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Out & About: Hear sage advice about scablands

Sage sparrow on sagebrush: a portrait of waning flora and fauna. (Tom Munson photo)
Sage sparrow on sagebrush: a portrait of waning flora and fauna. (Tom Munson photo)

OUTFIELD – What has wildlife lost along with 50 percent of the shrub-steppe habitat compromised in Eastern Washington?

A Spokane presentation on The Nature Conservancy’s Arid Lands Program will shed some light on the importance of these grass and sagebrush lands and the wealth of wildlife they support. TNC staffers from Wenatchee also will spell out the impacts off habitat fragmentation and the spread of wind farms and highlight citizen opportunities for habitat improvement projects.

The program by TNC staffers in Wenatchee, sponsored by the Spokane Audubon Society, is Wednesday, 7 p.m., at the Riverview Community Building, 2117 E. North Crescent Ave.

See a map at

Fragmentation and the spread of “wind farms” have begun to occupy an increasingly large amount of arid lands in eastern Washington.

Event to showcase Riverside Park

OUTDO – Riverside State Park is a stunning gem of recreational opportunity along the Spokane River on the west side of Spokane, yet most people don’t know half of what if offers.

That’s why the Riverside State Park Foundation and park staff are inviting the public to sample more than a dozen organized activities at seven park venues during an ambitious free Experience Riverside State Park event May 15 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Activities include horse and pony rides, orienteering, fun run, guided bike rides and hikes, kayak and canoe rides, ATV rides, activities for kids and fur-trader encampment tours.

Venues are the equestrian area, Bowl & Pitcher, military runway, ORV park, Spokane House, park headquarters and the Nine Mile Recreation Site.

If you’re game for it all, you can get a punch card stamped at each site and be eligible for prizes.

Sites also will have educational opportunities, such as water safety tips, Centennial Tail info and a look at proposed park renovation plans.

The event guide and map are available to download and print from the foundation’s website,

Volunteers needed for trail projects

OUTDO – The Washington Trails Association once again is organizing projects to build or maintain popular non-motorized trails in northeastern Washington, from Spokane Valley to the Salmo-Priest Wilderness.

The projects range from one-day stints to week-long volunteer vacation group projects that culminate in great accomplishments in spectacular areas.

Liberty Lake hiking trails are getting attention this weekend. Sessions continue Thursday, Saturday and later in the month.

Colville National Forest volunteer vacations to consider include:

• June 11-18: Gibraltar Mountain Trail construction on the Republic Ranger District. 

• July 9-16: Salmo-Priest Loop Trail maintenance and construction.

Get info and sign up for these projects at


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