March 22, 2020 The Yellow Pine Times

March 22, 2020 The Yellow Pine Times – Valley County, Idaho

Community Calendar:

Yellow Pine Tavern closed until further notice
March 23 – South Fork Road (weight) Restrictions
Postponed – March 28th meeting Community Hall Spring Rx Burning
Canceled – May 2nd Firewise Meeting 2pm at the Fire Hall
(details below)

Valley County Covid-19 Response Page


Local Events:

St. Patrick’s Day Celebration at the Tavern March 17th

We had an Apocalypse St Patrick’s Party at the Tavern this year with our usual Corned Beef and Cabbage. Our Leprechaun got Deflatavirus so only 4 people showed up and a good time was had by all. Stay safe out there.

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Postponed – meeting at the YP Community Hall Spring Rx Burning

link to map: Notifications Spring Rx Burn 2020.pdf

(more info below under Public Lands)
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Canceled – May 2 Firewise Meeting

To be rescheduled at a later date?

Village News:

Yellow Pine Tavern closed due to COVID-19 fears

Tavern will be closed til further notice. Will have gas available as well as take out beer, pop, candy, chips, pizza. Call 208 739-7086 or go to 355 Yellow Pine Ave. House across street from the Tavern next to the Silver Dollar.
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South Fork Road Restrictions

The load restrictions on the South Fork Salmon River Road start Monday 3/23. They will stay in effect until the subgrade has dried out and the roadway can support standard loading.
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Snowmobile Grooming

Valley County has discontinued grooming for the season.
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March Snow

So far in March we have had a total of 10″ of snow fall. As of Sunday morning there was an average of 20″ of snow in the open on the flat. Tree wells, rocky south facing slopes and ground near buildings is opening up wider each day.
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Rock Migration Season

Watch for rocks on the EFSF road in the bowling alley area and some areas of the South Fork, the freeze thaw cycle is bringing down rocks large and small.
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Yellow Pine US Mail

The 3-day a week mail delivery started Nov 1st. The Post Office in Yellow Pine is open six days a week year around: M-F 845am-245pm Saturday 9am-245pm. Forever Stamp: 55 cents. Support our local post office and purchase your holiday stamps here.
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Yellow Pine Transfer Station

Dump Report March 17th: The bins are less than half full. The road to the dump is breaking up, slush and ruts.

Lakeshore last emptied the bins Feb 13. The transfer station was last plowed on Feb 28.

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.

Yellow Pine Transfer Station (aka, the dump)

The Yellow Pine Transfer Station is located approximately 3 miles south on Johnson Creek Road.

The TRANSFER STATION is for household trash and yard waste:
* Household trash must be put inside (and fit) the dumpster;
* Yard waste (limbs, pine needles, brush, et.) goes in the burn pile on the south end of the turn-around;
* Cardboard boxes should be flattened before putting the in the dumpster,

The DUMPSTERS are NOT for:
* Furniture (take to Donnelly Transfer Station);
* Appliances (take to Donnelly Transfer Station).

The BURN PILE is NOT for:
* Cardboard boxes (flatten and put in dumpster);
* Furniture and appliances (take to Donnelly Transfer Station);
* Drywall and building material (take to Donnelly Transfer Station);
* Wire or fencing (take to Donnelly Transfer Station);
* Foam Rubber (take to Donnelly Transfer Station);
* Wood with metal (like nails) attached (take to Donnelly Transfer Station.)

When closing the DOORS on the front of the dumpsters:
* Make sure the “U” brackets at the top and bottom of the door are engaged;
* The retaining bar at the middle of the door is slid into the pipe;
* And the “L” bars at the bottom of the doors dropped into place.

The Yellow Pine Transfer Station is Valley County responsibility. If it is not kept tidy, use of the Transfer Station may be revoked. That would result in residents having to take all household trash and yard waste to the Donnelly Transfer Station.

If Dumpsters Are Full, Contact Lake Shore Disposal at: 208/634-7176

Local Groups:


Second half of the water bill is due June 15, 2020.

The last Yellow Pine Water Users Shareholders meeting was Sunday July 7, 2019.
link: 20190707YPWUAminutes
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VYPA News:

Proposed VYPA Bylaws Changes

Attached is the compiled proposed changes to the bylaws the Council has received.

The proposed changes and the proposed addendum B, are being published to give folks plenty of time to read and process the information before the first reading.

link: 2020 Proposed changes to Yellow Pine Bylaws Adopted 9-12-2015.pdf

link: 2020 Addendum B-letter of interest.pdf

link: 2018 Midas Gold Community Partnership Agreement with the Village of Yellow Pine

Deb Filler – Chairperson
Village of Yellow Pine Association

The community hall committee’s goal is to have adequate heating installed in the main hall before the June VYPA meeting.

If folks have items for the community yard sale, please place them by the north wall in the community hall. If you see items you would like to purchase, you can pay Deb, Ronda, or Lynn. All funds support the community hall.

VYPA meetings for 2020 – June 13, 2pm; July 11, 2pm; August 8, 2pm; September 12, 2pm.

Village of Yellow Pine Association Meeting Minutes for September 21, 2019
link: 20190921 Village of Yellow Pine Association Meeting
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YPFD News:

YP Fire Commissioners:
Sue Holloway – District 1
Dan Stiff – District 2
Merrill Saleen – District 3
Fire Chief – Jeff Forster

Yellow Pine Fire Protection District Community Service Notice

The purpose of this letter is to show how you as a Yellow Pine Resident can help protect your structure against a wildland fire by being “Fire Wise.” Click the link: to view 20190724 Yellow Pine Fire Protection mitigation

We will do another class this spring/summer [2020] depending on interest. Training will resume in the spring. -Fire Chief Jeff

Biz Listings:

The Corner (208) 633-3325

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

Closed until further notice.
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Yellow Pine Lodge (208) 633-3377

Closed for Winter.
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Buck Horn Outfitters LLC 208-633-3614
Tom & Sarah Lanham
156 Yellow Pine Ave, Yellow Pine Id 83677
Starting June 2020 We will be doing trail rides out of Yellow Pine along with summer pack / camping trips to high mountain lakes in the area!

