Monthly Archives: June 2016

Fire Updates June 30

Investigators say fireworks sparked 2,500-acre fire near Table Rock

KTVB June 30, 2016

20160630TablerockFire

BOISE — Investigators confirmed that fireworks sparked a blaze that charred more than 2,500 acres and destroyed a home and an outbuilding near Table Rock.

Boise resident Taylor Kemp said he saw the fire start when he went up to Table Rock Wednesday night to take photographs of the storm.

“There were people up there shooting off fireworks – mortars, the ones that will go up in the air,” he said.

As he watched, one of the fireworks tipped over and shot into the dry field, setting it on fire, he said.

“As soon as it happened, they booked it,” he said.

Kemp said he immediately called the fire department to report the flames and tried to put the fire out, but it quickly spread out of control.

continued:
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Boise man loses family home in Table Rock Fire

Joe Parris, KTVB June 30, 2016

BOISE — In an instant, everything was gone.

Steven Danielson wiped away tears Thursday as he stood amid ash and debris, all that was left of a home that had been in his family for generations.

Danielson’s house, located in the middle of an 18-acre plot of dry grass near Warm Springs Avenue and Pheasant Lane, was the only home destroyed in a 2,500-acre wildfire that swept through the Boise Foothills Thursday morning near Table Rock.

“It’s all gone,” he said.

Danielson said he was woken up at about 12:30 a.m. by his step-daughter. She was frantic.

“I just hear ‘everything’s on fire, the hill’s on fire!'” he said.

continued:
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Home in the foothills untouched by fire thanks to defensible space

Alex Livingston, KTVB June 30, 2016

BOISE – Planning for the worst-case scenario is what Boise resident Pat Telleria did and he says when you’re living in the foothills, it’s not a matter of if there will be a fire, it’s a matter of when.

“The walls as you look at them and the space that’s between the top of the wall and the house is what really made the difference,” said Telleria.

“Defensible space and the firefighters really saved that home,” said Boise City Fire Chief Dennis Doan.

Telleria finished building his home in 2002 and says he took several things into account, but the possibility of fires was always on his mind.

“We don’t have any fire hydrants so it’s about me creating space in order to facilitate keeping the house safe in an event like what we had last night,” said Telleria.

continued:
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Fireworks safety following Table Rock Fire

Boise Fire Chief Dennis Doan talks about fireworks safety.

KTVB June 30, 2016

video report:
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Payette National Forest Enters Fire Season – Sources for Fire Information Available

Payette National Forest
June 30, 2016

McCall, ID – So far this year, the Payette National Forest has responded to two lightning caused and one human caused wildfires. All three fires were kept to less than .10 of an acre and suppressed with our initial attack resources. The Southern Idaho Timber Protective Association has also responded to three wildfires – all lightning caused and kept to less than .10 of an acre.

We expect a “normal” wildland fire season across the Payette National Forest this fire season, which typically starts in June and ends in late September or early October with a “season ending” weather related event. The height of the fire season in central Idaho typically begins in mid to late July.

“A normal fire season for us means that we will have wildfires across the Forest,” said Sean Johnson, Payette National Forest Fire Management officer. “In a normal fire season we see as many as 100 wildfires.” Predicted weather over the summer months indicates that we may have large fire activity on the Forest, but the danger for large wildfire activity is less this year than it was last year.

“We had a good snow pack in the mountains this past winter, but the hot weather we had in early June quickly melted the snow in higher elevations. Those warm temperatures increased water runoff from the mountains during late May and early June, which is not good for keeping heavy fuels wet as the heat of summer approaches,” added Johnson. The early runoff promoted the growth of fine fuels such as grasses across the Forest which can cause a wildfire to spread quickly.

For members of the public that want to know about wildfires occurring across the Forest, several method are available. To report a wildfire, be sure to call Payette Interagency Dispatch at 208-634-2757

* Fire Information Hotline: 208-634-0820

* The fire information hotline has the most up to date information about fires burning on the Forest. This is a recorded message during times of minimal fire activity, then will be the phone number to our fire information center if/when we have larger fires on the Forest.

* Email Distribution: During times of heightened fire activity on the Forest, we distribute fire information daily via email using GovDelivery. GovDelivery was used on the Forest last year, and those signed up from last year will continue to receive updates. To learn how to register for fire information via GovDelivery, click this link, or send an email request to payettefireinformation@gmail.com.

* Internet based fire information: The Forest uses two internet based systems for fire information.

* Inciweb is used for “large fires” that are over 100 acres in size, and to track wildfires that are burning in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. Once on the Inciweb page, filter the wildfires by State to view Idaho. http://inciweb.nwcg.gov

* IdahoFireInformation – this is an interagency website developed by federal and state agencies in Idaho to provide timely and accurate information of wildland fires, fire restrictions, and prevention and education across the state. Once on the page, note the link in the upper left of the home page for the “Payette Dispatch” center. This link will take you to a page that is specific to wildfires on the Payette National Forest and Southern Idaho Timber Protective Association (SITPA). http://www.idahofireinfo.com

* Social Media: The Payette National Forest uses Facebook and Twitter for posting fire information. Follow us on Facebook, (search for U.S. Forest Service – Payette National Forest), and on Twitter (#payetteForest).

For Information about smoke, visit these web sites:

* Statewide Daily Air Quality and Forecast provided by Idaho DEQ: http://www.deq.idaho.gov/air-quality/monitoring/daily-reports-and-forecasts

* National Smoke Information provided by the US Department of Environmental Quality: https://www.airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.local_state

For Information on potential highway closures or restrictions, visit the Idaho Department of Transportation road report page at: http://www.511.idaho.gov/
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4thPayette

Fire Update June 29

Visitors are reminded: No fireworks allowed on the Boise National Forest

June 28, 2016
Boise National Forest

BOISE, Idaho, June 28, 2016 — The Boise National Forest is reminding visitors and campers that the use of all fireworks and other pyrotechnic devices is prohibited on National Forests lands regardless of weather conditions or holidays. The forest is expecting large numbers of visitors to recreation areas over the Fourth of July weekend and this increased activity could lead to human caused fires.

With the recent Banks Fire and other smaller starts, the potential for wildfires is escalating and conditions are high. Fire officials ask visitors to be especially careful when towing trailers or boats.

“If you plan to tow a boat or RV, please check your safety chains before heading to the forest or any major highway corridor,” said Tony DeMasters, a member of the Boise National Forest fire staff. “The chains sometimes hang too low and have the potential to spark a wildfire if they drag on the ground while towing.”

When building campfires, look for a place at least 15 feet from trees, shrubs, tents or other flammable objects; be aware of low hanging branches. Don’t leave campfires unattended and make sure they are dead out when you leave.

Internal or external combustion engines, like those found on all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and motorcycles, without a spark-arresting device properly installed and maintained are strictly prohibited on National Forest lands, along with the use of explosives and exploding targets. These devises are designed to explode when shot with a rifle. The resulting explosions have been known to cause wildfires.

