Now in its 10th year of service as a fully restored fire lookout, field research facility, remote tracking station and interpretive center for the endangered California Condor, Hi Mountain Condor Lookout sits in the heart of the Los Padres National Forest in eastern San Luis Obispo County. The Lookout project is a collaboration between the Morro Coast Audubon Society, the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Biological Sciences and the Ventana Wildlife Society. The Lookout was accepted to the National Historic Lookout Register by the Forest Fire Lookout Association in 2002 and was the subject of a September 2004 article in Audubon magazine.
Come with us to the crest of the Santa Lucia Mountains at an elevation of 3,198 feet and enjoy the vast 360° views of this magnificent condor country, Lopez Lake, Point Sal, the Carrizo Plain and the Temblor Range. Huff’s Hole, a historic condor and peregrine falcon nesting site, lies to the immediate southwest and is now a designated critical habitat area for California Condors. The Lookout is used as a platform for conducting condor radio telemetry, as a research station for conducting long-term research in the stability and diversity of local plants and vertebrate populations, and for Cal Poly students to complete part of their research-based graduation requirements.
Our trip will be led by senior volunteer Marcelle Bakula, who will give a talk about the California Condor Recovery Program and history of the Lookout at the SLO Grange prior to our departure by van to the Lookout. Marcelle recruits and trains Lookout volunteers, orients college interns to their summer work experience, and performs fundraising and public outreach functions. She will set up spotting scopes for us to locate Peregrine falcons and attendees can try their hand at tracking Monterey and Santa Barbara County released condors using the Lookout’s telemetry equipment
Lunch and roundtrip transportation from the SLO Grange Hall included.
Registration is open for the 5th annual Central Coast Bioneers Conference – go to Ecologistics Central Coast Bioneers webpage to check out this year’s events. Early bird discount period ends August 15, so get your tickets now!