Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Ideas, anyone?

© 2010 Joshua Stark

I'm trying to get a couple of ventures off the ground, one in particular.

A few years ago, I tried my hand at professionally guiding.  I ran a guide service for a few months, and though I did get a lot of interest, and a few clients, I couldn't get it going quickly enough, and had to get back into the 'real' world. 

Since then, I've only come to realize more clearly that I need to work more outdoors.  I love my current job, but it's only part-time (I'm currently one of those "underemployed"s you keep hearing about), and so I am left with somewhat of an opportunity to get a guide service going again.  Related to this service, I hope to offer some Twitter-feed on local outdoors goings-on, as well as try my hand at getting some outdoor articles published.  I'm nowhere near the professional talent of Chad Love or Holly Heyser, but I think I can find a niche posting about the local drama and beauty of our wild margins.  I'm looking to be the go-to guy for locals who want to know where and how they can catch a glimpse of river otters, or hear an owl.

What I would like from you all, dear reader(s?), is advice on what else I might be able to offer, both here at Lands on the Margin, and also in a potential new guide service.  Just remember, I'm a sucker, so any good ideas will obviously get you free trips (airfare, hotel, and food accommodations not included).

So send me your ideas and notions.  What would you like, information-wise, on our local outdoor scene?  What could you take away from knowing about our marginal lands?

I will also continue to post on some bigger issues that impact marginal lands here, as well as posting on Environmental Ethics and Agrarianista.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Some marginal lands get their due

© 2010 Joshua Stark

A quick note that High Country News has an article on the vital ecological importance of some of our marginal lands, like the Hanford Nuclear Waste Site.

Normally, I wouldn't link to a site that only gives you a snippet, and then requires submission.  But High Country News deserves to be read, and it deserves to get paid for its work.  It offers some of the best commentary and news on the Western U.S. you will find anywhere.  And they don't pay me a dime, nor offer me a subscription to say it.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Can we start fishing yet?

© 2010 Joshua Stark

For those of you not living in Northern California, we've had an El NiƱo year, which means a lot of precipitation.  In the Sacramento region, that almost always means rain, which we've had off-and-on (mostly on) for months now.  Last week, though, it hailed a couple of inches.  For the Sierra Nevada, it means snow (hence the name "Sierra Nevada"), and remarkably low elevations for it, too.

Late April in sunny California...
For fishermen, then, it means more waiting.  Here it is May, and we are getting breezy to windy (40mph gusts) conditions, snow at 4,500 ft., and another storm slated for Monday.

I just want to catch some crappies, man.

My local marginal lands, the Barge Canal in West Sacramento, has some great spots for crappies and bluegills, two of the best-tasting species around, as well as striper runs.  In the next few weeks, too, the shad are supposed to start pouring into the Sacramento River.  And if the Sierra ever starts its runoff, the trout will become fishable.

But right now, everything is still sluggish.  Sheesh.