Campgrounds are expected to fill up rapidly and reservations are recommended. Reservations can be made at: http://www.recreation.gov. Motor Vehicle Use maps (MVUM) are available at Ranger District offices, the Boise Interagency Visitor Center or on the Boise National Forest webpage. The maps show designated routes for motorized recreation users.

While the Banks Fire is 100 percent contained, visitor’s traveling along Forest Highway 17 (Banks / Lowman Road) and Idaho State Highway 55 may still see smoke as crews conduct burn out and mop-up operations.

For additional information, call the Interagency Visitor Center at 208-373-4007, located at 1387 South Vinnell Way in Boise or contact the Ranger District offices.

Linda Steinhaus
Public Affairs
Forest Service
Boise National Forest
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Payette National Forest Enters Fire Season – Sources for Fire Information Available

June 28, 2016
Payette National Forest

McCall, ID – So far this year, the Payette National Forest has responded to two lightning caused and one human caused wildfires. All three fires were kept to less than .10 of an acre and suppressed with our initial attack resources. The Southern Idaho Timber Protective Association has also responded to three wildfires – all lightning caused and kept to less than .10 of an acre.

We expect a “normal” wildland fire season across the Payette National Forest this fire season, which typically starts in June and ends in late September or early October with a “season ending” weather related event. The height of the fire season in central Idaho typically begins in mid to late July.

“A normal fire season for us means that we will have wildfires across the Forest,” said Sean Johnson, Payette National Forest Fire Management officer. “In a normal fire season we see as many as 100 wildfires.” Predicted weather over the summer months indicates that we may have large fire activity on the Forest, but the danger for large wildfire activity is less this year than it was last year.

“We had a good snow pack in the mountains this past winter, but the hot weather we had in early June quickly melted the snow in higher elevations. Those warm temperatures increased water runoff from the mountains during late May and early June, which is not good for keeping heavy fuels wet as the heat of summer approaches,” added Johnson. The early runoff promoted the growth of fine fuels such as grasses across the Forest which can cause a wildfire to spread quickly.

For members of the public that want to know about wildfires occurring across the Forest, several method are available. To report a wildfire, be sure to call Payette Interagency Dispatch at 208-634-2757

* Fire Information Hotline: 208-634-0820

* The fire information hotline has the most up to date information about fires burning on the Forest. This is a recorded message during times of minimal fire activity, then will be the phone number to our fire information center if/when we have larger fires on the Forest.

* Email Distribution: During times of heightened fire activity on the Forest, we distribute fire information daily via email using GovDelivery. GovDelivery was used on the Forest last year, and those signed up from last year will continue to receive updates. To learn how to register for fire information via GovDelivery, send an email request to payettefireinformation@gmail.com.

* Internet based fire information: The Forest uses two internet based systems for fire information.

* Inciweb is used for “large fires” that are over 100 acres in size, and to track wildfires that are burning in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. Once on the Inciweb page, filter the wildfires by State to view Idaho. http://inciweb.nwcg.gov

* IdahoFireInformation – this is an interagency website developed by federal and state agencies in Idaho to provide timely and accurate information of wildland fires, fire restrictions, and prevention and education across the state. Once on the page, note the link in the upper left of the home page for the “Payette Dispatch” center. This link will take you to a page that is specific to wildfires on the Payette National Forest and Southern Idaho Timber Protective Association (SITPA). http://www.idahofireinfo.com

* Social Media: The Payette National Forest uses Facebook and Twitter for posting fire information. Follow us on Facebook, (search for U.S. Forest Service – Payette National Forest), and on Twitter (#payetteForest).

For Information about smoke, visit these web sites:

* Statewide Daily Air Quality and Forecast provided by Idaho DEQ: http://www.deq.idaho.gov/air-quality/monitoring/daily-reports-and-forecasts

* National Smoke Information provided by the US Department of Environmental Quality: https://www.airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.local_state

For Information on potential highway closures or restrictions, visit the Idaho Department of Transportation road report page at: http://www.511.idaho.gov/

Brian D. Harris
Public Affairs Officer
Forest Service
Payette National Forest
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Wildfire near Banks fully contained

KTVB June 28, 2016

BANKS, Idaho — A wildfire burning along the Banks-to-Lowman Road has been 100 percent contained days after it sparked, according to the Bureau of Land Management.

Fire crews reached containment on the 125-acre fire at about 12:30 p.m. Monday, according to officials.

The blaze started near Banks Saturday afternoon. Crews used helicopters, engines and a tanker to quell the flames.

Some of the interior of the fire continues to burn, and drivers may encounter smoky conditions, according to the BLM. Motorists should slow down and use caution in the area.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

source:

4thPayette

Fire Update June 27

UPDATE: Banks Fire nearly contained

Boise National Forest
Acting Public Affairs Officer
BOISE, Idaho, June 27, 2016

Fire crews report the Banks Fire near County Highway 17 and Idaho State Highway 55 is 90 percent contained.

The Banks Fire, which totaled 125 acres is expected to be 100 percent contained some time today. The fire continues to smolder and motorists may encounter smoke when driving through the area. In addition, there may be delays due to slower traffic speed. Signs alerting motorists to smoke are posted along the road and all lanes are open.

“We want to caution people to drive slowly with lights on while traveling in these smoky areas,” said Deputy Fire and Aviation Staff Officer Ron Bollier. “While there are dead trees and snags as a result of the fire, these hazards are contained, but we may continue to see smoke for several days.”

While the cause of the fire is unknown, human caused is suspected and the investigation is still underway.

Heading into the July 4th weekend, fire official ask visitors to be especially careful ensuring campfires are dead out, spark arresters are installed on all combustion engines and vehicles pulling trailers or boats are not dragging anything that could spark a fire. The public is reminded that absolutely no fireworks are allowed on National Forest lands.

The Boise National Forest would like visitors to have a safe and happy holiday and appreciates any assistance by the public in preventing wildfires.

4thPayette

June 29, 2016 The Yellow Pine Times

June 29,  2016 The Yellow Pine Times – Valley County, Idaho

YPWUA News: 

Please be conservative when watering lawns. We ask those that are here all week to not water lawns on the weekends so that more water is available for the weekend cabin owners. There will NO lawn watering on all summer holidays and during the Festival weekend!
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Village News:

Fire Siren

A reminder the siren will be “tested” at Noon on July 1st. Alex Pellegrini will flip the switch.
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4th of July Weekend Events at the Yellow Pine Tavern

Friday July 1st 9pm Karaoke, and Saturday July 2nd 9pm Live Music: Dave Nudo returns to the Yellow Pine Tavern.
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The 18th Annual Yellow Pine Golf Tournament Saturday July 2nd Starting at 10am

$20 per player – Benefits the Medical Supply & Training Fund for Yellow Pine

$50 per hole – Sponsorship provides Advertisement on a hole and covers entry fee for two players

Awards for: Best Ball Scramble Twosomes – Men’s, Women’s, and Mixed; and closest to the hole on #1 hole only.

Get your reservations in early, as we will start with foursomes on each of the 18 holes, limiting the tournament to 72 golfers.

