Learn to live with wolves

A wildlife biologist turned rancher will discuss the benefits and challenges of living with wolves Wednesday night at Single Hill Brewing.

The Cowiche Canyon Conservancy will host as Molly Linville provides information on the life history of wolves, their current population in Washington, and efforts to minimize interactions with people as well as livestock. Attendees can also expect to hear recommendations on how to keep themselves and their pets safe from wolves while on area trails.

Linville, a member of the state's Wolf Advisory Group, grew up on a wheat and barley farm near Reardan in northeast Washington and earned a degree in wildlife biology at the University of Montana. She worked for eight years with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service before inheriting a 100-year-old cattle ranch that she and her husband have been running since 2012.

The free talk is scheduled to last from 7-8:30 p.m.

Campground closures

Snow Cabin Campground and the Ahtanum Campground are being closed for construction this summer.

Ongoing renovations including brushing, clearing and other activities to lower the risk of wildfire will keep Snow Cabin Campground closed until the end of July, according to the state's Department of Natural Resources. The DNR's Ahtanum Campground will close from 5 p.m. Aug. 4 to Aug. 31 to replace the bridge.

For more information, visit dnr.wa.gov/ahtanum.

BIRD ALERT

Wow! A blue-gray gnatcatcher was spotted by a local bird enthusiast who was birding at Ft. Simcoe this week. The bird was first heard giving its high-pitched nasal call and was observed as it darted from the nearby Garry oaks to the open shrub area, flitting its tail as it perched on top of the shrubs. Settling on a branch to preen for several minutes it gave birders a good photo op. This bird is rarely seen in Yakima County with less than five accepted records. Add to that and the abundance of other species found here, and you have all the reasons you need to visit Ft. Simcoe State Park. Remember you need a Discovery Pass for this site.

Another fairly hard-to-find bird in Yakima County is the lesser goldfinch. This week a couple of local birders went out to eat dinner at the Country Buffet in Union Gap. As they headed out to their car in the parking lot just about sundown they heard a ‘tee-yer’ sound. Following the sound to the Macy’s store’s NW corner to their amazement, atop an ornamental fruit tree along that drive sat a lesser goldfinch incessantly giving its plaintive two-note ‘tee-yer’ call as the sun was just setting in the west. A real unexpected treat.

Please email your bird sightings to kdturley@embarqmail.com and be sure to like us on our Facebook page or visit yakimaaudobon.org.

Kerry L. Turley

ON THE CALENDAR

SATURDAY: BuDu Racing will host the Ellensburg Triathlon with Olympic and Sprint courses that start and finish at Irene Rinehart Riverfront Park. Both races start at 8 a.m. and registration prices vary from $75 for an individual Sprint triathlon or duathlon to $115 for an Olympic three-person relay. To register, go to Buduracing.com or pay onsite for an additional $5 for most races.

ALSO SATURDAY: The Hard Core Runners Club in collaboration with the state's Department of Natural Resources will host the Grey Rock Trail Runs, which start and finish at Tree Phones Campground. Entry fees are $40 for the 12K, $50 for the 25K and $75 for the 50K, which starts at 7 a.m. followed by the 25K at 8 and the 12K at 8:30. Online registration at ultraisignup.com ends Thursday night and race day registrations are allowed if spots remain.

ALSO SATURDAY: The Yakima Greenway will offer opportunities for volunteers to paint, pull weeds, pick up litter and more at its monthly Second Saturday event from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Sarg Hubbard Park. Bring gloves and dress accordingly. Other supplies will be provided. For more information go to the Greenway's Facebook page.

ALSO SATURDAY: The untimed Dye Hard 5K will be held at 9:30 p.m. at Sozo Sports Complex. The entry fee is $45 with a $10 discount for those with a military ID. For more information, go to dyehard5k.com or call 509-575-3010.

WEDNESDAY: The Hard Core Runners Club Summer Race Series will begin at 7:15 p.m. on the two-mile course at Franklin Park. Entry fees are $3 for a single race or $10 for all three races in the series, and $15 for a family to compete in the series.

GETTING OUTDOORS

THURSDAY: The Pathfinders will hike along the Bumping Lake trail off of Highway 410. Bring water, lunch and the 13 Essentials, and drivers will need a Northwest Forest Pass or Senior Pass. Call Rudy at 509-248-7304 for meeting time and place.

SATURDAY: Join the Cascadians for a five-mile hike with 900 feet of elevation gain from the Ohanapecosh Campground to the Grove of the Patriarchs Loop in Mount Rainier National Park, Green Trails Map 302. Departure will be at 8 a.m. from the Chesterley Park parking lot. Drivers need a Senior Pass or a Northwest Forest Pass and everyone should bring water, lunch and the 13 essentials. Call Rudy Labernik at 509-248-7304 with any questions.

MONDAY: Yakima Basin Velo hosts its Mellow Monday ride that starts at 5:30 p.m. at Wide Hollow Elementary School and goes for 20 miles on relatively flat roads at an often brisk pace with several stops to regroup before finishing back at the school.

TUESDAY: The Cascadian Free Spirits will hike six to eight miles with 1,400 feet of elevation gain at Mount Clify in the Naches River area, Green Trails Map 240, and the Trekkers will hike 13 miles with 1,500 feet of elevation gain in the Goat Rocks, Green Trails Map 303S. Both groups will depart at 7:30 a.m.  from the Chesterley Park parking lot. Call Dean Hata at 509-388-6375 with any questions regarding the Free Spirits outing and call Mark Kushner at 509-969-2431 with any questions regarding the Trekkers outing. Drivers with both groups will need a Northwest Forest Pass or a Senior Pass. The 13 Essentials are required for both hikes. The Free Spirits hike a little faster and farther than the Pathfinders, but slower and not as far as the Trekkers.

ALSO TUESDAY: Bearded Monkey Cycling and Fitness will host its weekly road rides with various distances and paces for different skill levels. Meet at the store at 6 p.m. and be ready to roll out at 6:15 to ride until around 7.

WEDNESDAY: Yakima Basin Velo will host a 21-mile Naches Loop Ride from SunTides Golf Course. The ride starts at 5:30 p.m. and typically splits into different groups that meet up at the halfway point in Naches.

THURSDAY: The Pathfinders will go on an exposed hike at Norway Pass from the Iron Creek Campground at Mt. St. Helens, so bring extra water in case of hot temperatures. Drivers will need a Northwest Forest Pass or Interagency Pass. Calle Darrell at 509-955-3002 or Rita at 509-594-0543 for meeting time and place.

Reach Luke Thompson at luthompson@yakimaherald.com on Twitter: @luketscribe