August Meeting Summary

The August meeting was attended by 18 people in person and one over Zoom.  Since no actions were taken there will be no notes for this meeting, only this summary.

Susie Kocher, a Forestry Advisor with the University of California Cooperative Extension gave a presentation on prescribed fire, and what the options are for private landowners who might want to employ this technique.  The full PowerPoint presentation will be available here for approximately one month.

She also suggested three workshops that should be of interest to property owners who wish to maintain or restore their forests.  There are workshops on Forest Stewardship, Post- Fire Forest Resilience, and Prescribed Fire Planning on Aug. 30th (more information available from  The workshops are hosted by University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources.


photo by Mary Rawson

Participant updates:  Unfortunately, the quality of the audio recording is not good and consequently not all the updates have been completely captured.  Apologies to those who whose reports are not audible.

  • Monti (USFS) shared that the Alpine Watershed Group had started monitoring of the West Carson Project. Once the West Carson Project is completed crews will move to the similar project at Monitor Pass.  She also confirmed that work repairing Sawmill Road should be completed that day and that the Forest Service would be removing the downed hazard trees along Pleasant Valley Road.  
  • Aralia updated the meeting on activities of the Tahoe Conservancy (TC) regarding updating pre-attack and Community Wildfire Protection Plans for the Tahoe Basin. The TC is also finalizing development of a decision support tool to optimize and prioritize projects in the Tahoe Basin.  She also shared that the Dept. of Conservation now has LIDAR data that was flown in 2022 for the entire Sierra Nevada. 
  • The Hellmans reported that they had completed mastication over part of their ranch and highly recommend the contractor that they used. Initially they had tried to get assistance from the National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), but found the process too slow so they went ahead on their own.  Their WoollyStar Music Festival was highly successful and they are planning on organizing it again next year. 
  • McAffee (AWG) announced that their annual volunteer Creek Day would be on Sept. 17th. Details will be available here.  The AWG is also open to requests for volunteers for other projects.
  • Kaffer announced that the Friends of Hope Valley were planning their Aspen Festival for the 2nd weekend in October at Picketts Junction.
  • Rawson (Markleeville Enhancement Club) announced that their stargazing event with the Reno Astronomy Club would be at the Alpine County airport beginning at 6 pm on August 27th.
  • Elliot (BLM) reported that they were working with CalFire on some of their property along Hot Springs Road. They will be completing fuels reduction projects this fall on some of their parcels near Foothill Rd. along the border between California and Nevada. 
  • Thornburg reported that the emergency salvage on their property has been largely completed, although there are still a few loads to be hauled away.
  • Griffith reported that the Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Program (RFFCP) is well funded and that hopefully the County will be able to take advantage of this program to build more capacity to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire. CalFire has released its Fuels Reduction Project Viewer which shows all projects that CalFire has funded beginning in Fiscal Year 2020-21.  Federally there have been some minor adjustments to NEPA procedures that may speed up some project approvals.  The Eastern Sierra Sustainable Recreation Project (ESSRP) has put out a Request for Proposals for a consultant to plan the Towns to Trails project, which ultimately result in a system of connected trails from north of Lake Tahoe to Independence in Inyo County.  Regarding Measure D on the November ballot, which would prohibit any biomass facility in eastern Alpine County, the Board of Supervisors agreed to let the Committee Against Measure D prepare the ballot arguments against the initiative.  He also reported that the idea of volunteers gathering cones to provide seed for reforestation efforts was an idea that wouldn’t fly due to the amount of expertise required.  Kocher mentioned that there was a course being designed for those really interested.

Future Meetings:  In September Dr. Malcolm North of the Pacific Southwest Research Center on what a resilient forest is under current and an anticipated warmer and drier future climate, why it is important, and what needs to be done so that our forests are resilient now and in the future.   Suggestions for future topics that are consistent with our mission statement are welcome.  Please send suggestions for future speakers to

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s