NEWS

Pacific Crest Trail Season is on!

The 16th Annual Day Zero PCT Kick-Off Event was held the weekend of April 24th at Lake Morena County Park. For the roughly 300-400 thru hikers who will attempt to hike the full 2,650 mile long trail over the next five months, it marks the end of planning and preparation and the beginning of a long anticipated adventure. Over the next few months, we can anticipate the first of the PCT thu hikers to pass through the Tehachapi mountains on their way north.

The section of the PCT that passes through our back yard is one of the driest sections, with as many as 30 miles or more between reliable water sources. With this in mind, we encourage any rider who comes across a hiker to stop and make sure the hiker doesn’t need a lift to water or any aid before passing on. You could save a life or, at they very least, make a new friend.

Please remember that motorized vehicles are prohibited on the PCT. Places where OHV-legal trails cross the PCT are clearly signed. Keep an eye out for hikers and equestrians if you're riding a trail that crosses the PCT.

As Always, the Friends of Jawbone encourage users to obey all posted signs. If unsure check a Friends of Jawbone map or stay off the trail!

 

Thank You, Google!

We would like to thank Google for awarding a nonprofit grant to Friends of Jawbone for the free use of their new Google Maps Engine, a donation worth $15,000. This remarkable online GIS mapping product will help us to manage our work on ground and to proof upcoming trail maps with local agencies. Google Maps Engine is available to members of the public for free in a Lite Version if you are interested in creating your own online maps.

Congratulations Kern County Sheriff's OHV Division!

Friends of Jawbone wants to wish a hearty congratulations to the Kern County Sheriff’s Office’s OHV division in their recent acquisition of a 4-seat Polaris Razor. The new Razor was purchased with California State Parks and Recreation grant money. The sheriff’s office will also be purchasing four 2013 Yamaha ATVs, which will replace some of the older ATVs in their fleet, allowing them to continue the hard work of keeping riders safe and on legal trails.

The Kern County Sheriff’s Office has a response area of 8,000 square miles. Within this area are many large off-highway vehicle areas open to OHV recreation. Deputies assigned to the Off-highway Vehicle Team are responsible for patrolling in both mountain and desert terrain, often on challenging, sandy, rutted or rocky roads which normal patrol vehicles cannot gain access to.

Carrying on The Work

We here at the Friends of Jawbone love to hear that our friends carried on volunteering and getting involved even after they left the state. Recently Ed Waldheim received a very nice eMail from Lemont Southworth. Lemont was one of the founders of the informal Desert Rat groups here in southern California. A few years ago he moved to Utah and wanted to let us know that he’s carried on his involvement in trail advocacy and conservation.

Read more: Carrying on The Work

DGSRV To Receive President's Volunteer Service Award!

Friends of Jawbone wants to wish a hearty congratulations to Desert Group Search and Rescue Volunteers, Inc. for having received the President’s Volunteer Service Award. DGSRV is an amazing group of people dedicated to educating and aiding the public. During the most recent FOJ meeting it was announced that the group of 31 volunteers had logged a total 10,000 hours of volunteer work over the past year. The top five volunteers in the group have personally reached the Gold level of service (meaning the adults have volunteered 500 hours or more in the past 12 months, or 250 Hours for young adults) and they will be honored individually at the awards ceremony.

Read more: DGSRV To Receive President's Volunteer Service Award!

BLM Names new Ridgecrest Field Office Manager

The BLM has announced that Carl Symons, previously BLM’s Medford Supervisory Realty Specialist in Oregon, will be the new field manager for the Ridgecrest Field Office.

Symons served as acting Ridgecrest Field Office Manager in late 2011 and early 2012, so he’s familiar with the area.

When asked about his new position Symons said, “I am very proud and honored to be joining the California Desert District as the Ridgecrest Field Manager.

Read more: BLM Names new Ridgecrest Field Office Manager

ROHVA Opens New DriverCourse in So. Cal!

The Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (ROHVA) has unveiled a new driver training site in Irvine for Southern California SideXSide enthusiasts. The new Basic DriverCourses are a chance for both individuals and groups to improve their SideXSide driving skills in a controlled environment and under the supervision of a certified DriverCoach. Drivers are taught how to navigate tough situations, when and how to effectively use a spotter, and how to maintain better control of their vehicle in a variety of situations.

Read more: ROHVA Opens New DriverCourse in So. Cal!

Closure Lifted on Pacific Crest Trail in Jawbone Area

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Ridgecrest Field Office, has lifted its closure order on a portion of the Pacific Crest Trail that was implemented on August 12, 2012 in response to the Jawbone Complex Fire that was burning across the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail.

The trail is now accessible by the public from Highway 58 in the south to the Jawbone Trail Road/Sequoia National Forest boundary to the north.

While the closure is being lifted the public is reminded that the only legal routes of travel within the area are those roads and trails that are designated and marked on the ground with brown numbered signs.  Please help the natural post-fire recovery processes to take place by staying on the designated roads and trails.

Read more: Closure Lifted on Pacific Crest Trail in Jawbone Area

Spotted at Jawbone Station: Mr. Bob!

The weather has cooled down a little and it’s made Mr. Bob perk up. He was out of his burro and exploring his enclosure this morning. Drop in and say hi! Got questions? Curious about tortoises? The staff at Jawbone Station are always happy to help you find an answer.

Click the photo for a larger photo of Mr. Bob. Photo courtesy Mr. Ed Waldheim.