Mar 10, 2019 The Yellow Pine Times

Mar 10, 2019 The Yellow Pine Times – Valley County, Idaho

Community Calendar:

March 16 – St Patrick’s 4pm at the YP Tavern
May 25 – ATV-UTV Scavenger Hunt Memorial Day Weekend
July 6 – Golf Tournament & Breakfast
July 13 – Ride to Big Creek
Sep 14 – Ride to Cinnabar

(details below)

Local Events:

St Patrick’s Celebration

Planning our St Patrick’s Celebration at the Yellow Pine Tavern for Saturday March 16, 2019 at 4pm. Potluck Corned Beef and Cabbage provided by the Tavern.
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Golf Tournament

It’s time to plan for the annual 4th of July Yellow Pine Golf Tournament. This year the proceeds will support the Community Hall and road repair.

The event will begin July 6th at 11am at the golf course, where the fairways aren’t fair and the greens aren’t green. The cost will remain the same at $50 per couple for sponsoring a hole with a sign displayed. $20 for individuals, each person playing will get a ticket for beer, additional tickets can be purchased for $3. Soda and water are free. Checks can be written to VYPA (Village of Yellow Pine Association)

There will be prizes for first, second and third places for men’s women’s and mixed. Also, there will be a prizes for closest to the pin. Spots go quickly, so be one of the first!

There will be a hearty breakfast at the museum from 8-10. The cost is $6 and all proceeds benefit the upkeep of the museum.
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2019 Yellow Pine Escapades

The 2019 schedule for the Yellow Pine Escapades has been updated on the website!

Expect new escapades this coming year, including an ATV-UTV Photo Scavenger Hunt; two (yes, two) ATV-UTV rides, a golf tournament, and even a community yard sale. Other events will be added to the calendar as plans are finalized.

Join us for a great season of fun! The starting point for fun in Yellow Pine! The website includes information on the events hosted by the Yellow Pine Community Hall as well as the other “goings-on” in the village. Food, lodging and fuel are available in Yellow Pine.


Village News:

Valley County Quarry – Notification of Decision


The Decision Memo (DM) for the Valley County Quarry Development Project has been signed.

The decision will authorize the issuance of a 5-year special use permit (SUP) to authorize Valley County to use National Forest System lands for the purpose of developing and operating a quarry. The crushed gravel produced at this quarry will be used as surfacing on County roads that run through the Boise and Payette National forests in the Yellow Pine area. The surfacing will improve the maintainability of the roads and will reduce the amount of sediment entering the streams and rivers that these roads follow.

Implementation of this decision is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2019.

The DM can be downloaded from the project website located at:

If you have questions, please contact Jake Strohmeyer, Cascade District Ranger at 208-382-7402.

Notice of Public Hearing March 14 – Valley County Quarry Yellow Pine

The Valley County Planning and Zoning Commission will hold a public hearing at the Valley County Courthouse in Cascade, Idaho, on March 14, 2019, to review the application.

Please direct questions and comments to Cynda Herrick at the P&Z office. Comments must be received at least seven days prior to the public hearing.

Phone: 208-382-7115
Fax: 208-382-7119

CUP 19-01 Valley County Quarry Yellow Pine: Valley County Road & Bridge Department is requesting approval of an expansion of the existing CUP 10-3 Valdez Quarry. The expansion would be south onto approximately 5 acres of the USFS Boise NF. Rock material extracted from this quarry would be used as cover material for road maintenance. Upon completion of the quarry activities, both portions would be reclaimed, re-contoured, and re-vegetated. Access would be via a private drive off Murphs Ave.

link to: 20190208ValdezQuarryExpansion.pdf
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Winter Photo

Yellow Pine Tavern March 7, 2019


We still have a lot of snow in Yellow Pine.
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History of the log cabin at the Cemetery

The Cemetery Committee is interested in any information on the cabin that is located by the cemetery. We know that it had been on the property that was known as “Mary’s Cabins”. It was moved by Tom Richter while the Filler’s were building their house. Donna Valdez said that the people who ran the cafe and bar slept there, before the Tavern was built.

Do people have pictures or any information they can share? We’d love to put a plaque up on the cabin while we repair it.

– Marj Fields
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Lower Johnson Creek Plowing

Note: when traveling to the dump, please use the river side of the road for wheeled vehicles so the hill side can be for snowmobilers. Turnouts will be plowed. – CD
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Yellow Pine Transfer Station

Note: The dumpsters are full. Lakeshore may come in next week.

Please do not abuse our Transfer Station or we may lose it. Household trash must be placed in the bins, flattened cardboard boxes can also go into the bins. Do not stack trash in front of the doors. Woody yard debris only for the burn pile. No furniture, appliances, tires or construction debris allowed, those items must be hauled out to the Donnelly station by you.

