottner deadpanned in front of the Recreation Commission on Tuesday afternoon.
Said Rec Commssion Commission Chair Bill Sauser, â€śThe cattle kind?â€ť
Mono County Supervisor Larry Johnstonâ€™s hopes that Mono County would reduce all the fees it charges county residents for services such as building permits by 10 percent fell on deaf ears at Tuesdayâ€™s board meeting.
Johnston said the vote, a 4-1 decision that adopted a package of fees, some of which were reduced but not all, was a disappointment.
â€śI would have liked to have supported some of the reductions that were in the package, but because it was all offered in a package deal, I didnâ€™t have the opportunity,â€ť he said.
The battle for Mammoth Creekâ€™s water rights continued this Thursday, just as the Mammoth Times went to press.
Mammoth Community Water District and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power met via conference calls to consider each partyâ€™s administrative record and to discuss dates for future court hearings.
The fight has moved from administrative to political, according to the water districtâ€™s general manager, Greg Norby.
â€śThe Los Angeles City Council met in closed session on Tuesday to talk about this issue,â€ť he said Thursday.
There is still no conclusion as to how Mono County will fill the recently vacated county assessor seat after Assessor Jody Henning has turned in her resignation letter.
The county supervisors talked about the subject at length Tuesday, considering everything from filling the position with a qualified assistant assessor (the countyâ€™s assistant assessor, Chris Lyons, also resigned when Henning did) to holding a special election to fill the assessorâ€™s seat.