Wapiti Meadow Ranch – Johnson Creek (208) 633-3217
or 208-315-3554 – cabin rentals

Deadwood Outfitters
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Local Fuel Suppliers

Amerigas Phone: (208) 634-8181
Ed Staub & Sons Phone: (208) 634-3833
Diamond Fuel & Feed Phone: (208) 382-4430
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Outside Biz that will service Yellow Pine:

The Star-News

A reminder that those who live in other states can subscribe to the online edition only since the mail can take days for hard copy to reach them.

Rocky Mountain Mechanical – Plumbing – Heating – Air conditioning
(208) 365-PIPE (7473), Emmett, 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 16) overnight low of 19 degrees, clear and very blue sky this morning, measured 23″ of crusty old snow on the ground. Lots of birds visiting, jays, juncos, hairy woodpecker, towhee, chickadees and nuthatches as well as a very acrobatic pine squirrel. Sunny and warm at lunch time. Mostly clear mid-afternoon, warm and light breezes, high of 51 degrees. Mostly clear at dusk. Stars out before midnight, but a little thin haze.

Tuesday (Mar 17) overnight low of 20 degrees, nearly clear sky (1 cloud) and a bit breezy this morning, measured 22″ of old snow (hard crust about a foot down in the layers.) Just a few birds this morning: Hairy woodpecker and red-breasted nuthatches visiting, jays and a red-winged blackbird calling to the east. Clouds building up by lunch time. Gray overcast by early afternoon. Chickadees and juncos visiting. Windy and splatters of rain this afternoon for about half an hour, high of 47 degrees. Clark’s nutcracker and female hairy woodpecker fighting over a feeder. Another round of wind and rain blew through later in the afternoon. Mostly clear early evening. Partly cloudy and calm at dusk. Cloudy before midnight. Graupel (snowballs) at 6am.

Wednesday (Mar 18) overnight low of 29 degrees, overcast and foggy ridges this morning, trace of snow (graupel) melting, measured 21″ snow on the ground. Pine squirrel, juncos, jays and red-breasted nuthatches visiting. A few flakes of snow falling at lunch time. Mail truck made it in on time. Early afternoon snow flurries, high of 38 degrees. Rufous sided spotted towhee and hairy woodpecker stopped by. Snow flurries on and off during the afternoon, ridges fogged in low. Breaks in the cloud cover and foggy bands across the mountains and peaks at dusk. Cloudy before midnight. Foggy and misting rain after midnight. Little skiff of snow fell before daylight.

Thursday (Mar 19) overnight low of 27 degrees, overcast and ridges fogged in, light breeze this morning and trace of new snow, measured 21″ total snow on the ground. Fresh fox tracks, pine squirrel, red and white-breasted nuthatches and juncos visiting. Partly clear before lunch time, and partly cloudy after. Mostly cloudy mid-afternoon and warm and breezy, high of 51 degrees, tree wells are growing and south facing dark rocky hillsides baring up. Partly cloudy, breezy and way above freezing at dusk. Lots of stars out before midnight.

Friday (Mar 20) overnight low of 21 degrees, mostly clear sky – high haze this morning, measured an average of 20″ snow on the ground. Pine squirrel, clark’s nutcracker, jays, a few juncos and red-breasted nuthatches visiting. Thin clouds and filtered sun at lunch time. Mostly cloudy (chunky clouds w/dark bottoms) by early afternoon, high of 53 degrees. Hairy woodpecker visiting, raven flying and calling. Broken dark cloud cover late afternoon. Mostly clear and above freezing at dusk. Mostly clear and stars twinkling before midnight.

Saturday (Mar 21) overnight low of 19 degrees, clear sky and measured an average of 20″ of crusty snow on the ground. Pine squirrel, nuthatches, juncos and noisy jays visiting. Sunny and mild at lunch time. Clark’s nutcrackers visiting in the afternoon. Partly cloudy and breezy late afternoon, high of 52 degrees. Elk out on the golf course mid-evening. Some high thin clouds and calm at dusk. A few stars out before midnight.

Sunday (Mar 22) overnight low of 19 degrees, mostly hazy sky and light breeze this morning, estimate we still have an average of 20″ snow on the ground. Fresh fox signs this morning, jays, a few juncos, a chickadee and nuthatches visiting. Sunny at lunch time. Clark’s nutcrackers and mountain chickadees visiting, singing their signature song. First butterfly sighting (small, orange wings with black spots.) Report of an evening grosbeak, red-wing blackbird and a rufous towhee. Mostly clear and warm late afternoon, high of 52 degrees. Mostly clear and above freezing at dusk. First robin calling.


Richard Randall (Randy) Norell

68 yrs of age, passed away March 10 following an extended illness.

Randy was born May 4, 1951 to Richard C. (Dick) Norell and Donna D Norell (Bryant). Randy was an outdoor enthusiast who loved hunting, fishing and hiking from mountain lake to mountain lake. He spent many a summer exploring the mountains surrounding his beloved family ranch in Yellow Pine, Id.

Randy graduated from Boise State University with a BS degree in Geology. He worked for a variety of mining companies that lead him from Idaho to Montana. In 1992 Randy returned to the Boise area where he went to work for Spidell And Associates doing air quality testing. He worked up until 2012 when health issues forced him to retire.

Randy was a quiet soul, who never complained unless politics were involved. He loved science and technology. He had a great little chuckle that always made you smile.

