An Airtanker drops fire retardant on a wildfire. (USFS Photo)
Imagine if a hostile country sent an Unmanned Aircraft System or UAS, otherwise known as a drone, to disturb the efforts of firefighters during a catastrophic wildfire. The confusion that might ensue could cause loss of life and property as flames jump fire lines simply because resources have been diverted or grounded to identify and remove the UAS.
But these threats aren’t coming from an enemy state. They are being flown by our own citizens and impeding the job of our firefighters. This isn’t a script for a Hollywood film. It’s really happening.
Recently, unauthorized drones disrupted wildfire operations in southern California twice in one week. Because of these drones, Airtanker operations were suspended on both the Sterling Fire and Lake Fire on the San Bernardino National Forest. Read more »
San Gabriel Mountains of Los Angeles County, CA. USDA USFS photo.
It has now been a couple of weeks since President Obama declared the San Gabriel Mountains in California a National Monument, and I’m still very excited about the great prospects ahead for that area based on this historic proclamation. This is another rare opportunity for the Forest Service to manage a national treasure with national monument status and – more importantly – it’s an opportunity for us to do more to protect and showcase the San Gabriel Mountains for millions of visitors and local residents each year.
This recent designation is a terrific way to celebrate an area that represents significant archeological, cultural, historical and scientific heritage for California and the nation, and it brings along extra benefits as well. National monument status will help enhance recreational access and interpretative and environmental education for millions of visitors each year near one of the major metropolitan areas in the nation, while helping to preserve the historical and cultural heritage of the region. Monument designation is a tremendous recognition and opportunity for the Forest Service, for the region, and for everyone who enjoys the forests. Read more »
Volunteer snow ranger Conradt Fredell shares his love of skiing and the beautiful landscape of the Arapaho National Forest by taking Loveland Ski Area visitors on an educational tour. The ski area is entirely on Forest Service land. (U.S. Forest Service)
Forget the high-priced dinner, artificial moon glow and hurried wait staff this Valentine’s Day.
Try, instead, something very different from the tried and true red roses that wilt away or those earrings that she really had hoped would be a ring. Plan a visit to a national forest or grassland. Let a photograph or video be the record of your everlasting love. Please do not carve your names into a tree or other object or in another way deface the beauty of our national forests and grasslands.
And if the weather for the recreational activity you would like to pursue makes a Valentine’s Day visit out of the question, consider designing and printing a “Let’s Love the Outdoors Together” coupon with a promise for a hike, bike or other activity during a more heart-warming time of year. Read more »
A new baby bald eagle will soon begin his flight lessons on the San Bernardino National Forest as the first recorded chick to be successfully nested in recent times near Big Bear Lake.
Baby bald eagle Jack, right, in his nest. Photo credit: Robin Eliason, District Wildlife Biologist, San Bernardino National Forest, Mountaintop Ranger District
The chick was first spotted Feb. 21 by Forest Service wildlife biologist Marc Stamer while leading a school field trip. “I was shocked to look through the spotting scope and see a bald eagle chick sitting up in the nest,” said Stamer. “The students, teachers and parents were as excited to see a baby eagle as I was! It was a first for all of us!” Read more »
A bald eagle in Rockport, Wash.
Bald eagle counting season is in full swing for the U.S. Forest Service, specifically in California and Washington. Read more »
As a disabled Vietnam Veteran, Daniel stated, “my greatest honor was having the opportunity to participate with Missing-in-Action work by returning to Vietnam and Laos assisting in recovery efforts of fellow soldiers.”
For over 15 years, Daniel has worked as a Tribal Relations Program Manager on the San Bernardino National Forest in California. He thinks of himself as an ambassador for the forest representing the federal government working with tribes. Read more »