Cabrillo National Monument
Cabrillo National Monument is at the southern tip of the Point Loma Peninsula in San Diego, California. It commemorates the landing of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo at San Diego Bay on September 28,1542 and this event marked the first time a European expedition had set foot on what became the West Coast of the United States. The site was designated as California Historical Landmark #56 in 1932, as with all historical units of the National Park Service, Cabrillo was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15,1966. The annual Cabrillo Festival Open House is held on a Sunday each October and it commemorates Cabrillo with a reenactment of his landing at Ballast Point, in San Diego Bay. The park offers a view of San Diegos harbor and skyline, as well as Coronado, on clear days, a wide expanse of the Pacific Ocean and Mexicos Coronado Islands are visible. A visitor center screens a film about Cabrillos voyage and has exhibits about the expedition, the Old Point Loma Lighthouse is the highest point in the park and has been a San Diego icon since 1855.
The lighthouse was closed in 1891, and a new one opened at an elevation, because fog. The old lighthouse is now a museum, and visitors may enter it, the area encompassed by the national monument includes various former military installations, such as coastal artillery batteries, built to protect the harbor of San Diego from enemy warships. Many of these installations can be seen walking around the area. A former army building hosts an exhibit that tells the story of history at Point Loma. The area near the monument entrance was used for gliding activities in 1929-1935. Even Charles Lindbergh soared in a Bowlus sailplane along the cliffs of Point Loma in 1930, markers for these accomplishments can be found near the entrance, and the site is recognized as a National Soaring Landmark by the National Soaring Museum. On October 14,1913, by proclamation, Woodrow Wilson reserved 0.5 acres of Fort Rosecrans for The Order of Panama. To construct a statue of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. In 1939 the Portuguese government commissioned a statue of Cabrillo.
The sandstone statue, executed by sculptor Alvaro de Bree, is 14 feet tall, the statue was intended for the Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco but arrived too late and was stored in an Oakland, California garage. Then-State Senator Ed Fletcher managed to obtain the statue in 1940 over the objections of Bay Area officials and it was stored for several years on the grounds of the Naval Training Center San Diego, out of public view, and was finally installed at Cabrillo Monument in 1949. The sandstone statue suffered severe weathering because of its position and was replaced in 1988 by a replica made of limestone
Sequoia National Park
Sequoia National Park is a national park in the southern Sierra Nevada east of Visalia, California, in the United States. It was established on September 25,1890, the park is south of and contiguous with Kings Canyon National Park, the two are administered by the National Park Service together as the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. They were designated the UNESCO Sequoia-Kings Canyon Biosphere Reserve in 1976, the park is famous for its giant sequoia trees, including the General Sherman tree, the largest tree on Earth. The General Sherman tree grows in the Giant Forest, which five out of the ten largest trees in the world. The Giant Forest is connected by the Generals Highway to Kings Canyon National Parks General Grant Grove, the parks giant sequoia forests are part of 202,430 acres of old-growth forests shared by Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Indeed, the preserve a landscape that still resembles the southern Sierra Nevada before Euro-American settlement. Many park visitors enter Sequoia National Park through its entrance near the town of Three Rivers at Ash Mountain at 1,700 ft elevation.
The last California grizzly was killed in this park in 1922, the California Black Oak is a key transition species between the chaparral and higher elevation conifer forest. At higher elevations in the front country, between 5,500 and 9,000 feet in elevation, the landscape becomes montane forest-dominated coniferous belt, found here are Ponderosa, Jeffrey and lodgepole pine trees, as well as abundant white and red fir. Found here too are the giant sequoia trees, the most massive living single-stem trees on earth, between the trees and summer snowmelts sometimes fan out to form lush, though delicate, meadows. In this region, visitors often see deer, Douglas squirrels, and American black bears. There are plans to reintroduce the bighorn sheep to this park, the vast majority of the park is roadless wilderness, no road crosses the Sierra Nevada within the parks boundaries. 84 percent of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks is designated wilderness and is only by foot or by horseback. Sequoias backcountry offers a vast expanse of high-alpine wonders, covering the highest-elevation region of the High Sierra, the backcountry includes Mount Whitney on the eastern border of the park, accessible from the Giant Forest via the High Sierra Trail.