For questions or registration or to mail/email/phone your entry info. contact:

Jeff or Ann Forster P.O. Box 38 Yellow Pine, ID 83677 email: a4srar911 @ gmail.com phone: (208) 633-1010

Tickets will be available for purchase at the beginning of the tournament so arrive early to purchase for Beer & Mulligan’s. The Museum will be hosting a lunch to be purchased during and after the tournament so… you will need to carry cash for these items. Water will be provided for all participants!
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Yellow Pine Parade July 3rd

Independence Day is just around the corner!  You are invited to take part in the annual Yellow Pine Parade. Bring your family and friends, pets, vehicles, floats, marching bands, and silliness to be a part of the parade  meet at the fire house at 3:30. The parade starts at 4pm on Sunday, July 3rd.  All family-friendly participants are welcome!
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Fireworks

Sunday July 3 – Village fireworks at Dusk. Please be considerate and do not bring illegal fireworks to Yellow Pine, and remember fireworks are banned in the forest!

4thSafeSane
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Museum Pergola

Yellow Pine Group Facebook gallery

Link:
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4thBeer-b4thJulyGame-b

Local Observations:

Monday (June 20) early morning loud airplanes (still some planes parked at the airstrip.) Clear sky, a little dew, warming up quickly. Very loud airplane over the village at 1145am. Gusty breezes and sunshine. New posts set at the school for museum pergola. Rather warm day (89F for the high.) A western tanager sighting down by the river, and by evening a lone mourning dove in our yard. Full moon and Summer Solstice.

Tuesday (June 21) only one early morning airplane (and only 1 parked at the airstrip.) Clear sky, not much dew. A few finches, swallows active. Clear sky, warming up fast this morning. Local streets are dusty. Low flying helicopter at 1248pm. Warm breezy afternoon.

Wednesday (June 22) some early morning loud airplanes (more planes parked at airstrip.) Clear sky, not much dew. A few finches and a couple humming birds. Mamma doe on the golf course, golden mantel and ground squirrels active. Bubbles in the water in the morning. Local streets quite dusty. Hot sunny day, light afternoon breezes. First swallow egg hatched! Doe in the neighborhood early evening.

Thursday (June 23) a few early morning loud airplanes (only a few planes parked at the airstrip.) Clear sky, not much dew, dusty roads. Two more eggs in the swallow nest hatched, both parents feeding the babies. A few finches at the feeders. Ground squirrels running around. Clouds drifting by during the day, increasing clouds towards evening.

Friday (June 24) a few early morning airplanes, brief sprinkle of rain. Mostly cloudy and breezy. Cool breezy day, clouds passing thru. Hungry mosquitoes. Very light rain shower around 830pm, just enough to make things damp. Clearing at dark.

Saturday (June 25) several early morning LOUD airplanes. Early morning light freeze, clear sky. Warmed up to be a sunny nice day (not too hot.) A few finches at the feeders. Airplane traffic off and on all day. Clear sky, light breezes. Crew working on pergola at the school/museum.

Sunday (June 26) some early morning airplanes. A few finches at the feeders, pine squirrel running about. Clear sky and warming up quickly this morning. Very warm sunny day, mild breezes. We are watching five swallow babies in the nest, growing quickly – doubled in size since hatching. Today a hint of dark fuzz on their backs. Both parents feeding the chicks. Dusty roads (where there is no dust abatement.) Warm evening (81 degrees at 730pm.)
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Photo to Share:

Bar O

BarODP

photo credit Dave Putman
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Idaho News:

Police, firefighters to be on alert during Fourth of July weekend

BY TOM GROTE for The Star-News June 23, 2016

One focus during the Fourth of July weekend will be quelling partiers at North Beach on Payette Lake, but police and fire officials will be keeping watch on the rest of the area as well.

All 12 officers of the McCall Police Department will be on duty during the weekend, with peak staffing expected between 4 p.m. and 4 a.m. on Saturday through Monday, July 2-4, McCall Police Chief Justin Williams said.

Officers will be enforcing the city’s new ban on alcoholic drinks in city parks throughout the weekend.

Williams was asked whether officers will automatically write tickets to violators or first ask them to pour out their drinks.

“We will enforce the ordinance to the extent that compliance is obtained,” he said.

The three resident Idaho State Police troopers in Valley County will be patrolling that weekend joined by other ISP troopers, said Teresa Baker, ISP public information officer.

Baker did not know how many troopers will be deployed due to other holiday events in southwest Idaho. “We will have as many troopers as we can send,” she said.

McCall Fire & EMS will have its station on Deinhard Lane fully staffed throughout the holiday weekend to respond to fires caused by fireworks or abandoned campfires, Chief Mark Billmire said.

The agency also will have an aid tent set up at Legacy Park on Monday, July 4, which will allow rescuers to be close by in case of an accident in or near the park, Billmire said.

Fire lookouts on Brundage Mountain and No Business Mountain will be staffed by the holiday weekend, Chief Fire Warden Ken Stump of the Southern Idaho Timber Protective Association said.

SITPA patrollers also will be checking on popular primitive camping areas near North Beach, Bear Basin west of McCall and around Lake Cascade for abandoned campfires, Stump said.

source The Star-News
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The Battle for the Beach

BY DAN GALLAGHER and TOM GROTE for The Star-News June 23, 2016

Valley County will stage its most concerted effort next week to choke off the annual party of young adults at North Beach on Payette Lake over the Fourth of July weekend.

The county has banned alcoholic drinks at the beach for the entire weekend, including Monday, July 4, and has banned parking along roads leading into the beach.

On Payette Lake, a buoy line will be set and patrol boats will be posted to keep boats laden with those intent on a good time from reaching the beach.

The efforts are intended to quell the annual party that in the past has featured up to 2,500 young adults, free-flowing alcohol and the potential trouble that can result.

Despite the preparations, Valley County Sheriff Patti Bolen said she does not know what will happen when revelers are confronted with the new rules.

“We don’t know how they will act, whether people will sneak alcohol in,” Bolen said. “We’re not giving them the opportunity to sit and just indulge in alcohol all day.”

full story The Star-News
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Pilot error cited for 2014 mid-air collision near Landmark

Colo. man died, other pilot managed to land safely

BY TOM GROTE for The Star-News June 23, 2016

2014crash

credit Star-News File Photo

photo caption: Photo shows burned wreckage in which a Colorado man died when his plane and a second plane collided near Warm Lake in July 2014.

Pilot error has been cited as the cause of a mid-air collision between two small aircraft in July 2014 over a backcountry Valley County airstrip that killed one of the pilots.

Findings from the National Transportation Safety board said Michael A. Bond, 45, of Fort Collins, Colo., lost sight of the second plane above him, which led to the collision.

The NTSB findings were posted on the federal agency’s website last month, nearly two years after the accident.

Bond died when the single-engine plane he was piloting crashed and burned about the 2-1/2 miles south of the Landmark airstrip about 30 miles east of Cascade.

The second plane, piloted by Amy Hoover, 52, of Ellensburg, Wash., landed safely in a grassy area about 1-1/2 miles southeast of the airstrip.

Hoover took off from McCall Airport and Bond took off from the Flying A Ranch, a private airfield, on the morning of July 7, 2014, the NTSB report said. The two had planned to meet at Sulfur Creek Ranch located southwest of Warm Lake, the report said.

