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All High Sierra National Forests


An entry that applies to backpacking across, or a rule or condition that pertains to all of our High Sierra Nevada National Forests.

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February of 2019 All High Sierra Outdoors & Nature News Index sticky icon

 

Updated
February 23, 2019

 

LATEST HIGH SIERRA TRAIL NEWS
BELOW

 

LATEST HIGH SIERRA GENERAL NEWS
BELOW

 

LAST MONTHS' NEWS

 

Latest
High Sierra Backpacker's News
 Man and Nature

 
February, 2019

Happenings in the relationship between Man and Nature affecting our hike down life's trail through both worlds. We study both the reality created by humans and the uncreated reality reflected in, and tended by Nature. 

The vast majority of our reporting on Nature comes from the American Association of Scientists summarizations of each day's bounty of the peer-reviewed research published by academic institutions and journals around the world.

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Who’s Responsible for Your Mountain Safety? sticky icon

MOUNTAIN SAFETY & WILDERNESS ETHICS

The Folks Who Pull Us Out:
California Mountain Rescue Association

MRA met in Mammoth Lakes California to test in "Snow and Ice" for their yearly Re-Accreditation test, hosted in 2016 by Inyo County Search and Rescue. Credit Adorabutton.
MRA met in Mammoth Lakes California in 2016 to test in "Snow and Ice" for their yearly Re-Accreditation test, hosted by Inyo County SAR. Map. Photo Credit, Adorabutton, Wiki.

 

Who’s Responsible for Your Mountain Safety?

Should we stop rescuing people in wilderness?
Adirondack Explorer, February 12, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

New York Wilderness
New York’S 288 conservation officers and 134 forest rangers participated in 346 search-and-rescue missions in 2018.

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Winter 2019 Status: Tropical Transport & Storms of February 13 sticky icon

STATUS of the WINTER of 2019

 

NASA MODIS reveals the Instantly Intense Winter of 2019
NASA MODIS reveals the Instantly Intense Winter of 2019, Credit NASA, MODIS team.
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) acquired these natural-color images of the difference a year makes; the Sierra Nevada on February 15, 2018, and February 15 of 2019. Credit NASA, MODIS team.

Also check-out MODIS, Feb 13, 2015

Scroll the Year on MODIS above to review Today's Sierra,
especially the 11th.

 

Tropical Transport & Storms of February 13

A Strong Start to Sierra Snowpack,
NASA Earth Observatory, February 13, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

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2019 Tree Mortality Report: Forest Succession Underway, Continuing Through 2018 sticky icon

FOREST, TREES, & CLIMATE

Great Swaths of Ultra-Dry Death Cut the Sierra Forests
 UC Merced
Many trees in the Sierra have died in the past few years because of drought. From, Can our forests survive the next drought? Credit: UC Merced.

 

Forest Succession Underway, Continuing

Survey Finds 18 Million Trees Died in California in 2018,
US Forest Service, Feburary 11, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Tree Mortality Continues
“The USDA Forest Service announced today that an additional 18 million trees, mostly conifers, died in California since fall 2017.”

California Count
“Over 147 million trees have died across 9.7 million acres of federal, state, local and private lands in California since the drought began in 2010.”

Over, but Extreme Weather Continues...
“While the 2016-2017 winter officially ended California’s drought, below-average precipitation recorded in 2017-2018 slowed the recovery of the state’s surviving trees.”

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ALL July 2018 High Sierra TRAIL NEWS sticky icon

 

Basic Sources of July 2018 High Sierra Trail News

 

All July 2018 Trail News

 

 

Mountain Safety

 

Fire Information

 

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High Sierra Mountain Safety. Hazards & Alerts: Winter of 2018 sticky icon

 

 

Hazards & Alerts: High Sierra Winter of 2018

 Also See
General
Observation & Analysis

THE WINTER of 2018
 

Previous Report
Fall 2017 Hazards & Alerts

 

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2018 News of Health Science, Fitness, the Human Past, Potential & Pitfalls for Backpackers sticky icon

 

 

Health, Fitness, & The Human Condition 
News and Science

LAST
Updated

December 27, 2018

 

January 1, 2018 & 19:
HAPPY NEW YEARS!

  

 

2018 News Below

 

Later Health News
Health & Fitness News, 2019

Earlier Health News
Health & Fitness News, 2015-2017

  

 

Our goal here is to provide the best information how to deal with internal and external threats to your health. But why?

 

FIELD GRADE
Our greater goal is to attain "Field Conditioning." Field Conditioning is an advanced state of fitness where we are capable of moving and operating effectively across great distances over all types of terrain, at high or low altitude, in hot, cold, wet, or dry conditions over extended time spans, under all seasonal conditions, while carrying the weight required to withstand these environmental conditions, feed ourselves well, and safely reach our goal. 

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Bear News and Research sticky icon

 

The repository of Bear news, research, and stories we come across.

