Half Dome preseason lottery now open
The preseason lottery for permits to climb Half Dome this summer is under way through March 31.
In the lottery, 225 permits are made available per day. After it concludes, about 50 permits will be available per day through a daily lottery system from May 20 through Oct. 11.
People can apply for up to six permits (six people) and seven dates. Applications will be granted if the number of permits requested is available on one of the requested dates. If there are openings on more than one of the desired days, applications will be awarded to the date of highest priority.
Hiking permits are required daily at Half Dome. A maximum of 300 are allowed per day (about 225 day hikers and 75 backpackers) on the trail beyond the base of the subdome during hiking season.
The Half Dome cables are planned to be in place May 22 through Oct. 12, though those dates are subject to change.
To apply for a permit, visit www.recreation.gov. Applicants will be notified there of via email by April 12.
Blossom Trail Run this weekend
The eighth annual Blossom Trail Run is Saturday in downtown Sanger.
It starts and finishes on Seventh Street between West and O streets near City Hall.
The main 10K race is the fourth race in this year’s Valley Runner of the Year Series, with division winners earning 30 points in the standings.
Race day starts with packet pickup and late registration at 6:45 a.m. There is a 10K walk at 7 a.m., followed by a Kids Run at 7:15. The Blossom Trail 10K starts at 8:10. A 2-mile run and 2-mile walk start at 8:20 a.m.
Early registration is $30 for the 10K and 2-mile events and $5 for the Kids Run. Race-day registration is $40 and $10.
Participants can sign up from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. today at First Fleet (formerly Sierra Running Co.), 9447 N. Fort Washington Road in Fresno, or 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday at the Sanger City Annex, 1789 Jensen Ave.
California Classic opens March 15
California Classic half-marathon day is next Sunday in downtown Fresno.
The race, which includes a two-person relay and Rock & Run 5K, is the first half of what until last year had been a one-weekend event. Now the second part, the Century bike ride, is May 16, with mini-metric and metric routes also offered.
A split was made, with the half-marathon moved up, to give runners more favorable weather conditions.
A Health and Fitness Expo is 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 14 at Alta Sierra Intermediate School. It will have health and running-sports vendors, volunteer information and packet pickup.
The half marathon and 5K start at Chukchansi Park, Inyo and H streets. The 13.1-mile run begins at 7 a.m. and the 5K at 7:05.
Registration is $75 for the half marathon, $150 for the two-person relay and $45 for the 5K. Registration for the Century Ride starts at $65.
Information, sign-ups: www.californiaclassicweekend.com.
Third annual San Joaquin River Trout & Bass Fishing Derby
When: 7 a.m. Saturday; late registration starts at 6 a.m.
Where: Sycamore Island Ranch (39664 Avenue 71/2, Madera)
The event is free and open to anglers of all ages (anglers 16 and older must have a valid California fishing license)).
Anglers can begin casting lines into three competition ponds at 7 a.m. The derby ends at 11 a.m., with prizes and other awards to follow.
Prizes include passes to three fishing spots along the San Joaquin River, summer camp scholarships and canoe rides. A drawing for a lifetime California fishing license will be held at the end of the event.
Access fees of $9 per car and $5 per trailer are required to enter Sycamore Island Ranch.
Online registration is recommended in advance at www.riverparkway.org under the “Things to Do” tab.
Black Mountain Summit hike
When: 9 a.m. Sunday
Where: Black Mountain Preserve near Prather (meet in parking area off Black Mountain Road)
Explore the wildflowers and shrubs of Black Mountain as they begin to bloom on a guided hike with the Sierra Foothill Conservancy. Fees are $5 per person.
The hike to the summit is about 2 miles with an elevation gain of 800 feet. Hikers will follow a dirt road to the top, and if the group wishes the hike may go another mile out onto the ridge. Expect to spend about three hours, more if the ridge trail is explored.
Hikers as always are encouraged to wear appropriate shoes and clothing and bring water as well as snacks or a lunch.
• Also Sunday, the conservancy will host its monthly birding walk at Stockton Creek Preserve. Hikers will meet at 9 a.m. at the Stockton Creek trailhead along Highway 140 about one mile north of Mariposa. The hike will last about three hours. A $10 donation is requested.