If you’re into watching eagles in the wild, here’s some information about upcoming eagle watches around the state, courtesy of the state Tourism Department:
Bald Eagle Watch programs at Chickasaw National Recreation Area
Bald eagles are flying once again over Lake of the Arbuckles at Chickasaw National Recreation Area. The annual return of the bald eagles to this area is always a cause for celebration during the winter season.
This year park rangers at Chickasaw National Recreation Area would like to invite the public to attend Bald Eagle Watches scheduled for Jan. 16 and 30. The day will begin at 9 a.m. with a program at the Travertine Nature Center. After the program the group will caravan with park rangers to the Lake of the Arbuckles to locate and observe eagles in the wild. Those attending should dress for the weather; bring a camera and binoculars, and a sack lunch. To learn more about this annual event, please call the Travertine Nature Center at (580) 622-7234.
The American bald eagle almost reached the point of extinction, but the combined efforts of many private citizens, elected officials, and government agencies led to the removal of bald eagles from the endangered species list in 2007. This increase in the eagle population allows us the privilege of seeing these birds in the wild.
Kaw Lake Ultimate Eagle Watch scheduled Jan. 16
We may be in the grips of winter, but that’s the perfect time to enjoy a popular outdoor event, the Kaw Lake Ultimate Eagle Watch set for Saturday. The watch involves a day of activities in addition to the thrill of sighting eagles.
For starters, at 7:30 a.m. at both the Kaw City Community Center and the Kaw Nation Tribal Headquarters, doors open and refreshments are served. At 8 a.m., the first guided eagle viewing tours depart both locations. Two more tours depart at 10:15 a.m. and at 1 p.m. from both locations.
According to Kathy Tippin, executive director of the Kaw Lake Association, other events include seminars, a live eagle program and a free Native American luncheon including corn soup, fry bread, boiled potatoes and grape dumplings to be served at the Kaw Nation Community Center just west of Washunga Bay.
“Two of the presentations are new this year: the one by the Oklahoma Falconers Association and the one by Dave Hensley with Kaw Nation Environment Program,” she said. The day’s events are free, but donations are accepted, she added.
For complete details, see the following schedule of events.
Kaw Lake Ultimate Eagle Watch
Kaw City Community Center (East of Ponca City, south side of State Highway 11)
7:30 a.m. – Doors open with refreshments.
8:00 a.m. – First guided eagle viewing tour departs.
9 to 9:30 a.m. – Kathy and Gary Siftar, raptor rehabilitators.
9:30 a.m. – Refreshment break.
9:45 to 10:15 a.m. – History of the eagle and its habitat; Mark Howery, biologist, state Department of Wildlife Conservation.
10:15 a.m. – Refreshment break/second guided eagle viewing tour departs.
10:30 to 11 a.m. – Cinnamon Valley Exotics.
11 to 11:15 a.m. – Refreshment break.
11:15 a.m. to noon – Ryan Van Zant, Sutton Avian Research Center – Live Eagle program.
11:30 a.m. to1 p.m.– Free Native American lunch, Kaw Nation Community Building (Washunga Bay) or area restaurants.
1 p.m. — Third guided eagle viewing tour Departs.
Kaw Nation Tribal Headquarters (Kaw City, north side of State Highway 11)
7:30 a.m. – Doors Open with Refreshments.
8 a.m. – First Guided Eagle Viewing Tour departs.
9 to 9:30 a.m.– Luther Pepper, significance of eagles to Native Americans.
9:30 a.m.– Break/refreshments.
9:45 to 10:15 a.m.– “Solve a Mystery,” Jennifer Lance, Critter Tales.
10:15 a.m.- Refreshment break/second guided eagle tour departs.
10:30 to 11:15 a.m.– Oklahoma Falconers Association with live raptors.
11:15 a.m.– Break/refreshments.
11:30 a.m. to noon – Dave Hensley, Kaw Nation Environmental Program, “The Water Eagles Live On.”
11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. — Free Native American lunch at the Kaw Nation Community Building (Washunga Bay) or area restaurants.
1 p.m. – Third guided eagle viewing tour departs.
During the free Native American luncheon at the Kaw Nation Community Center, meat pies will be available for sale.
All programs are subject to change and weather conditions, Tippin said.
“In case of ice or snow, please phone before departing for the Eagle Watch,” she said.
The numbers to call are (580) 761-1615 or (918) 688-9518.
For more information, call (877) 671-6985, (580) 762-9494 or go to www.kawlake.com.
So there’s always been a part of me that would love to be a park ranger. Patroling the national parks, hiking around a lot, spending time in nature and caring for the sites: Yeah, that is right up my alley.
It looks like the national Parks Service is offering just this sort of opportunity for teachers. So if you’re a teacher with an outdoor bent, check this out. I got this from the state Tourism Department:
Put on the Ranger uniform, receive training, and work for the National Park Service at Washita Battlefield National Historic Site for eight weeks between June and August 2010.
The intent of the Teacher to Ranger to Teacher (TRT) program is to link National Park units and teachers with Title I students in urban and rural school districts. Teachers spend the summer working in the park performing various duties depending on their interests and the interests of the park, including developing and presenting interpretive programs for the general public, staffing the visitor center desk, developing curriculum-based materials and taking on special projects.
They spend part of their school year presenting park-related activities in uniform to their students. Teacher-Rangers also make presentations to other students, teachers, and schools during National Park Week.
