By Michael P. Neufeld
Arrowbear, CA –Two forest lookouts — Keller Peak and Butler Peak — have been adopted by WTI.
Western Telematic, Inc. (WTI) has not only renewed its donation to the Keller Peak Lookout in Running Springs but has also adopted Butler Peak Lookout through the National Forest Association’s Adopt-A-Lookout Program.
The locally-based WTI presented it’s fifth annual contribution, supporting the Fire Lookout Host program that helps keep seven historic fire towers across the San Bernardino National Forest staffed and in good repair to continue to spot fires and educate visitors.
The $3,000 donation was provided by Dan Morrison, part-time Arrowbear resident and CEO of WTI and will allow for annual maintenance and repairs to the towers, keeping them safe and open to the public.
WTI’S COMMUNITY OUTREACH
Earlier this year, Morrison brought his Boy Scout troop up to help clear brush on the hiking trail to Butler Peak lookout.
“Giving back to such a viable program helps ensure this opportunity exists for kids in the future,” Morrison said in a media release issued by the NFA. He also stated that he can see the improvements and changes to Keller Peak lookout over the last few years since he joined the Adopt-A-Lookout program.
Fire Lookout volunteers help to protect the forest resource and local mountain communities, as well as urban communities, along the forest boundary from the threat of fire. In fact, this year lookout volunteers logged more than 15,000 hours, educated over 13,000 visitors, called in 61 smoke reports, and 650 lightning strikes inside the forest boundary.
KELLER PEAK LOOKOUT was originally staffed from 1926 through 1982 by the U. S. Forest Service. In 1994, the Fire Lookout Host program was created to restore, maintain and staff the lookouts. At 7,882-foot elevation, the lookout offers 360 degrees of Southern California views. Though not the first lookout built in the San Bernardino National Forest, Keller Peak is the oldest remaining “original” tower.
BUTLER PEAK LOOKOUT, at 8,535-foot elevation, is located in the San Bernardino Mountains between the towns of Green Valley Lake and Fawnskin. Butler Peak Lookout is the tallest fire lookout tower in the San Bernardino Mountains.
To learn more about the Adopt-A-Lookout Program and other donation opportunities visit NATIONAL FOREST ASSOCIATION online or call Program Coordinator George Morey at (909) 225-1025.