Native Americans in the Yosemite area called the site of the current town of Wawona Pallachun, “a good place to stay.” Student and faculty researchers of the UC Merced Sierra Nevada Research Institute (SNRI) agree. They have a new base of operations in the Sierra Nevada: the Wawona SNRI Field Station.
The facility, which was converted from an existing building, provides both overnight lodging and data-analysis capability for SNRI researchers investigating environmental trends in the Yosemite area. Reducing drive time to and from the field and getting results on-site will make research work cheaper, easier and more productive.
“The Wawona Field Station is a physical symbol of our commitment to increase understanding of the environment around us,” says Sam Traina, Director of the SNRI. “In the summer of 2004 we renewed our memorandum of understanding with Yosemite and Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Parks and brought faculty, students and postdoctoral researchers on board to begin work in the Sierra.”
SNRI researchers will study the big picture of the Sierra Nevada through interdisciplinary investigations of population, hydrology, air quality, fire ecology, biodiversity, climate change, transportation, resource management and recreation.