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Come Spring…

“To Yellow Pine residents. I will be making several trips next spring and summer hauling out metal, appliances, etc. . If you need anything hauled away please get on the list. Vehicles require a title. I will be hauling gravel back if anyone is interested.”

Contact Mike Amos
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Yellow Pine US Mail

We are on 3-day a week mail delivery from Cascade. The Post Office in Yellow Pine is open six days a week: M-F 845am-245pm Saturday 9am-245pm. Forever Stamp: 55 cents
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Mountain lion sighted a few mile up the East Fork from Park’s Creek March 9th. Fox tracks in the village this last week. Please do not leave pet food outdoors and remember to keep trash secured, it will draw foxes, coyotes and loose dogs.
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Ice Hole Campground Closed

The Campground has been temporarily closed to provide for public safety during reconstruction. This order will be in effect from September 27, 2018 through July 2, 2019, unless rescinded earlier by the Forest Supervisor. (0402-04-80)

Local Groups:


Emergency boil order instituted March 8th until water issue is solved.

Winter Water Advice

To help prevent frozen water, avoid parking over buried water lines, allow the natural snow cover to insulate the ground. Driving over the lines will also push the frost deeper and can result in frozen pipes. Also, don’t plow the snow over where water lines are buried, and avoid covering up water shut off valves.

link to: 2018 September Water Department Update.docx
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VYPA News:

VYPA Meeting Dates 2019

June 8th; July 20th; August 10th; September 14th.

Note that the July 20th meeting is not on the second Saturday due to a conflict with a planned ATV rally involving many residents and visitors.

Yellow Pine Harmonica Meetings 2019:

March 30, 2019 Saturday 2pm at the Tavern
April 23, 2019 Tuesday 2pm at the Tavern
May 23, 2019 Thursday 2pm at the Community Hall
June 20, 2019 Thursday 2pm at the Community Hall
July 27, 2019 Saturday 2pm at the Community Hall
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YPFD News:

The next meeting to be May 18th, 2019 at the Community Hall

Yellow Pine Fire Protection District Updates:

Fire Department Training on Sundays at 11am will resume in the Spring.

The YPFD has 2 Sizes of Chimney Brushes with extension rods that were donated for use around YP. If you would like to borrow one, please contact Cecil or Jeff and we’ll get them for you. The YPFD also has loanable mitigation tools, (Weed-Whacker, Hedge Trimmer, backpack blower and 16’ pole saw). If you would like to borrow one or all, please contact Cecil or Jeff and we’ll get them for you.

It’s also time to check the Smoke Alarm batteries and Fire Extinguishers. Please test the alarm and replace Smoke Alarm Batteries every year, if you have the replaceable battery type. Fire Extinguishers should be checked as well and should be easily seen and reachable. A good location for the Fire Extinguishers would be the kitchen and near the wood stove and/or fireplace. The needle should be in the green.

If you need a Smoke Detector or Fire Extinguisher for your YP residence please contact Jeff F.

Smoke Alarm Info:

Biz Listings:

Yellow Pine Lodge (208) 633-3377

Closed for winter
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The Corner (208) 633-3325

Closed for winter
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Yellow Pine Tavern (208) 633-2233

Winter Hours at the Tavern: 9am-2pm and 4-8pm Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat and 9am-2pm Sun. Or call 208 633-2233 the phone rings into the house.
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Buck Horn Outfitters LLC
Link to FB page:

Deadwood Outfitters
Link to website:
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Local Fuel Suppliers

Amerigas Phone: (208) 634-8181
Ed Staub & Sons Phone: (208) 634-3833
Diamond Fuel & Feed (208) 382-4430, Suet blocks (peanut crunch, and cherry) for $1.99 per block. 50# bag of Polar Ice Melt available for $7.99.
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Outside Biz that will service Yellow Pine:

Elkhorn Heating & Cooling
(208) 906-4067 Middleton, Idaho, Will service Yellow Pine

B&T Safety Solutions LLC
208-271-1600 Based out of Donnelly
Snow removal, cleaning chimneys and stoves, we do cabin staining/chinking as well
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Follow The Yellow Pine Times on Facebook (updated more often than emails)

Local Observations:

Monday (Mar 4) overnight low of 15 degrees, broken cloud cover and light breeze this morning, old snow averages 27″ deep. Local pine squirrel, a few juncos, some red-breasted and 2 white-breasted nuthatches, jays, a clarks nutcracker and a hairy woodpecker visiting this morning. Partly sunny mid-day, icicles dripping, high of 40 degrees. Mostly jays, juncos and nuthatches after lunch. By mid-afternoon it was partly clear, light chilly breezes, still above freezing and lots of icicles dripping. At dusk it was mostly cloudy, starting to freeze up and calmer. Partly clear at 10pm, stars to the east.

