Outdoors

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

UPDATE: 30 Acre Fire Burning Near Hoopa

Posted By on Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 12:29 PM

Smoke from the Signboard Fire rising over Hoopa. - COURTESY OF WES CRAWFORD
  • Courtesy of Wes Crawford
  • Smoke from the Signboard Fire rising over Hoopa.
An escaped prescribed burn has spread over 30 acres of steep terrain east of Hoopa, according to Peggi Lawrence, Public Affairs specialist for Six Rivers National Forest.

Yesterday afternoon, the Signboard Fire rolled downhill from a planned burn started last Thursday by Hoopa Tribe to manage the forest.

“Burning material has been running downhill. It’s extremely steep,” Lawrence explained. “Some rolled onto Six Rivers Forest land.”

Hoopa Tribe and Six Rivers now have formed a unified command with the Hoopa Tribe,” according to Lawrence. “The southern edge of the fire has 15 percent containment,” she said.


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Smoke from Camp Fire Continues to Impact Region

Posted By on Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 10:33 AM

AIRNOW
  • AirNow
Smoke from the devastating Camp Fire in Butte County — the deadliest in the state’s history with at least 48 now confirmed killed — is continuing to affect air quality in the region today.

According to a release from the North Coast Unified Air Quality Management District, the impacts are expected to be "Moderate” to “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” with periods of “Unhealthy,” depending on weather conditions.

The Camp Fire, which all but wiped the town of Paradise off the map, has burned 135,000 acres and is 35 percent contained with 7,600 homes destroyed and another 15,500 structures threatened.

For the most updated information on the Camp Fire, click here.


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Monday, November 12, 2018

HumLook: Your Week in Images

Posted By on Mon, Nov 12, 2018 at 3:42 PM

Fog frames horses standing along Mitchell Road off of Myrtle Avenue in Eureka. - JON EXLEY
  • Jon Exley
  • Fog frames horses standing along Mitchell Road off of Myrtle Avenue in Eureka.

Local photographer Jose Quezada has launched a pair of new websites, HumSport and HumLook, showcasing the work of a team of local photographers. Photographers will be uploading galleries of photos on both sites regularly, showcasing their best images of local sports, cultural events and landscapes. High-resolution downloads of the images are also available for $5 apiece.

The Journal is partnering with Quezada and the sites to bring you regular slideshows offering a glimpse of what these photographers have captured. The below slideshow is from HumLook. To see more or to purchase downloads of any of these images, visit www.HumLook.com.

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Friday, November 9, 2018

North Coast Night Lights: Close Encounters on the Avenue

Posted By on Fri, Nov 9, 2018 at 3:08 PM

When the Milky Way lines up with the Avenue of the Giants. - DAVID WILSON
  • David Wilson
  • When the Milky Way lines up with the Avenue of the Giants.
The Avenue of the Giants is as beautiful a drive as you will find. The groves along its 36-mile course line the Avenue with some of the grandest examples of the tallest trees on Earth, the California coast redwood, Sequoia sempervirens. Some are thousands of years old. If a disproportionate number of my photographs are taken along the Avenue, it is only proportionate to the beauty that is found there. The image I’m sharing today was photographed from the hillside just off the road near the California Federation of Women’s Clubs Grove, one of the special places found in Humboldt Redwoods State Park.

This particular view of the Milky Way rising just so above the road is only visible for a few days of the year. Why is this? Well, we know Earth orbits the sun, going completely around it in one year. This means that each day Earth’s night side is presented with a slightly different view of the cosmos as we travel around the sun, and as our view of the universe changes, the position of the Milky Way in our sky also shifts a little every night. The most spectacular part of the Milky Way, that area nearest the Galactic Core, is now almost entirely beneath the horizon after dark and we will see less of it each night until the return of “Milky Way season” next spring, when we will again be treated to more of the Core in the night sky.

I waited for months for a night when the Milky Way would rise from the horizon above the bend in the road at this spot. In my mind’s eye, the lines and curves of the road, the trees and the Milky Way would line up and interact interestingly, and, together with light painted in by passing cars, would make a good composition. And then, as so often happens, elements beyond my control intertwined with my own endeavors, with results that exceeded my expectations. I had planned to let passing cars bathe the scene with light but I could not control how they laid their strokes of light. I don’t think I could be happier with how it worked out, and again I thank the universe.

