ARCATA, California. – Outdoor enthusiasts will have the opportunity to experience the beauty of Headwaters Forest Reserve this spring and summer, with free guided walks and events sponsored by the Bureau of Land Management and a partner group, Friends of Headwaters. The events are as follows:
- Bird Walk, Saturday April 30. Wildlife biologist Ken Burton will lead a one-mile round-trip walk on the Elk River Trail to focus on identifying native and migratory birds. Participants will learn to identify various bird songs throughout the tour. Birds are often heard, but not seen, in the riparian corridor of the Elk River. Participants should meet at 8:30 a.m. at the Elk River trailhead.
- Native plant walk, Friday, May 20. Botanist Crystal Welch from the Bureau of Land Management Arcata Field Office will lead a three-mile, two-hour walk on the new South Side Trail, presenting information and pointing out plants native to Headwaters. Participants should meet at 10:00 a.m. at the Elk River trailhead.
- Nature writing workshop, Saturday 20 August. North Coast writer Jerry Martien will lead the hour-long session starting at 1 p.m. at the Headwaters Education Center, about a half-mile down the Elk River Trail from the trailhead. Martien will guide participants in his process of “listening” to nature and “translating” what is heard into poetry and prose. Participants must meet at the training center.
To reach the Elk River trailhead, take the Elk River exit from Highway 101 at the south end of Eureka and turn onto Elk River Road. Drive approximately six miles to the Elk River Trailhead parking lot.
The BLM also announced that it is now accepting reservations for free, guide-led hikes on the Salmon Pass Trail at the south end of the preserve. Hikes are scheduled on the third Sunday of each month from May to November. Hikers can book an outing by calling the Bureau of Land Management Arcata field office, 707-825-2300.
The 7,472-acre Headwaters Forest Preserve was established in 1999 after a decade of grassroots efforts to protect the world’s last unprotected and intact ancient redwood forest ecosystem. Several endangered species, including coho salmon, northern spotted owl and marbled murre, take advantage of the reserve’s habitat.
Information about Headwaters history, resources, and recreation access is available by visiting https://www.blm.gov/programs/national-conservation-lands/california/headwaters-forest-reserve.
Information is also available by contacting the Arcata field office at 707-825-2300.