He is survived by his sister Teri Norell and brother in-law Chuck Roth ; Stepmother Donna Norell; Stepbrothers Barry Curry ( Bernadette), Mike Curry (Carolynn), Brent Curry (Rhonda), Jeff Curry (Jennifer); Stepsister Jill (Tom) and his lifelong friend Cam Houlgate (Mary).

Over the past eight years, Randy lived at Paramount Parks Assisted Living. where his quality of life was greatly enhanced by all those who surrounded him.

A celebration of Randy’s life will be held at a later date at his beloved family’s property, the Bryant Ranch, in Yellow Pine.

Memorials can be made in his name to your favorite charity.
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Naomi Herrick
1932 – 2020

On Friday March 13th our beloved mother and Matriarch of the family Naomi Herrick passed away from natural causes. After almost 88 years she is now peacefully sitting in heaven with her arms around her two daughters Kim and Kit.

Naomi was born Naomi Ruth Neeb on June 1st, 1932 in Round Valley Idaho to Melvin and Macel Neeb. She was the youngest of three sisters and an adopted brother. She attended high school in Boise while living with her Grandmother during the school year and then returning to the Neeb Ranch in Smiths Ferry for the summers to work on the ranch and in the lodge (Cougar Mountain Lodge). At an early age she learned to drive a tractor, tend to the farm animals and shoot a gun. After graduating from Boise High in 1950 she attended the University of Idaho.

She married Jim Drobny in 1954 and gave birth to her first child, Chris. She later married the love of her life Gary Peterson and in 1957 gave birth to twin girls, Kim and Kit. The twins were quite a surprise because they had no idea there were two babies in there! Then to top it off their births were on different days. Kim was born just before midnight and Kit was born just after midnight! Then in 1960 the second son, Kurt, was born. The marriage eventually ended and Naomi later married her longtime friend Mel Herrick with whom she shared many memorable and fun years with until Mel’s passing.

Naomi was the ultimate homemaker and mother. While she was the mother of 4 of her own, she “Mothered” many more. She had a pretty open door policy for anyone who needed a place to stay or just some motherly love. She took in many of our friends over the years, fed them, cut their hair, and was always willing to share her wisdom or just lend an ear to them.

She loved her family dearly and always did her best to make things as good as possible for us. While raising her four children she worked numerous jobs to make ends meet. Including working as a substitute teacher in the Cascade school system, which was a little challenging for us kids . . . she didn’t cut us a lot of slack for our behavior at school. Thankfully, for us, her stint as a teacher was relatively short-lived and she moved on to work as a teller at the local mercantile store and grocery store in Cascade. After leaving Cascade she worked as a Pharmacy Tech for Rite Aid in Boise until she retired.

Naomi was one of the strongest women God ever put on earth. Even with the loss of both her daughters due to complications from diabetes and cancer, she held her head up and kept going strong until the very end. She passed with her family and caregivers at her side.

Naomi was preceded in death by her parents Melvin and Macel Neeb, her sister JoAnn Cole, brother Jack Jones, her beloved daughters Kim Peterson and Kit Hill, along with her husbands Jim Drobny, Gary Peterson and Mel Herrick. She is survived by her sister Betty (Cecil) Nowland of Boise ID, son Chris (Tina) Drobny of Arizona City AZ, son Kurt (Heidi) Peterson of Park City UT, 11 grandchildren and numerous great-grandchildren and nieces and nephews.

There will not be any immediate services for Naomi. We will have a small service later this summer in Cascade for family and close friends.

We would like to extend a special thank you to all the caregivers at Grace Assisted Living and Memory Care Center and Treasure Valley Hospice for the absolutely wonderful and loving care and compassion you showed for our Mom. It is truly greatly appreciated. You all made her last days the best they could be.

In lieu of flowers, if anyone would like to make any contributions to the American Diabetes Association or the in Mom’s name that would be great. Every day is a gift.

Memories and condolences may be shared with the family on Naomi’s memorial website at (link)

Published in Idaho Statesman on Mar. 18, 2020
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Gregory Eich

Eich, Gregory, 71, of Council [formerly of Yellow Pine & Stibnite] passed away March 11, 2020 in Boise. Arrangements under the direction of Thomason Funeral Home.

Idaho News:

Announcement from Valley County

An update – Tomorrow we begin a COV-19 task force that will be in communication daily with all hospitals-Central District health-all city governments-county official-first responders. This will be to keep communication flowing within the Region and to create a central communication point as we move forward. Once we have confirmed cases the County Emergency Operations Center will begin operations and it creates levels of emergency response not available until we have confirmed cases. This new task force will create a situation ready opportunity for the Region. The County and City officials are working daily behind the scenes to do everything we can to prepare. We will begin posting daily anything that is needed within the community to stay informed. Please follow the Valley County Facebook feed for daily updates. Stay Home-Stay Healthy-Stop the spread

from Valley County Commissioner Sherry Maupin (via FB March 22nd)
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First COVID-19 Case Reported in Part-time Valley County Resident

* No Identified Risk to Valley County Community.
* CDH is asking anyone with recent travel to Blaine County, Idaho in the past two weeks (March 8 through March 22) to shelter in place.

Press Release Excerpt:

Central District Health (CDH) announced the first case of novel coronavirus infection with ties to Valley County. A part-time Valley County man in his 50s, with mild symptoms, was recently confirmed to have COVID-19 after testing in Ada County. The man is recovering well under self-isolation in Ada County. He had no associated travel to Valley County during his infectious period. Contact investigations suggest travel-associated risk from Blaine County, and there is no identified risk to the Valley County Community.

CDH is asking anyone with recent travel to Blaine County, Idaho in the past two weeks (March 8 through March 22) to shelter in place. This, after three Ada County residents and one Valley County resident tested positive for COVID-19, and confirmed travel and time spent in Blaine County.


