Spring is the perfect time for viewing the landscape up close as nature awakens from winter’s respite. And the great outdoors awaits. Got a backpack? Hiking boots? Camera or binoculars? Three nonprofit organizations specialize in offering excursions with the outdoor enthusiast in mind.
The summer field research course through NatureBridge introduces teens to Yosemite National Park’s backcountry. Students will gain a greater understanding of the Sierra Nevada ecosystem while developing critical-thinking skills. Groups are led by professional educators. Through hands-on science, stewardship education and team building, participants will learn to think like a scientist while producing their own field-based research projects.
A grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation makes it possible for NatureBridge to offer scholarships to qualifying high school students in the Central Valley. Students must be a resident of Merced, Madera, Fresno, Kings, Stanislaus, Tulare or San Joaquin county. Full and partial scholarships are available, depending on financial need.
Three two-week sessions will be held between June 29 and Aug. 9. For more information, visit mercedcommunityservices.com.
NatureBridge is the largest residential education partner of the National Park Service. More than 30,000 students each year benefit from programs offered in six of America’s national parks.
Yosemite Conservancy helps preserve and protect the park by protecting wildlife and their habitats and maintaining trails. For additional information, call (800) 469-7275 or visit www.yosemiteconservancy.org/outdoor-adventures.
Birding and wildflower hikes in the central Sierra Nevada range are on the calendar with the Sierra Foothills Conservancy:
For more information visit www.sierrafoothill.org, or call the Prather office at (559) 855-3473 or the Mariposa office at (209) 742-5556.
It’s too beautiful to stay indoors. Take a drive to the foothills and stay awhile.