December 21, 2014

Delta Group activities update

Map by Bob Newey.

Map by Bob Newey.

The next Delta Group general meeting will be in September.

Delta Group program meetings are usually held in February, May, September, and November. A newsletter listing Delta Group programs, outings, and activities is available by sending a check for $5, payable to “Sierra Club, Delta Group”, to:

Janess Hanson
431 Levee Road
Bay Point, CA 94565.

For information about Delta Group activities, call Janess Hanson at (925)458-0860. For information about Delta area environmental concerns, call Tim Donahue at (925)754-8801.

Upcoming hikes and activities 

Sun., June 8, Mount Diablo State Park, 1A loop hike, Clayton.

Sat., July 12, Martinez Regional Shoreline, 1A sunset walk.

“How to Work Effectively With Government Agencies” — Tuesday June 17 — Don’t Frack CA

stop-frackingsponsored by the Sierra Club Bay Chapter’s Don’t Frack CA team

Tuesday June 17, 6:30 pm (our June monthly meeting time), Chapter Office, 2530 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley.

At the June meeting of the Bay Chapter’s Don’t Frack CA team, we’ll hear from Sbeydeh Viveros-Walton, senior aide and savvy political staffer to Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates, about how to most effectively communicate with elected officials and government agencies to gain their support. She’ll make a short presentation and then answer our questions.

Sbeydeh has an MA in public administration from Cal State San Francisco as well as a lot of practical working political experience. She has been a valuable and extremely articulate member of Leadership East Bay, a community-based leadership development program.

Come with your strategy questions! This will be a valuable training for anti-fracking activists, as well as for all others who want to learn more about how to influence government agencies.

The event is organized by the Bay Chapter’s Don’t Frack California team, and will start with a brief meeting in lieu of the team’s regular monthly meeting.

Wilderness Act 50th-anniversary celebrations in full swing

CA Wilderness_Killion poster 300x400

Get your very own copy of this Tom Killion poster. For details see end of this article.

Update (May 14, 2014): get your own copy of Tom Killion’s wilderness poster; Click here:

or see details at end of article.

Wilderness50, a coalition of 30 non-governmental organizations and federal agencies, is putting on dozens of wilderness-themed events across the U.S.A. this year to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act and the creation of the National Wilderness Preservation System. For a full listing see


The Bay Chapter is front and center promoting wilderness. We’ll be sponsoring hikes, backpacks, and stewardship days in nearby wilderness areas, including the beautiful Phillip Burton Wilderness in Point Reyes National Seashore. For announcements of these events, watch the Yodeler and the Chapter Calendar on page A of every Yodeler or at

In this issue’s Calendar, note:

Sun., June 1–Point Reyes (strenuous 3C)

Sat., June 21–Point Reyes summer solstice (strenuous 4C)

Sat., July 12–Central Point Reyes loop (strenuous 3C)

Wed., July 23–Lioness of the Lake (strenuous 3C).

Most of our backpacks are to wilderness areas all over California. See the Calendar in this and following issues for lots of options.

“Visions of the Wild Festival”

September 3 – 6, downtown Vallejo.

Vallejo, known for its cultural and natural diversity and vibrant arts community, is holding the largest single Bay Area event celebrating the Wilderness Act. “Visions of the Wild” will include field trips, art showings, a film series, panel discussions, and more; see

Earth Day events

The Bay Chapter has participated in Earth Day events this year in Oakland, Berkeley, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, Emeryville, Alameda, El Cerrito, Martinez, Antioch, and Mount Diablo. Chapter volunteers staffed Sierra Club tables and spoke with folks of all ages about wilderness, water conservation, clean energy, ending fracking in California, and other critical issues.

“Wilderness at the Library”

Tuesday, June 3 – Monday, July 7–Berkeley Public Library, Central Library, 2090 Kittredge Street (at Shattuck, near Berkeley BART), Berkeley.

We’ve created an exhibit at the Berkeley Public Library, highlighting the Wilderness Act, wilderness in American literature, and how anyone can get out into nearby natural areas without using a car.


We’ve been working with government officials to issue proclamations commemorating the 50th anniversary. The Berkeley City Council adopted a resolution on March 11, and San Francisco adopted one on April 29. California Assemblymember Anthony Rendon has authored Assembly Concurrent Resolution 90 to formally recognize the anniversary. The resolution has passed the Rules Committee and will soon have a hearing and go to the floor.


Sierra Club executive director Mike Brune and associate executive director Bruce Hamilton are strongly promoting the 50th anniversary in their public appearances. Mike’s keynote address at the Bay Nature annual awards dinner on March 23 focused on the evolving concept of wilderness and the relevance of wilderness to metropolitan areas like the Bay Area. Bruce’s keynote address at the Earth Day/John Muir’s Birthday event at the John Muir National Historic Site on April 26 focused on Muir as a founder of the Sierra Club and as a vigorous proponent of the principles for preserving wild lands that ultimately led to passage of the Wilderness Act in 1964.


Come to any of our coming events. Even better, volunteer to help put them on. To volunteer, contact Anne Henny at or Vicky Hoover at (415)977-5527.

Get your own copy of Tom Killion’s spectacular poster commemorating the wilderness 50th anniversary; see the reproduction above. Posters are available for $10 (tax included) at the Chapter Office, 2530 San Pablo Ave. in Berkeley. You can pay cash or check there, or pay on-line through the link at:

Shipping is available for an additional $7. Proceeds will go towards the conservation efforts of the Bay Chapter.

A committee for folks who care about all the Sierra Club’s issues

400x400_sc-logoThursday, June 5, 6:30 pm, Chapter Office, 2530 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley.