On the floor of canyon, at least two days hike from the nearest road, is the Kern Canyon hot spring, a popular resting point for weary backpackers. From the floor of Kern Canyon, the trail ascends again over 8,000 ft to the summit of Mount Whitney, in the summertime, Native Americans would travel over the high mountain passes to trade with tribes to the East. By the time the first European settlers arrived in the area, smallpox had spread to the region. The first European settler to homestead in the area was Hale Tharp, Tharp allowed his cattle to graze the meadow, but at the same time had a respect for the grandeur of the forest and led early battles against logging in the area
Mojave National Preserve
Mojave National Preserve is a United States National Preserve located in the Mojave Desert of San Bernardino County, California, USA, between Interstate 15 and Interstate 40. The preserve was established October 31,1994 with the passage of the California Desert Protection Act by the US Congress, previously, it was the East Mojave National Scenic Area, under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management. At 1,600,000 acres, it is the third largest unit of the National Park System in the contiguous United States. Natural features include the Kelso Dunes, the Marl Mountains and the Cima Dome, as well as volcanic formations such as Hole-in-the-Wall, the preserve encloses Providence Mountains State Recreation Area and Mitchell Caverns Natural Preserve, which are both managed by the California Department of Parks and Recreation. Impressive Joshua Tree forests cover parts of the preserve, the Cima Dome and Shadow Valley forests are the largest in the world. The defunct railroad depot and ghost town of Kelso are found there, the depot is now the visitor center.
The preserve is commonly traversed by 4 wheel drive vehicles traveling on the historic Mojave Road, summer temperatures average 90 °F, with highs exceeding 105 °F. Elevations in the Preserve range from 7,929 feet at Clark Mountain to 880 feet near Baker. Annual precipitation varies from 3.37 inches near Baker, to almost 9 inches in the mountains, at least 25% of precipitation comes from summer thunderstorms. Snow is often found in the mountains during the winter, the California Desert Protection Act of 1994 designated a wilderness area within Mojave National Preserve of approximately 695,200 acres. The National Park Service manages the wilderness in accordance with the Wilderness Act, the CDPA, the following climate data is for a higher elevation area in the preserve. See Climate of the Mojave Desert, Mojave Memorial Cross Official website Photo tour of Mojave National Preserve - from USGS
California is the most populous state in the United States and the third most extensive by area. Located on the western coast of the U. S, California is bordered by the other U. S. states of Oregon and Arizona and shares an international border with the Mexican state of Baja California. Los Angeles is Californias most populous city, and the second largest after New York City. The Los Angeles Area and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nations second- and fifth-most populous urban regions, California has the nations most populous county, Los Angeles County, and its largest county by area, San Bernardino County. The Central Valley, an agricultural area, dominates the states center. What is now California was first settled by various Native American tribes before being explored by a number of European expeditions during the 16th and 17th centuries, the Spanish Empire claimed it as part of Alta California in their New Spain colony. The area became a part of Mexico in 1821 following its war for independence.
The western portion of Alta California was organized as the State of California, the California Gold Rush starting in 1848 led to dramatic social and demographic changes, with large-scale emigration from the east and abroad with an accompanying economic boom. If it were a country, California would be the 6th largest economy in the world, fifty-eight percent of the states economy is centered on finance, real estate services and professional, scientific and technical business services. Although it accounts for only 1.5 percent of the states economy, the story of Calafia is recorded in a 1510 work The Adventures of Esplandián, written as a sequel to Amadis de Gaula by Spanish adventure writer Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo. The kingdom of Queen Calafia, according to Montalvo, was said to be a land inhabited by griffins and other strange beasts. This conventional wisdom that California was an island, with maps drawn to reflect this belief, shortened forms of the states name include CA, Cal. Calif. and US-CA.