Tuesday (Mar 5) overnight low of 11 degrees, partly clear sky (high haze), snow depth ranges from 24-28″. Fresh fox tracks in the neighborhood. Pine squirrel, jays, red-breasted nuthatches visiting. Mid-day blue sky over VanMeter, cloudy to the south up Johnson Creek, gusty breezes and icicles dripping, high of 44 degrees. European starling, red-winged blackbird, flicker and a quartet of jays visited after lunch. Mid-afternoon warm, drippy and overcast, some paths are breaking up. At dusk it was still above freezing, flat gray sky. Cloudy and calm at 10pm. Started snowing around midnight.

Wednesday (Mar 6) overnight low was probably a little below freezing, mostly cloudy sky this morning, 1/2″ new snow, 27″ total snow. Lots of birds: juncos, red and white-breasted nuthatches, red-wing blackbird, hairy woodpecker, northern flicker, clarks nutcracker and of course the jays. Mail truck made it in good time today. Mid-day it was warm and lots of melting, high of 48 degrees. Mid-afternoon dark clouds, rain and gusty winds. Loud gunshot at 548pm. At dusk it was sort of misting, above freezing and very wet and drippy, dark clouds. At 10pm it was 33 degrees, occasional drops. Probably rained most of the night.

Thursday (Mar 7) overnight low of 32 degrees, no new snow, measured 0.34″ of rain in 24 hours, old snow is down to an average of 24″ on the flat, overcast and a few drops of mist this morning. Red and white-breasted nuthatches, starlings and jays visiting. Mid-day filtered sunshine and icicles dripping like crazy, high of 43 degrees. Clarks nutcracker, hairy woodpecker and jays visiting after lunch. By mid-afternoon it was partly cloudy, lots of blue sky, warm sun and lots of melting. At dusk it was partly cloudy and starting to freeze up. Some stars out at 10pm.

Friday (Mar 8) overnight low of 7 degrees, high thin haze and light cold breeze this morning, 24″ old crusty snow on the ground. Pine squirrel, starlings and jays visited early. Gray overcast and a few drips from icicles mid-day, high of 37 degrees. Starlings are still hanging around. Breaks in the clouds mid-afternoon, a little above freezing, icicles dripping and chilly light breezes. Cow elk with collar walking up Pioneer St. at 545pm. Report of a elk leg laying in the road near Park’s Creek. Deer and eagles on the South Fork. It had just started snowing at dusk and below freezing, clouds lowering. Snowed until around midnight.

Saturday (Mar 9) overnight low of 9 degrees, high thin haze and filtered sun this morning, average of 24″ snow on the ground. Hairy woodpecker, red-breasted nuthatches and juncos visiting. Thicker broken cloud cover mid-day and icicles dripping a little, high of 34 degrees. Mid-afternoon gray overcast, cold breezes. At dusk the sky looked partly clear, some high haze with little clouds around the edges, very thin fuzzy crescent moon in the sky. Flag flapping breezes and some stars out at 10pm. Clearing and cold night.

Sunday (Mar 10) overnight low of 2 degrees, clear sky and light cold breezes this morning, est. 24″ snow on the ground (not much melting yesterday.) Red-winged blackbird, starlings, jays and a hairy woodpecker visiting. Very blue sky, breezy and icicles dripping mid-day, high of 39 degrees. Mid-afternoon clear blue sky, strong sunshine, breezy and icicles dripping. Clear at dusk, bright crescent moon high in the sky, temperature dropping quickly. A few elk (including one with a F&G collar) wandering up the main road.


John Lance


A celebration of our dear friend John Lance, of Donnelly, [was] held on Saturday, March 9, at 2 p.m. at The Donnelly Club.

John lost his courageous battle with cancer on Feb. 15, 2019. He will be missed by many and was loved by all.

He was our bartender, friend, mentor and confidant. He never missed a festival, horseshoe tournament, or an opportunity to travel and visit friends and family.

Don your favorite tie-dye, funny T-shirt or Hawaiian attire and join with us and celebrate. Bring your favorite photos, memories and favorite dish. Be prepared to dance.

posted in the Star-News March 7, 2019

Letters to Share:

Crews worked around the clock to keep up with Mother Nature

Valley County received four months worth of snow in four weeks. With the wind, I had to take road graders off of their routes to assist in opening roads that kept blowing closed with the relentless winds.

With the bad visibility, I had numerous dump trucks run off the road and get stuck because they could not see the road during very low visibility, and those same road graders had to go pull them out.

It is my decision to move this equipment around just to try to keep the roads open and to get the roads open. I do realize that some roads have been neglected but most of those roads are at least passable where, unlike other roads, there were residents stuck at home for two days because we couldn’t keep the roads open.

Almost all of my crew, including myself, had been working 12 to 18 hours a day just trying to keep up with Mother Nature, and they do have to go home and eat and rest.

Now we are in the clean-up stage, cutting the snow floor off and winging the banks down, so that means more berms in people’s driveways. We do not have snow gates to keep from putting snow in the driveways.

