Bishop, CA – Friends of the Inyo and the Sierra National Forest are partnering on the Humphreys Basin Volunteer Project to engage volunteers in restoration work at Lower Golden Trout Lake in the John Muir Wilderness.
On August 23, seven volunteers will hike with Friends of the Inyo Stewardship Crew staff and two Sierra National Forest Wilderness Rangers out of North Lake and over Piute Pass to conduct restoration work. The group will work to restore illegal campsite to mitigate impacts to riparian and aquatic habitat at Lower Golden Trout Lake.
As California’s population grows and technological advancements have made backcountry gear lighter, softening the hardships of the outdoors, Sierra Nevada trails, trailheads, and campsites experience recreational usage at rates never seen before.
At the same time, funding deficits and lack of political support have cut the capacity of agencies to manage wilderness spaces – to protect both the ecological and recreation resources for now and the future.
A perfect example is Lower Golden Trout Lake. Located between popular Eastside trailhead North Lake and the John Muir and Pacific Crest Trails, Lower Golden Trout Lake is a popular layover on a busy trail corridor.
Lower Golden Trout Lake also happens to have unique and imperiled riparian habitat that is being detrimentally impacted by recreational use Friends of the Inyo is grateful for the amazing volunteers devoting their well-earned vacation time to steward a special place in the John Muir Wilderness.
As the Inyo, Sierra, and Sequoia National Forests currently revise their management plans, events like the Humphreys Basin Volunteer Project display how partnerships between agencies, non-profits, and volunteers can fill the void left by agency budget cuts.
By partnering together, the Sierra National Forest and Friends of the Inyo are able to leverage the help of volunteers to get more good work done on the ground in a special place like Lower Golden Trout Lake, and this can serve as an inspiring model for how people and organizations can come together to care for special places in the John Muir Wilderness.
Founded in 1986, Friends of the Inyo is a Bishop, CA-based non-profit organization that works to care for and protect public lands in the Eastern Sierra while inspiring others to do the same.
Friends of the Inyo connects thousands of people to their public lands each year through hikes, tours, volunteer opportunities, habitat restoration, trail maintenance, civic engagement, and educational programs.
The Sierra National Forest, located on the western slope of the central Sierra Nevada, is known for its spectacular mountain scenery and abundant natural resources. The Sierra National Forest encompasses more than 1.3 million acres between 900 and 13,986 feet in elevation. Placed under Federal protection and management in 1893, Sierra National Forest lands have met public needs for wood, water, and outdoor recreation for more than a century.
Today, the Forest’s many rugged wilderness areas makes it one of the most popular National Forests in the United States.