Aug 29, 2021 The Yellow Pine Times

Aug 29, 2021 The Yellow Pine Times – Valley County, Idaho

Reminder: We are still under a boil water order.
Because of our [water] situation lawn watering is discouraged. No watering after 2pm. If you are asked to turn your water off, it’s because the system is in danger of running out. Please be respectful. There will NO lawn watering on all summer holidays weekends.

Stage 1 Fire Restrictions are still in Effect

Community Calendar:

April 17, 2020 – Boil water order issued
May 10 thru Oct 20 – Burn Permit season
May 15 – Firewood Season, permits at The Corner
May 25 – Johnson Creek road fully open
June 7 – Lick Creek road open
June 13 – Profile road open
July 16 – Stage 1 Fire Restrictions
Aug 29 – Price of 1st Class Stamps goes up
Aug 31 – Deadline for Fest Chairperson
Sept 1 – Deadline for Stibnite Foundation/Council
Sept 4 – Labor Day Weekend Golf Tournament
Sept 4 – Potluck 4pm at the YP Tavern
Sept 11 – YPFD Budget Meeting 10am at Fire Hall
Sept 11 – VYPA Meeting 2pm at Community Hall
Sept 18 – ATV-UTV Ride to Thunder Mountain
(details below)

Local Events:

YPFD Meeting Aug 28, 2021

18 people attended to hear County officials explain the legal process for becoming a Yellow Pine Fire District Commissioner.

[h/t LI]
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Labor Day Weekend Golf Tournament

Saturday, September 4th, 10am, Annual Labor Day Weekend Golf Tournament. $20/person. Proceeds support the Yellow Pine Fire District. Contact Adam Pellegrini at Email for questions or to sponsor a hole ($50-250 per hole.)

Fire Department Fundraiser

Want to join me in making a difference in Yellow Pine? We are raising money to benefit the Yellow Pine Fire Department through its Annual Golf Tournament, and any donation will help make an impact. You don’t need to come out and golf to support us, simply give $5 or $100. All proceeds go to help update pumps, new equipment and prepare for the coming fire season. Thank you! – Yellow Pine Fire Department. link:
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Potluck 4pm at the Yellow Pine Tavern

Lasagna and Brauts provided by the Tavern, Cory’s and Sullivan’s.
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ATV-UTV Ride to Thunder Mountain

Saturday, September 18, 9am – 4pm

Meet at the Community Hall

Ride with us through the fabulous back-country to the historic Thunder Mountain area and support the Yellow Pine Community Hall. This out-and-back ride is rated as intermediate. Participants ride from Yellow Pine Community Hall up Stibnite Road to Thunder Mountain. BBQ Lunch will be served to participants at the end of the road. The timeframe of this event is estimated to be from 9am to 4pm. $25 for online sign up and $30 at the event.

Sign up link:
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Stage 1 Fire Restrictions in Effect

Under the Stage 1 Fire Restrictions, the following acts are prohibited on state and federally managed or protected lands, roads, and trails:
* Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire or stove fire except within a designated recreation site and in a permanent concrete or metal fire ring, or on private land, and only within an owner-provided structure.
* Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle, building, or designated recreation site or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.

Village News:

Notice – New Deadline

In order to have your item posted in that week’s paper you must email it in by Noon on Sundays.

A reminder – if your group or business want an event, photo, minutes, news or advertising posted in the Yellow Pine Times, please write what you want posted in text form (for copy/paste) and send it by email. Remember to include the “who, what, when, where and why.” Images or groups of images must be under 10 megs per email.
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Buckhorn Outfitters

Our Elk & Deer hunts are booked for our 2021 season, we do have a couple openings for our 2022 Elk & Deer hunts. We Also have a couple openings for Mountain Lion hunts December 2021 through February 2022 and Spring Bear hunts May of 2022.

Getting new sets of shoes on before season starts next week. Thanks Buck Greenwood

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Yellow Pine General Store

The Liquor Store is now reinstated. Store hours: 10am to 5pm, Monday – Sunday. (See updated ad for more info.)
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Harmonica Festival Chairman

Anyone interested in Harmonica Festival chairman for 2021 needs to notify a Council member by August 31,2021. 2022 festival chairman will be announced at the September VYPA meeting.
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Stibnite Foundation and Stibnite Advisory Council

Letters of interest for being Yellow Pine representatives for the Stibnite Foundation and Stibnite Advisory Council must be submitted to the Village Council by 9/1/2021. The letters will be presented at the September meeting for a vote by the membership.