Only limited pieces of equipment are capable of turning the blades, and if we take all the snow to one side of the road, then we create a giant mound of snow on the other side.

If we backup to remove every single berm in driveways on our roads, we would be doubling our time. If we remove one driveway berm, then we have to remove all of them.

My mechanics have also been working long hours trying to keep equipment moving but with a fleet this size something is always broken down and we only have a couple pieces of spare equipment set up to remove snow. We have no backup road graders so when they break I have to put a truck on that route which doesn’t do the job as efficiently as the grader.

At this point I have hired private snow removal companies to go out and help us with bigger snow blowers to widen roads and clean our cul-de-sacs out so there will be room to put the next snow storm.

Jeff McFadden, Superintendent, Valley County Road Department

posted in the Star-News March 3, 2019
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Commissioner Cruickshank’s February Newsletter


Friday Feb. 1st
I participated in a conference call with Senate Committee Staff to discuss Secure Rural Schools (SRS) and Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) payments. We discussed a potential change to assist counties with populations lower than 5,000 for PILT funding and long term SRS funding.
I also created my January newsletter to send out.

Monday Feb. 4th
Today was a Commissioner meeting day. You can find the minutes once approved on the Valley County website at Valley County Idaho | Official Site and clicking on the commissioners section.

I drove to Boise to attend an Idaho Association of Counties (IAC) Board meeting tonight and attend the IAC Conference this week.

Tuesday Feb. 5th
I attended the IAC Public Lands Committee meeting. Topics discussed were on National Forest Management, Wilderness Study Areas managed as if a Wilderness, Good Neighbor Authority process, Stewardship Receipts and how they are utilized, Potential legislation to permanently fund the SRS program with an Endowment and Public Access through Private Lands.

Wednesday Feb. 6th
I attended a First Time Attendees session to assist with understanding the benefits of attending an IAC Conference and learning more about county government.
Next I attended a Legislative Panel discussion where the moderator asked questions of State Legislators on specific issues happening currently in the Idaho Legislature. Topics included Mandates forced onto Counties, Local Option Sales Tax to fund specific projects, Justice Levy caps as they relate to counties struggling to fund their Sheriff’s Offices including Jails, Public Defense Costs to a county, Transportation Funding and Medicaid Expansion.
I then walked into a County Roundtable Discussion to be asked to Facilitate the discussion. Topic here were Issues with the Department of Motor Vehicle Internet Connections with the State, Wolf Depredation on Livestock and Wildlife in Idaho, Cyber Security and Counties being impacted by Viruses.
This evening was the IAC Legislative Reception where State Legislators joined us for the evening of networking.

Thursday Feb. 7th
This morning was a meeting of the IAC Commissioners. We had presentations on Liability and Risk by the Idaho Counties Risk Management Program, Public Defense Rules and Guidelines and Jail Standards.
I then drove home after the conference.

Friday Feb. 8th
This morning was a conference call with the leaders of the National Forest Counties and Schools Coalition (NFCSC) to discuss an upcoming SRS Fly In to Washington DC to advocate for the SRS funding.
At noon I participated in a National Association of Counties (NACo) Executive Board conference call. We discussed the schedule for the upcoming NACo Legislative Conference in March, heard who would be attending as speakers and learned of scheduled Hill Briefings during the conference.
I created my West Region Caucus Meeting Agenda for the NACo Conference.
I received a phone call from our Solid Waste Contractor to discuss potential changes to our contract in the future.

Monday Feb. 11th
Commissioner day today. Please find the minutes once approved on the Valley County website.

Tuesday Feb. 12th
I received a call from a Tamarack representative to request being placed on a future Commissioners agenda.
I sent out a NACo West Region conference call reminder and agenda for the call.

Wednesday Feb. 13th
I prepared and sent out a notice of how Valley County offices could decide if employees could be allowed to stay home due to snow conditions.
I sent out emails to Idaho Commissioners on impacts from wolves to livestock and wildlife.
I researched contact information as I am attempting to connect folks who are working on Cyber Security to share resources.

Thursday Feb. 14th
I received a call from the School Superintendent thanking Valley County Road Department for working with him when schools need to be closed due to weather conditions.
I hosted the NACo West Region Conference Call today. We discussed the potential of the SRS Endowment Idaho’s Senator Crapo and Oregon Senator Wyden are working on for permanent funding of SRS. As there were questions on the history of SRS and PILT by one county council person I prepared documentation to send to their county to assist in understanding the programs.

Friday Feb. 15th
I received a call from members of the NFCSC to discuss some of the language in the SRS short term funding and the long term endowment proposal.

Monday Feb. 18th
President’s Day Today. I reviewed letters and documents pertaining to a Conditional Use Permit that was appealed to the Commissioners.

Tuesday Feb. 19th
Commissioners day today due to President’s Day yesterday. Please find the minutes once approved on the Valley County website.