Hoover saw Bond’s plane take off below her and the two spoke on the radio, the NTSB report said.

Hoover then lost sight of Bond’s plane and next saw it about 10 miles west of Sulfur Creek under her left wing, overtaking her from behind and below, and appearing to be climbing, the report said.

“(Hoover) stated that she had no time to react before (Bond’s plane) struck her propeller, and then disappeared downward,” the NTSB report said. Hoover’s engine stopped, but she was able to land safely.

Radar video showed the two airplanes traveling in the same general direction, with Bond’s plane converging on Hoover’s plane just before the collision, the report said.

full story The Star-News
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Two Meridian men rescued after Warm Lake hike goes awry

The Star-News June 23, 2016

Two Meridian men were found by Valley County Search and Rescue last week near Curtis Lake off the Warm Lake Highway after they failed to return from a hiking trip.

Brandon Wallentine, 21, and Brandon Whitten, 28, were told by a friend that Curtis Lake was a good fishing spot to hike to and started walking on Sunday, June 12, said Larry Mangum of Search and Rescue.

But they failed to return home on Monday, June 13. Valley County sheriff’s deputies found their car the next day, on June 14, on Forest Service Road 425 just off the Warm Lake Highway near Big Creek Summit.

“Their cell phones were both dead or turned off, so dispatch could not ping them for location and was told they did have a GPS and some camping supplies,” Mangum said.

Ten search and rescue members were called out at 10 a.m. June 14. It was determined the two had not parked at the correct trailhead for Curtis Lake, but traveled cross-country to the water.

“It was rain at low elevation and snow covering the tree tops and ground Tuesday morning at higher elevation, so a Cascade ambulance was called into the command post to be on standby,” Mangum said. A rescue helicopter was requested from Kalispell, Mont., to help.

One of the search teams found the two men at 4 p.m., on the Clear Creek Road near the Warm Lake Highway. The helicopter reached the area, but was sent back.

source The Star-News
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Motorcyclist killed in crash on ID 55

KTVB June 26, 2016

HORSESHOE BEND – A motorcyclist died when he collided with two vehicles on Idaho 55 Sunday, police said.

The crash happened at about noon, four miles north of Horseshoe Bend.

Idaho State Police say 52-year-old Kevin Guth was riding his Harley Davidson motorcycle south on the highway, when he crossed the center line and collided with a Chrysler minivan. Guth was then hit by a Nissan SUV.

Guth died at the scene, police said. He was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

continued:
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Highway 55 reopened after rollover crash

KTVB June 24, 2016

The Idaho Transportation Department says Highway 55 was blocked between Spring Creek Way, which is five miles south of Horseshoe Bend, and Sportsman Access, 15 miles north of Horseshoe Bend Friday afternoon.

Idaho State Police officials say a car rolled at milepost 56.5 around 2:15 p.m.

ISP said Virgil P. Ayers, 86, of Murray, Utah, was driving southbound on Highway 55 in a 2004 Buick Rainier and drove off the road. Ayers overcorrected, causing the vehicle to roll. It came to rest on the driver’s side.

Ayers was transported by air ambulance to Saint Alphonsus in Boise. Ayers’ adult male passenger was transported by ground ambulance. Both men were wearing seat belts, ISP said.

Shortly after 4:30 p.m. ISP says all lanes were opened.

source:
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State sues small eastern Idaho town over ambulance

6/22/16 – AP

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho — The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is suing a small town in eastern Idaho for refusing to hand over an ambulance.

The Post Register (http://bit.ly/28RoCaw ) reports that fire officials in Swan Valley purchased an ambulance in 2012 using roughly $113,500 from a state grant, but the town has since lost its ambulance contract. Now the state says it wants the ambulance back or a full refund because the town is no longer improving services in the area.

Bonneville County consolidated ambulance services under the city of Idaho Falls last year. Swan Valley opposed the decision. However, county officials said the move was necessary to save money. For example, Swan Valley was using 17 percent of the county’s total EMS budget while providing just 1.5 percent of the services.

Swan Valley Fire Chief Dean Philbrick declined to comment, but he recently told county commissioners that the ambulance at the center of the current legal battle was being used to “protect my own people.”

continued:
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Letter to Share:

Request for extension of comment period

June 24, 2016 from Ron Julian

USFS-Boise NF has released EA for 30 day comment period in middle of summer and Fourth-We need more time.  Please join us in requesting an extension.

[see project below, reposted from June 19th YPTimes.]
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Assessment to Address Valley County’s Request for Snowmobile Grooming Routes Environmental Assessment Now Available

USDA Forest Service June 14, 2016

The Forest Service has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Assessment to Address Valley County’s Request for Snowmobile Grooming Routes (Valley County Snowmobile Grooming project) and is seeking public comment on this EA during the 30-day notice and comment period.

Please Note: The status of the wolverine recently changed to Proposed Threatened.  Because the effects analysis for the Valley County Snowmobile Route Grooming Project determined that the preferred alternative could result in impacts to the wolverine and because consultation with the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) had already been completed for this project, the Boise National Forest will request a conferencing report from the USFWS pursuant to section 7(a)(4) of the Endangered Species Act. In light of the wolverine’s status change from a Region 4 Sensitive species to federally Proposed Threatened species, the Biological Assessment will be updated and those updates will be incorporated into the Final Environmental Assessment and draft Decision following completion of the conferencing process.

The Valley County Snowmobile Grooming project area includes approximately 239 miles of existing groomed OSV trails and 15.6 miles of proposed OSV trails on the Forest within State Designated Snowmobile Areas 43c, 43d, and a portion of 43b (Enclosure A). A challenge cost-share agreement authorizes Valley County to groom these trails on the Cascade, Emmett, and Lowman Ranger Districts in Idaho’s Valley, Gem, and Boise counties, though the majority of the groomed routes lie within Valley County and the Cascade Ranger District.

The complete EA can be downloaded from the project website located at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=43272. If you would prefer a hard copy of the EA, please contact Terre Pearson-Ramirez, Team Leader, at tramirez@fs.fed.us or by phone at 208-382-7457.

… The Responsible Official for this project is Forest Supervisor Cecilia R. Seesholtz.  For further information on the project, please contact Terre Pearson-Ramirez, Team Leader, at tramirez@fs.fed.us or by phone at 208-382-7457.
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Forest / BLM News:

Scoping opportunity for South Zone Easements/Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project

June 24, 2016
Boise National Forest

The Forest Service is seeking scoping comments for the “South Zone Easements and Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project” located on the Mountain Home and Idaho City Ranger Districts.

The Forest Service is proposing to grant a combination of Special Use Permits (SUP) or reciprocal easements to individual applicants to allow private landholders to legally access private land inholdings within the Forest from existing roads. Within this proposed action, up to 13 SUP’s or reciprocal easements would be granted to individual applicants. The Special Use Permits issued would be granted for a term of 20 years. Any easement issued would exist in perpetuity. The total combined linear length of roads involved in this action is 5 miles with individual sections ranging from 0.01 to 1.20 miles. These access roads currently exist on the ground and no new road construction is proposed. Maps have been uploaded to the project website of each proposed SUP or easement.

