Tag: San Bernardino National Forest

The Trouble With Conifers

Big Bear City, CA, January 16, 2014 – For all the work trees do to clean our air, pollinating trees are the bane of allergy sufferers. This week, the unseasonably warm weather and windy conditions are making the situation worse. Several websites that rate pollen levels on a scale from 1 to 12 show Big Bear averaging 9.1 over the next few days, with two of the biggest culprits being cedar and juniper. Friday will score the highest on the allergy index at 9.9. Pollen counts tend to be highest early in the morning on warm, breezy days and lowest during chilly, wet periods. Normally, Big Bear would see about 4.33” of rain during January, along with 14.2” of snow. But the area has seen zero precipitation so far, and none is expected by the end of the month. The National Institute of Health says approximately 35 million Americans complain of respiratory symptoms from pollen allergies. People with the most severe symptoms may want to avoid travel during sunny, windy weather, and wear face masks when working...

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Local Forests Under Fire Weather Watch

San Bernardino National Forest, January 13, 2014 – The National Weather Service has issued a Fire Weather Watch throughout the Inland Empire due to extremely low humidity. A Fire Weather Watch indicates critically dry conditions that dangerously increase the risk of wildfire. Humidity could dip into single digits with little recovery overnight, especially in wind-prone areas through and below passes and canyons, which could see gusts up to 40 miles per hour. Wildfires burned over 4 million acres across the country in 2013; the continued lack of precipitation in our local mountains should be a red flag to residents and visitors alike. Remember: Never toss burning cigarettes out into dry brush areas. Completely extinguish any campfires and douse them with water so they cannot relight. Be cautious with mowing or weed-wacking equipment on dry brush – one spark can ignite a blaze.  ...

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Forest Visitors to be Surveyed on Activities and Satisfaction

Big Bear Valley, CA, October 4, 2013 – Federal furloughs notwithstanding, the San Bernardino National Forest will be participating in a one-year visitor survey called the National Visitor Use Monitoring (NVUM). This survey process, done in partnership with the University of California at San Marcos, will be conducted  through September 30, 2014. The interviewers will be stationed in orange vests at key forest roads or exits from recreation areas, and tally the number of people per vehicle and ask visitors a few basic questions, including: – What activities did you participate in? – How long did you stay? – How satisfied are you with the facilities? – Where are you from? The information will be analyzed at a national tabulation center, summarized and published along with other national forests. This year-long study, which is performed every four to five years, is used by Congress, agency planners and those who study national visitor and recreation trends. It may also be used as part of the basis for allocating funding to recreation programs. The last sampling showed that the San Bernardino National Forest was visited approximately 2.4 million times for recreation in 2009, with over 76% of those visits made for physical activity. It was also found that more than half of the visitors live within 50 miles of the forest, and that 29% of visitors stayed overnight in a US Forest Service...

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This Saturday, Forget the Forest Fees

San Bernardino National Forest, September 27, 2013 – The San Bernardino National Forest is offering a fee-free day this Saturday in conjunction with the 20th annual National Public Lands Day. On September 28, no Adventure Pass will be required for use of Standard Amenity Fee sites. National Public Lands Day is the nation’s largest, single-day volunteer effort for public lands, with more than 170,000 volunteers expected to participate around the country this year. Last year on this day, volunteers collected an estimated 500 tons of trash and 23,000 pounds of invasive plants, planted 100,000 trees and other plants and built or maintained 1,500 miles of trails. San Bernardino National Forest Supervisor Jody Noiron said, “National Public Lands Day is a good day to enjoy the great outdoors, both by visiting the national forest and taking part in one of the many volunteer opportunities around the forest.” Here are a couple of local Forest Service activities: Big Bear, Greenthumbs Ecological Restoration Project. Work will consist of seed collection, native shrub and tree planting and the scattering of woody debris to disguise unauthorized routes. Volunteers will meet at the Big Bear Discovery Center at 9:00 a.m. on September 28 and caravan to Holcomb Valley for ecological restoration activities until 3pm. Lunch will be provided through a sponsorship with REI. All supplies and gloves will be provided.  Volunteers are requested to wear long pants and tennis shoes or boots.  Sunscreen and...

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Discovery Center Breaks New Ground

Fawnskin, CA, August 30, 2013 — The Big Bear Discovery Center has long been an education portal to the outdoors. Now, it is the first certified Nature Explore Classroom in a U.S. National Forest. Nature Explore Classrooms are part of a collaborative project of the Arbor Day Foundation and the Dimensions Educational Research Foundation developed in response to the growing disconnect between children and nature. Certified classrooms help fill that void by integrating research-based outdoor learning opportunities into children’s daily lives. This national certification was awarded by the Arbor Day Foundation — a conservation and education organization of one million members — and the Dimensions Educational Research Foundation, whose mission  is to inspire children, families and educators to connect more deeply with the world around them by providing innovative, research-based programs and resources. Outdoor classrooms designed according to standards and principles described in Dimensions Educational Research Foundation’s Learning With Nature Idea Book are eligible to become certified Nature Explore Classrooms, which are being developed across the country. They offer interactive elements such as musical instruments made of natural materials, garden or pathway areas and natural materials for building and creating art. Activities are designed to enhance concentration, develop creativity and problem-solving, relieve stress and improve skills in many areas of development. The Big Bear Discovery Center is co-managed by the nonprofit Southern California Mountains Foundation. Stacy Gorin, Director of Operations for the Foundation, said, “We are one...

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