A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California

Issue 141 -- 1/21/04:
Cross-country skiing on the Bizz Johnson TrailGerald NordstromSalt Creek pupfish - (Photo used by permission of Dr. Donald W. Sada, Desert Research InstituteProfile: Jennifer JohnstonWhere is this? (photo quiz)
- Not For Educators Only:
    - Wildlife Trivia Question of the Week: X-treme X-istence
    - Where is this? (Interactive photo quiz)
    - Our readers write: Last week's "Where is this?"
    - Our readers write: Last week's free offer
- Bookstore Feature: "Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Guidebook"
- Photo Album: Bizz Johnson Trail
- Meet your Advisory Council members: Gerald Nordstrom
- Profile: Jennifer Johnston
- Damage to public lands: Graffiti, illegal roads
- Headlines and Highlights, including:
    - BLM national director speaks in Bishop
    - Adopt-A-Horse or Burro: Burbank
    - Habitat plan
    - Local BLM head steps down
    - Drug smugglers in the dunes: 1,000 pounds of pot seized in 48 hours
    - Cemex
    - Preserve "a great place to spend a day"
    - Wildfire
    - ...and more
- Selected Upcoming Events, including:
    - Several public meetings
    - Nature hikes
    - Volunteer events: Adopt-a-Cabin, Tamarisk removal
    - Speakers


Wildlife Trivia Question markWILDLIFE TRIVIA QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Extreme existence
What extreme conditions are pupfish able to withstand that would kill most other vertebrates?

(a) They can survive in water as hot as 116 degrees Fahrenheit;
(b) They can survive in water as cold as 32 degrees Fahrenheit;
(c) They can tolerate water with a salt content more than 4 times that of ocean water.
(See answer near the end of this issue of News.bytes)

Where is this? (photo quiz)WHERE IS THIS? (Interactive photo feature)
1. Argus Range Wilderness Area
2. Manly Peak Wilderness Area
3. North Mesquite Wilderness Area
Take your best guess and check your answer against other readers, in our interactive photo quiz:

Our readers (and co-workers) write: Last week's "Where is this" interactive photo quiz
The outdoor recreation planner at our BLM Bakersfield Field Office informed our News.bytes Team that last week's "Where Is It?" interactive photo quiz could be called a trick question: "The scene is actually looking from the Chimney Creek Back Country Byway toward the Forest Service portion of Dome Land Wilderness."

Our readers write: Last week's Free Offer
Last week's online offer was a limited number of free maps of the King Range National Conservation Area. Several readers emailed to say they clicked the link, and read "This offer has expired" - the same day as it was offered.
      Answer: we had a limited inventory of these maps -- exactly 100 -- that we could offer for free. The first 100 requests via our Web site form were received in just over an hour from the time News.bytes issue 140 was emailed out. These maps sell in our bookstore and at our Arcata Field Office for $3 each, and we were only able to obtain 100 for this special free offer. An automatic computer script kept count of requests, and let our readers know when our supply was depleted. However, we have clarified the language on that page to state that "Our supply has been depleted" -- not that "The offer has expired." We are sorry for any confusion.

BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Guidebook"
BOOKSTORE FEATURE: "Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Guidebook"
From the official series of the Rail-to-Trials Conservancy, this is your guide to walking, jogging, biking, and cross-country skiing California's rail-trail system. An easy-to-follow guidebook with mile-by-mile descriptions of 34 listings of the state's rail-trails. You'll find full trail profiles, with length, access points, difficulty rating, and surface type. Also: Detailed trail maps, at-a-glance icons for easy identification, wheelchair accessibility, availability of parking, restrooms, and places to eat along the trail, location of ranger stations, visitors' center, and depot museums, and where to rent bikes.