* NO identified risk to the Valley County Community
* If you have traveled to Blaine County between March 8 – March 22, CDH is asking you to SHELTER IN PLACE for 14 days (stay home – only exception is for medical care). That means no grocery store, post office, work, etc.

To read the full Valley County and CDH Press Releases, please visit: (link)
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Valley County declares emergency, closes courthouse

By Max Silverson for The Star-News March 19, 2020

Valley County Commissioners on Monday declared a countywide state of emergency and closed all county facilities to the public in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is an unprecedented event,” said Valley County Commission Chair Elt Hasbrouck. “These are hard decisions, but decisions we felt we had to make to keep our employees, their families and our community safe and healthy.”

All functions of county government are still operational but for the foreseeable future the best way for constituents to continue to receive them is by electronic means or mailing their requests to the various departments, Hasbrouck said.

“Until the coronavirus recedes we must protect the health of these departments by re-stricting public access to them,” he said.

The courthouse, Department of Motor Vehicles offices in Cascade and McCall, probation offices and sheriff’s offices were all closed to the public.

These facilities will remain closed to the public until March 30, at which time the situation will be reassessed, a press release from county commissioners said.

Law enforcement and emergency services, including 911 services remain fully functional and available to the public, Sheriff Patti Bolen said.

The transfer site and recycling centers would remain open to the public as well, commissioners said.

The emergency declaration directed elected officials and department directors to send home the majority of their staff, some of whom will work from home until the closures are lifted.

All employees will continue to be paid, commissioners said.

… For more information about how to access services during this public facility closure, visit (link)

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More info Valley County Covid-19 Response Page
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City Council votes unanimously to approve a Declaration of a State of Emergency in McCall

March 17, 2020

City Council met yesterday, March 16th, 2020, at 6:00 PM in Legion Hall and unanimously voted to approve a Declaration of State of Emergency for the City of McCall for the next 30 days in response to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic. [watch the stream] The declaration allows access to federal, state and local supplemental funding and decision making resources for the purpose of protecting the health and safety of the community. Although one goal of a declaration is to alert citizens to change their normal behavior, this does not mean there is a mass outbreak in the city of McCall, but a proactive measure enabling necessary emergency plans to be made for the future.

City leaders are taking the lead of the State of Idaho and Valley County in our response to the pandemic and continue to look at current recommendations of the CDC and Central District health in decision making as we move forward. We encourage the public to follow the most recent guidelines of maintaining gathering limitations of less than 10 people at a time, limiting social situations and maintaining good hygiene.

McCall is a tourist destination with many vacation and second homes. We are at an increased risk of exposure and therefore, we hope that our visitors will respect our community’s goal to remain proactive by adhering to CDC recommendations. Help us to keep McCall healthy and safe for all. Local business can let us know here how they have altered hours or services and we will share that with the community and visitor.

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Travel advisory announced for McCall: ‘Stay Home, Stay Healthy’

by CBS2 News Staff Friday, March 20th 2020

A travel advisory has been issued for the area of McCall.

There are limited health resources to help those who may become sick in these areas. Travelers who get sick would put a huge strain on healthcare workers.

“The West Central Mountains has finite healthcare resources. It is very likely that anyone who gets sick in our area may need to be transported to another area for treatment. This puts massive strain on our entire healthcare system,” the city of McCall said.

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City of Cascade declares emergency, cancels hearing

By Ben Fletcher for The Star-News March 19, 2020

The City of Cascade joined other local governments on Monday by declaring a state of emergency over the feared spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Mayor Judith Nissula issued the declaration on Tuesday to allow the city to receive state and federal funding and supplies to assist the city in combating the virus.

Changes in city operations were announced on Monday, including the limiting of walk-in traffic at Cascade City Hall.

“Doors to City Hall will be locked with a notice that all utility payments may be made either through, online utility bill pay, the drop slot, or through the mail,” a statement from the city said.

Water, sewer and streets employees will continue to work normally, the statement said.

Meetings of the Cascade City Council and Cascade Planning and Zoning Commission were postponed until after March 31.

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Cascade urges people to avoid visiting Valley County to prevent coronavirus spread

by CBS2 News Staff Saturday, March 21st 2020

Cascade, Idaho (CBS2) — The city of Cascade is asking visitors to avoid vacationing in Valley County to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

“To act as a cohesive community and to protect each other, we are respectfully asking that no visitation happen at this time,” a press release said. “It is imperative that our community follow the federal guidelines adopted by the State of Idaho, including avoiding unnecessary travel.”

Hospital providers and staff across Valley County have been preparing for the virus’ arrival. They are concerned their resources will not be able to support an increase of visitors.

“We are encouraging our neighbors in other areas of Idaho and sister states to stay where they are and protect themselves by following CDC guidelines, as we are stressing to our residents,” the city said.

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Hot Springs Closed:

Goldfork hotsprings is closed and will remain closed until there is a new post here saying we have reopened. We will be closed for roughly 3 weeks.
(per their FB page March 19th)

Burgdorf Hot Springs – The latest update from here is that Burgdorf will be temporarily CLOSED to all drop-in Day Swims starting March 20th in efforts to help stop the spread of the current pandemic. Hope you enjoy some sweet home-time and can still get out in nature and relax! See you soon! Exceptions: Previously made Cabin reservations and previously made snowmobile rental reservations will be honored and have limited access. Please contact us for details.
(per their FB page March 19th)
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Panic buying clears store shelves

Toilet paper, hand sanitizer in high demand

By Drew Dodson for The Star-News March 19, 2020

Store shelves from New Meadows to Cascade were left barren this week as shoppers scrambled to stock up on supplies amid fears of the COVID-19 virus.

Store managers and owners said the craze started last Thursday, just before the first confirmed case of the virus was reported in Idaho on Friday.

