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DCNR invites military families to visit state parks and forests in April
DCNR Secretary Richard Allan today invited military families with children to take advantage of free activities in state parks and forests during April, “The Month of the Military Child."

In 1986, the secretary of defense designated each April as “The Month of the Military Child” to recognize the contribution a child makes as their parents serve our nation.

“DCNR works every day to encourage our citizens to take time to explore and be active outdoors, which is important for kids who spend more and more time with electronic entertainment,” Allan said. Read more...

Anglers, hikers reminded of Poe Paddy tunnel closing
DCNR officials are reminding anglers, hikers and other users of the Penns Creek Path rail trail that the Poe Paddy Tunnel remains closed because of deteriorating structural conditions. Read more...

South Mountain Speaker Series to focus on geology in April
Rhyolite, one of the geological features that makes South Mountain so special, will be the topic of the next lecture in the South Mountain Speakers Series on Wednesday, April 10, at Penn State Mont Alto in Franklin County. Read more...

Also in the News

Rails-To-Trails Conservancy survey finds D&L Trail value
The Delaware & Lehigh Trail—a 165-mile rail-trail through eastern Pennsylvania—generates an annual economic impact of more than $19 million in the communities it passes through, according to new findings published by the Rails-To-Trails Conservancy.

The seventh in a series of RTC reports to chart the economic impact rail-trails bring to local communities, the user survey found that of the $19 million, $16.3 million has been injected directly into the local region. Such studies have been conducted since 2006 by the RTC.

The D&L Trail is the backbone of the Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor (DLNHC), a five county region of Pennsylvania that traverses the historic Delaware and Lehigh Canals that was designated a National Heritage Area by Congress in 1988. The area is managed by the nonprofit DLNHC organization, a joint effort of private groups, citizens, county and municipal governments, DCNR and the federal government. For more information, visit here.

Explore, paddle on West Branch Sojourn in May
The West Branch of the Susquehanna River is calling you. Answer by signing up for the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership’s annual sojourn that has been slated for May 14-19.

The six-day, 97-mile, canoe and kayak trip will start in Mahaffey, Clearfield County, and end in Keating, Clinton County. It will take paddlers of all ages and skill levels to some of the most beautiful and remote locations along the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. Along the way local experts will give exclusive access to the area’s history, wildlife, and conservation efforts through river-side presentations.

Registration includes river guides, camp sites, meals, insurance, shuttles, a T-shirt and educational programs and entertainment. Paddlers must provide their own boat and gear. Boat rental information and a daily schedule are available in the registration packet. Beginners are encouraged to join. Registration information can be downloaded here or call Erin Pierce, program coordinator at 570-522-7244.

Pennsylvania’s river sojourns are a national model for connecting people to their natural environment in a fun and educational way. The sojourn is made possible with support from DCNR and the PA Organization for Watersheds and Rivers.

Prescribed fire planned for spring on gamelands in Dauphin & Schuylkill counties
The Pa. Game Commission plans to use prescribed fire this spring to improve forest and wildlife habitat on several State Game Lands in Dauphin County and Schuylkill County. 

The use of prescribed fire, sometimes referred to as a controlled burn, is very different from a “wild fire.” In fact, properly conducted prescribed fire can reduce the potential fuel load – such as leaf litter, pine needles and twigs on the forest floor – it also can decrease the chance of a catastrophic wildfire being ignited by a lightning strike or by a cigarette carelessly tossed on the ground.

With a prescribed fire, safety is the first consideration in the process, from the planning through the implementation. A safe and effective prescribed burn is very dependent on both site and weather conditions. An anticipated burn window is established between time periods when optimum site and weather conditions could be present. The anticipated burn window for the prescribed fires opens the end of March and will run through October 2013, with a spring burn being the preferred time frame. As more exact weather and site conditions become known, the window for the burn is narrowed. The public will be notified of the burn window status through the Game Commission website.

The specific areas to be treated with prescribed burns are:

  • SGL 210 – Dauphin Co., Jefferson Twp – 271 acres – Referred to as the Scarlet Lady Burn
  • SGL 326 – Schuylkill Co., Blythe Twp - 240 acres – Referred to as the Wolf Creek Burn
  • SGL 217 – Schuylkill Co., West Penn Twp – 52 acres – Referred to as the Baer Rocks, Unit 1 Burn
  • SGL 217 – Schuylkill Co., West Penn Twp – 138 acres – Referred to as the Baer Rocks, Unit 2 Burn
The majority of these State Game Lands are forested, with oak being a major component. For more information, visit here and click on the "News/Updates" tab.

Agency Spotlight

Delaware State Forest
This state forest in the Pocono region is awash in glacial lakes. Read more...

Upcoming Events

Mountain Biking and GPS Basics at R.B. Winter State Park
April 6. Held 9:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Ready for some adventure? Always wanted to learn about mountain biking or using a GPS? Equipment, safety, and outdoor ethics will be discussed as well as a chance to go for a ride on the park’s mountain bikes. We will also learn for to use a GPS and then go on a short geocache. This program is for participants ages 12 to adult. Pre-registration is required, please call R. B. Winter State Park at (570) 966-1455 to enroll. Only 12 participants can be accepted for this program due to limited amounts of equipment so please call early. Pack a lunch and dress for outdoor conditions.

For more DCNR events, go here.

April 3, 2013

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