Monday, December 24, 2012

A White Christmas

Looks like Snake Valley will have a white Christmas this year, along with a white New Year's. Snow is forecast for today (Monday), along with Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. The Wheeler Peak Snotel is reporting 15 inches of snow, and total precip of 5.9 inches since October 1, the beginning of the water year.

At the end of November, eastern Nevada was at 61% precipitation from the average water year, according to the NRCS precipitation data. Sounds like more snow would be a good thing!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Getting Ready for Christmas

 The kids in Snake Valley have been busy getting ready for Christmas. Last weekend was the annual gingerbread house event at the Border Inn. I think this is the third year of this event, and it keeps getting more popular! The kids (of all ages) have lots of fun trying out their creative ideas.

 The results are so scrumptious!

 The Garrison and Baker school kids performed to a packed house at Baker Hall. Following the elementary orchestra number (wow!), the younger elementary students did a play about a Very Classy Christmas, with a school of fish and other sea creatures. The costumes were fantastic! It is always amazing how well the kids do in front of a big audience.

The older elementary kids did a play about Santa and his reindeer going through a time warp and meeting some dinosaurs. They did a bunch of songs as part of it, and it was great to watch them.

After the program, Santa Claus put in an appearance to the delight of the kids.

There's still more Christmas fun coming up. The children's Nativity play at EskDale on Christmas Eve is always memorable. The smallest kids inevitably goof up a few lines in the cutest way imaginable.

Monday, November 26, 2012

2012 Harvest Festival

 Every November, Baker and Garrison schools hold a Harvest Festival. A potluck dinner is followed by an auction with over a hundred items that range from exercise equipment to apple pies. Here are some photos from the fun evening.

The schools are in their last few days of selling See's Candy, another fundraiser. Contact a school kid or one of the schools if you'd like to buy some.

The Baker/Garrison schools Christmas program will be the evening of December 19 in Baker Hall. That's always a huge crowd-pleaser. And the Winter Carnival will be February 22.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Snake Valley Calendars

Beautiful 2013 Snake Valley calendars make a perfect holiday gift. All the proceeds from calendar sales go to the Great Basin Water Network.

Calendar prices are one calendar for $15.00 ($3.00 postage), two calendars for $25.00 ($5.00 postage).
Make checks out to GBWN.

Please contact Susan Wetmore at sywetmore AT to order. You can also call Susan at 775-234-7265.

NOTE: If you're in Snake Valley, you can buy the calendars at the Border Inn 24/7.

Thanks for your support!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Halloween Hayride 2012

 Here are some sights from the 2012 Halloween Hayride. We traveled around Baker, stopping at places with their lights on to go trick-or-treating. Over 25 kids went on the hayride (which prompted a few people to ask "Where did they all come from?"). We ended at the community center, where quite a few folks had joined together to put on a grand finale. It was a super fun evening!
 A horse
The mummy in the apartments

The weather was perfect!

Monday, November 5, 2012

A Cute Denizen of Snake Valley

 I noticed this kit fox on the side of the road in Snake Valley today. I circled around, went back, and he was kind enough to let me take some photos. He's on some newly established burrows.

 He wanted to pretend I wasn't there.

I just hope he (or she) isn't too close to the road and gets run over. It's such a treat to see a kit fox, I haven't seen one in awhile. Hoping you're getting to see some wildlife this beautiful autumn.

Monday, October 15, 2012

A Survey of Road Art by Jenny

Want to see all the road art in the Baker area? Jenny Hamilton has a wonderful post about it! Be sure to check it out, as the road art keeps changing (and hopefully we'll see more soon!).

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Great Basin Paleoenvironmental Database

Snake Valley is in the Great Basin, a huge geographic area where water doesn't drain out to the seas. As a result, it was one of the last places in the U.S. to be explored. Due to its remoteness and lack of water, it also has been an area of much lower population concentration than many other areas in the U.S. This has resulted in a paucity of information about the Great Basin. Fortunately, over the years, a number of researchers have studied the Great Basin, including what it used to look like. What they've found has been fascinating--huge lakes, very different wildlife than today (imagine relatives of camels, saber-toothed tigers, and more), and a variety of ethnic groups that used the lands in various ways.

Desert Research Institute just announced a new tool where you can look for all that information in one place: the Great Basin Paleoenvironmental Database. From their website you can download a kml file to use on Google Earth to see where different studies were done. They also have an Excel spreadsheet listing the different studies focusing on the paleoenvironment of the Great Basin, plus additional information about the project.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Scientists Use Stalagmites to Learn about Past

Here's another story from The Salt Lake Tribune that relates to Snake Valley, particularly how cave stalagmites can record climate history.

You can find out about a couple active studies being done using Lehman Caves stalagmites in this pdf of The Midden, winter 2011 edition. This is the resource management newsletter for Great Basin National Park that is published twice a year.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Dry West Desert

The Salt Lake Tribune has a story from today's paper about the effects of the drought on the West Desert. It includes quotes from several people in Snake Valley. Let's hope for a good winter and not a return to Dust Bowl conditions! Western Utah Driest Year

Friday, September 14, 2012

2012 Wheelathon

 The day of the annual Wheel-a-thon, a fundraiser for the Baker/Garrison schools started out with rain all night and a forecast of thunderstorms for the morning. We were a little nervous about if we'd be able to do the event. As the kids lined up, you can see all the jackets. They were ready!

 Fortunately patches of blue sky allowed the sun to come down. The kids got their bikes ready. The K-2 students were planning to ride eight miles, while the 3-6 students would ride sixteen miles.

 It wasn't a race, as the kids stopped every mile for a snack and a mark, but they were eager to go!

 Little Neto was on the smallest bike, with twelve inch tires. He had to do a lot more pedaling than everyone else. Plus he had training wheels adding friction. Nonetheless, he was a trooper and kept on going. Parents (and younger siblings) rode along to encourage the kids.

 One challenge was a cattle guard. Some of the students had no idea what to do.

 June had to repeat the rules of it not being a race, as the kids were just ready to zoom!

 Near mile marker two we met the bik kids coming from the opposite direction.

 All the kids gathered for a photo.

 A little further on, Charlie and Nomi found this horned lizard.

 It started sprinkling on us as we continued, but that didn't dampen anyone's spirits.

It turned out to be a wonderful day for the Wheel-a-thon, complete with some big puddles to make the views even more interesting. Thanks to all who pledged students, helped organize it, and rode!