Wednesday Feb. 20th
I called and visited with NACo staff on the SRS proposals for short term and permanent funding.
I attempted to call Senator Crapo’s office in Washington DC only to learn the offices were closed sue to weather. When it snows in Washington DC it shuts the city down.
I participated in a NFCSC conference call finalizing the upcoming SRS Fly In details.

Thursday Feb. 21st
I attended the Payette Forest Coalition (PFC) meeting at the Payette National Forest Supervisors Office. Discussions were held on projects completed for restoration and proposed projects for restoration. Also discussed were Stewardship Funding that the Forest Service wanted approval on from projects they decided. Of course I voice my opposition to not allowing the PFC members the opportunity to apply for projects that they felt might be beneficial to the local forests and economy.
I participated in a NACo Transportation Committee conference call to review proposed resolutions that will be heard during committee meeting at the NACo Conference in March.

Friday Feb. 22nd
I prepared an email to the House Revenue and Tax Committee to oppose HB 154 which would change the Sales Tax formula and hurt 40 of the 44 counties and help 4 of the largest counties by providing them more funding. Valley County would lose $50,000.00 in revenue that would of been shifted to the property tax payer. Not a good move in my opinion. (note the bill is being held in committee).
I participated in a NACo Executive Board conference call where we discussed additional meetings during the upcoming conference in March. A meeting on Waters of the United States (WOTUS) will happen the day prior, speakers include Ben Carson, Senator Rubio, Secretary Purdue to name a few. There will also be a Day of Rural Action Caucus the day after if folks are still in town.
I also received a message that I was to introduce Idaho Congressman Russ Fulcher for the SRS/PILT Press Conference at the Nations Capitol during the NACo conference.

Monday Feb. 25th
Commissioner day today. Minutes once approved will be on the website.

Tuesday Feb. 26th
I participated in a NACo staff call to discuss the WOTUS meeting on Friday March 1st at NACo Headquarters. This was to help us to prepare for the meeting and who would be attending. NACo has been a strong partner to help clarify the rules of WOTUS as it is being rewritten.

Wednesday Feb. 27th
I received a call on concerns about snow preventing a school student’s mother from getting to her child when school is let out. After a few calls I received a message saying thank you as it had been plowed. With the recent snowfall I had been in contact with our Road Superintendent as we had several major breakdowns during the storms which created less than we wanted in snow removal across the county.

Thursday Feb. 28th
I flew to Washington DC to attend the NACo Legislative Conference.
Tonight after arriving I met with NFCSC Leadership and NACo staff assigned to SRS to learn how the NFCSC Fly In went. 25 folks attended their Fly In and the offices they met were generally in favor of supporting the SRS program while working to continue with Responsible Forest Management of our National Forests.

Well the last 10 days or so showed us Mother Nature still knows how to send us the snow as schools were closed on five different days. Lots of snow fell which made our region look more like the days of my youth. High snow banks and fence post covered over in many areas show how deep the snow is. Ski areas are loving the huge snow amounts and next summer all our lakes will be full.

Thanks for reading the newsletter.

Idaho News:

Highway 55

from Valley County Sheriff’s Office 3/7/2019 via FB

We would like to share this information with all of you in regards to the plans that are in development with the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD). The section of highway that is being discussed is from MP 98, northbound to MP 99.4 The section of roadway has been identified as an area of safety concern. ITD has identified alternatives and secured funding to improve safety and mobility on this corridor. Construction would began after peak summer travel has subsided. Please click through the tabs at the top of the screen for more information about this project. To find more information and updates on road construction throughout the State of Idaho, visit the ITD website and clicking on the ‘PROJECTS’ tab.

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U.S. 95 bridge north of New Meadows to be replaced

The Star-News March 7, 2019

The U.S. 95 Little Rainbow Bridge north of New Meadows will be replaced starting this month, the Idaho Transportation Department announced.

The Little Rainbow Bridge, located about 13 miles north of New Meadows, has reached the end of its design life, an ITD news release said.

The new structure will include a wider bridge deck and upgraded guardrail among other safety enhancements.

Braun-Jensen of Payette will build the $4.1 million project, with construction expected to be completed in late fall.

The work zone will be reduced to one-lane of traffic with flaggers assisting motorists through the area. As construction progresses, signals will be placed on either end of the structure. Work will occur during daytime hours.

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Work begins to replace U.S. 95 bridge over Weiser River

The Star-News March 7, 2019

The replacement of the U.S.95 Weiser River Bridge located about 10 miles north of Council has begun, the Idaho Transportation Department announced.

Built in 1939, the bridge has reached the end of its design life, a news release said. The new structure will include a wider bridge deck and upgraded guardrail among other safety enhancements.

Knife River is the contractor for the $7.1 million project, which is scheduled be completed in late fall.

The work zone will be reduced to a single lane with alternating one-way traffic, an ITD news release said.

A traffic signal will be used at either end of the structure, and flaggers may assist with traffic control during different construction phases. Work will occur during daytime hours.

