This year’s Family River Walk, offered as part of the Sanctuary Forest summer hike program, was enhanced by an eager group of young scientists from Stepping Stones Preschool. The children joined approximately 50 other attendees for a mid-day educational stroll through the forest to the upper Mattole River.
Children and parents alike learned about native plants, aquatic animals, and the restoration work being done to improve the river habitat. Activities included simple map reading; plant identification; the capture, identification and release of macro aquatic invertebrates; salmon art work; learning and singing river songs; and building miniature ponds and woody debris structures in the river. There was much splashing, laughter and learning, and all those who attended seemed to enjoy a beautiful day in the Whitethorn valley.
This and other Sanctuary Forest educational programs are made possible by support from local businesses and donations from hikers. If you would like to support Sanctuary Forest’s education programs please send donations to: P.O. Box 166, Whitethorn, CA 95589 or online at www.sanctuaryforest.org.
Local businesses that make this program possible are Blue Star Gas, Jangus Publishing Group, Whitethorn Winery, Charlotte’s Perennial Gardens, The Security Store, Chautauqua Natural Foods, Clover Willison Insurance Services, Hohstadt Garden Center, Roy Baker O.D., Worthy Construction, Wyckoff Plumbing, Mattole Meadows, James Friel Plumbing, Ned Hardwood Construction, Randall Sand and Gravel, Sylvandale Gardens, Redwood Properties, Dazey’s Supply, Monica Coyne Artist Blacksmith, Southern Humboldt Fitness, Pierson Building Center, Whitethorn Construction, Caffe Dolce, Mattole River Studios, and Wildberries Marketplace.
Sanctuary Forest is a land trust whose mission is to conserve the Mattole River watershed and surrounding areas for wildlife habitat and aesthetic, spiritual and intrinsic values, in cooperation with the diverse community.
Reta Riley (far right) instructs excited youth on the identification of aquatic invertebrates on the Family River Walk, which took place on July 29.