2016 Ranger and Campfire Programs

Pinecrest, Tuolumne County, California

Learn about the natural
world around you.

2016 Weekly Visitor Activities, Pinecrest Lake

Campfire Programs, Junior Rangers, Nature Walks, Local History
2017 Programs TBA in May


Ranger led outings and Campfire Programs at Pinecrest Lake are under the direction of the Three Forest Interpretive Association (3-FIA). 3-FIA is a non-profit, educational organization that serves the Stanislaus National Forest, conducting campfire programs, the Junior Ranger program, and nature outings or activities related to local history. They suggest a $1.00 donation per person for some of their events. All donations directly support their interpretive programs. Other events may require a materials fee, which is noted below.

Daytime Programs

Mondays

Junior Rangers

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM, June 27 - August 8
Pinecrest Amphitheater
Hands-on activities to introduce children ages 4 - 104 to the world we live in and how to care for the outdoors. See map below for location of amphitheater.

Tuesdays

Tall Tales and Silly Songs

10:00 AM to 11:00 AM; June 28 - August 9
Pinecrest Amphitheater, $2.00 donation
An enjoyable hour of interactive songs with Bill Roberson and his storytellers Cynthia Restivo, BZ Smith or Jennifer Aguirre.

Critters, Conifers, and Clay

11:00 AM - 12:30 PM; July 5, 12, 19, 26
Meet next to Pinecrest Amphitheater, $10 Materials Fee
Learn about forest animals and plants by making clay projects. Children under 7 must be helped by an adult.
Space limited.

Making Memories at Pinecrest

2:00 PM - 4:00 PM; June 28 - August 9
Meet at Summit Ranger Station, See map below for location of Summit Ranger Station.
Enjoy a short nature hike with interpretive staff and create a memory book. Great for ages 8 to 108.

Wednesdays

What's Buggin' You?

10:00 AM to 11:30 AM; June 29 - August 10
Pinecrest Chalet, about 1 mile up the Dodge Ridge Road.
$5 Materials Fee
Children and their parents learn about aquatic ecosystems. Also print a T-shirt with molds and stamps of creatures found in an aquatic ecosystem. See map below for location of Pinecrest Chalet.

Cowboy Coffee

10:00 AM to 11:00 AM; June 29 - August 10.
TeleLi puLaya (Black Oak Flat) Campground, host site
Share coffee with Interpretive Staff who will share stories of legends and histories of the region. All ages. Campground is off Beardsley Dam Road, off Hwy. 108, 5 miles east of Summit Ranger Station.

Fishing for Small Fry

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM; June 29 - August 10.
Pinecrest Lake Fishing Platform
Interpretive staff teaches children learn how to bait a hook, cast, and land a fish. See map below for location of fishing pier.

Thursdays

Weaving Life Stories into Baskets

10:00 AM to 12:00 Noon; July 14, 28, and Aug. 11
Summit Ranger Station - $10 Materials Fee
Arvada Fisher will help you begin a pine needle basket while she shares stories of her Mi-Wuk heritage. Bring a chair if you like. For all ages 10 to 110.

Me-Wuk Lifeways

10:00 AM - 11:00 AM, June 30 - August 11
Summit Ranger Station
Carlos Geisdorf, a Tuolumne Band Me-Wuk, will share stories and lessons from his cultural heritage.
Bring a chair if you like.

Where Am I? Compass Orienteering

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM, June 30 - August 11
Meet at Trail of the Survivors, near Meadowview Campground. Take the Dodge Ridge Road and turn onto Camp Gold Road. Look for the Trail of the Survivors sign on your left.
Learn how to use a compass to find your way through the woods (compasses provided). Great for everyone from age 7 to 107. See map below for location of Trail of the Survivors.

Fridays

Trees and Trails

9:00 AM to 1:00 PM, July 1 - August 12
Summit Ranger Station
Learn about the wisdom of nature on ranger led adventures in the forest. Program lasts from 2 to 4 hours. Gas up your car, pack a lunch, water, and wear good walking shoes. For information on this week's destination, call the Summit Ranger Station (209) 965-3434.

Pinecrest Junior Rangers

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM; July 1 - August 12
Pinecrest Amphitheater
Hands-on activities to introduce children ages 4 - 104 to the world we live in and how to care for the outdoors.