I've written about my experiences with High Sierra Black Bear Behavior in the Trail and Camp Skills section of the Trail Guide. Remember, bears act differently in different locations, and can be quite unpredictable in most situations.

Most times we can figure out what they want, and that typically boils down to two things: Food, and/or to be "left alone." Bears have personalities and feelings, which make them almost as unpredictable as that most deadly of beasts, humans. Almost...

 

   Latest Update

 

 October 26, 2018

BEARS

How to Get Along with Bears

Conservationists predict bear/human conflict hot-spots

 

 

 

 July 10

 

Yosemite Bear Activity

Summer 2018

Yosemite Bear Facts, June 17 – June 30, 2018

 

 

 

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All BUGS, SPIDERS & Other Mountain INSECT NEWS sticky icon

The World of Insects and the Spiders that Eat Them

We've got worlds of wonder in the High Sierra looking in any direction. The ground and sky are full of vibrant insect communities. Some, like the mosquitoes, are winged devils. Others are winged delights. On the ground we find spiders trying to catch and eat them all.

This forum started out as the Spider Forum, but has been expanded to include the various insects we encounter that are not Bees, Butterflies, and Mosquitoes, which have their own dedicated pages.

Spiders
&
Other
High Sierra Insects

IDENTIFICATION

 

Greg Lasley
SPIDERS

 

Greg Lasley
INSECTS

 

Insect Societies

Spider Sites Index
arachnology.be


SpiderIdentification.org

American Arachnological Society

 

How Ticks Work

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HIGH SIERRA BIRD NEWS and IDENTIFICATION GUIDES sticky icon

High Sierra Plant and Animal Identification Guides

 Quick Reference 
High Sierra Bird Guides

EXCELLENT
INTERNET
IDENTIFICATION RESOURCES

BirdMom
Excellent observer of Sierra Nevada from her foothill perch. Flower identification by color. RIP Birdmom, the world is a little less kind and observant without you.
West Sierra Flank Birding List.

High Sierra Wildflowers, too!

 
 

Graeme Colmer's
Handy List of Images-Identifications of Sierra Birds

A Handy Thing

 

Greg Lasley
Nature Photography
Birds of North America

 

Birds,
Species List,
Yosemite
.
National Park Service.

  

Standard Guides

Birdwatcher's Digest Bird ID Guide

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Safety First! First Aid Kit for High Sierra Backpackers sticky icon

 Spring has come to the eastern Sierras and time to spring clean the first aid kit. Alex has provided excellent information about his first aid kit in the gear list. I am an avid day hiker, so the contents of my bag are a bit different. I also have extensive medical training and access to prescription drugs, so I try to keep stuff to help out others on the trail. This is the time of year I pull the first aid kit from the depths of my day pack and inspect and refill the contents.

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All News about High Sierra Trees and Plants sticky icon

All Tree News
Generally Covering the Plant World

 

 TREE & PLANT
NEWS

2015 through 2018

 2018

Next Year's Tree & Plant News
2019

 

All
High Sierra Fire and Smoke Information

High Sierra Tree Identification Resources

Tree Forum

 


The Brethren

FERGUSON FIRE

Bottom: 2015

Last
Updated

2018

December 21

PLANTS, TREES, WEATHER, WATER, & FORESTS

Observing the Decline of the Doomed Forests in the Southwestern US

Southwest forest trees will grow much slower in the 21st century

 

 

 

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News of Fish, Water, Oceans, Ice, and People sticky icon

This is the High Sierra
Fish &
 Water News

The Fish News has been stretching into Fish & River News, now into covering Water Issues generally.

 

Next
2018 Water and Fish News

 

Below
June 2015
to
December 28, 2017

Last Updated
December 28, 2017:

 

Nestle Water Heist Update

State DWR & NPR Discover Theivery, Yawn, Don't Care, Will Issue Permit

 

 

 

December 24

The Great Water Ripoff Advances

SoCal will Grow at All Costs to Man & Nature

 

 

Symbolic of the Corporate Ripoff

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Bee News sticky icon

Bee News 

BEE WORRIED

Insect Identification

Latest All Bug News

 

BEE NEWS

THE BUZZ

Updated

2019

 

February 23

THE BUZZ

Biggest Bee, Thought Lost, Rediscovered

World's Biggest Bee Found in Indonesian Jungles

 

 

THE BUZZ

Dancing Bees: Are Humans Killing the Waggle Dance?

Honeybees' Waggle Dance no longer Useful in Some Cultivated Landscapes

 

 

 

February 10

 

THE BUZZ

Bee More Understanding

How bees Say Cool on Hot Summer Days

 

 

 

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High Sierra Nevada Backpacker and Hiker Geology Sources, Information, NEWS, and Resources sticky icon

This is the "go to" general page for geological sources, resources, and information.  For now we can use it to store information before it's sorted any further or lost to indexing.

