Archive for the ‘Recreation’ Category

Our top posts during September: Lighting, wildfire, and ‘angular unconformity’ were popular topics

October 2, 2013
Lightning strike

Lighting has been striking more often this summer in Washington and Oregon — about 238,109 times, which four times higher than normal. Photo: DNR.

Here’s a roundup of the most popular blog posts on Ear to the Ground during September:

Snap, crackle, pop! More lightning than past years. Does it seem like Washington and Oregon have had more lightning this year than past years? That’s because it’s true — four times the normal rate, according to reports.

DNR’s Fire Dispatch Center takes the heat. Ever wonder how DNR mobilizes personnel, trucks, aircraft, and supplies to respond to wildland fires?

Former firefighter seeks — and finds — names of rescuers 32 years later. A former firefighter gets DNR’s help in tracking down crew members who rendered first aid and carried him to safety after he collapsed while working on a wildfire in 1981.

End summer the ‘Reiter-way. DNR announces that two new sections for off-road fun at Reiter Foothills Forest are now open to the public: The ATV Purple Line and the intimidating 4×4 Connector Challenge trails.   

Our Geology Image of the Month: ‘Angular unconformity’. The Washington State Geology News (a free e-newsletter from DNR) shows off a well-exposed angular unconformity in the rocks at Beach 4, located along coastal Highway 101 between Ruby Beach and Kalaloch.

Working forests, working double-time. Most people know about the monetary benefits of harvesting trees from forest lands, but what people may not know are the other services forests provide, such as clean water, flood control and carbon sequestration.

Small earthquake shakes Lake Wenatchee area. A small, 3.0 magnitude, earthquake shook the east end of Lake Wenatchee at 8:15 a.m. on September 24.

Can animals survive wildfires? You’ll be glad to know that most wild animals do survive wildfires. They are much smarter than we give them credit for.

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Severe weather forces State DNR to cancel Saturday’s volunteer event in Yacolt Burn State Forest

September 27, 2013

DNR volunteersDue to a severe weather advisory and forecasted high winds for the Yacolt Burn State Forest, Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has cancelled the annual Pick Up the Burn volunteer event and related activities scheduled for Saturday, September 28.

DNR’s number one priority is the safety  of our staff, volunteers, and the public.

We will work to reschedule the event for a future date. For any further questions regarding the event and information on efforts to reschedule, please contact Nick Cronquist at nick.cronquist@dnr.wa.gov or 360-480-2700.

Get the latest weather conditions and advisory for southwestern Washington.

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Say goodbye to summer this weekend

September 20, 2013
Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area

Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area includes more than 35,000 acres of mountainous terrain for hiking and other types of low-impact, outdoor recreation

This fall equinox this Sunday (September 22, 2013) signals the official end of summer. Many DNR recreation sites and trails are open this weekend. Check out a DNR recreation opportunity near you. For example, the Morning Star Natural Resources Conservation Area (NRCA) is a 33,592-acre mountainous conservation area in Snohomish County. It offers access to a number of wilderness trails from various trailheads (Note: The trails are not ADA accessible; however, accessible toilets are available at the Ashland Lakes trailhead and at the Boulder/Greider trailhead).

A Washington State Discover Pass is required for parking at all trailheads in Morning Star NRCA.

DNR provides trails and campgrounds in primitive, natural settings on the 2.2 million acres of forests that the department manages as state trust lands for revenue to support school construction, state universities and services in many counties.

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Anderson Mountain gate open for fall recreation

September 13, 2013

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Northwest Region is temporarily opening a gate on Anderson Mountain.

The opening is scheduled to run today, Friday, September 13, 2013 through Thursday, January 2, 2014 to allow for seasonal access. Anderson Mountain is located adjacent from Blanchard Mountain on the east side of Interstate 5.

Recret8The gate is located off Skarrup Road, which becomes Alger Mountain Road, near the town of Alger, Washington and provides drive-in access to Anderson Mountain.

Please enjoy this fall recreation opportunity!
DNR requests that users heed the following rules:

  • Fires are not allowed in the area accessible beyond the gate.
  • Users are instructed to leave no trace: pack out what you pack in!
  • Recreationists are not allowed to travel off designated roads.
  • DNR requests that you do not go around closed gates.
  • Please respect private property boundaries.
Anderson Mountain

Enjoy a fall hike or hunting adventure on Anderson Mountain. Photo by: DNR

DNR reserves the right to close this gate at any time if it becomes necessary.

As always, we request that users respect the area so DNR can continue to provide access in the future.

Also – remember that it is hunting season! Please put high visibility clothing on yourself, your kids, and your dogs. DNR wants everyone to stay safe and have fun while exploring the woods.

Learn more about sustainable recreation on DNR’s website.

Don’t forget your Discover Pass
The Discover Pass is your ticket to recreation access on nearly 7 million acres of state lands. Even Sasquatch needs one to park at DNR sites! Learn where to get yours at buydiscoverpass.com

Report any illegal activity to DNR’s Forest Watch program at 1-855-883-8368 or forestwatch@dnr.wa.gov.

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End summer the ‘Reiter-way’

September 12, 2013

As many of you may know, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) opened new trails at Reiter to off-roaders for weekend use this past June. Now, there’s even more to celebrate!

Reiter

Take the family on a beautiful adventure through Reiter’s new ATV Purple Line trail. Photo by: DNR/Jessica Payne

Today, DNR announced that two new sections are now open to the public. Load up the quad, the 4×4 truck, or dirt bike and enjoy the last days of summer adrenaline.

What weekend adventures should I expect at Reiter?
The ATV Purple Line and the 4×4 Connector Challenge trails are ready to be put to the test.

The new ATV Purple Line Trail is a breathtaking excursion through the sun-speckled understory of the forest.