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Monday, November 5, 2018

Arborist Recommends Eucalyptus Removal to Make Way for Bay Trail

Posted By on Mon, Nov 5, 2018 at 11:49 AM

COUNTY STAFF REPORT
  • County Staff Report
The eucalyptus must go.

That was the conclusion drawn by a professional arborist hired by the county to determine if there is a viable way to mitigate the risks of the 219 eucalyptus trees on the U.S. Highway 101 corridor north of the former California Redwood Company mill while making way for the last leg of the Humboldt Bay Trail, a 4-mile stretch that would connect the trail to already constructed segments south of Arcata and north from Eureka.

Citing liability concerns related to falling trees and tree limbs, county staff recommended back in July that the county remove all the trees north of the mill as part of the trail plan. On July 31, the board voted unanimously, with First District Supervisor Rex Bohn absent, to approve an environmental impact report for the trail that included the trees’ removal. But the board also asked county staff to hire a certified arborist, or two, to conduct a risk assessment of the trees to determine if county staff was being overly cautious and if there is a way to keep the trees and build the trail without dramatically increasing maintenance costs or county liability.

In a 17-page letter that will come before the board tomorrow, certified arborist Torrey Young writes that “the trees as a whole are in an advanced state of physiological decline.” They have gone prolonged and heavy trimming, Young writes, and are growing in an inhospitable environment with high concentrations of salts in the soil. Additionally, he writes, there is some documented decay.

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Saturday, November 3, 2018

HumLook: Pelicans and Parades

Posted By on Sat, Nov 3, 2018 at 3:15 PM

The fifth annual Bark in the Park on Oct. 21 was a dog delight 5K walk-jog, trot-sniff jaunt through Sequoia Park, a benefit sponsored by local firefighters of the Humboldt Bay Fire District. Proceeds from runners traversing through the towering redwoods benefits Mending Mutts, working to rehabilitate animals of Humboldt County that have special and medical needs. - LISA WILHELMI PERKINS
  • Lisa Wilhelmi Perkins
  • The fifth annual Bark in the Park on Oct. 21 was a dog delight 5K walk-jog, trot-sniff jaunt through Sequoia Park, a benefit sponsored by local firefighters of the Humboldt Bay Fire District. Proceeds from runners traversing through the towering redwoods benefits Mending Mutts, working to rehabilitate animals of Humboldt County that have special and medical needs.

Local photographer Jose Quezada has launched a pair of new websites, HumSport and HumLook, showcasing the work of a team of local photographers. Photographers will be uploading galleries of photos on both sites regularly, showcasing their best images of local sports, cultural events and landscapes. High-resolution downloads of the images are also available for $5 apiece.

The Journal is partnering with Quezada and the sites to bring you regular slideshows offering a glimpse of what these photographers have captured. The below slideshow is from HumLook. To see more or to purchase downloads of any of these images, visit www.HumLook.com.

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Thursday, November 1, 2018

North Coast Night Lights: Humboldt County Skyline

Posted By on Thu, Nov 1, 2018 at 2:41 PM

A composite of stills from the time-lapse. The streaks were the paths of the stars as they swung across the sky. - DAVID WILSON
  • David Wilson
  • A composite of stills from the time-lapse. The streaks were the paths of the stars as they swung across the sky.
It’s unlikely for one who lives in Humboldt County to be unaware of a certain industry, which shall here remain nameless, and for which the county is known somewhat beyond its borders, and which recently became legal in our state, for the subject naturally becomes a part of many conversations. I could discuss it in one context or another, but hasn’t that been done? And can’t others do that? For fun, I decided to take a look at it from a particular angle: a silhouette of it against the stars.
A Humboldt Skyline: Pseudotsuga menziesii (Douglas-fir) and Cannabis sativa (the herb) silhouetted against the Milky Way and stars as they slowly revolve over the course one hour and 40 minutes.