The Forest Service is contacting interested persons, groups, and agencies to make them aware of the project and to gather pertinent feedback. Even if you have no specific concerns, I am asking that you respond if you desire to stay on the project’s mailing list.

To be most helpful, please submit your scoping comments by July 23nd, 2016, and make your comments as specific as possible. Your comments will help us refine the proposal, and identify preliminary issues, interested and affected persons, and possible alternatives. Comments received in response to this request will be available for public inspection and will be released in their entirety if requested pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. Comments received in response to this request will also be available for public inspection on the “Public Comment Reading Room” on the “South Zone Easements and Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project” webpage: http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=49640.

How to Comment

Written, facsimile, hand-delivered, verbal, and electronic comments concerning this project will be accepted.

Written comments must be submitted to: Mountain Home Ranger District, Attention: Joshua Newman, 3080 Industrial Way, Mountain Home, Idaho, 83647.  The office hours for those submitting hand-delivered comments are: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding Federal holidays.  Verbal comments may also be provided at the Mountain Home Ranger District office during normal business hours or via telephone 1-208-587-7961.

Comments may also be submitted through the “South Zone Easements and Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project” webpage http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=49640. To submit comments using the web form select “Comment on Project” under “Get Connected” on the right panel of the project’s webpage.

Email comments must be submitted in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), Adobe (.pdf) and Word (.doc) to comments-intermtn-boise-mtn-home@fs.fed.us. Please put “South Zone Easements and Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project” in the subject line of e-mail comments.  Comments must have an identifiable name attached or verification of identity will be required.  A scanned signature may serve as verification on electronic comments.

Stay Connected to this Project via the Web

To assist the Forest Service in meeting its goals of reducing our carbon footprint and to achieve a sustainable operation, we are transitioning to a web-based electronic comment system that allows all interested parties to receive project material (scoping documents, updates, draft and final NEPA documents, and decisions) by e-mail. This new system gives you direct control over which mailing lists you are subscribed to and immediate electronic access to project documents as they are posted online. It’s easy, it’s good for the environment, and it gives “on-demand” access to projects.

To subscribe to this new system, go online to the “South Zone Easements and Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project” webpage http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=49640. On the project webpage, you will see a box titled “Get Connected” on the right hand side of the page, click on “Subscribe to Email Updates”. When you click on that item, you will be prompted to provide your e-mail address and select a password. When you have logged in, you will be able to manage your account by subscribing to projects by Forest, District, project type, or project purpose. You will also be able to change your e-mail address and password. If you no longer wish to follow the project(s), simply delete your subscription. Once you are subscribed, you will receive all project information via e-mail, unless you specifically request hard copies.

For further information on the “South Zone Easements and Special Use Permits for Private Landowner Access Project”, please feel free to contact, Joshua Newman at 1-208-587-7961.

Sincerely,
Aaron Stockton – South Zone NEPA Planner, Boise National Forest
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Becker Integrated Resource Project Record of Decision is Now Available

USDA Forest Service June 23, 2016

The Notice of Availability (NOA) was published in the Federal Register (FR Vol. 81, No. 63, NOA for EIS No. 20160068) on April 1, 2016, announcing the availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Draft Record of Decision (ROD) for the Becker Integrated Resource Project. A legal notice was also published on April 1, 2016 in the Idaho Statesman (newspaper of record) announcing the opportunity to object to the project pursuant to 36 CFR 218 subparts A and B.  Two objections were filed during the objection filing period. Objections received are available for public review at https://cara.ecosystem-management.org/Public//ReadingRoom?Project=18922. The Objection Reviewing Officer (ORO) issued response letters to these objections on May 26th and May 31st.  These letters are available for review at http://www.fs.fed.us/objections/objections_list.php?r=110402. Pursuant to 36 CFR 218.10, both objections were set aside from review.

On June 22, 2016, Forest Supervisor Seesholtz signed the Record of Decision (ROD) for the Becker Integrated Resource Project. The ROD and FEIS are available on the Project web page: http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=18922. Please contact me, if you would like a hard copy of the ROD and/or FEIS.

As documented in the ROD, Forest Supervisor Seesholtz selected Alternative C with modifications.  Modified Alternative C will conduct vegetation restoration activities including commercial and non-commercial thinning and mixed treatments on about 8,535 acres.  Transportation management activities include road realignment (1.2 miles), road reconstruction (4.8 miles), road decommissioning (32.9 miles), road closures (24.1 miles), temporary road construction (6.5 miles), and designation of unauthorized routes to the NFS road system (4.6 miles).  Modified Alternative C will remove or replace 22 aquatic organism passage barrier culverts.  Modified Alternative C will also authorize about 37.9 miles of summer non-motorized trail and 60.2 miles of winter non-motorized trail.  An estimated 8.7 MMBF of wood products will be provided to local/regional processing facilities.

To allow time for distribution of the decision, implementation of the Becker Integrated Resource Project may begin five days following the signature date of the ROD.

For additional information regarding this project, please contact Brant Petersen, Idaho City District Ranger, by phone at 208-392-6681.

Sincerely,

Melissa Yenko
Forest Environmental Coordinator
Boise National Forest
1249 South Vinnell Way, Suite 200
Boise, ID 83709
Phone: 208-373-4245
Email: myenko@fs.fed.us
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Idaho hot springs shut down to protect health, safety

6/22/16 AP

BOISE, Idaho — An Idaho recreation spot known as the Skinny Dipper Hot Springs has been shut down by federal officials.

Bureau of Land Management officials plan to remove illegal piping and illegal pools during a temporary five-year shutdown at the Boise County hot springs. The agency also plans to re-establish vegetation in the area, reported KTVB-TV (http://bit.ly/28PknNh ).

BLM conducted an environmental analysis on the pools in 2015 that showed they’re unsafe and damaging natural resources.

Officials also cited public health and safety concerns at the hot springs. There have been nearly 150 incidents there since 2004, according to BLM Four Rivers field manager Tate Fischer, including underage alcohol consumption, public intoxication, public nudity, assault and rape. He said the region also has health hazards like hypodermic needles, dirty diapers and human waste.

continued:
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Agency enlists high-tech help keeping drones from wildfires

By KEITH RIDLER – 6/23/16 AP

BOISE, Idaho — When Brian Cresto and his fellow firefighters fly toward a wildfire at just a few hundred feet off the ground, he’s scouting for the best spot for them to land when they parachute down.

Lately, he’s also been keeping an eye out for hobby drones that could take out their twin-engine propeller craft before it climbs to 1,500 feet, where the eight smokejumpers exit.

“It’s dangerous anytime you drop an aircraft down to a certain level,” said Cresto, a smokejumper with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. “Drones are starting to be a part of that conversation.”

Hobby drone ownership has spiked in recent years, and more and more of the devices have been spotted flying illegally over active wildfires, where they can endanger the airplanes and helicopters being used to battle the blazes.

continued:
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Critter News:

4thCats

Dogs & Fireworks: How to Keep your Dog Calm and Safe During July 4th

Summer holidays – everyone loves them. You get a long weekend, time off work, get to hang with your family and friends, and enjoy time outside.

