Happy Camp

Residents Voice Concerns About Klamath River Dams

More than 20 Orleans area residents expressed their concerns about the dams on the Klamath River at a scoping meeting before California Water Resources Control Board officials last week. All of the speakers said they want the dams removed./Photo by Leslie Lollich, TRT Contributor.An ex Yurok and Karuk water scientist stood up to put on record that “spring Chinook have been suffering since conquest.” He also reminded the water board that the dams would only rightly be considered point source polluters, since, removal of the dams would release accumulated mercury sludge. Pointing out that the dams were a genocidal project, he set the tone for the rest of the meeting. Read More →

New Law Adds Water Board As New Hurdle For Dredges

A miner crouches in the willows along a bank of the Klamath River as he searches for gold with a suction dredge. The Karuk Tribe has led a campaign for ten year to outlaw the practice and a new law from the California Legislature may accomplish their goal./Photo by Stormy Staats. The new law approved by Governor Jerry Brown at the end of 2015 is viewed as a devastating blow by suction dredge miners along the Klamath, but light at the end of a long tunnel for the Karuk Tribe, which has fought for ten years to end the practice because of its threats to water quality and fish survival. Read More →

Forest Management Plans Led By Community

Nearly 50 participants went to the woods to talk about how they would treat forest fuels given the set of six shared values the group had agreed to the year prior during the Western Klamath Restoration Partnership’s first meetings. The Partnership began in 2013 to build bridges between the antagonists of the so-called Timber Wars and continues to meet to prepare forest management plans./Photo by Will Harling, Mid Klamath Watershed Council. One was a law passed in 2002 called the Healthy Forest Initiative. The timber industry welcomed it, but environmental groups renamed it the No-Tree-Left-Behind Act because it seemed to target removal of the larger trees instead of the brush and smaller trees that form the ladder fuels for the most severe burns. Read More →

An Eye on the Future

Laverne Glaze, the elder basket weaver and Karuk activist, shows off a regalia skirt still a work in progress. She reflected, “My life is getting pretty damn short I still need to teach some of these young girls how to sew dresses.”/Photo by Malcolm TerenceGlaze, who spent decades as a promoter and organizer of basketweaving, is now 82 years old and hobbled by arthritis and even occasional difficulty breathing, but she is still working hard with an eye on the future. Read More →

Meeting of the Fire Minds

Learning to burn. The public met in SawyerDuring the summer, one of the driest on record, 220,000 acres were afire in the Klamath Forest and, at the peak, 6,800 firefighters were deployed. It all cost approximately $175 million. The Two Rivers Tribune attended the Salmon River AAR session. The area near the community of Sawyers Bar burned in the White’s Fire and there were a few days when the town itself was threatened. Read More →

Learning to Burn Again

Scott Harding ignites ground fuels with a drip torch at Pearch Creek in Orleans. Agencies, tribes and non-profits sponsored the exercise to build fuels reduction skills in the region. Earlier, Harding was part of a crew that burned the part of his own property that had not burned in last summer’s Butler Fire. Photo by Stormy Staats, Klamath-Salmon Media Collaborative. The burn plans were signed and all the permits finally granted. The crews, packing tools and wearing fire gear, gathered along Gold Dredge Road in Orleans. Firelines were in place. Then they waited, ironically, for the morning dew to dry. Read More →

Somes Bar Builder Tries Old Methods To Build Houses of the Future

Dillon Creasy built frame of massive timbers, all cut from local trees, after the foundation and floor slab were poured. The next step would be the construction of thick walls packed with straw infused with a wet clay slurry./Photo courtesy of Dillon Creasy.  Creasy says that homes built with the same methods in Europe 800 years ago are still in use. The straw content of the walls would make them seem vulnerable to rot and fire but the infusion of the clay slurry just before the packing stage adds durability. Read More →

Bear Activity on the Rise

The Black Bear population is Humboldt County has been determined to be stable, not increasing nor decreasing. Wildlife Biologist Dave Lancaster said, currently there are approximately four migrating bears per square mile./Photo courtesy of Pamela Mattz “He comes everyday at this point.” Mattz said. “And he plows through everything. He cleans everything, and he will stand there and stare at me. I watch for as long as I can before he freaks me out. I don’t know if he was going to attack or what he might do. Although he seems really mellow, he still is a wild animal.” Read More →