Deer-hunting season kicks off Saturday
It's deer-hunting season in the mountains east of Fresno.
Saturday is the general deer opener for Zone D7, which includes most of eastern Fresno and Madera counties south to the middle fork of the Kings River.
The season closes Nov. 3.
Deer hunting in Zone D8, which includes most of eastern Tulare County, opens Sept. 28 and closes Oct. 27.
All 9,000 deer tags for D7 are sold out, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
However, there are still remaining tags for D8.
It could be a tough season for Fresno-area hunters.
Not only are deer fewer in numbers (due to chronic wasting disease and predation) but the conditions, both for hunters and deer, are poor following two straight years of below average rainfall.
Reported hunter success rates for 2012 were 4.4% for D7 and 3% for D8, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
The estimated success rates were 11.4% for D7 and 9.8% for D8.
Bear-hunting season runs in conjunction with deer season.
It runs until Dec. 28 or when 1,700 bears have been reported taken.
Go to www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/hunting/deer/ for more information.
When: Sept. 25-29
Where: Yosemite Valley
Now that the tourists have come and gone, it's time for the annual volunteer cleanup effort spearheaded by the Yosemite Climbing Association.
Last year, some 1,200 volunteers collected more than 20,000 pounds of trash and debris.
More than 95% of the trash was recycled.
Volunteers can sign up at a booth in front of the Valley Visitors Center during all five days of the Facelift from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
There are also check-in booths at the Tuolumne Meadows Wilderness Center (Sept. 27-29 only) and in Wawona at the Mariposa Lower Grove (Sept. 28 only).
Crew leaders at each booth will organize work groups and hand out trash bags, gloves and litter sticks.
For more details, check the Yosemite Facelift page on Facebook.
News & notes
-- The 2013 Valley Runner of the Year Series resumes Sept. 28 with the 26th annual Smokey Bear Run at Bass Lake. The 10K run is worth 20 series points. Details: www.smokeybearrun.com.
-- Critter Creek Wildlife Station, a nonprofit rehabilitation center for injured or orphaned animals, is hosting an open house from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at 36710 Sand Creek Road in Squaw Valley. Gates will close at 1:30 p.m. Details: (559) 338-2415.
-- The 21st annual Grizzly Century returns Oct. 5 to the Sierra Vista National Scenic Byway outside North Fork. Cyclists can ride 100 miles, 100 kilometers or 26 miles around Bass Lake. Details: www.grizzlycentury.org.
The writer can be reached at (559) 441-6218, email@example.com or @MarekTheBee on Twitter.