California Trail Center

Visit the Trail Center and learn how to start a fire with flint and steel. Enjoy s’mores around the campfire in the pioneer camp.

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ELKO – Have cabin fever? Visit the California Trail Center during January for a variety of family friendly programs.

The following programs begin at 2 p.m. and are free and open to everyone:

Jan. 7: Junior Ranger Program: Flint, Steel and S’mores

Join Nevada Outdoor School Interpreter Tim Burns and learn how the mountain men created campfires with flint and steel. Following the program, enjoy making s’mores around a crackling fire. Ingredients for s’mores provided, while supplies last.

Jan. 13: The Archaeology of the Donner Party

There are so many different accounts of the Donner Party and their fateful winter encampment. How do we know the facts?

Archaeology! BLM Archaeologist Dan Broockmann will discuss the archaeological excavations of Donner Party encampments. He will discuss what the excavations teach us about the members of the Donner Party.

Jan. 20: Winter Wildlife Snowshoe Trek

Do you know how fish survive months in frozen lakes with dwindling oxygen and food supplies? How do birds avoid freezing in blizzards?

Join Ranger Erika for a guided family snowshoe trek and learn how mammals, fish and birds survive a harsh Great Basin winter. Search for the hidden animals to reveal their amazing adaptations.

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The Trail Center hiking trail is easy to moderate, and snowshoes will be provided. In case of a lack of snow, plan on a guided hike.

Jan 28: Junior Ranger Program: Why do Wolves Howl?

Imagine being an emigrant on the California Trail, and listening to wolves howl at night. Wolves were once top predators along the Trail and across the land.

The controversial reintroduction of wolves have far-reaching ecological beneficial effects upon entire ecosystems, including the structure of rivers. Join BLM Biologist Beth Wood, and learn about the benefits and complications the return of wolves could mean to our lands.

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