Aisles in Ridley’s, Rite Aid and Albertsons in McCall were devoid of toilet paper, hand sanitizer, rubbing alcohol and household disinfectants over the weekend and into this week.

Canned goods, produce, meat, frozen foods, rice and beans also dwindled as more shoppers poured through the doors in hopes of stocking up prior to the arrival of the virus.

“This is the first time I’ve seen something this extreme, but you just take it day to day,” said Dan Smith, Ridley’s store director.

All three stores placed quantity limits on items that were especially in demand to help prevent customers from hoarding.


[Note: Please pass the word to folks, “Leave a little on the shelves for the locals.”]
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‘It’s scary’: McCall and Donnelly restaurant owner closes two of three locations amid coronavirus outbreak

Temporary shutdowns and outright closures of some businesses have started to affect several Idaho establishments.

Brian Holmes March 18, 2020 KTVB

McCall, Idaho — With the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urging everyone to practice social distancing for the foreseeable future by avoiding crowds of less than 10 people, those in the service industry have really started to feel the pinch.

Restaurants across the country have either drastically reduced their staff and hours, have gone to only take-out or delivery, or have voluntarily shut their doors altogether.

For restaurant owners like Steve Topple, it meant shutting the doors on two of his three restaurants in the McCall/Donnelly area.

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City of Crouch asking people to stay away from the Garden Valley area amid COVID-19 concerns

Mar 21, 2020 By Izaak Anderson KIVI

Garden Valley, Idaho — Leaders of the City of Crouch are asking people to avoid Crouch and the Garden Valley area at this time amid COVID-19 concerns.

City leaders say they are following current CDC and Central District Health Idaho recommendations to maintain gathering limitations to 10 or fewer people at a time, limit social situations and maintain proper hygiene.

As Crouch and the surrounding areas are tourist destinations, city leaders say the increase in visitors will increase the risk of exposure from coronavirus.

The city says they have noticed an increase in visitors coming to Crouch and the Garden Valley area from the Treasure Valley. This increase is putting a strain on depleted grocery stores, as well as stressing out their local EMS system and putting pressure on Crouch residents.

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Boise VA campus to set entrance restrictions, screenings for veterans and employees

by CBS2 News Staff Friday, March 20th 2020

Boise’s VA campus will set restrictions for entering and screening starting Tuesday for veterans and employees.

Starting March 24 veterans must use the main entrance at Fort Street, and employees will use parking lot 7.

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ITD issues 90-day extension on expiring credentials

March 16, 2020 Local News 8

To reduce large gatherings of people, the Idaho Transportation Department’s Division of Motor Vehicle is instituting a 90-day extension on some credentials.

The 90-day extension applies to driver’s licenses and non-commercial registration.

If one of these credentials expires between March 1 and May 31 of 2020, you will have until June 30, 2020, to renew.

Many of these can be renewed online.

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Idaho Power responds to coronavirus concerns

Mar 16, 2020 By Katie Kloppenburg KIVI

Boise, Idaho — Idaho Power is reducing public activities to reduce to spread of coronavirus through the community. The new measures come after weeks of internal planning and preparation.

… In addition, they are also limiting public access to their facilities. If you usually visit Idaho Power offices to pay your bill, they encourage you to pay online or by mail. To learn more about payment options, click here.

The facility closure also includes access to Idaho Power campgrounds. Most of the campgrounds are located near facilities that help provide energy to the community. If you have an existing reservation, you will be contacted by phone or email and will receive a full refund. Idaho Power is currently not accepting future reservations but will provide an update when they are again.

full story:
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Idaho utility companies to waive late fees, keep power on during coronavirus outbreak

Idaho Power Company, Intermountain Gas and Suez Water have all introduced payment options for those affected by the coronavirus.

March 21, 2020 KTVB

Three Idaho utility companies have informed their customers that several new relief measures will be implemented to those affected by the coronavirus. These measures range from assisting customers in setting up a payment plan and not disconnecting customers for late or nonpayment.

Idaho Power released a statement on their website announcing the assistance options that are available to their customers on Friday. For residential and small business customers, Idaho Power will not be disconnecting service because of nonpayment.

In addition, Idaho Power stated they will be waiving late fees temporarily and will be available to assist customers in setting up payment plans to ensure they do not fall extremely behind on payments and later face an overwhelming debt.

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Secretary of state encouraging Idahoans to vote absentee

Lawerence Denney wants Idahoans to vote early and says they can do that by requesting an absentee ballot.

John Masters March 18, 2020 KTVB

Boise, Idaho — Idaho Secretary of State Lawerence Denney announced Wednesday that in response to the current COVID-19 situation, his office has initiated the #VoteEarlyIdaho campaign. Denney, along with Idaho’s 44 county clerks, are promoting early requests of absentee ballots for the May 19 primary election.

“By promoting early request of a ballot and voting by absentee, we are hoping Idahoans will take advantage of the opportunity to protect themselves and protect their neighbors. The process of voting absentee is literally as easy as 1, 2, 3,” Chief Deputy Secretary of State Chad Houck said. “You just have to request the ballot, wait for it to arrive around a month before the election, and then vote and get the ballot back to your county clerk before the polls close on election night!”

Denney asks all Idahoans to share the campaign on social media using the hashtag “#VoteEarlyIdaho.”


[Note: Yellow Pine is a vote by mail precinct.]

Tips & Advice:

Plumbers: If you have to use an alternative to toilet paper, don’t flush it down the toilet

While toilet paper has been hard to come by during the coronavirus pandemic, plumbers say any alternative should not be flushed down the toilet

Gretchen Parsons March 17, 2020 KTVB

Boise, Idaho — During the coronavirus pandemic, toilet paper has quickly become a grocery item in high demand. Most supermarkets are in short supply or sold out.