By Arthur Feinstein, chair, Sierra Club Bay Chapter Conservation Committee

Is climate change getting you down?

Do you occasionally think that the largest mass extinction of species since the dinosaurs might be a problem?

Are you frustrated with local policies that ignore nature and let our natural areas disappear under developers’ backhoes?

Or maybe you’re sad that salmon populations are disappearing in order to provide water for cotton and alfalfa?

Are you frustrated because you don’t know how to make your voice heard and how to influence these fateful decisions?

The Conservation Committee is being reorganized to help folks like you become effective advocates for the environment.

We will talk about how to be an effective advocate:

  • how to use Facebook, Twitter, and other social-media tools;
  • when and how to write e-mails, letters, etc. to influence decision-makers;
  • how to speak effectively at hearings and meetings–what makes an effective presentation in your allotted 2 – 3 minutes;
  • how to best use the few hours a month you may have available for preserving our world.

We’ll invite experts to brief us on major environmental issues and discuss the tools we have to influence decisions. For example, we’ll learn about:

  • the California Environmental Quality Act–what is it? How is it a tool to help preserve our environment? How do we use it?
  • the agencies that are supposed to protect our environment, such as the state and regional water and air boards and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission;
  • local agencies and zoning laws that that truly decide the fate of our communities;
  • federal and state laws on endangered species and other wildlife.

Of course, the Conservation Committee will also address specific conservation issues as they arise, and as members of the Committee you will help choose those issues. The Chapter has many issue-specific conservation committees such as the Energy, Water, Zero Waste, Transportation, and East Bay Public Lands Committees. But it is up to the Conservation Committee to address conservation issues that fall outside the purview of those issue-specific committees; for example, we may want to work to save threatened wetlands or work on sea-level rise issues.

The world is a scary place as its natural functions are being altered at a frightening pace. But everyday people have made a difference in the past and we can do it again. We just need to decide what we want to do and figure out how to do it. Join us to keep the Bay Area a healthy thriving environment and maybe even to set a model for others.

Come to our first meeting on Thu., June 5. At that meeting we will discuss future meeting dates and look for those that work best for everyone. If the first Thursday of the month doesn’t work for you, let me know at (415)282-5937 or, so that we can find the best repeatable date.

Learn Wilderness First Aid with the Sierra Club–multiple dates

Students practicing in Sierra Club Bay Chapter Wilderness First Aid class. Photo by Lydia Gans.

Students practicing in Sierra Club Bay Chapter Wilderness First Aid class. Photo by Lydia Gans.

Saturday and Sunday, April 26 – 27, June 21 – 22, or September 20 – 21—8:30 – 5, Chapter Office, 2530 San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley. Note: the February-March printed Yodeler listed an incorrect date for the April classes.

Come to an all-day class in Wilderness First Aid sponsored by the Bay Chapter Activities Committee. It satisfies the first-aid requirements for most outing leaders (confirm requirements with your section/group officers). Students have two options:

  • do the one-day class on Saturday and receive the Basic Wilderness First Aid (BWFA) certification of the American Safety & Health Institute (ASHI)—$50 for members/$60 for non-members; or
  • sign up for two days (Saturday and Sunday) for an additional $30/$40, and receive ASHI’s higher-level Wilderness First Aid (WFA) certification. Text­book: if you already have the current WEC textbook (200 pages) and show it at the registration table, deduct $15. The old edition (196 pages) won’t do.


If you are a current Bay Chapter outing leader, you should register by the Tuesday before the class with Chapter office manager Deirdre Ashby at (510)848-0800, ext. 315, or Then mail a $30 deposit check (made out to “Sierra Club SF Bay Chapter”) to Deirdre’s attention at:

Sierra Club
2530 San Pablo Ave., Suite I
Berkeley, CA 94702.

This check will be returned in class, but will be cashed if you don’t show up. Include your mailing address, e-mail, phone number, and which section you lead for. Indicate if you are also attending the Sunday class; you will pay the $30 for the second day at the class. (If you are a leader candidate or trainee, you must follow the non-leader procedure and cost for registering, as spelled out below).

If you are not a current Chapter outing leader, you must register with the instructor at or:

P.O. Box 1227
Berkeley, CA 94701.

Indicate if you are attending the Sunday class. Include your membership number. Be prepared to pay the fee in class.

People who have taken Steve Donelan’s one-day class in the last three years can sign up for the second day only, for $30/$40. Those who have taken Steve’s two-day class can repeat the second day for free. Pre-register with Steve.


Island-hopping in Channel Islands National Park

DSC00072Saturday – Monday: April 12 – 14.

Sundays – Tuesdays: May 4 – 6; June 8 – 10; July 20 – 22; August 24 – 26; September 14 – 16.

Join us for a three-day, three-island, live-aboard tour of the enchanting Channel Islands! Hike wild, windswept trails bordered with blazing wildflowers. Kayak rugged coastlines. Marvel at pristine waters teeming with frolicking seals and sea lions. Train your binoculars on unusual sea and land birds–and an occasional whale. Watch for the highly endangered island fox. Look for reminders of the Chumash people who lived on these islands for thousands of years. Or, just relax at sea. All cruises depart from Santa Barbara. The cost, $590, includes an assigned bunk; all meals, snacks, and beverages; and the services of a ranger/naturalist, who will lead hikes, point out items of interest, and give evening programs.

To reserve space, send a $100 check, written to “Sierra Club”, to leader Joan Jones Holtz at:

11826 The Wye St.
El Monte, CA 91732.

For more information contact her at (626)443-0706 or