Good
High Sierra Geology Introductory Texts, Links, & Resources

On the Trail Guide

Weather is the Speed of Life.
We consider the interrelationship between geological and biological processes.

 

Volcanic Tomb for a Granite Range.
We observe the slow reemergence of ancient hard granites as thousands of years of erosion scour the soft volcanic material off the buried High Sierra granite landscapes underneath.

 

Recent Discoveries.
A short set of links to a series of articles explaining the recent evolution of our understanding of the complex geology of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, but the latest information from 2015 to 2018 is chronologically listed below.

 

GEOLOGICAL RESOURCES

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Elevation Keys Diverse Pika Population Responses to Changing Climate

SMALL SIERRA NEVADA MAMMALS

American Pika
American Pika, Ecological Society of America, Photo credit to, courtesy of, Shana Weber.
 With their sensitivity to overheating, pikas are an indicator species for how climate change may affect mountain-dwelling wildlife.
Ecological Society of America, Photo credit to, courtesy of, Shana Weber.

 

Elevation Keys Diverse Pika Population Responses to Changing Climate

Pika Survival Rates Dry Up with Low Moisture,
Ecological Society of America, February 4, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

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The Character and Evolution of the High Sierra Winter into the Spring of 2019

 

SETTING a SEASONAL “MARKER”

Almost Dead-Average Snowpack

February 2, 2019
The salient point today, the second of February, is we’ve got a seasonal normal, “average,” snow pack (calendar), while looking at a set of moderately powerful storms coming through, all playing out in the wake of the disruptions created by the great movement of the Polar Vortex, off the top of the planet to center its spin over the North end of Hudson’s Bay, over the past couple of weeks.

Today we can see the Polar Vortex has split into thee, "vortexes," with the one over Hudson's Bay, the one that brought so much frigid Arctic cold air to the South, has weakened in favor of the Vortex to its North:

 

High Altitude View of the Polar Vortex(es)
EARTH

10 hPa, roughly 84,998.2 feet of elevation.

A rough table of pressures and altitudes.

 

NEXT?
Where does, “it,” our Seasonal Transition into Spring, go from, “here?”

Alex Wierbinski's picture

January of 2019 All High Sierra Outdoors & Nature News Index

 

LAST
Updated

January 31, 2019

 

LATEST HIGH SIERRA TRAIL NEWS
BELOW

 

LATEST HIGH SIERRA GENERAL NEWS
BELOW

 

NEXT MONTHS' NEWS

LAST MONTHS' NEWS

 

Latest
High Sierra Backpacker's News
 Man and Nature

 
January, 2019

Happenings in the relationship between Man and Nature affecting our hike down life's trail through both worlds. We study both the reality created by humans and the uncreated reality reflected in, and tended by Nature. 

The vast majority of our reporting on Nature comes from the American Association of Scientists summarizations of each day's bounty of the peer-reviewed research published by academic institutions and journals around the world.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

WINTER 2019 WEATHER FORECAST, THE POLAR VORTEX, and accessing the WINTER WONDERLAND

WINTER WEATHER, THE POLAR VORTEX, and the WINTER WONDERLAND

Enjoy the Show and the Snow

Wet and stormy week ahead for all of California; Dipole pattern to follow,
Weather West, January 13, 2019.

MAIN POINTS

Recap of the Season, so far.

View of the Series of Storms we just experienced-are experiencing.

Analysis of Saturated Soils-Wildfire Mud flow Dangers

 

>> KEY POINT <<

Medium-to-Long Forecast

“Unusually strong consensus regarding development of “Warm West/Cool East” pattern”

Blocking Ridge Returns
“...there is rather striking multi-model ensemble agreement (dare I say unanimity?) that a high-amplitude blocking pattern will develop across much of the Northern Hemisphere during the second half of January, and perhaps persisting for weeks (at least through mid-February).”

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41% Sierra & Rocky Mountains Snow Pack Loss since ‘82

ECO-CRASHING NEWS: WEATHER, WATER, and MASSIVE GROWTH

Science in Action
Measuring snowpack in a "snow pit" along Arizona's Mogollon Rim during a snow survey in 2017. Credit Patrick Broxton, copyright 2017.
Measuring snowpack in a "snow pit" along Arizona's Mogollon Rim during a snow survey in 2017. Credit Patrick Broxton, copyright 2017.

Results

41% Snow Pack Loss Since ‘82,

79% of that Gone by 2100

 

Research

Declining snowpack over western US mapped at a finer scale,
University of Arizona, December 12, 2018

Original Research Report Above, for the Article Below

 

The Popular Press

As Snow Disappears, the Sierras and Rockies Are Shrinking,
Wired, December 12, 2018.

MAIN POINTS

“...the High Sierra and the Rockies are, in effect, shrinking, according to a new analysis of the nation’s snowpack over the past 36 years.”

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