The teacher will receive a stipend and the program is open to any school district teacher. Contact Kathryn Harrison, park ranger/education coordinator, at (580) 497-2742 or go on line to email@example.com. For more information about the Teacher-Ranger-Teacher program, visit http://www.nps.gov/learn/trt/.
Some news from the National Park Service…
SULPHUR — Lake use permits for 2010 for the Chickasaw National Recreation Area’s Lake of the Arbuckles are now available for purchase. The annual permit can be purchased for $30 from the automated fee machines at Guy Sandy, The Point, and Buckhorn launch ramps and the lobby of Sulphur Chamber of Commerce, 717 W Broadway, Sulphur. The receipts must be redeemed for a yellow annual permit sticker within one week of purchase.
If visitors are eligible for the Senior Pass (formerly Golden Age Passport) or Access Pass (formerly Golden Access Passport) discount, they must have their Senior Pass or Access Pass card in hand to input the card number for permit purchase. The fee machine, which will accept either cash or credit card, dispenses two receipts for each transaction. These receipts, which are heat and light sensitive, must be redeemed for a yellow annual permit sticker within one week of purchase.
The receipts may be redeemed at the following locations: Travertine Nature Center, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. seven days a week; Park Headquarters (1008 W 2nd Street), 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; the Visitor Information Station (717 W Broadway), 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. seven days a week, or when NPS staff are present; and the Buckhorn Ranger Station when personnel are available.
Boat owners will also need to bring their current boat registration to obtain the annual sticker. These permits will expire Dec. 31. The annual permit stickers are to be placed on both sides of the watercraft and trailer.
The Travertine Nature Center, Visitor Information Station and park headquarters all sell the Senior Pass and Access Pass. The Senior Pass can be purchased (must be a U.S. citizen and at least 62 years old) for $10. There is no charge for the Access Pass. For more information about passes and lake permits, call the Travertine Nature Center at (580) 622-7234 or visit the park Web site at http://www.nps.gov/chic/
Time for those weekly ski reports A co-worker of mine was up in Colorado last week and noted that the east slope resorts were still a little thin while she was there. But just as she left, they got a good 14-inch dump. So hopefully those places are shaping up now.
New Mexico: http://www.skireport.com/newmexico/
And just because I know some people in this area like to hit Tahoe, here’s some information out that way…
Sugar Bowl: http://www.skireport.com/california/sugarbowl/
Tahoe Donner: http://www.skireport.com/california/tahoedonner/
Enjoy the slopes, people!
Picked up this link from the adventure life blog. Interesting, short read. But be sure to click on the NPR report on the issue. Pretty informative. One thing we have learned is that social networking cam be powerful — powerful enough to keep some ski resorts accountable. And hats off to skireport.com (used here weekly), which came up with a phone app which allows users to report ski conditions as they see it.
We’ve heard about mountain lion sightings in Oklahoma before, but as reported by Ed Godfrey in Tuesday’s Oklahoman, a mountain lion caught on camera deep inside southeast Oklahoma suggests that maybe these predators aren’t just passing through. (Story here: http://www.newsok.com/trail-camera-snaps-a-big-cat/article/3429730?custom_click=lead_story_title )
The story says that an Atoka landowner who has a camera stationed on a trail on his land (to watch for game) got pictures of a mountain lion approaching a grain feeder used to attract deer.
Can we add mountain lions to the list of predators now roaming Oklahoma’s wild areas? Nature enthusiasts can only hope so. Ranchers might disagree. Hikers, campers and backpackers should at least be aware.
In any case, it would appear that southeastern Oklahoma — already known for having a growing black bear population — may soon be looking more like it did before being populated by people. Could be interesting to watch how mountain lions affect other species out there, and it will definitely be worth monitoring human interaction with these creatures if they are indeed here to stay.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — American snowboarder Kevin Pearce was in critical condition Saturday at a Utah hospital after suffering a “severe, traumatic brain injury” in a training accident, one of his doctors said.
Pearce is in the University of Utah Hospital’s intensive care unit in Salt Lake City. Dr. Holly Ledyard said Pearce is stable condition and has not yet needed to undergo surgery.
“Kevin sustained a severe, traumatic brain injury … (and) is being kept sedated,” Ledyard said in a statement released by the snowboarder’s publicist. “The focus over the next week will be watching for any swelling in his brain and keeping his brain pressure normal.”
Pearce was preparing for next week’s Olympic qualifying events at Mammoth Mountain, Calif., when he hit his head during a training run Thursday in Park City.
“Kevin has a long recovery ahead of him,” Ledyard said.
According to an update Saturday afternoon on a Facebook page set up by his family, Pearce was “doing well, he continues to maintain his stable condition. Being young, healthy and strong is working in his favor.”
“Family and friends remain positive and are thankful for the outpouring of support,” said Pearce’s spokeswoman, Danielle Burch.
The 22-year-old from Norwich, Vt., is a top-ranked halfpipe rider. Along with Shaun White, he is considered to be one of America’s top athletes in a sport dominated by the United States.
Olympic halfpipes are essentially hollowed out ice shells, the sides of which rise up to 22 feet in the air. Riders gain speed as they go from one side to another and fly several feet over the edges, where they flip and spin, often rotating 720 or 1080 degrees on a single jump.
Pearce was in the process of completing a twisting double back flip when he caught his toe-side edge while landing, Burch said. He was wearing a helmet.
Three weeks ago, Pearce fell during a preliminary run at an Olympic qualifying event in Copper Mountain, Colo., and suffered a concussion.