U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
Central California District
|Release Date: 02/02/12|
|News Release No. CA-CC-12-31|
BLM Bishop Field Office Seeks Collaboration with Climbers, Campers, to Protect Public Lands
The Bureau of Land Management’s Bishop Field Office is increasing its efforts to educate climbers and campers on how to enjoy natural resources without damaging them, especially as the number of visitors grows.
Over the past decade, the Bishop Field Office has experienced an increase in climbing and car camping activity in the Volcanic Tableland north of Bishop. Damage to cultural and natural resources has also increased.
“We are concerned about visitors leaving trash or human waste, building improper fires, camping in archeological sites or on sensitive vegetation and creating new roads, trails and parking areas,” said Becky Hutto, BLM park ranger.
Recreational interest in areas like the tableland is expected to increase. According to the Outdoor Industry Association, California experienced a 20 percent increase in climbing from 2009 to 2010. The number of people car camping is expected to increase from 42 million to 62 million by 2050 in California alone.
A number of efforts are underway to decrease the impacts climbers and other public lands users have on wild areas and improve the recreational experience for everyone in increasingly popular climbing and camping areas.
Visitors from all over the world enjoyed a beautiful day of climbing in the Happy and Sad’s bouldering areas managed by the BLM Bishop Field Office over the busy New Year’s holiday weekend. Rangers Eric Keefer and Becky Hutto traveled on foot and made contact with as many public land visitors as possible to talk about outdoor ethics.
The BLM is, in particular, interested in sharing information with users about outdoor ethics. In addition to the foot patrols, the agency is hosting a monthly “climber’s coffee” at the Pleasant Valley Pit Campground where campers and climbers can meet BLM staff and discuss interests and concerns in an informal setting. The next climber’s coffee will be Feb. 17 from 8:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.
The BLM plans to improve educational information by updating web content and developing improved signage in key areas such as access points and the Pleasant Valley Pit Campground. Organizations like the Access Fund have also worked to improve conditions on the tableland by directly contributing to clean-up efforts. Volunteers have completed projects such as trail construction, campsite and social trail rehabilitation, and fire ring clean up.
Anyone planning a visit to the tableland can help with the BLM’s efforts in the following ways:
To volunteer to help preserve and protect areas like the tablelands through trail work and other clean-up efforts, contact Hutto at 760-872-5008.
Central California District 2800 Cottage Way, Sacramento, CA 95825
|Last updated: 02-02-2012|
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