Wolf Bauer, 103, mountaineer, environmentalist dies – Seattle Times

A remarkable life.

Wolf Bauer, accomplished mountaineer and environmentalist with a passion for teaching and sharing, has died at 103. His work influenced generations of skiers, climbers and kayakers and led to protection of shoreline areas. Jack Broom reports. (Seattle Times)


316th Anniversary of “The Big One”

Worth a read and maybe make sure you have your preparations updated.

“Last big Cascadia earthquake struck 316 years ago today”

The Red Cross recommends that people take the following steps to prepare for an earthquake: • Practice “drop, cover and hold on” in each safe place. If you do not have sturdy furniture to hold on to, sit on the floor next to an interior wall and cover your head and neck with your arms.

• Keep a flashlight and sturdy shoes by each person’s bed in case the earthquake strikes in the middle of the night.

• Bolt and brace water heaters and gas appliances, bookcases, china cabinets and tall furniture to wall studs.

• Learn how to shut off the gas valves in your home and keep a wrench handy for that purpose.

• Keep and maintain an emergency supply kit in an easy-to-access location.

Also, I read years ago, an article by a guy who was first on the scene in the San Francisco Earthquake of 1989. He said that he found the three things he needed the most were:

  • Leather gloves
  • Heavy work boots (for walking on broken windows, doors, wood with nails in it)
  • Crowbar

All these things can be kept in the trunk of a car, or out in an RV if you have one. I’ve always carried a short crow bar, and leather gloves in my car, and usually try to stuff a pair of older boots in as well.




On Malheur, The Peninsula and the real work needed to change things

I came across this article today, from the Salt Lake Tribune by Lesli Allison. It’s important, because it points out what is really happening away from the ego driven takeover by the Bundy’s, now nearing it’s inevitable deadly climax.

It’s relevant to us here as well, because the hard work to get a large number of stakeholders in environmental issues to make change, is not usually headline news. But it is happening all around us. And it is being successful.

If you want to see the good stuff happening in the West, look up one or more of the many rancher-led collaborative efforts such as the Malpai Borderlands Group, the Blackfoot Challenge, the Chama Peak Land Alliance, the Altar Valley Conservation Alliance, the Diablo Trust and the California Rangelands Conservation Coalition. Look up the Sand County Foundation’s Leopold Conservation Award winners, the Sage Grouse Initiative and the Western Landowners Alliance.

Here on the Olympic Peninsula, collaboration between the Tribes, environmental restoration organizations like the North Olympic Salmon Coalition, and local stakeholders like the Dungeness River Management Team, continue to spend years in meetings to come up with innovative programs that get funded by agencies like the Puget Sound Partnership, EPA, and others. Many of us joke about the endless meetings, but we understand the importance of coming to agreement over the science of an issue, and usually those who attack us from the community, haven’t taken the time to get involved, learn the science and help build consensus.

Yesterday, I had the good fortune to participate in a long rang planning meeting for the Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee. The Committee, which advises the Jefferson County Commissioners on aquatic issues, is made up of a very active group of volunteers representing a wide range of local interests. From Taylor Shellfish, Washington State University Extension Program, marine scientists and researchers, the marine trades, recreational boating, representatives of the citizens of the various political districts, along with the Port of Port Townsend, the City of Port Townsend, and environmental activists, we do our best to better understand our shorelines. We try and come to consensus on sticky environmental issues,  involve ourselves in marine projects to expand the science based work we value, and educate the public, who we represent.  We don’t always agree on everything, and there are some intense debates on key issues. But we work things through, and either choose to agree or not.  There are a lot of meetings, often about educating our members and the public to an issue, but we try our best to make it fun and bring in knowledgeable speakers. We also  get to get out on the beach and waters a lot. That’s one of the payoffs.

So while there are a vocal minority in the American west that refuse to work cooperatively to solve problems, the Bundy’s of this world usually end up just hurting their own cause. What you might not have heard reported was that the community  around Burns had been working on a collaborative agreement with BLM for a number of years. It was coming to an end, public comment had been asked for, and community meetings had been planned for January, before the Bundy’s blundered in and got a lot of the locals upset. Now that the standoff is ending, the community will likely get back to the hard work of figuring out the right land management plan for all, given the legal constraints of science based management, which  the courts have almost always supported when challenged. Intimidating people with guns to get your way, is not the way of the west anymore. And most of the real positive work that has ever been done out here, when you read the histories, has been collaborative, with communities coming together, not being torn apart.

The unfortunate thing is that many people live behind their computers or TVs for most of their news, and get that news from outlets like Fox that manipulate it and highlight divisiveness for their own reasons. In many places it is getting harder and harder to get people to come out and participate in their democracy. Often boards don’t have full representation for months on end. Do yourself a favor and get involved if you aren’t already. Oh, and while you are at it, take time to vote.


Pope Resources, Port Gamble S’Klallam negotiating conservation easement – North Kitsap Herald

More good news and work towards a restoration of our waters.

The Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe is in line to receive a $1.5 million grant from the state Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Estuary and Salmon Restoration Program, or ESRP. According to Fish and Wildlife, the Tribe would use the grant and other funds “to protect the mill site from future development with a conservation easement … for the purpose of restoration, returning the site to a more natural state for future generations.” The site is across Port Gamble Bay from Point Julia and the Port Gamble S’Klallam reservation, where the S’Klallam people relocated after the mill was established in 1853. The Tribe and Pope Resources are working together “to develop a vision for the future of the site that includes restoration, a park setting and recognition of Tribal history,” according to Fish and Wildlife. Richard Walker reports. (North Kitsap Herald)


Picture of the Day – Squat Lobster

Squat Lobster in shell. Hood Canal. Sund Rock by Bruce Kerwin. DSC_6173 Squat Lobster in Shell - Sund Rock

Rogue wave hits Pacific Beach. Caught on video – CBC & KING TV

An amazing bit video showing a rogue wave going ashore in Pacific Beach last weekend is on Youtube, and has a bit of reporting on it, on CBC.

The CBC story is here:

A “rogue” wave inundated the coast near Pacific Beach in Washington last weekend (on 1/16/2016 — and it was all caught on camera.

Luckily no one was caught in the water at the time, but what exactly caused the “mini tsunami”? Called rogue, freak or killer waves, this phenomena has been a part of marine folklore for centuries. But rogue waves have only recently been accepted as an actual scientific event. Johanna Wagstaffe reports. (CBC)

KING 5 also covered the story, with a bit more depth to the story.




Spawning Gumboot Chiton

Photographer Bruce Kerwin captured a Gumboot Chiton releasing eggs into the water column at Point Hudson – Port Townsend, WA

DSC_5116 Spawning Gumboot Chiton - Port Townsend


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