Forest Service encourages visitors to recreate responsibly

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Forest Service encourages visitors to recreate responsibly

We’re heading into a busy holiday weekend and large crowds are expected at national recreation areas. The Forest Service is asking visitors to put safety first by recreating responsibly and provides these tips for enjoying the outdoors:

  • Water Safety- Choose swimming areas carefully and ensure small children are not left unattended. When boating, ensure all passengers wear a life jacket and look out for other boaters and swimmers.
  • Severe weather- Weather conditions can change rapidly. Monitor weather before and during outdoor activities.
  • Wildlife- Do not feed wildlife, keep a safe distance when encountering wildlife and do not disturb their habitat. Clean up food or garbage around your camp or picnic site.
  • Hiking- Stay on marked trails. Don’t hike alone. Plan for emergencies such as becoming lost and bring along extra food, clothing and water. 
  • Be Fire Safe- Keep fires small and never leave them unattended. Ensure firepits are cold to the touch before leaving.
  • Driving- Use caution when traveling through areas that are heavily congested. Regulations are enforced for the protection of visitors and natural resources.
  • Fireworks- Leave fireworks to the professionals. Fireworks are prohibited in developed recreation areas and dangerous in other parts of the forest. Open spaces tend to dry out quickly and fireworks could start a wildfire.
  • Alcohol- To ensure a family-friendly environment, alcoholic beverages are prohibited in many areas of the forest including campgrounds and many day-use sites. 

Mountain Hardwear and American Mountain Guides Association Announce LGBTQIA2S+ Climbing Instructor Course 

Mountain Hardwear and American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA) have announced a 3-day climbing course instructed by and in celebration of the LGBTQIA2S+ community. AMGA has offered the Single Pitch Instructor course since 2008, but thanks to financial support from Mountain Hardwear, this will be the first course with a direct invitation to the LGBTQIA2S+ community.

The course will take place in Joshua Tree, California on October 2, 2020 through October 4, 2020. During the inaugural event, Mountain Hardwear will cover all participant fees, aside from travel expenses. There are four spots available in the program and applications are open now through July 20, 2020. Current AMGA membership and a two-part application are required to be considered. 

National park visitor severely injured by ‘territorial’ otter

A visitor to Lassen Volcanic National Park was swimming in Manzanita Lake on June 25 when they were attacked by a river otter, the park reported on their Facebook page. There was no indication that the visitor provoked the otter in any way. The Facebook post said that the otter was “most likely a female protecting its young and den.” 

The visitor was sent to the hospital. Their injuries have not been disclosed. Although otters are cute, they have sharp claws and teeth and can become aggressive when protecting their young. The park is requesting visitors avoid swimming or using floatation devices in the eastern part of the lake where the attack occurred. 

Photo: Forest trail in Shenandoah Blue Ridge Appalachian mountains on skyline drive near Harry F. Byrd Visitor Center with yellow flowers and path – Getty Images krblokhin

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