Southern Sierra Nevada Acorn Harvest Weekend
Oaks have provided a major source of food, fuel, medicine, and shelter to humans across the globe for thousands of years. That said, here in California they are of particular importance due to both their sheer abundance and species diversity (approx. 22 species and 12 varieties are found in CA alone!). And although ALL oaks (Quercus spp. and relatives) have edible/medicinal virtues, some are much more preferred than others…for a variety of reasons. In this class we will explore in exhaustive detail 5 of the main species used for food and medicine in Southern California: Black Oak (Quercus kelloggii), Valley Oak (Q. lobata), Coast Live Oak (Q. agrifolia), Oregon Oak (Q. garryana), and Blue Oak (Q. douglasii). During this comprehensive 3 day field class we will delve into all aspects of the process, including: botany/field I.D, harvesting methods, edible and medicinal uses, acorn processing (both hot and cold leaching procedures), ethnobotanical significance, as well as covering any utilitarian potential. If it is a good year, you can expect to take home literally POUNDS of nutrient dense acorns from our base camp in the stunning montane wilderness around Kern River canyon. Any spare time will be devoted to discussing the edible and medicinal uses of the Sierran plants that we come across on our daily harvesting treks. Nighttime will consist of campfire conversation, relaxing soaks in wild/remote hot springs, not to mention camping under a blanket of shimmering stars. This full immersion botanical field study is guaranteed to take your oak awareness and appreciation to a whole new level!
Date: October 25-27. Partial attendance possible.
Meet-up/Departure Time: We will meet at a designated camping area between 5pm-7pm on Thursday 10/24. Class ends at 5pm on Sun. 10/27.
Location: near Lake Isabella, CA (approx. 2.5 hours north of Los Angeles, CA)
(general location could change depending on this year’s crop)
Instructor: Tellur Fenner. Registration: Email (preferred) or Phone.
Interested, but don’t have a car? Inquire about carpooling options.
To Bring: Since this is a car-camping trip, no serious backpacking gear is necessary. Things that are necessary are: Tent, Sleeping Bag, Rain Gear, Clothes (for hot/cold weather), Hiking Boots, Hat/Sunscreen, Daypack, Food/Snacks (class fee does not include meals), Camp Stove, Camping Chair, Camping Pad, Swimming Suit (for hot springs), Flashlight, Water Bottles, Work Gloves, Firewood, and most importantly…a sense of adventure!
Optional (yet recommended): Notebook, Camera, Hand lens.
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