BRIDGEPORT, Calif. – Wildland fire crews from the Bureau of Land Management Bishop Field Office are planning winter pile burning operations with interagency partners for south of Bridgeport, Mono County, when weather and air quality conditions permit.
Slash piles, composed of limbs, branches and trees will be burned on approximately 270-acres of BLM-managed public lands at several locations in the Mormon Meadows and Bridgeport Canyon areas. Prescribed burning helps to reduce hazardous fuels, moderate the potential negative effects of wildland fire and increase firefighter and public safety.
During burn operations, smoke may be visible from Bridgeport, Conway Summit, Conway Ranch Estates, June Mountain, Lee Vining, Mono City, U.S. Route 395 and Virginia Lakes Road. The BLM is requesting the public to avoid congregating on or near roadways, which can obstruct fire equipment and emergency vehicles.
The BLM is committed to keeping public landscapes healthy and productive. These prescribed burns are part of a larger strategy to improve sagebrush habitat conditions throughout the Bodie Hills. Trees have been cut and piled in historically open sagebrush areas to increase ecosystem resiliency and restore habitat for several species, including sage grouse and migratory mule deer. All prescribed fire operations are conducted in close coordination with the Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District.
For more information, please call Heather Stone at the Bishop Field Office, 760-872-5000.
BISHOP, Calif. – The Bureau of Land Management Bishop Field Office has issued seasonal fire restrictions for BLM-managed public lands in the Eastern Sierra effective Monday, July 1, due to increased wildland fire danger in the region. The restrictions will remain in effect until November 1, or until wildland fire conditions on public lands in the region improve.
Fire officials estimate that nearly 90 percent of wildland fires affecting BLM-managed public lands in California during the last decade have been human caused. Individuals who spark wildfires, intentionally or unintentionally, may be held responsible for fire suppression and property damage costs. Officials encourage the public to be extremely careful when recreating outdoors, to carry a shovel and water at all times, and to check weather forecasts and fire danger conditions before leaving home.
The following restrictions will remain in place until the risk of wildland fire in the Eastern Sierra subsides:
- No campfires, charcoal or wood barbeques, or similar open flame fires, except within a designated campsite with a fire ring or fire pit specifically provided for such use in the following developed campgrounds: Tuttle Creek Campground, Goodale Creek Campground, Horton Creek Campground, Crowley Lake Campground and Pleasant Valley Pit Campground. Portable stoves burning gas, jelled petroleum or pressurized liquid fuel are allowed outside of developed campgrounds when used in accordance with a valid California Campfire Permit, available free at all BLM, Forest Service and Cal Fire offices or at www.preventwildfireca.org/Permits.
- No tools powered by internal combustion engines off established roads, trails or parking areas (such as chainsaws or lawn mowers).
- No smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, or within the developed campgrounds listed above, or while stopped within an area at least five feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
- No motorized vehicles off established roads, trails or parking areas.
- Target shooters may not use incendiary, exploding, tracer, steel core or armor piercing ammunition. Shooting at steel or exploding targets that could emit sparks is not allowed. Target shooters must have a shovel or fire extinguisher on hand. Hunters may use steel shot and other non-lead ammunition as required by California State Law.
- No fireworks, including “safe and sane” fireworks.
- No welding or operating an acetylene or other torch with open flame, except by special permit.
- No use of explosives, except by special permit.
BLM-managed public lands subject to these fire restrictions extend from the southern Owens Valley in Inyo County, north to Topaz Lake and the Nevada border in Mono County. These fire restrictions also apply to popular BLM-managed recreational areas in the region including the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area, Inyo Mountains Wilderness, Volcanic Tableland, Long Valley, Adobe Valley, Mono Basin, Bodie Hills and Slinkard Valley. BLM seasonal fire restrictions for the Eastern Sierra Region are being implemented in close coordination with Cal Fire (https://www.facebook.com/1663811310523258/posts/2419842918253423?sfns=mo).
The BLM is committed to keeping public landscapes healthy and productive by working closely with cooperating agencies, neighboring communities, and public land visitors to prevent wildland fires. To learn how you can do your part to prevent wildland fires visit www.readyforwildfire.org. A listing of fire restrictions throughout BLM California is available at https://go.usa.gov/xmUEG. For specific questions, please contact the Bishop Field Office at 760-872-5000.
Bishop Park Ranger Receives BLM Excellence in Interpretation Award
Bishop Calif. – Ron Napoles, Recreation Park Ranger for the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Bishop Field Office, has received this year’s national award for contributions in the field of interpretation.
Ron was recognized for developing and designing a set of interpretive panels in collaboration with the fourth through seventh grade classes at Round Valley Elementary School in Bishop. The panels are being used on a nature trail at the Horton Creek Campground, managed by the Bishop Field Office.
In the fall and winter of 2014-2015, staff from the Bishop Field Office joined multiple partners to provide a series of classroom lessons to the fourth through seventh grade classes at the school. The classroom workshops taught students about local wildlife and plants, the Paiute people and the geology and ecology of the Eastern Sierra. Students also did their own research on the Sierra Nevada. As part of their lessons, they wrote text, drew and colored pictures, and created maps and images about what they learned.
“Ron took the text and illustrations made by the students and made a set of beautiful and creative interpretive signs for the nature trail,” said Jeff Starosta, Acting Supervisory Resource Management Specialist. “By engaging local school kids in creating the panel content, the Bishop Field Office, Ron in particular, helped to realize the primary goal of BLM’s Recreation Strategy: to connect with communities.”
Nominees for the award were evaluated on the basis of their success in enhancing the public’s understanding of the cultural and natural resources of our public lands, supporting BLM goals and objectives, helping the public to recognize their connection to public lands, creating programs that are accessible to diverse audiences, involving partners and developing strong working relationships with local communities.
blm bishop field office, round valley elementary school, horton creek campground, bureau of land management