Labor on Adopt-A-Trail

Bombing Cuesta, photo Shaw
Cuesta Fire Drop

Happy Labor Day Everyone,

I love Labor Day, it’s our day!  Right?  Labor day is “a public holiday or day of festivities held in honor of working people”.  That’s what I’m talking about, a break from work to celebrate the fact that most of your time is spent working.  I’m okay with that.  Labor Day also marks the end of summer and the oncoming of Fall or backcountry season here in the Los Padres.  You can see it coming.  Trees are changing colors ever so slightly, it’s dark now at 8pm and the mornings are just a little cooler.  It’s always a little sad to say goodbye to summer but I get really fired-up saying hello to Fall and Winter.  Bring it on……

Speaking of labor, big thanks to everyone who fought the Cuesta Fire in SLO County.  The fire is now 100% contained and even with a few flareup scares over the past weeks; the FS, CalFire and others were able to fight it back and keep it under control.  Cuesta ended up burning 2,446 acres and lasted nearly two weeks.  Great work and thank you to everyone involved, I hope you also find some downtime this weekend to celebrate your labor!

AAT Off and Running, photo Spicer
REI Check
The LPFA is excited to announce that we won an REI partner grant and will be kicking off and publicizing an Adopt-A-Trail program in the Los Padres.  While Adopt-A-Trail is nothing new and there are dozens of similar programs around the country, there hasn’t been a large scale active program in the Los Padres.  We’re looking forward to working with the Forest Service, trail organizations, corporate sponsors and volunteers to help facilitate a program where everyone can help make a difference on their favorite trail.  Many many more details to come.  We’re hoping to officially launch the program in early November during a Volunteer Wilderness Ranger BBQ event.  Again, more details to come.  We hope you’re all excited about the potential of being able to help your favorite trail.  If you have any questions or need more information, please contact

Another New Kiosk Installed, Lower NIRA Trailhead, photo Fosters
NIRA Kiosk

September 17: Wilderness Protection Summit, Santa Cruz Sierra Club & VWA
September 25-27: LPFA NPLD Alamar Trail Crosscut Sawyer Project

September 26-27: VWA Pico Blanco NPLD Trail Project
September 26: NPLD Santa Barbara, Upper Cold Spring
October 3: Wild and Scenic Film Festival, Monterey in support of the VWA
October 16-18: LPFA Madulce Trail Crosscut Sawyer Project (NOTE NEW DATE)
October 24: Wilderness Symposium, Ojai, Los Padres Chapter Sierra Club
November 7: AAT Launch & VWR Appreciation, Santa Barbara
December 4-6: LPFA Lower Mono-Alamar Trail Project

If you have any events to share, please send them our way.
Enjoy the long weekend…….

Cuesta Fire Dodging Lead Bullets

Image, NASA

A series of fires were started last Sunday evening as a result of a northbound truck along Hwy 101 in SB and SLO Counties dragging a chain and the sparks from that chain igniting roadside vegetation.  The largest of these fires has become the Cuesta Fire and was started along the Cuesta Grade just outside of San Luis Obispo.  The fire started along the south slope of East Cuesta and has spread quickly from there.  As of now the fire has grown to 3,500 acres and is 20% contained.  Thanks to the diligence of the fire fighters and support crews, the fire heading towards containment and the evacuation order for Santa Margarita residents has been lifted.  Currently the fire is being pushed east into the Santa Lucia Wilderness.  Word on the street is that the fire will be fully contained by the middle of next week.  Good news is that the onshore marine layer appears strong over the coming days and below average temperatures are expected into early next week.  Many many thanks to everyone helping with the fire.  With all the fires raging across the West, resources are thin and the amount of work and planning that goes into fighting a fire is astounding.  For those of you in Twitter land, following fires through social media brings you the best and most up-to-date information possible.  You can follow the Cuesta Fire here.


Photo, Ventana Wildlife Society

As you might be aware, most of the Los Padres is currently in A-Zone South hunting season.  One of the hot local hunting topics over the past decade has been trying to ban lead bullets and instead use copper.  The use of lead bullets is directly related to condor mortality.  You can browse online for days and days about this topic but real quick:- Hunter shoots deer with lead bullet.
– Deer runs away before dying in bushes.
– Hunter is unable to find dead deer.
– Condors feed on dead deer.
– Condors ingest lead bullet fragments.
– Condors get lead poisoning.
– Condors get sick or die.

It is strongly encouraged for hunters within the Condor Range to switch to copper instead of lead.  For those who want to learn more or make the switch, Salinas based Ventana Wildlife Society has tons of information online and they even host a monthly free copper ammunition giveaway.  You enter your name into the drawing, fill out a few questions and each month they raffle out free copper ammunition.  It’s a great program, to say the least.  You can learn more on the Ventana Wildlife Society’s page here.



Finish Line, Santa Barbara 100 Endurance Run

Are you an athlete?  Runner?  Mountain Biker?  Just like to get out, exercise and participate?  Well, chances are you’ll be interested in one of these upcoming events:

This 100 and 50 mile ride crosses the SB Backcountry utilizing a series of dirt roads and single tracks.  This will be the 2nd annual running of the event and it got rave reviews last year.  If you are a mountain biker, be sure to check this out.  More information:

BIG SUR RIVER RUN: October 24, 2015
Now in its 35th year, the Big Sur River Run offers a 5k walk and 10k run through the redwoods at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park.  Proceeds from the event support the Big Sur Health Center and the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade.

PATAGONIA SALMON RUN: November 8, 2015
This year marks the 22nd year of the Patagonia Salmon Run in Ventura.  The Salmon Run is a fun spirited 5k race that follows the banks of the Ventura River.  Don’t let the fun spirit foul ya, there are some fast runners in the field as well.

Hope to see you at one of the upcoming races…….

Say cheese!
An all-star crew of Los Padres VWR’s took a summertime field trip to work the
Manter Meadow and Woodpecker Trails in the Southern Sierras’ Domeland Wilderness.

September 25-27: LPFA NPLD Alamar Trail Crosscut Sawyer Project
September 26-27: VWA Pico Blanco NPLD Trail Project
September 26: NPLD Frontcountry Santa Barbara, Location TBD
October 9-11: LPFA Madulce Trail Crosscut Sawyer Project

More details on each event in coming e-newsletters………

Be safe everyone and don’t forget to check us out on Facebook, where right now we’re discussion best ways to wash your down sleeping bag.  Amazing the things you can learn on the internet.

Thanks for the read……..