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High: 98 °F
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Mostly Sunny
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High: 95 °F
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SCV Outdoor Report

    SCV Outdoor Report: If You Can’t Stand The Heat....

    We learn to avoid touching hot stuff at an early age.  I was reminded of this one Sunday afternoon, a few week’s ago, when I spent some time baking cookies with two of my cousin’s 9-year-old daughters.  My job was straightforward and simple.  I was the “oven assistant” - I put the cookies into and took them out of the hot oven.

    SCV Outdoor Report: Such Stuff As Dreams Are Made On

    Anyone who’s ever taken care of a baby knows that babies sleep - a lot.  According to this NIH report, “Infants generally require about 16 hours a day”.  And these, “Infants...spend about half of their sleep time in REM sleep”, which, as we know, is the stage of sleep where most dreams occur.  Adults, on the other hand, sleep fewer hours asleep (7-8 hours) and generally spend less of their sleep time in REM sleep (about 20%).

    SCV Outdoor Report: Flash Versus Substance

    It’s a peaceful August night in Wisconsin.  I’m sitting in a cozy chair, talking with my Dad, when suddenly I see a tiny speck of light glowing through the window.  It was a brief flash, less than a second, but my face lit up with a smile in response.  It was a firefly - also known as a lightning bug.  This firefly was looking for romance and trying to make a flashy first impression.

    Best Of Santa Clarita Valley Outdoor Report: You Can Be Too Rich

    Remember the old saying, “You can never be too rich or too thin”?  Well you can be.  Too nutrient rich, that is.  Especially if you’re a salt-water marsh.  Scientists working at Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory recently reported “that nutrients—such as nitrogen and phosphorus from septic and sewer systems and lawn fertilizers—can cause salt-marsh loss.”

    Santa Clarita Outdoor Report: Grasping Webs

    It sounds like a scene in a horror movie.  Imagine you are walking along a trail.  As you come around the bend, you see a Cobwebby Thistle (Cirsium occidentale) standing at least 6 feet tall.  But you’re not worried - the thistle is at least two feet in from the trail.  You approach...the music swells ominously...suddenly...the plant lurches towards you and gouges its spiny thistles deep into your shirt, a hold that will...not...let...go.  Shriek!

    Santa Clarita Valley Outdoor Report: Wildlife Corridors

    This is a "Best of Wendy Langhans" Report.

    This week the news has been full of stories about Las Lomas and the development that has been proposed there.  Today I want to give you some background about what’s at stake ecologically by briefly explaining the concept of wildlife corridors.  I’d like to do that by weaving together several interconnected stories.

    Santa Clarita Outdoor Report: Another Bite Of Pie

    It’s not often that I disagree with the City Council.  But I did last night, when they described their vote to aquire Gateway Ranch as a “victory for the entire valley.”  I think they underestimated the acquisition of 302 acres of open space - it’s a victory for the entire region, for the entire state, and for Mexico as well!

    Santa Clarita Valley Outdoor Report: X-Ray Vision

    Q.  What would the “Man of Steel” be without his superpowers, especially his X-Ray vision?  

    A.  Just another “mild-mannered reporter for a great metropolitan newspaper”. 

    Santa Clarita Valley Outdoor Report: River Walk

    This is a "Best of Wendy Langhans" 

    Last week I went for a walk along the river.  It was a lovely day for walking - plenty of sunshine - and neither too hot nor too cold.  The embankment was lined by a graceful arch of trees.  I noticed the patchy grey, flaking tree bark and decided these were sycamore trees.

    Santa Clarita Valley Outdoor Report: Hairpencils

    This is a "Best of Wendy Langhans" Report.

    What exactly is a hairpencil?  Is it some sort of stick-shaped hair ornament?  Nope.  Hairpencils are cross between (1) lighting a scented candle and (2) spreading pixie dust with a magic wand.  Let me explain.