Saturdays

Rise and Shine Nature Hike

9:00 AM to 12:00 Noon
Pinecrest Amphitheater
Pinecrest Lake Hike, July 2, 16 , 30 and August 13
4 mile hike around the lake.
Trail of the Gargoyles Hike, July 9, 23, and August 6
Summit Ranger Station
Car caravan to the trail.
For more about Trail of the Gargoyles, see Trail of the Gargoyles on our Natural Wonders page.

Jr. Ranger Nature Detective

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM, July 2 - August 13
Pinecrest Amphitheater
Join the interpretive staff and learn to be a Nature Detective by searching for clues in the forest.

Ranger's Choice

5:00 PM to 6:00 PM, July 2 - August 13
Pinecrest Amphitheater
All ages join the ranger for a surprise activity.

Sundays

Cowboy Coffee

10:00 AM to 11:00 AM; July 3 - August 14.
TeleLi puLaya (Black Oak Flat) Campground, host site
Share coffee with Interpretive Staff who will share stories of legends and histories of the region. All ages. Campground is off Beardsley Dam Road, off Hwy. 108, 5 miles east of Summit Ranger Station.

Nature Crafts

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM, July 3 - August 14
Pinecrest Amphitheater
Find out what to do will all those rocks, leaves, and cones you have been collecting. For ages 5 to 105.

Map of Pinecrest area

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Pinecrest Amphitheater Evening Programs


Monday and Wednesday Night Programs

Monday, June 27

Water, the Real Gold

8:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Join Irene Patton and learn about the beautiful lakes, streams, and waterfalls that are to be found in the area.

Wednesday, June 29

Tales of the Mother Lode, 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Gather round the campfire as Hard Luck Lin shares rousing tales of the Gold Rush. $1.00 donation.

Monday, July 4

Python Ron, starts at 7:00 PM

Ron McGee shares his knowledge about reptiles. ($2 donation)

Wednesday, July 6

Songs and Tales from the Fire Line, 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

The Forest Service Balladeers capture the excitement of firefighting in an evening of songs and stories. ($2 donation)

Monday, July 11

Fire Celebration with Smokey Bear, 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Have fun and join Smokey and his pals as you learn about fire, healthy forest, and about fighting bad fires.

Wednesday, July 13

Wild Things

7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Rescued California birds and mammals - learn about their care and how to allow wildlife to remain wild. ($2.00 donation)

Monday, July 18

Celebrating Wildflowers, Starts at 7:00 PM

Celebrate wildflowers by creating a treasure to take home in this hands-on workshop. Learn about the colorful wildflowers seen around the Sierra Nevada. ($2 donation)

Wednesday, July 20

Friendly Fire, 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Hear the story of a 49er in 1851 and his new appreciation of the Me-Wuk world and his struggle to deflect catastrophe.
($2 donation)

Monday, July 25

Sonora Pass by Wagon, 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Learn about the emigrants who brought wagons over the rugged Sierra Nevada. Explore the past with an interpretive ranger.

Wednesday, July 27

Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Singers and Dancers, 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Me-Wuk tribe members share their cultural traditions through song and dance. ($2.00 donation.)

Monday, Aug. 1

Things That Go Bump in the Night, 8:30 - 9:30 PM

Interpretive Ranger offers fascinating information about the critters that are out and about at night in the Stanislaus National Forest.

Wednesday, Aug. 3

Batty About Our Insect-Eating Friends

Special start time: 8:30 PM.
NorCal Bats offers a program about the importance of bats in our environment. Learns about facts and myths surrounding bats. See live bats.
($2.00 donation.)

Monday, August 8

Green Gold, 8:30 - 9:30 PM

Learn all about the trees of the area and how they are so valuable for logging in the Stanislaus National Forest.

Wednesday, August 10

Songs and Stories of the Sugarpine Railroad, 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM


The Forest Service Balladeers offer an evening of stories and songs about days gone by when railroad logging was kind of the mountain. ($2 donation)


Star Gazing at Bald Mountain

Fridays


9:00 - 10:00 PM July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
8:30 - 9:30 PM Aug. 5, 12

Meet at Bald Mountain Helibase on Highway 108 across from Little Sweden.
An amateur astronomer will guide you through a tour of the night sky. Call Summit Ranger Station ((209) 965-3434) or Mi-Wuk Ranger Station to confirm, as sometimes program must be cancelled due to use of the Helibase or weather conditions.
Smoking, glass containers, and dogs of prohibited.
Bring a chair and blanket. $2.00 donation.

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