Settled by successive waves of arrivals during the last 10,000 years, various estimates of the native population range from 100,000 to 300,000. The Indigenous peoples of California included more than 70 distinct groups of Native Americans, ranging from large, settled populations living on the coast to groups in the interior. California groups were diverse in their organization with bands, villages. Trade and military alliances fostered many social and economic relationships among the diverse groups, the first European effort to explore the coast as far north as the Russian River was a Spanish sailing expedition, led by Portuguese captain Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, in 1542. Some 37 years English explorer Francis Drake explored and claimed a portion of the California coast in 1579. Spanish traders made unintended visits with the Manila galleons on their trips from the Philippines beginning in 1565
It is the most widely distributed pine species in North America. It grows in various forms from British Columbia southward and eastward through 16 western U. S. states and has been successfully introduced in temperate regions of Europe. It was first documented into modern science in 1826 in eastern Washington near present-day Spokane, on that occasion, David Douglas misidentified it as Pinus resinosa. In 1829, Douglas concluded that he had a new pine among his specimens, in 1836, it was formally named and described by Charles Lawson, a Scottish nurseryman. It is the state tree of Montana. Pinus ponderosa is a large pine tree. The bark helps to distinguish it from other species, mature to over-mature individuals have yellow to orange-red bark in broad to very broad plates with black crevices. Younger trees have blackish-brown bark, referred to as blackjacks by early loggers, ponderosa pines five subspecies, as classified by some botanists, can be identified by their characteristically bright, green needles.
The Pacific subspecies has the longest—19.8 cm or 7.8 in—and most flexible needles in fascicles of three. The Columbia ponderosa pine has long—12. 0–20.5 cm or 4. 7–8.1 in—and relatively flexible needles in fascicles of three. The Rocky Mountains subspecies has shorter—9. 2–14.4 cm or 3. 6–5.7 in—and stout needles growing in scopulate fascicles of two or three. The southwestern subspecies has 11. 2–19.8 cm or 4. 4–7.8 in, needles are widest and fewest for the species. Sources differ on the scent of P. ponderosa, but it is more or less of turpentine, some state that it has no distinctive scent. The National Register of Big Trees lists a ponderosa pine that is 235 ft tall and 324 in in circumference, in January 2011, a Pacific ponderosa pine in the Rogue River–Siskiyou National Forest in Oregon was measured with a laser to be 268.35 ft high. The measurement was performed by Michael Taylor and Mario Vaden, a professional arborist from Oregon, the tree was climbed on October 13,2011, by Ascending The Giants and directly measured with tape-line at 268.29 ft high.
This is the second tallest known pine after the sugar pine and this species is grown as an ornamental plant in parks and large gardens. The trees were burned and blown over. Pinus ponderosa is a dominant tree in the Kuchler plant association, like most western pines, the ponderosa generally is associated with mountainous topography
Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park is a national park in the United States. Straddling the border of California and Nevada, located east of the Sierra Nevada, the park protects the northwest corner of the Mojave Desert and contains a diverse desert environment of salt-flats, sand dunes, valleys and mountains. It is the largest national park in the lower 48 states and has declared an International Biosphere Reserve. Approximately 91% of the park is a wilderness area. It is the hottest and lowest of the parks in the United States. The second-lowest point in the Western Hemisphere is in Badwater Basin, the park is home to many species of plants and animals that have adapted to this harsh desert environment. Some examples include creosote bush, bighorn sheep and the Death Valley pupfish, several short-lived boom towns sprang up during the late 19th and early 20th centuries to mine gold and silver. The only long-term profitable ore to be mined was borax, which was transported out of the valley with twenty-mule teams, the valley became the subject of books, radio programs, television series, and movies.
Tourism blossomed in the 1920s, when resorts were built around Stovepipe Wells, Death Valley National Monument was declared in 1933 and the park was substantially expanded and became a national park in 1994. The natural environment of the area has been shaped largely by its geology, the valley itself is actually a graben. The oldest rocks are metamorphosed and at least 1.7 billion years old. Ancient, shallow seas deposited marine sediments until rifting opened the Pacific Ocean, additional sedimentation occurred until a subduction zone formed off the coast. This uplifted the region out of the sea and created a line of volcanoes, the crust started to pull apart, creating the current Basin and Range landform. Valleys filled with sediment and, during the wet times of glacial periods, with lakes, in 2013, Death Valley National Park was designated as a dark sky park by the International Dark-Sky Association. There are two valleys in the park, Death Valley and Panamint Valley. Both of these valleys were formed within the last few million years, the result of this shearing action is additional extension in the central part of Death Valley which causes a slight widening and more subsidence there.