What says Happy 4th of July better than fireworks? While enjoyable and entertaining for people, fireworks can send your dog into a scared frenzy. The loud noises and bright flashes of fireworks may alarm your dog, so we have a few great tips to minimize your dog’s anxiety and fear during fireworks celebrations.

Create a safe haven for your dog
Keep your dog inside and make a safe place for him. Remove all objects from the room that could cause harm – some dogs are destructive when frightened. Make sure his go-to hiding spot like under the bed or his kennel is clear and accessible – don’t pull him out if he is hiding. If the fireworks are especially close to your house, take him to a friend’s house where the noise won’t be as loud. Also close all the curtains and blinds to keep out the bright light flashes and decrease the loud booms and make sure all the doors and windows are securely closed and locked. You may also want to put down some training pads in case your dog gets excited and has an accident.

Exercise your dog
Wear your dog out. Three or four hours before the celebration, take your dog for a long walk, run, or to the dog park. Playing catch is also a great way to exhaust your dog – try it for a half hour or until your dog tires. By releasing energy now, he’ll have less to exert during the fireworks and hopefully be less stressed.

Feed him a big meal
Feed your dog a big meal an hour or two before the celebration. He’ll feel relaxed and content like you do after a big meal.

Massage his nerves away
You know how relaxing massages are for you, so try it on your dog. Have him lie down and gently massage his legs, shoulders, back, neck, and tips of his ears. You can even hold him during the fireworks and pet him to reduce anxiety.

Provide some distractions
Try keeping your dog’s focus away from the fireworks by cuddling or playing. You can also give him a toy like a frozen treat or a rawhide to divert his attention. Try turning on the radio or the television to block out some of the fireworks noises and cheering.

Make sure your dog has proper ID
If you do take your dog to the fireworks (which isn’t recommended) make sure he is micro-chipped and wearing an ID collar. Your dog may get scared and bolt. Always keep your dog on a leash and keep him far away from where the fireworks are being set off.

source:
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KWVR Oregon Wolf Education weekly Wolf Report

Third Week of June 2016
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Wolf management must be based on facts, Stahl says

Posted: 22 Jun 2016 WEI

As a lifelong outdoorsman, retired UW professor Earl Stahl has kept his finger on the pulse of the environment.

Stahl became troubled over the reintroduction and protection of wolves in the United States, and even more so when states like Minnesota and Wisconsin had its state management plans overturned by a federal judge.

The result of that legal maneuver has resulted in unabated wolf population increases and its ensuing impact on big game, livestock and the folks living in their midst.

“After reading many accounts of the devastation caused by wolves and interviewing people who live in proximity to wolves, I became convinced that the majority of people do not possess factual information about wolves,” said Stahl who penned the book Wolves at Your Door. “The book provides factual and documented wolf information for persons who do not have firsthand experience with wolf behavior.”

link:
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Idaho big-game hunt drawing results available online

By Rich Landers The Spokesman-Review June 24, 2016

Results of Idaho’s 2016 elk, deer, pronghorn, fall turkey and black bear controlled hunt drawings have been posted online.

Hunters can check the Idaho Fish and Game Department’s drawings web page to see whether they were successful in the recent computerized drawing.

Applicants can enter their hunting license number and follow three simple steps to find out instantly if they were successful or not in the drawing.  Traffic on the website may be heavy at times, slowing the system.

Postcards will be mailed to successful applicants by July 10.

continued:
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Elk Foundation opposes federal land transfer to states

By Rich Landers The Spokesman-Review June 23, 2016

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation went on the record this week in opposition to transferring federal public lands to states.   Here’s the policy statement and explanation from the Missoula-based conservation group of 220,000 members:

link:
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Horse trainers accused of animal cruelty headed to trial

Associated Press – KTVB June 26, 2016

POCATELLO – Two horse trainers in southern Idaho charged with multiple counts of animal cruelty are headed to trial.

The Idaho State Journal reports that 22-year-old Kristopher Fagan and 20-year-old Samantha Arave have been charged with four misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals after 15 horses and a mule were found in poor condition at a Pocatello county fairgrounds last month.

Arave and Fagan have pleaded not guilty. They are scheduled to appear in court on July 14.

Deputy Prosecutor Ashley Graham has said the trainers could face up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine for each county if found guilty.

source:
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Q&A: South Fork of the Salmon River Chinook fishing

By Rich Landers The Spokesman-Review June 23, 2016

South Fork of the Salmon River’s Chinook season can be fun and frustrating, says Roger Phillips, Idaho Fish and Game public information specialist.

The season opened June 18, and anglers play an anxious game trying to time their fishing trips with arrival of the salmon because after the fish arrive the season can be short and sweet.

Fish and Game has to carefully manage the fishery and ensure anglers don’t over harvest, but still catch their share, Phillips explains: “The season is typically a fluid situation because anglers are fishing before fisheries managers know exactly how many will be available for harvest. Fish and Game strives to keep people informed so they can best decide when to go fishing.”

Following are answers Phillips provides to common questions people have about the South Fork’s chinook season:

link:
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Grotesque salmon raise eyebrows in Idaho

By Rich Landers The Spokesman-Review June 20, 2016

A chinook salmon with a mouth deformed by sores and tumors caught June 9 in the Little Salmon River by Idaho angler Clinton Kingston is getting plenty of attention on social media.

The grotesque springer has generated discussion on topics that ranged to the possibility of exposure to radiation from Japan’s Fukushima disaster. Indeed, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Researchers have been monitoring for radiated fish, but no conclusions have been reached.

Idaho Fish and Game scientists are interested in the Little Salmon River specimen, but not necessarily alarmed.

Diseases and abnormalities occasionally occur in a population, as research indicates. If they occur several times in a run, it’s a different story.

continued w/photo:
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The Columbia Basin Bulletin

Weekly Fish and Wildlife News
http://www.cbbulletin.com
June 24, 2016
Issue No. 795

* Columbia Basin Salmon/Hydro Managers Gear Up For Another Hot Summer: Will Sockeye Get Slammed Again?
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436997.aspx

* BiOp Challengers Urge Court To Reject Feds’ Five-Year Timeline For New Salmon Recovery Plan; Say Get Done By Dec. 2018
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436996.aspx

* Sockeye Surging Over Bonneville Dam; With Less Than 50 Percent Passage, Already Far More Than Pre-Season Forecast
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436995.aspx

* Cantwell, Canadian Ambassador Meet To Discuss Columbia River Treaty Ahead Of North American Summit
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436994.aspx

* UW, NOAA Develop Seasonal Outlook For Pacific Northwest Coastal Waters
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436993.aspx

* Study: Water Temperatures Restrict Distribution, Abundance Of Westslope Cutthroat In South Fork Clearwater
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436992.aspx

* UCLA Develops New Method For Analyzing Mountain Snowpack; Says Sierra Nevadas Won’t Recover From Drought Until 2019
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436991.aspx

* IDFG To Release Chinook In Boise River For Angling Opportunities
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436990.aspx

* Public’s Interest In ‘Great Garbage Patch’ Drives Increased Activity From Scientists, Policy Makers
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436989.aspx

* Idaho Fish And Game Seeks Information About Killing Of Juvenile Wolves In Northern Idaho
http://www.cbbulletin.com/436988.aspx
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Elm seed bug

Arocatus melanocephalus:

An exotic invasive pest new to the U.S.