Motorists are encouraged to slow down and be prepared for stopped vehicles at the signal and crews working in the immediate vicinity.

For questions about construction, please contact Communications Specialist Jennifer Gonzalez at 208-334-8938 or via email at

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Blasting for Safety

Ski patrol uses dynamite to mitigate avalanche danger.

Mar 07, 2019 By Steve Liebenthal KIVI TV

Epic snow in February hit Idaho’s mountains hard. At resorts like Tamarack that made it an epic month for skiers and snowboarders who had day after day of pristine powder. But for ski patrollers it created more work. One of their top priorities? Mitigating avalanche danger with explosives.

“This as a two pound cast booster, basically equivalent to a stick of dynamite,” said Robby Ski Patrol Direct Robby Russel. “What we do is throw it over the cornice to hopefully create a shock wave that causes the cornice to break off, initiating a slide below the cornice in order to mitigate it so skiers and come in the next hour or two and ski safely.”

Because of safety concerns they only allowed us on the mountain after the bulk of the storms had passed. But even when the snow lets up, cornices on the top of the mountain pose a risk of slides.

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Payette Avalanche Center

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Downtown McCall to be Transformed

$2.8 million project will rebuild streets, add sidewalks

By Drew Dodson for The Star-News March 7, 2019

Work on a multi-million dollar reconstruction of McCall’s downtown core will begin this spring after action taken by the McCall City Council at its regular meeting last Thursday.

A contract worth about $2.8 million was awarded to Sunroc Corp. of Boise.

“This phase is the most expensive phase in the downtown core, and it’s coming in under budget,” McCall Public Works Director Nathan Stewart told council members.

Sunroc bid was about $150,000 below estimates provided by the city’s contract engineer, Horrocks Engineers of Nampa.

The work will focus on reconstructing Second and Lenora streets as well as building sidewalks, street lights, and streetscapes, Stewart said.

Work is expected to last until August and will be divided into four stages to keep local businesses accessible and avoid snarling traffic, he said.


Midas News:

Keeping Roads Open During Winter

March 5

During the winter, the snow stacks up at Stibnite. In fact, it has buried cars and covered roofs several times these last few weeks. Snowy winters are a big part of the Stibnite Mining District’s rich history.

We have photos of the area from the 1940’s that show the snow when it was more than 20 feet deep. In 1949, the roads were so bad supplies couldn’t be driven into site, so food had to be dropped out of planes for the miners. And in the earliest years of the site, Stibnite was totally inaccessible during the winter season unless you were traveling by dog sled.

While a lot has changed over the years, access to this part of the backcountry during winter was still limited just 10 years ago. Before Midas Gold started to explore the area for gold and antimony, Stibnite Road was piled too high with snow to drive a car or truck all the way up to the site. Today, we work hard to make it easy for recreationalists and snowmobilers to get up to their favorite spots during snow season.


Public Lands:

Bill to allow civil lawsuits for blocking public lands fails

Mar 04, 2019 KIVI

Boise, Idaho — Legislation that would have allowed private citizens to bring civil lawsuits against private individuals or entities willfully and knowingly blocking access to public lands has failed.

The Senate Resources and Environment Committee on Monday voted to hold the bill in committee, killing it.

Backers of the legislation say illegally blocking access to public lands used by hunters, anglers and other recreationists is a problem in Idaho because there’s rarely any prosecution and possible fines are too small to create an incentive to follow the law.

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Boise National Forest Annual Surplus Seedling Sale

Contact: Venetia Gempler Phone: (208) 373-4105

Boise, Idaho, March 4, 2019–Landowners who wish to purchase trees and shrubs to create windbreaks, improve wildlife habitat, and enhance their property are encouraged to come to the Lucky Peak Nursery’s annual surplus seedling sale.

The sale begins Saturday, April 6, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Seedlings will not be available on Sunday. The sale continues through the end of April; Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The price is $30.00 for 50 seedlings. Fifty seedlings is the minimum quantity that can be purchased. A bundle of 50 seedlings will easily fit into a standard grocery bag. This year limited quantities of big sagebrush and ponderosa pine seedlings will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Lucky Peak Nursery is a resource for the entire Intermountain West, producing over three million (one and two-year old) trees and shrubs. This year marks the 60th anniversary of the nursery’s inception and constant efforts in public land conservation and restoration; stay tuned for upcoming ways to celebrate with us.

Seedlings produced at the nursery are used for restoration efforts on public lands disturbed by wildfire, timber sales, or other events. Some brush species produced sustain mule deer populations on their winter ranges.

When the nursery has produced more seedlings than is customers need, the surplus becomes available to the public. The seedlings are best suited for land owners with property in rural areas. They are not intended for homeowners in urban areas to plant in their backyards. Written planting instructions and technical assistance will be available.