Uplift of surrounding mountain ranges and subsidence of the floor are both occurring. The uplift on the Black Mountains is so fast that the fans there are small
Old-growth features include diverse tree-related structures that provide diverse wildlife habitat that increases the biodiversity of the forested ecosystem. The concept of tree structure includes multi-layered canopies and canopy gaps, greatly varying tree heights and diameters. Old-growth forests are valuable, and logging of these forests has been a point of contention between the logging industry and environmentalists. Old-growth forests tend to have trees and standing dead trees, multi-layered canopies with gaps that result from the deaths of individual trees. Depending on the forest, this may take anywhere from a century to several millennia, hardwood forests of the eastern United States can develop old-growth characteristics in one or two generations of trees, or 150–500 years. In British Columbia, old growth is defined as 120 to 140 years of age in the interior of the province where fire is a frequent and natural occurrence. In British Columbia’s coastal rainforests, old growth is defined as more than 250 years.
In Australia, eucalypt trees rarely exceed 350 years of age due to frequent fire disturbance, Forest types have very different development patterns, natural disturbances and appearances. Levels of biodiversity may be higher or lower in old-growth forests compared to that in second-growth forests, depending on circumstances, environmental variables. Logging in old-growth forests is an issue in many parts of the world. Excessive logging reduces biodiversity, affecting not only the old-growth forest itself, a forest in old-growth stage has a mix of tree ages, due to a distinct regeneration pattern for this stage. New trees regenerate at different times from other, because each one of them has different spatial location relative to the main canopy. The mixed age of the forest is an important criterion in ensuring that the forest is a stable ecosystem in the long term. A climax stand that is uniformly aged becomes senescent and degrades within a relatively short time-period to result in a new cycle of forest succession, uniformly aged stands are a less stable ecosystem.
Forest canopy gaps are essential in creating and maintaining mixed-age stands, some herbaceous plants only become established in canopy openings, but persist beneath an understory. Openings are a result of death due to small impact disturbances such as wind, low-intensity fires. Because old-growth forest is structurally diverse it provides higher-diversity habitat than forests in other stages, sometimes higher biological diversity can be sustained in old-growth forest, or at least a biodiversity that is different from other forest stages. The characteristic topography of much old-growth forest consists of pits and mounds, mounds are caused by decaying fallen trees, and pits by the roots pulled out of the ground when trees fall due to natural causes, including being pushed over by animals
The classification of Purshia within the Rosaceae has been unclear. The genus was placed in the subfamily Rosoideae, but is now placed in subfamily Dryadoideae. They are deciduous or evergreen shrubs, typically reaching 0. 3–5 m tall, the leaves are small, 1–3 cm long, deeply three- to five-lobed, with revolute margins. The flowers are 1–2 cm diameter, with five white to yellow or pink petals. The fruit is a cluster of dry, leathery achenes 2–6 cm long, the roots have root nodules that host the nitrogen-fixing bacterium Frankia. The evergreen species were treated separately in the genus Cowania in the past, idaho south to California and New Mexico. British Columbia south to California and New Mexico, USDA Plants Profile for Purshia Jepson Flora Project, Purshia — Germplasm Resources Information Network−GRIN, Purshia
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park is a national park spanning portions of Tuolumne and Madera counties in Northern California. The park, which is managed by the National Park Service, on average, about 4 million people visit Yosemite each year, and most spend the majority of their time in the seven square miles of Yosemite Valley. The park set a record in 2016, surpassing 5 million visitors for the first time in its history. Almost 95% of the park is designated wilderness, Yosemite was central to the development of the national park idea. First, Galen Clark and others lobbied to protect Yosemite Valley from development, Yosemite is one of the largest and least fragmented habitat blocks in the Sierra Nevada, and the park supports a diversity of plants and animals. The park has a range from 2,127 to 13,114 feet and contains five major vegetation zones, chaparral/oak woodland, lower montane forest, upper montane forest, subalpine zone. Of Californias 7,000 plant species, about 50% occur in the Sierra Nevada, there is suitable habitat for more than 160 rare plants in the park, with rare local geologic formations and unique soils characterizing the restricted ranges many of these plants occupy.
The geology of the Yosemite area is characterized by granitic rocks, about 10 million years ago, the Sierra Nevada was uplifted and tilted to form its relatively gentle western slopes and the more dramatic eastern slopes. The uplift increased the steepness of stream and river beds, resulting in formation of deep, about one million years ago and ice accumulated, forming glaciers at the higher alpine meadows that moved down the river valleys. Ice thickness in Yosemite Valley may have reached 4,000 feet during the early glacial episode, the downslope movement of the ice masses cut and sculpted the U-shaped valley that attracts so many visitors to its scenic vistas today. The name Yosemite originally referred to the name of a tribe which was driven out of the area by the Mariposa Battalion. Before the area was called Ahwahnee by indigenous people, as revealed by archeological finds, the Yosemite Valley has been inhabited for nearly 3,000 years, though humans may have first visited the area as long as 8,000 to 10,000 years ago.
