Stewardship Projects for the 2022-2023 Climbing Ranger Season

Buttermilks: Delineation Stone Collection – December 2022

  • A group of volunteers was organized to help gather delineation stones for use in the Buttermilks.
  • This stockpile will be used in future seasons to help delineate trails to mitigate the creation of social trails and erosion issues that have plagued the area.

Alabama Hills: Vertical Mulching – December 2022

  • “Vertical mulch” (dead plants placed in the ground) was placed in heavily degraded areas that have suffered extensive vegetation loss. Vertical mulch helps to discourage the creation of social trails and serves as a seed catch for plants that disperse seeds by wind.

Happy Boulders: Vertical Mulch and Native Vegetation Plantings – January 2023

  • Vertical mulch and native desert pepperweed saplings were placed in areas around the Happy Boulders that have suffered from erosion and vegetation loss.
  • Desert pepperweed is a native plant species to the Volcanic Tablelands.

Flash Foxy: COSA Culvert Placement and Fence Removal – March 2023

  • The Climbing Rangers and Flash Foxy attendees helped to alleviate storm damage by placing culverts and digging water diversion channels. Additionally, we helped to remove an old barbed wire fence that was no longer in use in the COSA.

Vehicle Track Removal – 22/23 Season

  • Throughout the season, the climbing rangers along with the BLM have removed vehicle tracks that travel off designated roads in the Tablelands and Buttermilks. With the extensive storm damage this year, recreaters would bypass road obstacles by driving through the vegetation outside of established roads.
Group of ESIA volunteers out in the aspen trees

Arborglyph Extravaganza!

In collaboration with our agency partner, the Bureau of Land Management, ESIA sponsored the 6th Annual Arborglyph Extravaganza where twelve eager volunteers joined forces to document the historic messages left behind by Basque sheepherders.

Using aspen trees as their canvas, the herders used ten-penny nails, fingernails, and small pocketknives to carve records of their experiences trailing sheep in the Sierra Nevada for over a century.

The 6th Annual Arborglyph Extravaganza was a huge success where the twelve volunteers documented over 69 trees, many with multiple carvings, and donated 208 hours of volunteer time to the Bureau of Land Management. This event is coordinated by Nancy Hadlock and Richard Potashin of AspenLuv.

Read the full report from 2017

Arborglyph by sheep herders on aspen trees
Arborglyph of the name Ramon in an aspen tree
Arborglyph by sheep herders of a boxer in an aspen tree

Convict Lake Restoration

The Eastern Sierra Interpretive Association, in partnership with Friends of the Inyo and the U.S. Forest Service, helped restore habitat that has been damaged due to unauthorized OHV use. Antelope Bitterbrush plants grown from locally collected seed by the California Native Plant Society Cooperative Plant Nursery in Bishop, were selected to be planted to because they’re a very hardy plant and native to the area. We were able to plant about 150 individual plants on approximately a 350 ft. stretch of land. Due to a spectacular turn out from our volunteers we were able to plant the entirety of the restoration area.
Project Completed November 2017.

Round Fire Restoration

ESIA and volunteers joined the Forest Service to plant 2000 Jeffrey pine tree seedlings in a forested area burned during the Round Fire around Swall Meadows. Project Completed in April 2018.