Idaho State Department of Agriculture

In summer 2012, the elm seed bug (ESB), an invasive insect new to the U.S., was detected in Ada and Canyon counties in Idaho in July 2012; it was later found in Elmore, Gem, Owyhee, Payette, and Washington counties and in Malheur County, Oregon. Commonly distributed in central-southern Europe, ESB feeds primarily on the seeds of elm trees, although they have also been collected from oak and linden trees in Europe. The insect does not damage trees or buildings, nor does it present any threat to human health. However, due to its habit of entering houses and other buildings in large numbers to escape the summer heat and later to overwinter, it is a significant nuisance to homeowners.

Elm seed bugs and homeowners

Elm seed bugs spend the winter as adults, mate during the spring and lay eggs on elm trees. Immature ESB feed on elm seeds from May through June, and grow into adults during the summer.

Elm seed bugs are most noticeable in springtime as overwintering ESB begin to emerge inside buildings and try to escape, during hot periods in the summer when ESB attempt to enter buildings to get away from the heat, and in the autumn when they enter buildings to overwinter.

When disturbed or crushed, the bugs produce an unpleasant odor.

continued with photos and tips:
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Fun Critter Stuff:

Is your bird feeder bearproofed?

Are you sure?

[hat tip to Rich Landers]
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New Jersey’s Walking Bear Mystery Solved

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Fish & Game News:

News Releases for Idaho Fish and Game

* Reward Increased and New Information Released Concerning Dead Island Park Grizzly Bear ( Idaho Falls, ID – 6/20/16 )
* South Fork of the Salmon River Chinook fishing Q&A ( Boise, ID – 6/20/16 )
* Leave it better than you found it ( Boise, ID – 6/20/16 )
* Cultivate a lifelong fishing buddy – take a kid fishing ( Boise, ID – 6/20/16 )
* Fish and Game Commission to meet in Jerome in July ( Boise, ID – 6/20/16 )
* Take Hunter Education Now to Avoid the Rush ( Coeur d’Alene, ID – 6/20/16 )

https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/media/?getPage=179
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Tips & Advice:

Stay Cool Without Air Conditioning

The Old Farmer’s Almanac

Below, a few tips for staying cool(er) if you don’t have air conditioning:

*Try to drop excess bodyfat. Fat insulates your body and prevents heat escape.

* Get fit and stay fit year round. Fit bodies adapt better to extremes of both heat and cold.

* Train for the heat! If you acclimate gradually to the heat by starting to exercise outdoors when the weather begins heating up in spring, you’ll train your body to adapt better to the hotter spells to come, and you’ll feel more comfortable when they do. Start when the warm weather begins by exercising outdoors for 15-20 minutes at low intensity. Gradually increase the length and intensity of exercise as the weather gets hotter. No matter how fit you become, don’t exercise outside in extreme heat–above 90°. Also, save your most intense workouts for the cooler hours of early evening or early morning, or take them indoors.

* Eat smaller meals and eat more often in hot weather to reduce the heat produced by metabolic activity within your body.

* Stay well-hydrated. Sip cold water often throughout the day.

* Indulge in spicy food. If you can handle it, dressing up your summer meals with jalapenos, curries, and wasabi will induce sweating, particularly on your face and neck, and you’ll feel cooler.

* Close shades and curtains during the day to prevent the inside of the house and its furnishings from absorbing solar heat.

* Open (screened) windows at night to allow cross-ventilation throughout the house with cooler nighttime temperatures.

* Don’t use the oven. Grill in the shade or indulge in cool, main-dish salads. Turn the lights off, too.

* Wear light-colored, lightweight clothing. Athletic under- and outerwear designed to wick sweat away from the body will help you feel more comfortable in the heat.

* Sit in front of a fan (invest in a battery-powered or solar for power outages). Keep a spray bottle of cool water handy to mist your face and neck from time to time.

* For even greater cooling effect from a fan, fill a metal bowl with chunks of ice and put it between you and the fan. (Note: Fans can’t keep you from overheating during true heat emergencies. Please consult the CDC guide to extreme heat.)

* If you can’t take a swim in a local pool or pond (or even if you can), sit in a tub of cool water. Even soaking your feet in ice water helps.

* Run the undersides of your wrists under cold running water from the tap or a hose, or wrap your wrists in body-conforming athletic cold wraps. Or freeze used tea bags and hold them against the insides of your wrists and at your temples.

* Put a couple of ice cubes in a bandanna and tie it to your head under a wide-brimmed hat or around your neck.

* Place a wet towel around your neck and/or down your back. Alternatively soak your shirt in cold water, wring it out, and wear it.

* Freeze a couple of old socks filled with rice or small beans and place them at the foot of your bed between the sheets to cool you to sleep.
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The Heat Index

The Heat index (HI) is sometimes referred to as the “apparent Temperature”. The HI, given in degrees F, is a measure of how hot it feels when relative humidity (RH) is added to the actual air temperature.

So if the temperature was 85F and the Relative Humidity was 85% the Heat Index value would be 99F. Believe me, that’s an uncomfortable value. Many parts of the country will see heat index values over 100F this summer. Thanks to the invention of air conditioning many are fortunate to keep cool during the heat of summer. For those who do not have air conditioning it’s important to try to keep cool.

NOAA’s Weather Prediction Center has created a great “WPC Heat Index Forecast Page” that you can use to determine the heat index forecasted at your particular location.

They also have a wonderful “Heat Index Calculator” for you to try out as well as a “Heat Index Scale” to view.

Finally here is a list of possible heat disorders that could result for people in high risk groups when the HI reaches a certain value:

Heat Index of 130F or higher = Heat stroke or sunstroke likely.

Heat Index between 105 – 129F = Sunstroke, muscle cramps, and/or heat exhaustion likely. Heatstroke possible with prolonged exposure and/or physical activity.

Heat Index between 90 – 105F = Sunstroke, muscle cramps, and/or heat exhaustion possible with prolonged exposure and/or physical activity.

Heat Index between 80 – 90F = Fatigue possible with prolonged exposure and/or physical activity.

For additional information on “HEAT” and “HEAT STRESS” click on those words.

On a final note, animals such as dogs are very susceptible to heat stroke. Don’t forget to find a shady, cool spot for your pets, they will be thankful you did.
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Fire updates June 26

Crews hoping to have wildfire near Banks contained Sunday night

KTVB June 26, 2016

BANKS – Fire officials are hoping to have a 125 acre wildfire near Banks contained by the end of the day Sunday.

Fire crews have been battling the blaze about two miles from Banks on the Banks-Lowman Road since mid-afternoon Saturday

U.S. Forest Service officials said Sunday the fire has held steady about about 125 acres since Saturday evening.

One witness told KTVB that the fire had climbed the side of a mountain in less than an hour.

The U.S. Forest Service had two engines, one air tanker and three helicopters fighting the fire.

