rock moving trail work wheelbarrow

08 Sep: Making up for Winter Damage with SEMBA and the Inyo National Forest

We went out with the Inyo National Forest and SEMBA (Sierra Eastside Mountain Bike Association) and repaired a section of the Lower Rock Creek Trail that was damaged by flooding this winter. Lower Rock Creek is a classic trail for mountain bike riding. While we had a beautiful day out there, and finished the job, it was really nice to spend a morning with really nice folks stepping up to care for a place they enjoy and love. Best way to make an impact on trails you enjoy? Join us on another trail event soon. Thanks to the Inyo National…

astra lincoln resting on tree

15 Aug: How Can We Love a Place?

Check out Trail Ambassador Astra’s intellectual exploration of connecting to a place: While leading my third “Wild Harvest” interpretive hike for FOI this summer, one of the participants mused about what’s underfoot. We were three-quarters of a mile up the Parker Bench Trail, pausing in the ecotone between sage steppe and forest riparian corridor. The group had just come to a stand of aspen, and we were discussing the interconnectedness of trees: how a web of fungi in the soil allows trees across species to share nutrients and knowledge amongst themselves for the betterment of the forest writ large. “There’s…

boy scouts shovel rocks at boardwalk convict lake

15 Aug: Boy Scout Troop Working Hard at Convict Lake

Thanks for all your hard work yesterday, Troop 350! The Convict Lake boardwalk is looking great.   High flows this summer left rocks and debris piled up against the boardwalk at the head of the lake. Troop 350 was able to clear a fifty-foot section of boardwalk so water can flow under it again! The boys were especially motivated by the challenge of removing several huge logs that had gotten jammed underneath the boardwalk, causing sediment and boulders to pile up around them. No logs were left by the time they were done! Thanks, Troop 350!

bighorn sheep kiosk

15 Aug: New Bighorn Sheep Kiosk in Pine Creek Climbing Area

Just outside of Bishop, Pine Creek Canyon offers some of the best rock climbing in the Eastern Sierra. It’s also critical habitat for a herd of about a hundred endangered Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep, for whom the steep walls provide protection from predators and a migration corridor between their summer and winter ranges. Today, representatives from Friends of the Inyo, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Access Fund, the Inyo National Forest, and the local climbing community met to install an informational kiosk at the canyon’s main climber parking lot. This sign will help teach visitors about the…

crosscut black and white volunteers

15 Aug: Getting Nostalgic in the Mammoth Lakes Basin with the Trail Ambassadors

Watching the Trail Ambassadors run the cross cut saw to remove a log from a trail in the Mammoth Lakes Basin put us in an old time kind of mood, so here’s pictures of them working in black and white. Look for the Trail Ambassadors on high country trails this summer, or join them for Trail Work Thursday or an interpretive hike.

ruby saw great

15 Aug: Trail Ambassadors in Little Lakes Valley

For a month now, Friends of the Inyo’s Eastern Sierra Trail Ambassadors have been on the ground, working hard to open up and clear out high country trails after an epic winter. One place they’ve really enjoyed working is Rock Creek and the trails leading out of Little Lakes Valley. On the way up to Ruby Lake, a few Whitebark pine fell across the trail and they spent an afternoon sawing them out. Check out photos below, and look for the Trail Ambassadors out on trails all summer long.

road less travelled crew

15 Aug: Youth volunteers bring a sense of wonder to Rock Creek

Watching the students’ ecstatic faces as they raced toward a muddy patch of snow on the Tamarack Bench trail, you might have thought this was the highlight of their summer. But the chance to lob pine-needled-filled snowballs at their counselors was just one of many bright moments during a weekend of trail stewardship with the youth adventure programs Rustic Pathways and Road Less Traveled. One student from New York City had never seen the stars before they appeared above her campsite on Crowley Lake. Several others hiked above 10,000 feet for the first time in their lives. For some, finding a robin’s nest…

june lake trails day parking lot

15 Aug: Eight years in a row, June Lake Trails Day makes a difference

The iconic scenery of the June Lake Loop was the perfect background for a morning of stewardship last Saturday. A partnership between Friends of the Inyo, June Lake Trails Committee, Mono County, and the Inyo National Forest, the eighth annual June Lake Trails Day brought together 36 volunteers from as far away as Reno and Arizona. Volunteers tackled a variety of projects on popular trails, from pulling weeds, picking up trash, and repainting signs along the Gull Lake trail to crosscutting fallen trees on the Yost Lake trail. Steep trails like the one to Fern and Yost Lakes are very…

bridgeport trails day volunteers

15 Aug: First Bridgeport Trails Day

At the head of the Bridgeport Valley, Twin Lakes is the gateway to a spectacular corner of the Northern Sierra. Climbers, skiers, backpackers, fly-fishers, kayakers, and campers visit the area and travel its trails. This year, we were excited to partner with Mono County and the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest to host the first annual Bridgeport Trails Day at Twin Lakes. Twenty-four hardy volunteers pitched in to pick up trash and fishing line, crosscut downed logs, brush the Cattle Creek trail and the Lake trail, and disguise illegal switchback cuts along the Horse Creek trail. In all, we maintained nearly 12,000…