The Lucky Peak Nursery is located 16 miles northeast of Boise on Highway 21 (15169 E. Highway 21, Boise, ID 83716). For more information about the annual seedling sale call: (208) 343-1977

Letter to Share:

Dear friends. The attachment is very important for landowners, sportsmen and women, folks that just enjoy watching wildlife and those that would like to raise pheasant chicks. Please read and pass along to your friends. Make a few copy’s and take to work.

God Bless.

Jim Hagedorn
Executive Director
The Gamebird Foundation


The gamebird foundation and Idaho Fish and Game will hold a Wildlife Expo March 30th, 2019 – 2:00 pm at Viola, Id

All farmers, land owners, sportsmen and women, and those who like to watch wildlife are invited to the Viola Community Center for you to meet with the Gamebird Foundation, Idaho Fish and Game, and the Latah Sheriff. We want to show you how we have been improving habitat for birds of all kinds, and other wildlife. Starting at 2:30 there will be a 1/2-hour power point presentation from IDFG on habitat restoration – and cost sharing, how you can get some financial help from the SAFE program, from the HIP program, and other sources for your land restoration activities.

The Gamebird Foundation will have tables set up with all the information on raising pheasant chicks, the sharing of brooders, making soft release pens, and to answer your questions. Also –

How you can get baby chicks free!!!

We will be able to show you the release property that is available for youth hunting with adult mentoring. We will have a video of young folks helping release rooster pheasants. Where does this happen?

Viola, Id at the Viola Community Center

Free pizza will be provided!

Critter News:

Pet Talk – Why do big, old dogs breathe so loud?

By Dr. Karsten Fostvedt 3/8/2019 IME

Many older large-breed dogs breathe and pant as if something is caught in their throat. This is a disease called laryngeal paralysis. It is an inadequate opening of the larynx, or opening to the windpipe. This is due to weakness or paralysis of the vocal folds in the larynx. The disease varies widely in severity. It is very common in Labrador retrievers and golden retrievers older than 9. Male dogs are more commonly affected than female dogs. The primary cause of this condition is damage to the recurrent laryngeal nerve, which brings nerve supply to the vocal folds. In most cases, we do not know the exact cause of the paralysis.

Clinical signs include voice change, exercise intolerance, panting and difficult/noisy breathing. The dog produces a raspy, hoarse sound while breathing. Sometimes no obvious signs are present at rest, but even mild exercise can cause respiratory distress. The body temperature may rise and some dogs may collapse if they can’t get adequate oxygen.

Definitive diagnosis is made by direct visualization of the cartilages of the voice box. Poor movement, or “fluttering,” of the cartilages will be noted. Your vet may want to perform tests on your dog, such as X-rays of the neck, thyroid tests and other blood tests.

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Walking dogs is sending older people to the ER, study says

Study warns of risks associated with aging

Mar 06, 2019 Local News 8

Maintaining an exercise regimen as you age is important, and having a pet who requires daily physical activity can be motivation to go for a walk. Unfortunately, walking a leashed dog can increase the risk of fractures in older adults, new research finds.

An injury from this simple activity can result in life-altering circumstances — and such accidents are increasing, according to a study published in the medical journal JAMA Surgery.

… The researchers suggest that clinicians work with patients who use dog walking as exercise to reduce the risk of injury. That could including training dogs not to lunge when leashed and suggesting smaller breeds of dogs.

full story:
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US plans to lift protections for gray wolves

By Matthew Brown and John Flesher – 3/6/19 AP

Billings, Mont. — U.S. wildlife officials plan to lift protections for gray wolves across the Lower 48 states, a move certain to re-ignite the legal battle over a predator that’s rebounding in some regions and running into conflicts with farmers and ranchers, an official told The Associated Press.

Acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt was expected to announce the proposal during a Wednesday speech before a wildlife conference in Denver, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Spokesman Gavin Shire said in an interview with the AP.

The decision to lift protections is based on gray wolves successfully recovering from widespread extermination last century, Shire said. He said further details would be made public during a formal announcement planned in coming days.

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Advocates want protections kept for U.S. wolves

Mar 06, 2019 Associated Press

Billings, MT. — Wildlife advocates say plans to lift protections for gray wolves across the Lower 48 states could halt the predators’ recovery in many areas where they’ve been exterminated.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Spokesman Gavin Shire told the Associated Press Wednesday the government will propose lifting protections for wolves in coming days based on their successful recovery.

But environmental groups say the gray wolf remains absent across a majority of its former range, including portions of the Adirondack Mountains in New York State and southern Rocky Mountains of Colorado and New Mexico.

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KWVR Oregon Wolf Education weekly Wolf Report

First week of March 2019
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New study finds deer species react differently to wolves

By AP Mar 04, 2019

Spokane, Wash. (AP) – A new study shows that different types of deer react differently when approached by hungry wolves.

Researchers at the University of Washington recently studied how wolves are interacting with two species of deer in the state: white-tailed and mule deer.