… Haycock has been in the plumbing business for a long time. He said he understands that during this unprecedented time people might have to wipe with something other than toilet paper.

However, Haycock says toilet paper is the only material meant to be flushed.

“Everything else is taking a risk on causing a backup in your sewer line or even damaging the city sewer system,” Haycock said.

Materials like paper towels, tissues, and baby wipes, should never go down the toilet he explained.

full story:

Mining News:

Midas Gold

In light of the evolving situation with the coronavirus, Midas Gold is trying to do our part to help slow the spread of the virus. Starting Monday, we are encouraging our employees to work from home. If you have questions for our team, we are still here to make sure you get the answers you need. Please feel free to send us a message on Facebook, email or reach out to one of our team members directly.

We hope you and your family stay well.

(via FB Mar 16, 2020)
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Stibnite Advisory Council is Ready to Address Community’s Questions

Eight Communities Appoint 2020 Council Members

Contact: Natalie Podgorski Phone: 435-881-1391
March 17, 2020

Donnelly, ID – The eight cities and counties that signed onto a community agreement with Midas Gold dated November 30, 2018 have appointed representatives to serve on the Stibnite Advisory Council for 2020. The Stibnite Advisory Council, which was formed last year, provides a collaborative environment for local communities to work with Midas Gold throughout the life of the project and establishes a venue for cities and counties to address concerns and opportunities directly with the mining company.

“It is an honor to serve our communities on the Stibnite Advisory Council,” said Julie Good, chair of the Stibnite Advisory Council. “Midas Gold’s proposed Stibnite Gold Project will have a huge impact on this region, so it is important to have the communities closet to the mine site sit around the table to learn about the project and share our unique perspectives among the council. We each act as the voice of our community. We bring questions to the company, get the answers our neighbors need, and report what we learn back to our communities.”

Each participant in the community agreement appointed one member to represent their interests on the Stibnite Advisory Council. Midas Gold Idaho and Midas Gold Corp also hold seats on the council. The following individuals were chosen to represent their community in 2020:

Bob Crump, Riggins
Pat DeHaas, Council
Denis Duman, Idaho County
Julie Good, New Meadows
Lynn Imel, Yellow Pine
Joe Iveson, Adams County
Anne Labelle, Midas Gold Corp
Laurel Sayer, Midas Gold Idaho
Gene Tyler, Donnelly
Glenna Young, Cascade

Julie Good was elected to serve as chair for the Stibnite Advisory Council, Gene Tyler will serve as vice-chair and Lynn Imel will serve as secretary.

Over the last year, Stibnite Advisory Council members provided regular updates to their city council members or county commissioners. Additionally, many members of the council held gatherings in their towns. Based on the feedback at these meetings, the Stibnite Advisory Council established four working groups in order to address important issues in the region. Currently, members of the working groups are carefully evaluating the project’s impacts on the environment, workforce, transportation and local industry. As a result of these efforts, the workforce working group has released a public survey to gather more information from people who may be interested in working at the site. The survey is available at (link)
and will help the Stibnite Advisory Council gain a better understanding of where workers may want to live, their needs and how this might impact the communities closest to the Stibnite Gold Project.

Residents who live in Adams, Idaho and Valley County and have questions about the Stibnite Gold Project, should contact their community’s designated representative. Council members work with Midas Gold to answer every question and share that information with interested citizens. The council developed a frequently asked questions document that keeps track of all of the questions brought forward by the communities. If you would like to review this information, visit (link)

The Stibnite Advisory Council meets the second Thursday of every month at Midas Gold ‘s Donnelly office. The meetings are open to the public for observation. To date, the Stibnite Advisory Council has held 13 public meetings.

Public Lands:

South Fork Salmon River Road

I am planning on putting the load restrictions onto the South Fork Salmon River Road starting Monday 3/23. They will stay in effect until the subgrade has dried out and the roadway can support standard loading.

Ben Dreier, P.E.
Forest Road Manager
Payette National Forest, Supervisors Office
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Community Meeting for Payette NF Spring Prescribed Fire Postponed

Due to the current situation with COVID-19 the community meeting planned for March 28 in Yellow Pine to discuss spring burning operations on the Payette NF is indefinitely postponed. If there is a need to talk about any of the planned burns please feel free to send us your questions or to give a call on the phone. We may reschedule a community meeting if needed once coronavirus/ COVID-19 is no longer a concern. We will continue to send out emails to this list as we approach weather windows that will allow us to burn.

Please feel free to reach out with questions or comments:

Patrick Schon, Fire Management Specialist

Laurel Ingram, Fuels Technician

Thanks and be well
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Payette National Forest Spring Prescribed Fire

PNF March 5, 2020

Good afternoon,

The Payette National Forest, Krassel Ranger District will be implementing prescribed fire in the Bald Hill and Four Mile Project areas this spring.

Areas planned in the Bald Hill Project will be from Reegan Creek east to the ridge west of Boulder Creek, including adjacent to Eiguren Ranch and nearby properties. We may also burn the south and east facing slopes between Quartz Creek and Profile Creek.

Areas planned in the Four Mile Project are on both sides of the South Fork Salmon River, from Reed Ranch Airstrip south to Poverty Flat Camp Ground. Areas targeted for ignition this year include along the Miners Peak trail, the area between Reed Ranch and Four Mile Creek, and an area on the east side of the road across from Poverty Flat Campground. See the attached map for more specific location information.

We will have a community meeting Saturday, [postponed] March 28 at 10:00 at the Yellow Pine Community Hall to answer any questions. Burning may occur before this date if ground opens up, with the objective of creating a buffer around property boundaries earlier in the season than the main ignition will occur. Like all of our burning this will be dependent on many factors including weather and fuel conditions.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions.

