I think you are going to like the Banff film we chose for today’s email: The River’s Call.  It resonated with me when the narrator said that kayaking is “the art of being yourself in a crappy situation.”  We are pretty blessed because we don’t really have to endure crappy situations very often, yet here we are in week 7 of working at home, worrying about a contagious and deadly virus, trying to keep ourselves and community safe, watching the world crumble economically as we do so, and not knowing how long it is going to take to get a vaccine. “What the heck are we doing here, so far away?” they ask in the film.

It is interesting how Banff films show people who chose to put themselves in situations that demand the best of them.  We didn’t choose this, but here we are.  As the narrator says, “You never know the outcome of a kayaking trip.”  An apt metaphor for our current pandemic.

So, what do we do?  We have to admit that we are not in control.  And by doing so, we embrace the moment.  Like a kayaker going down a chute of white water.  We depend on our ability to respond to the moment, on our better selves coming out in a crisis, on teamwork and working together to get to calmer waters.  These are the days when we have to double down.  We have come this far and we can get to the other side, if we stay in the moment, look for joy where we can, and keep on paddling.  Now is NOT the time to let up.

How are you doing in all this? Please take our survey and let us know.

At SFCT, we continue to move our work forward.  At our board meeting this week, we approved four more conservation projects and have two projects ready for closing in May.  We are doing some trail maintenance along the Cañada Ancha to improve the trail along the arroyo on the Dale Ball Trails.  By protecting the open spaces and trails around Santa Fe, we are improving everyone’s life, one acre at a time, one day at a time, one step at a time.

Take good care!


Sarah Noss
Executive Director


Tim Rogers, SFCT Trails Program Manager, takes the gazelle to investigate the new Santa Fe recycling bins.

We want to know how you are doing.
Please take our survey!

SFCT has been nominated for Best Nonprofit for the Environment! Don’t forget to cast your vote on the Santa Fe Reporter’s website.

Final voting is open May 1-31.


Thanks for hanging in there with us to see if we can reschedule the Banff Mountain Film Festival on September 16 and 17.  Finding yourself these days asking “Why?”  You are not alone!  Here’s a 7-minute Banff Film called The River’s Call.  Always on the hunt for stout whitewater in remote reaches of the world, this group of French kayakers is known for asking Why. Why are we out here? What are we doing here?


We want to send out our thanks to our Banff Mountain Film Festival sponsors for hanging in there with us!  It takes a community to bring these films to Santa Fe.  Be sure to thank them.


As the temperature rises, the snowpack is quickly disappearing. We were blessed with a good amount of snowpack this winter,  but the warm weather in March has caused the snow to melt off to 47% of median snowpack for this time of year. The forecast from May through July doesn’t look any better, predicting above-average temperatures and below-average precipitation, so unfortunately we are looking at the perfect conditions for wildfire.

Here’s how you can make your home more resilient:

  • REMOVE leaves, pine needles, and other flammable material from the roof, gutters, and on and under the deck to help prevent embers from igniting your home.
  • SCREEN areas below decks and porches with 1/8” wire mesh to help prevent material from accumulating underneath.
  • COVER exterior attic and soffit vents with 1/8” wire mesh to help prevent sparks from entering your home.  Close your chimney flue so embers can’t get inside your home.
  • ENCLOSE eaves to help prevent ember entry.
  • INSPECT and REPLACE missing shingles or tiles on your roof. COVER ends of tiles with bird stops or cement to help prevent ember penetration during a wildfire.
  • REMOVE dead vegetation and other flammable materials, especially within the first 5 feet of the home.
  • PRUNE tree limbs so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet above the ground to help reduce the chance of fire getting into the crowns of the trees.
  • MOVE construction material, trash, and woodpiles at least 30 feet away from the home and other outbuildings.
  • Ensure your home and neighborhood have legible and clearly marked street names and numbers.

The National Fire Protection Association has a guide sheet in English and Spanish:

English –https://www.nfpa.org//-/media/Files/Firewise/Fact-sheets/FirewiseHowToPrepareYourHomeForWildfires.pdf

Espanol – https://www.nfpa.org//-/media/Files/Firewise/Fact-sheets/FirewiseHowToPrepareYourHomeForWildfiresSpanish.pdf

NM State University has put together a FireWise landscaping guide with plant lists:


Fire Adapted NM Webinar – The Home Ignition Zone – What to do to prep your home for fire season.  Tuesday, May 12, 2020, 1:00 – 2:00 PM

SFCT is a partner in the Greater Santa Fe Fireshed Coalition.


SFCT depends on the generosity of the community to fund our work.  SFCT partners with our community to keep northern New Mexico’s living lands and people flourishing together.  We protect environmentally significant landscapes, ignite people’s passion for nature and enable the continual regeneration of our healthy place.  If you believe in our mission, please make a donation today!