Officials say that one helpful factor that is keeping the fire from spreading further is a previous fire that burned in the area a few years ago.

The fire is currently under investigation, but the incident commander on scene told KTVB the fire is most likely human caused. There are no structures threatened by the fire.

Officials say County Highway 17/Banks-Lowman Road is reduced to one lane at this time.

source w/photos:

Idaho History June 26, 2016

A Difficult Life

A Difficult Commute

YellowPeril-b

(photo courtesy of Sandy McRae via Ron and Myrna Smith.)

Yellow Peril bus used to transport people at Stibnite.

“This bus was a 1917, 11 passenger touring bus, built by the White Motor Company of Cleveland, OH. It had a 4-cylinder engine, a prest-o-lite acetylene lighting system, and four doors on each side. Three doors on the driver’s side were screwed shut for the passenger’s safety. It had a canvas top but did not have side curtains. The bus was not heated. Bradley Mining Company bought one of these vehicles from the Yellowstone Park Transportation Company fleet. The bus was yellow in color and was soon nick named The Yellow Peril. It was used most of the time to convey workers to and from work, and sometimes used as a school bus. I can recall riding it from Fiddle Creek to the school several times. In about 1955 a fellow who lived in Yellow Pine bought the bus from Bradley. After cleaning the plugs and a little priming it started with a few twists of the crank. I followed the guy to Yellow Pine with a car in case he had a break down. The old bus made the trip fine. I don’t recall this man’s name or what happened to the bus after that.” (It is now at Zena Creek Ranch.)

by Ron Smith – from “Picks Pans and Shovels” – Valley County History Project – page 193
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A Difficult Drive

1910difficultdrive2-a

Snake River Idaho 1910 Post Card

[hat tip to SMc]
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A Difficult Haul

MulesPackingPipe-b

“Don’t know who this was, but it is a good picture of how they used to move pipe and equipment. Bet they had some interesting experiences.” – JMc

[hat tip to JMc]
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Difficult Job

HistoryLoggingNIdaho

“At first glance, you might not notice them, but there are four woodsmen standing atop the logs, lower left. I believe one of them is my great-great uncle, Dooley Cramp, and the photo was possibly taken near Avery, [Idaho].”

(Courtesy of Taryn Thompson)
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page updated Nov 12, 2018

Weather Reports June 19-25

June 19 Weather:

At 9am it was 46 degrees, clear and light breeze. Sunny warm day, mild breezes. At 730pm it was 72 degrees. At 10pm it was 54 degrees and mostly clear.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 20, 2016 at 09:00AM
Clear
Max temperature 77 degrees F
Min temperature 38 degrees F
At observation 54 degrees F
Precipitation 0.00 inch
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June 20 Weather:

At 9am it was 54 degrees and clear. Gusty winds around lunch time and into the afternoon. Sunny warm day. At 830pm it was 68 degrees and mostly clear. At 10pm it was 60 degrees.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 21, 2016 at 09:00AM
Clear
Max temperature 89 degrees F
Min temperature 41 degrees F
At observation 57 degrees F
Precipitation 0.00 inch
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June 21 Weather:

At 9am it was 57 degrees and clear. At 1015am it was 72 degrees. Sunshine and light breezes most of the day. At 4pm it was 78 degrees. At 7pm it was 72 degrees. At 845pm it was 62 degrees.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 22, 2016 at 09:00AM
Clear
Max temperature 79 degrees F
Min temperature 37 degrees F
At observation 52 degrees F
Precipitation 0.00 inch
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June 22 Weather:

At 9am it was 52 degrees and clear. Hot sunny day. At 8pm it was 80 degrees and mostly clear.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 23, 2016 at 09:00AM
Clear
Max temperature 85 degrees F
Min temperature 43 degrees F
At observation 57 degrees F
Precipitation 0.00 inch
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June 23 Weather:

At 9am it was 57 degrees, clear and dry. A few clouds drifting by during the day, warm, light breezes. At 8pm it was 73 degrees and mostly cloudy. Brief sprinkle around 7am.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 24, 2016 at 09:00AM
Mostly cloudy, breezy
Max temperature 83 degrees F
Min temperature 50 degrees F
At observation 60 degrees F
Precipitation Trace
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June 24 Weather:

At 9am it was 60 degrees, mostly cloudy and breezy. Clouds passing by and breezy cooler day. At 330pm it was 65 degrees. Very light sprinkle started about 825pm (for about 10 minutes.) At 835pm it was 52 degrees and partly cloudy.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 25, 2016 at 09:00AM
Clear
Max temperature 68 degrees F
Min temperature 32 degrees F
At observation 45 degrees F
Precipitation Trace
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June 25 Weather:

Light freeze early morning. At 9am it was 45 degrees and clear. Sunny all day. At 7pm it was 73 degrees and clear. At 115am it was 46 degrees.

NOAA Weather report:

Observation time June 26, 2016 at 09:00AM
Clear and dry
Max temperature 79 degrees F
Min temperature 37 degrees F
At observation 52 degrees F
Precipitation 0.00 inch
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Fire Update June 25

Crews respond to wildfire near Banks

BOISE, Idaho, June 25, 2016 – Boise National Forest Press Release

Fire crews are responding to a wildfire reported at approximately 4:55 p.m. today near County Highway 17 and Idaho State Highway 55 in the area of Banks.

Garden Valley local firefighters responded to the scene followed by fire crews from the Boise National Forest along with the Idaho City Hotshots. Now known as the Banks Fire, the blaze is approximately 125 acres.

Currently, there are two Type 2 and one Type 3 helicopters, one airtanker, two Type 4 engines engaged in fighting the fire. A Type 2 handcrew from the Salmon-Challis National Forest and the Sawtooth Hotshots are in route.

At this time, there are no threatened structures and the fire is under investigation. Motorists may experience delays as crews respond to the scene. Boise County is overseeing traffic control.
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Crews battle brush fire in Ada County – Big Springs Fire

KTVB June 25, 2016

ADA COUNTY — Fire crews are working to mop up a brush fire behind the Big Springs subdivision off Horseshoe Bend Rd in Eagle.

According to BLM Idaho, the Big Springs Fire between the Ada/Eagle Bike Park and Idaho State Veterans Cemetery, will be controlled by 6 p.m. Saturday night.

It was reported just before 9:30 p.m. Friday night.

Eagle Fire Chief, Mike Winkle, told KTVB that crews had a perimeter around the fire within 30 minutes.

BLM officials say the Big Springs Fire was contained at approximately 10 acres Friday night.

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BLM: 1,800 acre wildfire near Wendell contained

KTVB June 25, 2016

WENDELL, Idaho — A 1,773 acre wildfire burning near Wendell was contained as of 6 p.m. on Saturday, according to the Bureau of Land Management.

The so-called Salvage Fire began around noon on Friday two miles north of Wendell.

Earlier in the day, before more accurate mapping was done, the fire was estimated at more than 3,000 acres.

According to BLM Twin Falls public information officer Ryan Berlin, federal lands and county fire crews are working to stop the fire. Crews are using bulldozers on the fireline and fire retardant was dropped on the flames.

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