Archive - 2013
Forest makes plans for the next 20 years
Much of what makes the Eastern Sierra the Eastern Sierra—its high granite peaks, its mountain creeks, its wildlife, and wildness—is under the management of the Inyo National Forest, and now the agency wants help from the public figuring out how to manage it for another 20 years.
To that end, forest planners are working on a new revision of the existing forest plan that they hope will keep the forest alive and thriving.
Deadlines placed for June, July
Mammoth’s town council last week set July 3 as a deadline for businesses wishing to protest the creation of a revenue-generating Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID).
The July date would be the end of a 45-day period that is required under California state law.
The TBID, which asks businesses to pony up a percentage of sales for a five-year period, has been prodded along by Mammoth Lakes Tourism Executive Director John Urdi.
Drought could damage ranchers for years
The rich and fertile irrigated meadows and croplands that surround the small towns of Mono County are more than a pretty foreground to the towering Sierra—they provide the second greatest economic engine the region has, second only to tourism.
Cattle, sheep, garlic, onions, carrots, alfalfa, even wine grapes—yes, grapes—grow here, to the tune of about $77 million dollars.
It’s more than that, however.
Most attractions open for Memorial Day
â€¨The Inyo National Forest plans to open several popular high-country destinations for the Memorial Day Weekend due to the unusually dry winter and spring this year.
Normally, the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, Reds Meadow, and the upper Mammoth Lakes Basin areas are covered in snow until June.
This year, they will all be opening for the weekend.
Bishop takes center stage
While famous for its annual tribute to a four-footed hero of the American West, Bishop is actually one of four cities in the U.S. that hosts a multi-day celebration in honor of the mule.
Bishop isn’t even the only “self-proclaimed Mule Capitol of the World,” with Columbia, Tenn. also laying claim to the title.
But Bishop’s annual Mule Days Celebration has the others beat when it comes to variety, quality, and prestige.
Would require resorts to report on plans
In a vote along party lines, the California State Senate on Monday, May 13, passed a bill requiring all ski resorts in the state to prepare and make public their safety plans.
The legislation, introduced by State Sen. Bill Monning (D-Carmel), passed on its third reading, 24-8, with six senators abstaining.
It would require every ski resort in the state to prepare an annual safety plan and, upon request, make the safety plan available to the public the same day the request is received.
Two-hour hike turns into overnight misadventure
It was supposed to be a two-to-three hour hike—a ramble, really, nothing much more than a walk in the woods.
But for a 63-year-old Merced man, a hike out of the Horseshoe Lake trailhead last weekend turned into a nightmare series of bad decisions that left him bruised, scarred, tired, and cold.
“It was like the Minnow on Gilligan’s Island,” said Gary Walker. “A two-hour tour.”
At least Gilligan found an island.
Jim Leddy, Sonoma County deputy administrator, takes over June 4
Mono County hired a new County Administrative Officer (CAO), according to the Mono County Board of Supervisors.
The board announced Tuesday, May 21, it selected Jim Leddy, the current Deputy County Administrator/Community and Government Affairs Manager for Sonoma County, to be the new CAO for Mono County.
The push targets infractions as far back as 20 years, levies a $300 fee
A renewed and “enhanced” attempt to collect delinquent fines for court infractions could bring millions of dollars into Mono County and Superior Court coffers—and create an unexpected headache for those who didn’t pay their fees or failed to appear in court.
A 63-year-old overdue hiker, a Merced man missing since May 18, was found in the Reds Meadow area Sunday, May 19, after spending the night in the valley and getting lost while trying to reach Bishop.
On Saturday, May 18, at approximately 8 p.m., Mono County Sheriffâ€™s Dispatch received a call regarding an overdue hiker in the Horseshoe Lake area, according to a sheriff's department news release.
"A 63-year-old hiker from Merced was reported overdue by his son when he didnâ€™t return after a 3-4 hour hike," the news release states.
Mono County has hired a new County Administrative Officer (CAO), according to the Mono County Board of Supervisors.
According to a news release issued by the board of supervisors on May 21, Tuesday, Jim Leddy, the current Deputy County Administrator/Community and Government Affairs Manager for Sonoma County, will begin his service in Mono County on June 4, with a salary of $160,000.
"The selection follows an extensive recruitment process begun in January and guided by the Boardâ€™s efforts to strengthen strategic planning for the county," the news release states.
County of Mono could save about $2.8 million
Mono County’s much-loved but expensive county paramedic program might get a little less expensive after the paramedics offered a series of cost-cutting measures Tuesday, May 14.
Brent Truax, erstwhile GM of the Westin-Monache Resort, is now GM of the Sierra Nevada Resorton Old Mammoth Road, with Rhonda Duggancontinuing as director of marketing and sales. …
Speaking of the Denver-based Westin, the Mammoth property is minus a general manager, an executive chef, a rooms manager, a restaurant managerand a director of sales. …
Measure R tax funds would pay for infrastructure
A community garden at Mammoth Creek Park, funded with Measure R recreation-based tax dollars, received warm support from the town’s Recreation Commission this past week.
What it did not get, however, was a full-fledged blessing in terms of actual dollars.
The cables on Half Dome in Yosemite National Park will be in place and open for the season on Friday, May 24, weather permitting, park officials announced this past week.