Link: Community Rep Ltr of Interest.pdf
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Veterans’ Monument

With this heat, the flowers and shrubs at our Veterans’ Memorial dry out quickly. When Niebrand’s are in, they water them, but aren’t here all the time……if you go by, please check, and give them a drink with the hose that is there. Our veterans (and the Niebrand’s) thank you!
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Help Suvanna with medical bills and living expenses

On Saturday, August 7th Suvanna had a severe reaction to a bee sting and had to take a Lifeflight from the back country in Yellow Pine, Idaho to the Emergency room in Boise, Idaho.

We are hoping to help with the massive medical bills and home expenses while she recovers from lingering symptoms that will keep her from her wonderful work at the doggy day care that she loves. Any amount big or small. Even five bucks helps!

We are so grateful she is ok and appreciate any and all help.

Link: Go-Fund-Me
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Conserve (and Boil) Water

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

Use a dishpan to catch the rinse water (a.k.a “gray water”) when doing dishes (and hand washing) and use it to water outdoor flowers or to flush a toilet.
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Road News

Local streets are dusty – no dust abatement this year on main street. Please slow down!

Link: to current road reports.

Johnson Creek road was recently graded, but is already getting rough again.

Profile Gap, Lick Creek, Thunder Mountain and Deadwood roads are Open. These roads have not been bladed and are rough. Travel at your own risk.

Hwy 55 projects
Smith’s Ferry area: Starting Tuesday, Sept. 7, drivers can expect full road closures Monday-Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. After 2 p.m., the road will be open to one-way alternating traffic. Please note: the delays may be significant immediately after the road reopens due to large traffic volumes. Once this traffic clears, drivers can expect 15-minute delays. We encourage drivers to plan ahead and use U.S. 95 as an alternate route. Project Website link:
Donnelly to McCall: One lane during the week and two lanes on weekends. Project is slated to last until September.
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Be Mountain Lion Aware

Note: A report of a mountain lion hanging around the upper end of the village early summer.

* NEVER run away from a mountain lion. The lion’s instinct is to chase and ultimately catch what they perceive as potential prey.
* NEVER turn your back on a lion. Always face them while making yourself look as large as you can. Yell loudly, but don’t scream. A high-pitched scream may mimic the sound of a wounded animal.
* SLOWLY back away while maintaining eye contact with the lion.
* Safety equipment you may choose to carry could include bear spray, a noise device, like an air-horn, and if you walk in the dark, a very bright flashlight.
* If you are attacked, fight back!

Be Bear, Fox & Coyote Aware

* Do not feed them human food
* Secure your trash
* Feed domestic pets indoors
* Make sure your pets are updated on Rabies vaccines
* Small pets could become a snack


While bats are an important part of our ecosystem and most do not carry rabies, CDH offers the following tips to protect yourself and pets:
* Never touch a bat with your bare hands.
* If you have had an encounter with a bat, seek medical attention.
* If you come in contact with a bat, save the bat in a container without touching it and contact your health department to arrange testing for rabies. Whenever possible, the bat should be tested to rule out an exposure to rabies. During regular business hours in Ada, Boise and Elmore Counties, call 208-327-7499 and in Valley County, call 208-634-7194. After business hours in all counties, call 1-800-632-8000.
* Always vaccinate your pets for rabies, including horses. Pets may encounter bats outdoors or in the home.
* Bat-proof your home or cabin by plugging all holes in the siding and maintaining tight-fitting screens on windows. Bats can enter through holes the size of a quarter.

Pine Martins & Raccoons

Watch your small pets. Reports of pine martins living in the dump and raccoons on the north side of the village.

Aggressive Deer and Elk

Be aware that mothers will attack dogs and chase people if they feel their babies are threatened. Keep dogs leashed in the forest during “baby season” for their own protection.


* Know where to expect ticks. Many ticks live in grassy, brushy, or wooded areas. When possible, avoid wooded and brushy areas with tall grass and leaf litter. Walk in the center of trails, particularly in spring and summer when ticks feed.
* Wear appropriate clothing. When in tick habitats, wear light-colored, tightly woven long pants and long-sleeve shirt. Tuck your pant legs into socks or boots, and your shirt into your pants. This helps keep ticks on the outside of your clothing where you can spot them more easily.
* Use tick repellent when necessary, and carefully follow instructions on the label. Apply an EPA-registered repellent effective against ticks, such as those containing DEET to clothes and exposed skin, and permethrin to clothes and gear. Take care when applying repellent on children. EPA’s search tool can help you find the repellent that best suits your needs.
* Check clothing, gear, and pets after being areas with ticks. Ticks can hitch a ride into your home on clothing and pets, then attach to you or a family member later. Carefully examine coats, camping gear, and daypacks. