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February 11, 2015

Sierra Happenings

Events and Activities

Warm up with a Hike!

Get the blood flowing on these chilly mornings by starting out your day with a hike at Placer Land Trust's beautiful Harvego Bear River Preserve Have you heard that spending time outdoors is a great way to deepen relationships? Bring your Valentine, or friends and family, along to test the theory yourself. Don't put it off, sign up now!

Date: February 15, 2015, 9am
Place: Harvego Bear River Preserve

Carson Valley Trails Association

This leisurely, historical snowshoe trek will be enjoyed by the entire family. While on the trail, you’ll meet John “Snowshoe” Thompson, the legendary “Mailman of the Sierra”. For nearly 20 years during the Gold and Silver Rushes of the mid-1800s, Snowshoe was the only winter link back and forth between Mormon Station (Genoa) and Hangtown (Placerville, CA). Snowshoe will amaze you with his stories and exploits from carrying the U.S. Mail on homemade skis through wintery blizzards and 90 miles of wilderness each way. Participants must provide their own snowshoes and equipment appropriate for traveling over snow. Dress appropriately for the weather and bring water. Hot chocolate will be provided after the trek. This event will take place with or without snow.

Date: February 22, 2-4 pm
Place: Fay-Luther Trailhead

Reclaiming the Sierra 2015

The Sierra Fund’s bi-annual conference, hosted at the heart of the glitter and devastation of what was California’s original Gold Rush, is the state’s primary venue for collaboration and action around addressing the ongoing effects of historic mining.

Date: April 20-21, 2015
Place: California State University Sacramento, CA

Job Announcements & Volunteer Opportunities

Tahoe RCD is Hiring!

Lake Tahoe Watercraft Inspection Program: Submit applications to by Friday March 20th. • Watercraft Inspectors • Outreach Specialist • Service Technician • Public Information Specialist
California Tahoe Conservancy/Tahoe RCD Field Crews: Submit applications to by Friday March 6th. • Restoration Crew Leader and Assistant Crew Leader • Restoration Crew • Land Management/Forestry Crew Leader and Assistant Crew Leader • Land Management/Forestry Crew
Download the PDF Application here.

Tahoe Institute for Natural Resources is Hiring an Outreach Manager!

To expand our reach and move the organization forward, we are developing a new, full-time staff position to manage TINS' outreach, citizen science, and volunteer programs. As this is a new position for TINS, the exact role and duties of the Outreach Manager will be developed based on the strengths and interests of the applicant and the needs of the Co-Executive Directors and TINS itself. To Apply: Please send cover letter, curriculum vitae, and 3 references to
Closing Date: 5 PM on Friday, February 27. Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible.


Bureau of Reclamation Releases Funding Opportunity for Title XVI Water Reclamation and Reuse Feasibility Studies

Funding Applications are due on March 3, 2015, at 4:00 p.m. Mountain Standard Time.
The Bureau of Reclamation is providing a funding opportunity for communities in the West which may be seeking new sources of water supplies using water recycling and reuse technologies. Funding made available will assist communities in determining whether water recycling and reuse projects are feasible. This funding opportunity is part of the Department of the Interior's WaterSMART initiative, which focuses on improving water conservation, sustainability and helping water resource managers make sound decisions about water use.


Sierra Nevada Alliance's 10th Annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour in South Lake Tahoe

NEW! Become a Sierra Keeper and receive two free VIP tickets!

Wild & Scenic On Tour South Lake Tahoe

Thursday, March 26, 2015 7:00 - 10:00 pm, Doors open at 6:00 MontBleu Showroom South Lake Tahoe, CA
Presented by the Sierra Nevada Alliance, South Tahoe Earth Day Committee & Patagonia Lake Tahoe

The Sierra Nevada Alliance is excited to again host this inspiring event with the South Lake Tahoe Earth Day Committee and Patagonia Lake Tahoe for our 10th Annual Film Festival!

The Wild and Scenic Film Festival combines award winning environmental and adventure films with the energy of local activism. Each year we choose powerful environmental and adventure films so that attendees are inspired to take further action regarding issues that impact our environment, ourselves and our world.

The policy of the Resource is to include articles that appear in local or major media outlets relevant to Sierra conservation. We also include news releases, event notices, funding opportunities and job announcements sent to us from our Member Groups and friends. If you as a reader disagree with the content of a submission we encourage you to submit a letter to the editor of the issuing publication to reach the broader audience who read the article. You are welcome to forward your letter to the editor to the Alliance for inclusion in our new "Letters to the Resource" section. We also invite Letters to the Resource to be directly submitted on any article with which you're concerned.

Newsletter contents prepared by Kelly Miller.
If you have articles, events or announcements that you would like included in this newsletter or if you have feedback, please email

Recent News

Climate Change

Climate models don't over-predict warming, study shows
Sacramento Bee, Geoffrey Mohan, 1/28/15

Sierra Link: This study found that longer periods of climate models are more accurate but overall the models are accurate and unbiased. What does that mean for the changing climate and snowpack in the Sierra?


Residents return to Sierra Nevada towns charred by wildfire
Reno Gazette-Journal, Michelle Rindels, 2/9/15

Sierra Link: The Swall Meadows and Paradise communities in the Eastern Sierra was hit hard by a wildfire that spread through extremely dry timber brush. The on going drought has made wildfires more common in the Sierra and throughout the West. If you’d like to help with a donation for those affected by the fire, visit the Round Fire Relief gofundme website.


Panel urges overhaul of California parks system
Sacramento Bee, David Siders, 1/29/15

Sierra Link: John Laird, secretary of California Natural Resources Agency (and keynote speaker at the Sierra Nevada Alliance’s 18th annual conference!) praised the newly published report from the Parks Forward Commission to transform our state parks so they are accessible to all Californians, engage younger generations and promote healthy lifestyles and communities.

Yosemite fees go up March 1 — other national parks to follow
SF Gate, Kurtis Alexander, 2/2/15

Sierra Link: With Yosemite entrance fees increasing, this could bring much needed revenue to the park for maintenance and restoration work. With other parks following suit—some in the Sierra, will there be a change in the number of visitors to the parks?


Mapping Earth's hidden water
High Country News, Sarah Tory, 1/28/15

Sierra Link: With NASA launching the Soil Moisture Active Passive instrument (SMAP) 426 miles above the Earth, scientists will be able to better understand flood events, plant growth and daily weather. This information is useful information for the Sierra and the ongoing drought in the Western US.

As water demand slows, utilities seek new solutions
High Country News, Sarah Tory, 1/30/14

Sierra Link: With drought looming, utility districts are looking for new solutions to a growing population and water demand. Some utilities in Colorado have restructured pricing of water rates and provided incentives for using less water, a great case study for the Sierra.

Ranchers Bouncing Back, But Still Feel Effects Of Drought
Capital Public Radio, Amy Quinton, 2/11/15

Sierra Link: Although this year is looking better than last, the drought in California has had a huge impact on many of the farmers and ranchers in the state and the Sierra Foothills.


Monarch butterfly population makes a modest rebound
SF Gate, Peter Fimrite, 1/27/15

Sierra Link: Entomologists blame the plummeting monarch butterfly population on logging in Mexico, climate change and the mass destruction of the milkweed plant along its migration route in the United States. With a modest rebound this year, what could this mean for a warming Sierra?

Rare Sierra Nevada red fox spotted in Yosemite park
SF Gate, Associated Press, 1/28/15

Sierra Link: The Sierra Nevada Red Fox has been spotted for the first time in 100 years. With likely fewer than 50 left in North America, scientists and officials hope that the sighting of the fox can bring awareness and more funding for more studies on the species. It may also mean that Yosemite’s landscapes are providing a protected habitat that might allow the Sierra Nevada red fox to make a comeback.

Other Articles

Federal fracking rules due out soon
The Hill, Timothy Cama, 2/2/15

Sierra Link: Although California has some fracking rules and regulations in place and federal regulations and guidelines are coming out soon.

Dianne Feinstein pushes California desert protection
The Desert Sun, Bill Theobald, 2/10/15

Sierra Link: With much of the Eastern Sierra encompassing the California desert, Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s proposal will have a huge impact on the conservation and resources allocated to the Eastern Sierra.

Sierra Nevada Alliance

P.O. Box 7989
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96158

phone: 530.542.4546

Since 1993 the Sierra Nevada Alliance has been protecting and restoring Sierra lands, water, wildlife and communities. The regional climate change program shapes and implements county and regional resource plans that promote smart land use, incorporate sustainable water management practices, aggressively reduce greenhouse gases and adapt to climate change.