Chugach Corner: Fungus Festival is underway

A variety of mushrooms and other fungus gathered near Pipeline Lakes Trail. (Sept. 1, 2019) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith/The Cordova Times

The 15th annual Cordova Fungus Festival, “Fungus, Forest, Sea,” invites all foragers to delight in several activities via in-person events as well as virtual this year. Hunt for Winter Chanterelle (Craterellus tubaeformis) or Admirable bolete (Boletus mirabilis), watch a discussion on fabric and yarn dying with mushrooms or take part in nature journaling and mushroom painting.

U.S. Forest Service ecologist Kate Mohatt will be involved in a variety of events during the festival.  Whether participants want to search for fascinating fungus and lichen along the Cooper River Delta or foray into how to properly ID mushrooms, Mohatt is the expert to talk to.

Kate Mohatt, Forest Service Prince William Sound Zone ecologist. (Aug. 31, 2019) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith/The Cordova Times
Kate Mohatt, Forest Service Prince William Sound Zone ecologist. (Aug. 31, 2019) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith/The Cordova Times

Mohatt is the Prince William Sound zone ecologist working out of the Glacier Ranger District office in Girdwood. She has been collecting fungi in The Last Frontier for 15 years and is involved in both the Girdwood Fungus Fair and Cordova Fungus Festival. Mohatt received a master’s degree in Plant Science at Montana State University in Bozeman, Mont., studying mycorrhizal fungi associated with the whitebark pine.

For more information on the festival and the schedule for Cordova (In person events Sept. 10-12) visit the website: https://www.cordovafungusfest.com/schedule.