DEATH VALLEY, CA – National Park Service rangers recently raided an illegal marijuana growing operation in Death Valley National Park.
Hikers encountered three men installing irrigation hose near a spring in Hanaupah Canyon. The hikers initially thought the men were working on a National Park Service (NPS) project, so they asked them what they were doing. One of the men responded, “Growing marijuana. You won’t tell the cops, will you?”
National Park Service and Bureau of Land Management rangers raided the site on July 3. The rangers found over 4,000 marijuana plants in four garden plots. No workers were on location at the time of the raid.
Superintendent Mike Reynolds said, “Even though California and Nevada have passed laws legalizing marijuana sale, it remains illegal at the federal level. Our biggest concerns in Death Valley are that grow sites decimate vegetation around springs, poison wildlife, and are dangerous for the public.”
Native plants in lush areas near desert springs provide critical habitat and food for bighorn sheep, birds, and other wildlife. The workers had cleared away vegetation to make room for their crops. Each marijuana plant can use up to 6 gallons of water per day, which was delivered by a network of irrigation tubing from the springs. The rangers’ greatest concern was finding carbofuran, a pesticide which is highly toxic to humans and wildlife.
People hiking to infrequently-visited regions of Death Valley National Park should be aware of the risk of finding a marijuana grow site, which could be defended by the growers. Hikers should be on the alert for irrigation hose, fertilizer, signs of digging, unusual litter, and anything or anyone that seems out of place. If a hiker finds a grow site, he or she should leave the site as quickly as possible and notify the NPS at 760-786-2330.
Hiking to popular destinations remains safe, such as Golden Canyon, Mosaic Canyon, and Telescope Peak.
Mammoth Lakes, Calif. (July 5, 2018) — In less than five weeks Mammoth Lakes Tourism and Mammoth Resorts have secured a new airline carrier for the Mammoth Lakes to Los Angeles flight route.
United Airlines will add new service to Mammoth Lakes, California from its Los Angeles hub at LAX this winter. The airline will offer service beginning Dec. 1, 2018 using a 70-seat Bombardier CRJ700. Flights will run once daily, year round.
As the third largest carrier in the world, United brings a remarkably large hub and spoke system to the table, making Mammoth Lakes more accessible to visitors across the country and around the globe.
“United Airlines has been a strong partner with us for nearly a decade and adding their worldwide connectivity in Los Angeles for year round daily flights to Mammoth Yosemite Airport adds another major level to that partnership,” said John Urdi, Executive Director, Mammoth Lakes Tourism.
Mammoth Lakes Tourism and Mammoth Resorts have worked with United Airlines over the years on the flight route from San Francisco (SFO) to Mammoth Yosemite Airport (MMH).
“One of our key strategies is to improve access in and around the Eastern Sierra in order to solidify Mammoth Mountain as a world-class, year-round destination resort,” added Mark Brownlie, President and COO, Mammoth Resorts. “By partnering with United Airlines on the strategic development of air service into the region, we will continue to expand year-round access to Mammoth, Yosemite and the surrounding area.”
Round-trip flights from LAX to MMH via United are now bookable at united.com.
On June 19th, 2018 at approximately 1100 hours, Mono County Sheriff’s Office was notified of a 70-year-old female that suffered a possible dislocated hip while hiking with her husband and canine companion in Sky Meadows area near Emerald Lake (approx. 10,040’ elevation).
Mono County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue was called out and 10 SAR team members began the hike to the victim from the Coldwater Campground trailhead. A Search and Rescue Helicopter (Lasso 04) was requested from Naval Air Station Lemoore to assist with transporting the victim from Sky Meadows to the awaiting ground ambulance at Mammoth Airport.
SAR members located the victim, provided care and readied her for helicopter pickup. Despite the pain, she was stable and in good spirits. Helicopter Lasso 04 arrived on and was able to coordinate with SAR units on the ground the best landing zone near the victim. After the victim was flown out, her husband and canine hiked back to the trailhead with the SAR team.
As it turned out, the husband was a Mono County Search and Rescue member about 30 years ago.
The 2018 California High School Rodeo State Finals return to the Tri-County Fairgrounds this week! Wednesday, June 13th is Patriotic Day!! Wear Red, White and Blue. Free admission for Active and Retired Military. Opening Ceremony & Rodeo Performance is at 7pm.
Thursday June 14th is Family Night. $20 for the entire family. Rodeo Performance 7pm.
Friday June 15th is Cancer Awareness Night-Wear Pink! Rodeo performance is 7pm.
Saturday, June 16th is Senior Citizens Day! Free admission for 62+! 8am Cutting Championship, 11:30am Reined Cow Horse Championship Round and 1pm Final Rodeo Performance, Crowning of State Queen, Live Auction, Top 15 Finalists and ATV Raffle.
All show buttons are $20 and Single Evening Show is $7 available at the Bishop Area Chamber of Commerce 690 n. Main St. 760-873-8405.
Longtime Inyo County Administrator Kevin Carunchio has announced his retirement after 13 years with the County.
Carunchio, County Administrator since 2007, informed the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, June 12 of his intent to retire following completion of several outstanding projects, including the Fiscal Year 2018-2019 County Budget. He plans to continue living in the Owens Valley, raising his two children and devoting more time to volunteer work and other opportunities.
Noting that it is an exciting time for the County of Inyo, with several major projects in the hopper or poised on the brink of fruition, Carunchio said he plans to spend the next several weeks focusing on helping to guide those initiatives through their current phases, including consideration of the lease agreement for the Consolidated County Office Building Project, consideration of a contract for the 21st Century Obsidian Project, a State of the Parks report, and development of the Bishop Airport with an eye toward commercial air service.
“I am, and will always be grateful for the opportunity this Board has, and previous Boards of Supervisors have provided me to serve as Inyo County Administrator,” Carunchio said. “I truly love the job, the county, and our communities. Thank you with all my heart.”
The Board of Supervisors is expected to begin discussing the process for identifying Carunchio’s replacement in the coming weeks.
Carunchio has worked for the County of Inyo since May of 2005, initially serving as Deputy County Administrator who was responsible for economic development programs and budget analysis, preparation, and implementation. He also served as the interim Library/Museum Director, in addition to numerous other capacities for the County of Inyo, before being appointed to County Administrator in October of 2007.
Prior to being employed by the County of Inyo, Carunchio worked in California cities government and management.