Posted by Shawn & Annette in Family Fun, Outdoors on July 6, 2011

Sign in Stanislaus National Forest, California...

Stanislaus National Forest

It’s been a very busy week in Twain Harte, someone turned the heat on and left it on. I’m glad I’m not paying the propane bill for all this heat. The heat has brought people to the mountains in droves. Traffic hasn’t been this bad since – well since ever as far as I can recall.

While you are up here enjoying yourself with family and friends, I’d like you to please keep an eye out for Sandy, she’s been gone a week now.

We are seeing a lot more humidity than we normally see in the month of July, so be prepared to be hot and sticky. Speaking of hot and sticky, I know most of your vehicles are equipped with air conditioning because you are escaping the valley heat but you don’t have to cool yourselves driving 100 miles an hour.

Where is the fire? You come to the mountains to relax and unwind. Highway 108 is not The Indy 500. Slow down for pity sake. Because of our funky winter, we had a bumper crop of deer this season — I say had because far too many have been slaughtered this summer by motorists driving too fast. Just this week alone I’ve seen…

  • deer
  • raccoons
  • squirrels
  • birds
  • opossum
  • and other DEAD animals laying on the road.

It would be like a stranger driving through your home at 65 miles an hour. I normally have deer and turkeys visit my home daily as well as raccoons and many many squirrels. I’ve seen only one deer and a couple of squirrels all week. How can you enjoy nature if you drive it away or worse, kill it. Please slow down. Hell, stop and smell the flowers while you are here.

It’s great to get away and let your hair down but please take your trash with you. I wonder if you would be ashamed to know that we have 80 year old women who pick up the trash you leave behind? Crews of volunteers take to the streets to pick up the beer bottles, paper cups, and even entire bags of garbage that get tossed out beside the road. I love these mountains and the wildlife that call this area home. Your mother doesn’t live here. Pick up after yourself! If you bring it with you, or buy it here, take it home or dispose of it properly.

Lastly, if you enjoy the wildlife, please don’t feed it, don’t hold it and don’t treat it like a pet. Animals can be trained and tamed but then it will be doomed to death. Deer who are hand fed, petted and become too familiar with people, become tame, then are killed by hunters during hunting season or by motorists throughout the year — because they have come to trust man. I don’t have a problem with hunting but the deer should at least have a sporting chance at survival.

Want to have a good time in Twain Harte?

  • Take all the pictures you want.
  • Take some time for a nature walk.
  • Go fishing, boating, swimming, skydiving, caving, spelunking or zip-lining.
  • Partake of the local night life.
  • Buy a pizza, shop at The Market.

Always remember to:

  • Slow down
  • Pick up your trash
  • Don’t feed the wildlife
  • One last thing: Don’t dump your pet here.

Apparently, many valley people think that turning their unwanted dog or cat out into the wild is a good idea and that they can fend for themselves or will be happier in the great outdoors. Every year dozens of cat and dogs are lost and never found or left behind in the mountains only to end up road kill or lion bait. If you bring your pet with you, keep your dog or cat on a leash. Don’t let them wander off alone.

Have a terrific summer and enjoy the majestic Stanislaus National Forest, we certainly do. Be sure to stop up to Pinecrest for their Ranger programs and movies at the amphitheater.


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