PHOTO ALBUM: Bizz Johnson Trail
Cross-country skiing on the Bizz Johnson TrailThis rail-trail has four distinct seasons because of its high elevation and location. Winter recreation includes cross-country skiing and along part of the trail, snowmobiling. The trail follows about 25 miles of old railroad line near Susanville -- crossing the river 12 times and passing through two tunnels, as it winds through the rugged Susan River Canyon. The trail then follows existing roads an additional 4.5 miles into Westwood, where a railroad-station-type kiosk and a 25-foot carved redwood statue of Paul Bunyan mark the Westwood trailhead.

Related: "Bizz Johnson Trail" (BLM California Web page)
Learn about the history of the trail, the variety of recreation it offers, and more. For example, autumn is also a good time to visit. The fall foliage and scenery earned the trail one of eight feature spots on the Rails-To-Trails Conservancy's 1997 "Fall Foliage on the Web" rail-trails guide. Autumn also sees the annual Rails to Trails Festival in Susanville and along the trail.

Gerald NordstromMEET YOUR ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS: Gerald Nordstrom
Northeast California Advisory Council member Gerald Nordstrom is a retired high school science teacher from Janesville, and represents regional environmental interests on the council. Learn more in our weekly News.bytes feature:

Profile: Jennifer JohnstonPROFILE: Jennifer Johnston
The civil engineer in the Arcata Field Office, Jennifer surveys, designs, inspects and assesses recreation facilities, roads, trails and water systems. Coming from Texas, Jennifer has adapted to the North Coast, and says: "I love to ride my bicycle. I commute to work every day by bike, rain or shine." Read more in our weekly News.bytes "Profile" feature:


"Artist makes Giant Rock 'bleed'" (Hi-Desert Star, 1/21/2004)
"A woman calling herself an artist from Los Angeles added her two cents to the graffiti-laden Giant Rock by painting it red Jan. 11, according to eyewitness...." An international landmark, the huge boulder was painted by "a woman standing on a 24-foot extension ladder and operating an airless sprayer attached to a generator." BLM ranger talks about vandalism of public lands.

Related: "Vandalism costs public big bucks" (Hi-Desert Star, 1/21/2004)

Related: Photo of "art" vandalism currently on newspaper's online front page. (Hi-Desert Star 1/21/2004)

"Comment on plan to camouflage wilderness roads" (Needles Desert Star, 1/21/2004)
"The Needles Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management has invited public comment on its plan to camouflage the first 300 feet of closed roads leading into wilderness areas....The BLM has so far tried to prevent illegal use of these old roads by posting signs, but the signs are often ignored or destroyed."


"BLM boss keeps eye on Eastern Sierra; National director describes land management as challenging for local terra firma" (Inyo Register, 1/21/2004)
"The black cowboy boots, black jeans and striped flannel shirt were a dead giveaway that one of the most powerful public land managers in the nation is in fact and at heart, a Westerner.
But it wasn t just her comfortable casual attire that made Kathleen Clarke, the director of the Bureau of Land Management, stand out in the crowd of men in suits and ties and women in dresses who gathered to hear her speak...."

"Adopt-A-Horse or Burro Program returns to Burbank" (BLM California news release, 01/15/2004)
Just in time for Valentine's Day: a wild horse and burro adoption at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center in Burbank -- where approximately 80 Mustang yearlings, geldings and mares and 20 burros will be offered to qualified adopters on February 7-8.

"Local BLM head steps down" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 01/17/2004)
Tim Read retires as manager of BLM's Barstow Field Office.,72399,

"Dunes chase yields drugs; smugglers, 600 pounds of marijuana in custody" (Yuma Sun, 01/17/2004)
"U.S. Border Patrol agents working the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation area to help keep duners safe stopped a vehicle carrying almost 600 pounds of marijuana and took both suspected smugglers into custody." The ISDRA is managed by BLM. Officers from several agencies help patrol the area on busy winter weekends.

Related: "BORSTAR agents find more drugs at the dunes; 1,000 pounds of marijuana seized in 48 hours" (Yuma Sun, 01/19/2004)
"In approximately 48 hours of work and in just two incidents, U.S. Border Patrol agents seized more than 1,000 pounds of marijuana in the Imperial Sand Dunes this weekend."