Patrick Schon: 208-634-0623, or Laurel Ingram: 208-634-0622,

Laurel Ingram
Fuels Technician
Payette National Forest
Krassel Ranger District

linkto map: Notifications Spring Rx Burn 2020.pdf
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Payette National Forest plans no changes in operations

The Star-News March 19, 2020

No changes in operations at the Payette National Forest are planned as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, a spokesperson said.

“Everything is business as usual for the Forest Service with some minor changes that should not impact the services the Forest Services offers, Payette Public Affairs Officer Brian Harris said.

The Payette has its headquarters in McCall as well a district offices in McCall, New Meadows, Council and Weiser.

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Boise National Forest limits public visitation to offices

Boise, Idaho, March 20, 2020–The Boise National Forest has implemented self-screening procedures for public access to Forest building in order to reduce the potential transmission of the Covid-19 virus.

“We appreciate the patience of our local communities and partners as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19, while continuing to provide the services expected from the Forest Service,” said Tawnya Brummett, Boise National Forest Supervisor. “Forest employees are staffing phone lines and monitoring emails to provide information and assist with your needs.”

To reach the Supervisors Office call 208-373-4100 and leave a voicemail. Customer service representatives will call you back or direct your call appropriately.

To stay informed about Forest activities or online services visit:

* The Boise National Forest’s website (link) or
* The Boise National Forest’s Facebook page (link)
* To purchase America the Beautiful National Parks & Federal Recreational Lands Passes visit: (link) Fourth Grade and military passes available at site locations.

The Interagency Visitor Center located at 1387 S. Vinnell Way, in Boise, Idaho, is also implementing temporary limitations of face-to-face public access. Upon entry, visitors are directed to call for assistance. For more information, visitors can call 208-373-4007.

Important: Most Boise National Forest Campgrounds are closed for the winter but restrooms are left unlocked for visitor use. These restrooms are not serviced so they are not cleaned or stocked.

Visitors to our National Forests are urged to take the precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) including social distancing. For tips from the CDC on preventing illnesses like the coronavirus, go to: (link)
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Idaho State Park Visitor Centers Close to Curb Covid-19 Spread; Parks Remain Open

Date: March 19, 2020
Contact: Craig Quintana, Public Information Officer, Senior 208-514-2254

Visitor centers at Idaho State Parks shut down Thursday March 19 as a precautionary measure to limit propagation of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) – but the parks will remain open to the public.

Rangers and other staff will be on duty to assist visitors and can be contacted by telephone.

Parks continue to offer day use and most camping options – but hands-on activities and large group events are discontinued. Premium cabins and picnic shelters also have been closed to reduce infection potential.

The visitor centers will stay closed through April, and possibly longer, depending on the progression of the Covid-19 outbreak. Closing the centers, gathering places for groups of people, protects visitors and park employees and follows the guidance of Idaho Gov. Brad Little and public health officials.

At this stressful time, the public is encouraged to visit Idaho’s spacious parks to experience the outdoors and fresh air as an alternative to staying sheltered indoors. Hiking, biking and snow sports provide healthy alternatives that allow for the social distancing (at least six feet of space between individuals) recommended by experts.

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Idaho state parks closing camper cabins and yurts to stop coronavirus spread

by CBS2 News Staff Friday, March 20th 2020

AP Photo

Idaho state parks are closing camper cabins and yurts to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The state announced closing the camper cabins, yurts and Idaho City backcountry yurts will protect the public and park employees from potential Covid-19 exposure. The closures will begin Monday and all visitors with reservations will receive full refunds.

The closures will last until April 30 and could be extended, depending on the status of the virus outbreak in six weeks.

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National parks are free

By Brady Mccombs and James Anderson – 3/19/20 AP

Salt Lake City — Most national parks are open as a refuge for Americans tired of being stuck at home during a pandemic, but despite now being free to visit, people may find it more difficult to enjoy them as parks close visitor centers, shuttles, lodges and restaurants to fight the spread of the coronavirus.

Parks are trying to keep up with ever-changing rules and recommendations from government officials who are urging people to avoid gathering in large groups but allowing them to get outside for fresh air and exercise as long as they keep their distance from others.

The National Park Service says it’s adhering to the latest guidelines from the White House and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vowing to keep outdoor spaces open while giving park superintendents the power to close or modify operations.

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BLM to temporarily suspend entrance fees on public lands to help people enjoy the outdoors

by Kristen McPeek Thursday, March 19th 2020

Boise, Idaho (CBS2) — The Bureau of Land Management will temporarily suspend entrance fees in BLM-managed land until further notice.

Site-specific day-use fees at BLM recreation sites and areas will be waived temporarily. Overnight camping, cabin rentals, group day use, and use of special areas, will remain in effect. A majority of BLM outdoor spaces remain open to the public, while some areas may be closed.

According to the agency, they hope by waiving the fees, it will make enjoying the outdoors easier.


Critter News:

Cascade Veterinary Clinic

In order to keep everyone safe we are officially cancelling the vaccine clinic for April 2020 in both GV & Cascade. We apologize for any inconvenience.

(via FB Mar 16, 2020)

[Note: The Yellow Pine June vaccine clinic has not been scheduled, I will let folks know if it will occur. – rrS]
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Cascade Vet Clinic

Due to the Corona Virus We have had to make some changes at the clinic. Cascade Clinic we will be open on Monday / Wednesday / Friday from 9 – 5 Lunch 12 – 1. Tuesday and Thursday we will not be opened. Please leave a detailed message if you need prescriptions refilled or pet food etc., and someone will get back with you. We are asking all our clients to stay in there car when they arrive for there appointments. Please call us when you arrive and a Staff member will come outside and check you in. We are so sorry for any inconvenience but we must protect our clients and employees. This will be in effect until further notice.