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Thursday, October 25, 2018

Crab Season Opener For Patrick's Point North Delayed by Domoic Acid

Posted By on Thu, Oct 25, 2018 at 12:08 PM

As crab season nears, domoic acid raises its ugly head. - C. JUHASZ/CDFW WEBSITE
  • C. Juhasz/CDFW website
  • As crab season nears, domoic acid raises its ugly head.
It’s official: The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has “enacted a delay” of the recreational Dungeness crab season for areas stretching from Patrick’s Point north to the Oregon border due to “unhealthy levels” of domoic acid.

The remainder of the state is set for an opening on Nov. 3. Read previous Journal coverage of the elevated levels of the toxin found in local testing samples here.

“This closure shall remain in effect until the Director of the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), in consultation with the State Public Health Officer at CDPH, determines that domoic acid no longer poses a significant risk to public health and recommends lifting the fishery closure in this region,” the fish and wildlife release states. “CDFW will continue to coordinate with CDPH and OEHHA to test domoic acid levels in Dungeness crab to determine when the Dungeness crab recreational fishery in this area can safely be opened.”


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SECOND UPDATE: Warning Issued on Dungeness Crab After Testing Shows Toxin

Posted By on Thu, Oct 25, 2018 at 10:21 AM

As crab season nears, domoic acid raises its ugly head. - C. JUHASZ/CDFW WEBSITE
  • C. Juhasz/CDFW website
  • As crab season nears, domoic acid raises its ugly head.
SECOND UPDATE:
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has “enacted a delay” of the recreational Dungeness crab season for areas stretching from Patrick’s Point to the Oregon border due to “unhealthy levels” of domoic acid.

UPDATE: The California Department of Public health is now warning the public against eating Dungeness crab caught from Patrick’s Point near Trinidad to the Oregon border due to elevated levels of domoic acid.

“Dangerous levels of domoic acid have been detected in the body meat and internal organs of Dungeness crab from this region,” the release states. “Cooking crabs neither decreases nor destroys the toxin.”

The Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, or OEHHA, in consultation with CDPH, is now recommending a delay in the opening of the recreational crab season in these areas. The season was slated to begin Nov. 5.

PREVIOUS:

The most recent round of domoic acid testing in Dungeness crab shows a few “hot spots” of elevated test levels, including samplings off Trinidad and George Reef in Del Norte County.

California Department of Public Health results of the six samples taken at those locations between late September and early this month show elevated levels were found in varying degrees. One location in the Bay Area, Bodega Bay, also showed higher domoic acid levels while San Francisco, Half Moon Bay, Monterey and Morro Bay sectors tested clear.

Domoic acid, as most of us will remember, all but destroyed the 2015 season. This year’s recreational season is currently slated to start Nov. 3 with the commercial season opening on Nov. 15.


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Wednesday, October 24, 2018

North Coast Night Lights: This Way to the Galactic Core

Posted By on Wed, Oct 24, 2018 at 10:22 AM

The moonlit Kneeland Road leads straight to the Galactic Core. - DAVID WILSON
  • David Wilson
  • The moonlit Kneeland Road leads straight to the Galactic Core.
I found myself on a ridge line along the Kneeland Road the night of July 18, 2018, on an impulsive late-night mission to the Galactic Core. It was out there, all I needed was a stretch of road that would take me up to meet it at the horizon.

We live in the Milky Way galaxy, which is a spiral galaxy shaped much like a flattened pinwheel, with arms spiraling outward from its center. From Earth’s position on one of the galactic arms, we seasonally get a view through the thickest portion of the Milky Way, which appears as the milky trail, or way, of lightness that stretches from horizon to horizon some parts of the year. This band itself is often called the Milky Way. It is brighter than the rest of the night sky because when we look at it, we are looking through our pinwheel-shaped galaxy edge-on, right through the greatest number of stars, nebulae, etc. They appear so dense from this angle, and many are so far away, that they blend together into indistinct milkiness. The Galactic Core is the center of all that, the densest part, and in July it’s low on the southern horizon after dark. Looking to either side of the Milky Way band is to look above and below the edge-on view of our flattened spiral galaxy, out where the stars are fewer and less closely packed. If your mind is boggled, don’t worry, it’s probably a good thing. That keeps it from being blown. You’re extremely tiny in all this, helplessly adrift in outer space.

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