"City vests in proposed mine property" (The Santa Clarita Signal, 01/16/2004)
Santa Clarita City Council buys promissory note for surface rights of property where Cemex, Inc. plans gravel mining -- and holds permit for mineral rights. City officials say they do not know how this might impact their attempts to block or reduce the mining operation.

Related: "Santa Clarita buys itself a seat at Cemex bargaining table" (The Santa Clarita Signal, 1/16/2004)
Editorial: "The City Council has substantially improved its legal position with the so-called “Cemex property,” the 460-acre site in Soledad Canyon that the federal government would like to turn into a gravel pit. This latest move, which the council made on Tuesday, gets a little complicated, so bear with us."

"Preserve is a great place to spend a day" (Palm Springs Desert Sun, 01/18/2004)
"A lizard and series of remarkable events resulted in the establishment of a 17,000-acre wildlife sanctuary in the heart of the Coachella Valley. Known as the Coachella Valley Preserve, this conglomeration of sand dunes, palm oases, alluvial fans, eroded hills and arroyos, is so diverse that it would take several days of exploring just to get a feel for the environments which are preserved here." The Preserve is managed by partners including BLM California.

Related: "Coachella Valley Preserve" (BLM California Web site)

"Lake Elsinore adopts habitat plan" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 01/14/2004)
The habitat plan for western Riverside County. "The city didn't favor having to set aside thousands of acres for open space, but it nevertheless went along with 13 other communities. Tuesday was the deadline for cities to make a decision. Calimesa is the only city left to make a decision, but has been working with the county...." BLM is a partner in the Multi-Species Habitat and Conservation Plan.

"Foresters to discuss wildfire prevention" (Redding Record-Searchlight, 01/18/2004)
"For a quarter century, a wide range of experts has gathered each year in Northern California to debate how best to care for the nation's forests. After devastating wildfires that have fueled furious forest management debate, this year's gathering...might take on added significance." About 250 people were expected at the three-day conference this week in Redding.

"Obituary: Jerry Harrell wrote about the outdoors" (Sacramento Bee, 1/20/2004)
Jerry Harrel's career included working with BLM California's external affairs office in Sacramento.

Salt Creek pupfish - (Photo used by permission of Dr. Donald W. Sada, Desert Research InstituteANSWER
: "All of the above" -- These amazing little creatures, only a few inches in length, can withstand all of these conditions! The Salt Creek pupfish is one of the few that the public is allowed view. The Death Valley National Park has a boardwalk designated for just that purpose.
     Learn more about this fish in our online wildlife database (Photo used by permission of Dr. Donald W. Sada, Desert Research Institute)
(Note: the Wildlife Database is hosted on the Department of Interior's secure Web server - see note under "Selected Upcoming Events" below.)


01/21/2004 - Horse and burro gather plans public meeting

01/22/2004 - Ecology of the Palm Oasis - Free Lecture
Palm Springs

01/25/2004 - Tamarisk removal in Carrizo Gorge

01/26/2004 - Nature Hike on Victor Trail at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument

01/29/2004-1/30/2004 - Northeast California Advisory Council meeting

01/31/2004 - Ruth Mine Workparty - Adopt-A-Cabin Take Pride in America Event

01/31/2004 - Cache Creek Free Guided Hikes

02/05/2004 - Northwest California Advisory Council meeting

02/05/2004 - Modoc-Washoe Stewardship Committee meeting

02/07/2004 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument Advisory Committee meeting
Palm Desert

02/07/2004 - Desert Hikes - North Algodones Dunes
El Centro

02/07/2004 - Geology Talks at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto National Monument
Palm Desert

02/07/2004 - Burbank Wild Horse and Burro Adoption

02/07/2004 - Cache Creek Free Guided Hikes

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News.bytes published by
Bureau of Land Management
California State Office
2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1834
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(916) 978-4600

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