The indigenous natives called themselves the Ahwahneechee, meaning dwellers in Ahwahnee and they are related to the Northern Paiute and Mono tribes. Many tribes visited the area to trade, including nearby Central Sierra Miwoks, a major trading route went over Mono Pass and through Bloody Canyon to Mono Lake, just to the east of the Yosemite area. Vegetation and game in the region were similar to that present today, acorns were a staple to their diet, as well as seeds and plants, salmon. In 1851 as part of the Mariposa Wars intended to suppress Native American resistance and he was pursuing forces of around 200 Ahwahneechee led by Chief Tenaya. Accounts from this battalion were the first well-documented reports of ethnic Europeans entering Yosemite Valley, attached to Savages unit was Dr. Lafayette Bunnell, the company physician, who wrote about his awestruck impressions of the valley in The Discovery of the Yosemite. Bunnell is credited with naming Yosemite Valley, based on his interviews with Chief Tenaya, Bunnell wrote that Chief Tenaya was the founder of the Pai-Ute Colony of Ah-wah-nee
United States National Forest
National Forest is a classification of protected and managed federal lands in the United States. The National Forest System was created by the Land Revision Act of 1891, abbot Kinney and forester Theodore Lukens were key spokesmen for the effort. In the United States there are 155 National Forests containing almost 190 million acres of land and these lands comprise 8.5 percent of the total land area of the United States, an area about the size of Texas. Some 87 percent of National Forest land lies west of the Mississippi River in the ranges of the Western United States. Alaska has 12 percent of all National Forest lands, the U. S. Forest Service manages all of the United States National Grasslands, and around half of the United States National Recreation Areas. There are two different types of forests within the National Forest system. Those east of the Great Plains in the Midwestern and Eastern United States were primarily acquired by the government since 1891. The land had long been in the domain and sometimes repeatedly logged since colonial times.
These are mostly lands that were kept in the domain, with the exception of inholdings. Land management of these areas focuses on conservation, timber harvesting, livestock grazing, watershed protection, unlike national parks and other federal lands managed by the National Park Service, extraction of natural resources from national forests is permitted, and in many cases encouraged. National Forests are categorized by the U. S. as IUCN Category VI protected areas, the first-designated wilderness areas, and some of the largest, are on National Forest lands. There are management decision conflicts between conservationists and environmentalists, and natural resource extraction companies and lobbies, over the protection and/or use of National Forest lands, many ski resorts and summer resorts operate on leased land in National Forests
General Land Office
The General Land Office was an independent agency of the United States government responsible for public domain lands in the United States. It was created in 1812 to take over functions previously conducted by the United States Department of the Treasury. Placed under the Department of the Interior when that department was formed in 1849, the GLO oversaw the surveying and sale of the public lands in the Western United States and administered the Homestead Act and the Preemption Act in disposal of public lands. The frantic pace of Public Land sales in the 19th century American west led to the idiomatic expression Land Office business, the GLO was placed under the Secretary of the Interior when the Department of the Interior was formed in 1849. Reacting to public concerns about forest conservation, Congress in 1891 authorized the president to withdraw lands from disposal. Grover Cleveland created 17 forest reserves of nearly 18,000,000 acres, in 1905, Congress transferred responsibility for these reserves to the newly created Forest Service, under the Department of Agriculture.
Thus, beginning in approximately 1900, the GLO gained a focus for conservation of public resources. An early commissioner was John McLean, an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, the BLM makes images of General Land Office records issued between 1820 and 1908 publicly available on its website. The GCDB data is available for download by the public in GIS shapefile format from the GeoCommunicator Land Survey Information System website, the GCDB coordinates are available to the public in the GCDB flat file and GCDB coverage formats via the National Operations Center website. List of Commissioners of the General Land Office Public Land Survey System Beginning Point of the U. S, Public Land Survey Beginning Point of the Louisiana Purchase Survey National Irrigation Congress Malcolm J. Rohrbough. The Land Office Business, The Settlement and Administration of American Public Lands, General Land Office Records, The Official Federal Land Records Site, at Bureau of Land Management