The study found that white tailed deer are graceful runners who will seek flat ground in an effort to outrun wolves.

But mule deer have developed a quick jump escape technique that makes them appear to be bouncing on a pogo stick. This is effective for escaping on uneven, rocky ground.

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Wolf Education International

Newsletter 3/5/2019

Wolves knocking on Colorado boundaries
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Big game feeding operations minimal

Mar 05, 2019 Local News 8

(near Sugar City)

Boise, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) – The Idaho Fish and Game Department says there has been no need for large-scale, emergency winter feeding in eastern Idaho, despite near-record snowfall in the high country.

The Natural Resource Conservation Service reports snowpack ranges from 91 to 153% of average across the state, with the majority of river drainages between 110 and 130%.

But, wildlife managers said animals are faring well. They are optimistic they will not need to declare winter feeding emergencies anywhere this winter.

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Nampa sees some success with efforts to curb crow problem

by Erin Bamer – Idaho Press Tuesday, March 5th 2019

Nampa — Nampa Chief of Staff Bobby Sanchez estimates there are about 60 days left of the city’s crow season, when several thousand crows gather to roost in highly populated areas of the city at night. The city’s first multiphased crow mitigation plan is showing some success, he said.

Tactics such as using infrared lasers, drones and decoys were successful when tested, he said. Other efforts were not as promising, such as using deterrent sprays in trees where crows like to roost, according to Parks and Recreation Director Darrin Johnson.

“The larger question is where can we displace them to in the long run,” Sanchez said.

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The Columbia Basin Bulletin

Weekly Fish and Wildlife News
March 8, 2019
Issue No. 900
Table of Contents

* Washington Fish/Wildlife Commission Allows Lower Columbia Fall Chinook Gillnet Fishing This Year, Matches Oregon Regs

* Options Discussed In Maintaining Flows For ESA-Listed Chum Redds With Below Average Upper Basin Water Supply

* Crazy Snow In Some Places Still Leads To Normal Water Supply Forecast For Basin; Grand Coulee 87 Percent Of Normal

* So Far, Sea Lion Abundance At Bonneville Dam Below 10-Year Average; Mostly Stellers

* Fifth Round Of Negotiations Aimed At Modernizing 55-Year Old U.S./Canada Columbia River Treaty Concludes

* Finland Study Shows Salmon Spawning In Home River Produce Far More Offspring Than Strays

* Idaho Governor Appoints New Member To Northwest Power And Conservation Council

* USFWS Proposes Lifting Federal Protections For Wolves; Legal Challenges Predicted

* NOAA Fisheries Launches New App Making ESA Species Habitat Easy To Find

* Wildfire And Ecosystems: OSU Ramping Up Research To Better Predict Wildfire Behavior

* Wildfire And Ecosystems: California Study Examines Centuries Of Climate Data To Better Understand Climate-Wildfire Links

* Wildfire And Ecosystems: Researchers Study 450 Years Of Forest Fires In Alaska, Big Increase In Last 100 Years

* Navigation Locks On Columbia/Snake Rivers Closed This Month For Annual Maintenance

Fish & Game News:

Final big game season proposals available online

By Brian Pearson, Conservation Public Information Specialist
Thursday, March 7, 2019

Commission scheduled to set big game seasons March 13

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game’s final proposals for the 2019-20 big game seasons are now available to the public online.

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Draw results available for spring bear controlled hunts

By Brian Pearson, Conservation Public Information Specialist
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Results available online

The spring black bear drawing is complete, and the results have been posted through Fish and Game’s licensing system. Hunters who already have an account can check to see if they drew controlled hunt tags for spring black bear.

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Upper Salmon River Steelhead fishing report

By Brent Beller, Fisheries Technician
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Steelhead angler effort and catch on the upper Salmon River increased throughout the last week. Temperatures were still well below average for this time of the year but not low enough to prevent anglers from fishing.

The majority of anglers were observed fishing between the Lemhi and North Fork Rivers in location code 16. Effort downstream of North Fork in location code 15 did begin to increase but remained relatively low. Additionally, the Deadwater ice jam went out on Thursday, February 28.

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Become a Volunteer Hunter or Trapper Education Instructor

By Jennifer Jackson, Regional Communications Manager
Monday, March 4, 2019

New Instructor Classes Coming Up

Are you a safe and responsible hunter or trapper? Are you passionate about hunting and trapping ethics? Do you like sharing your knowledge and skills with youth and adults new to Idaho’s hunting and trapping traditions? If so, consider becoming a volunteer hunter or trapper education instructor.

To get started, attend one of Fish and Game’s New Instructor Orientation classes coming up in southeast Idaho. These classes also serve as great refresher courses for those who are already certified hunter or trapper education instructors.

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More F&G News Releases

Fun Critter Stuff:

Funniest Winter Pet Video Compilation December 2017


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