Garden Valley Clinic

Due to the Corona Virus We have had to make some changes at the clinic. Garden Valley Clinic will be open Tuesday / Thursday from 9 – 5 Lunch 12 – 1. Monday / Wednesday / Friday we will not be opened. Please leave a detailed message if you need prescriptions refilled or pet food etc., and someone will get back with you. We are asking all our clients to stay in there car when they arrive for there appointments. Please call us when you arrive and a Staff member will come outside and check you in. We are so sorry for any inconvenience but we must protect our clients and employees. This will be in effect until further notice.

(via FB Mar 20, 2020)
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Cascade Veterinary Clinic

ALERT! Someone is shooting dogs on Gold Dust in Cascade, ID Dr. Keith just had to take care of a Beagle that was shot 3 times. Please watch your fur babies!

(via FB Mar 21, 2020)
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MCPAWS closes thrift store, limits access to shelter, clinic

The Star-News March 19, 2020

MCPAWS Regional Animal Shelter has made changes to the operations of its thrift store, shelter and clinic in response to the COVID-19 virus.

The MCPAWS Thrift Store on Lenora Street in downtown McCall will be closed for at lease 14 days for both sales as well as donations.

The MCPAWS shelter on Idaho 55 south of McCall will remain open, but with limitations on public access.

Those arriving at the shelter should stay in their vehicle and call 208-634-3647.

“We have suspended our volunteer program and volunteers are being asked to stay at home and avoid visiting the shelter or thrift store,” a statement said.

Adoption meet-and-greets and surrenders will continue by appointment and those who find stray animals should call the shelter rather than bring the animal.

MCPAWS Veterinary Hospital near Donnelly will remain open, but with similar limits to public access.

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Idaho wildlife agency kills 17 wolves in Lolo Zone

March 17, 2020 Associated Press

Lewiston, Idaho (AP) – More than a dozen wolves were killed last month to help curb struggling elk populations in north-central Idaho, wildlife officials said.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game announced Monday it killed 17 wolves in the remote Lolo Zone, the Lewiston Tribune reported. The zone includes part of the Clearwater National Forests and stretches to the Montana state line.

The agency has carried out wolf culling operations in the region for eight of the last nine years, officials said.

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Judge asked to force decision on US wolverine protections

By Matthew Brown – 3/18/20 AP

Billings, Mont. — Wildlife advocates on Wednesday asked a U.S. judge to force the government into deciding if the snow-loving wolverine should be federally protected as the rare predator becomes vulnerable to a warming planet.

The request comes in a lawsuit filed in Montana almost four years after U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen ordered wildlife officials to take swift action to protect the animal.

Wolverines, also known as “mountain devils.” need deep snows to den. Scientists warn such habitat could shrink as the Earth heats up.


Fish & Game News:

Idaho Fish and Game cancels events due to COVID-19 virus

By Roger Phillips, Public Information Supervisor
Monday, March 16, 2020

F&G will provide updated information as situations change

In response to updated guidance from Idaho Department of Health and Welfare for public events, Idaho Fish and Game has canceled several events and limited access to facilities, such as hatcheries. Cancellations are limited to specific events and hunting and fishing seasons are unaffected.

“I am proud of our extensive public outreach, but today is the time to use proactive caution based on the guidance of our public health officials and the Governor’s Office,” F&G Director Ed Schriever said.

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Winter survival for radio-collared mule deer fawns and elk calves average to slightly above average

By Brian Pearson, Conservation Public Information Specialist
Monday, March 16, 2020

84 percent of collared fawns and 92 percent of collared calves survived through February

Statewide winter survival of radio-collared mule deer fawns and elk calves was about average to slightly above average through the end of February.

A relatively mild winter in much of the state bolstered survival so far, and early spring weather is arriving in some locations, which means early survival reports are encouraging. But threats to wintering wildlife are not over, and biologists will continue monitoring animals until late spring.

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Attention elk hunters: If you apply for a controlled elk hunt in 2020, you will be ineligible to buy a capped elk zone tag until five days after they go on sale

By Roger Phillips, Public Information Supervisor
Friday, March 20, 2020

Waiting period is intended to more fairly distribute capped elk zone tags

At its March 20 meeting, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission established a five-day waiting period to purchase capped elk zone tags for any resident who applies for a controlled elk hunt regardless of whether the person draws the controlled hunt tag. Capped elk zone tags go on sale in July.

Some controlled hunts will be exempt from the waiting period, including Super Hunts, extra elk hunts, depredation hunts or Landowner Appreciation Program hunts.

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Online Hunter Education temporarily waives field day, allowing certification to continue uninterrupted

By Ian Malepeai, Marketing Manager
Tuesday, March 17, 2020

In response to updated COVID-19 guidance from Idaho Department of Health and Welfare for public events, Idaho Fish and Game has temporarily waived the requirement to attend an in-person field day for online hunter education certification.

The temporary waiver allows students who complete the online course the ability to gain certification and purchase a hunting license. The cost of the online course is $24.50 and can be taken at (link). Classes are available to anyone 9 years or older.

According to Idaho Fish and Game’s Hunter Education Manager Brenda Beckley, “The public safety of our instructors, staff, and students are our primary concerns. We have seen an increased interest in our hunter education classes, and want to maintain a path for the public to gain certification. By temporarily waiving the in-person field day, we can follow health recommendation for social distancing while still providing necessary instruction and certification.”

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More F&G News Releases


Crazy Critter Stuff:

Cats are wearing coronavirus masks in China

By Madeline Farber Fox News February 16


As the deadly coronavirus outbreak continues to ravage the country, pet owners in China are putting on makeshift masks on their furry friends.

Photos on the Chinese social media app Weibo show pets – namely cats – wearing the makeshift masks, many of them made from traditional surgical masks. Owners are cutting holes in the material to accommodate the animal’s eyes while the rest of their face remains covered.



Seasonal Humor: