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Colonel tours Tahoe

Penny Stewart, of the California Tahoe Conservancy, shows Col. Michael Farrell, of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, photos of an area effected by the Angora Fire. Farrell stood at the site during a tour around Lake Tahoe on Monday.

Penny Stewart, of the California Tahoe Conservancy, shows Col. Michael Farrell, of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, photos of an area effected by the Angora Fire. Farrell stood at the site during a tour around Lake Tahoe on Monday.

A high-ranking official with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers visited several restoration sites in the Lake Tahoe Basin on Monday to see the product of agency funds first-hand.

Standing at the site of the Angora Fire, Col. Michael Farrell, commander of the Sacramento District, listened to members of the California Tahoe Conservancy as they talked about restoration efforts that went into the area — some the Corps helped pay for.

Conservancy staff told him about the trees that needed to be cleared, the habitat structures that needed to be retained and the significant amount of planting that needed to be conducted after the 2007 fire.

They also talked about ongoing efforts to control brush in the area to make sure the trees thrive.

“There were also some monitoring efforts done out here that the Corps helped to fund,” said Penny Stewart, resources and public access program manager for the Conservancy. “Some of those were a wildlife fire rehabilitation: How long does it take the animals to return?”

Farrell visited the sites of the North Canyon Creek, Blackwood Creek and Angora Creek restoration projects, as well as a major water quality improvement project in Lake Forest.

Of the four, the Blackwood Creek and Angora Creek projects were Conservancy-lead.

Farrell said the tour was a valuable opportunity.

“It’s nice to see the breadth of challenges within the Tahoe Basin itself,” he said, “and also how big of an impact projects like this have.”