The intimidating 4×4 Connector Challenge Trail is sure to give even the toughest Jeep a grappling test.

When can I go?
Reiter will be open on weekends until the end of September on the following schedule:

Friday 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Starting in October, Reiter will be open Saturdays and Sundays only through the rest of the winter.

Keep posted on trail status by subscribing to our Northwest Region e-newsletter. Check out new trail maps, motorized trail rules, and 4×4 technical trail guidelines on our website. (more…)

Recreation Alert: Elfendahl road closed in Tahuya State Forest

September 9, 2013
The Tahuya trail system will be accessible from the Mission Creek Trailhead during the road closure. Photo by: DNR

The Tahuya trail system will be accessible from the Mission Creek Trailhead during the road closure. Photo by: DNR

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will close the road leading to the Elfendahl Pass staging area and trailhead in Tahuya State Forest the week of September 16 – 20.

The road will be closed for crews to replace a fish passage culvert that is currently blocking salmon from spawning up river.

Elfendahl Pass inaccessible during road closure
There will be no access to the Elfendahl Pass Staging Area and trailhead during the week-long closure. Elfendahl is a main trail access point for both motorized and non-motorized recreationists. Users are encouraged to use the Mission Creek Trailhead instead via NE Belfair Tahuya Road.

View a map of the Tahuya State Forest here.  (more…)

Nominate your Volunteer Hero today!

September 6, 2013

A volunteer helps with a restoration project at McClane Creek Nature Trail. Photo: DNR

It’s that time again! The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is calling for you to nominate your favorite, most rockin’ volunteer for the 2013 Commissioner’s Volunteer Hero Award.

The Commissioner’s Volunteer Hero Award was established to salute DNR’s volunteers who have dedicated their time, enthusiasm, and efforts to support several of DNR’s programs.

This award not only recognizes an outstanding volunteer who has shown tireless commitment, it also celebrates all of DNR’s valuable volunteers.

Nominate someone special
This is your chance to nominate a volunteer who has spent countless hours battling blackberries and scotch broom from overtaking trails and other natural areas. (more…)

Recreation Update: Mac Johnson trail now open in Harry Osborne State Forest

August 26, 2013

Thanks to the volunteer efforts of members of the Skagit Chapter Backcountry Horsemen of Washington, repairs to the Mac Johnson trail are complete.

horse rider

Thanks to the volunteer efforts repairs to the Mac Johnson trail are complete! Photo by: DNR

In July, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) had to close the Mac Johnson Trail in Harry Osborne State Forest, managed by DNR’s Northwest Region. A puncheon bridge had failed, creating unsafe conditions. Now repairs are complete and the trail can once again be enjoyed by it’s usual horseback riders and hikers.

Members of the Skagit Chapter Backcountry Horsemen brought the DNR’s attention to the situation and offered to repair the bridge if the DNR provided the materials. Working together, we were able to repair and reopen the bridge in a timely manner.

Read about the original closure here.

Please think of the efforts of these volunteers as you enjoy DNR managed trails this summer!

Get your Discover Pass
The pass is your ticket to recreation access on nearly 7 million acres of state lands. Find out more at: buydiscoverpass.com

Report any illegal activity to DNR’s Forest Watch program at 1-855-883-8368 or forestwatch@dnr.wa.gov.

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Sasquatch Family Helps You Avoid a $99 Ticket

August 21, 2013
A family of Sasquatch enjoy camping with hula hoops after purchasing their Discover Pass.

A family of Sasquatch enjoy camping and hula hoops after purchasing their Discover Pass.

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) launched a video campaign featuring a Sasquatch family to remind people that a Discover Pass is required when visiting Washington state-managed recreation lands.

Watch the video today!

The Discover Pass is a vehicle access pass required on all Washington state-managed recreation lands. The fine for not displaying a Discover Pass is $99.

An annual pass costs $35  and a one-day pass is $11.50 (including transaction fees).

The Discover Pass may be purchased:

  • Online at http://www.buydiscoverpass.com
  • In person at nearly 600 recreational license vendors in Washington State where state fishing and hunting licenses are sold
  • By phone (866) 320-9933
  • At State Parks headquarters and region offices, and at state parks when staff is available

Video Link
More videos and a ‘Meet the Family’ bio is available at BuyDiscoverPass.com

Discover Pass
The Washington State Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to recreation lands and water-access sites managed by the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, DNR, and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). State recreation lands include state parks, boat launches, heritage sites, wildlife and natural areas, trails, and trailheads. For more information, visit www.discoverpass.wa.gov.

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Meet Washington’s Newest (and Furriest) First Family

August 13, 2013
Take a walk on the wild side and watch the Squatch Family Video!

Take a walk on the wild side and watch the Squatch Family Video!

The Squatches are a fun-loving, outdoorsy family that moved to the ‘burbs to escape the hustle and bustle of modern day life.

These weekend warriors love the millions of acres of Washington state-managed lands where they can fit all their outdoor activities into one, action-packed trip.

Papa Sasquatch holding a fishPapa Squatch

Interesting fact: Stands 9’2”, wears a size 39CC shoe

Likes: Fishing, spending time with the family, cutoff shorts

Dislikes: Neckties, litter, city-living, Big Foot hoaxes

Mama Sasquatch

Mama Squatch

Interesting fact:  Wants to have her own show on HGTV about cooking ‘found foods’

Likes: Shopping, backpacking, organic gardening, volunteering to clean up the trails

Dislikes: Flip phones, unattended campfires

Lil' SquatchLil’ Squatch

Interesting fact: Hopes to one day meet Smokey Bear

Likes: Hula hoops, road kill burgers and fries, camping trips

Dislikes: Organic gardening, wearing shoes, taking baths


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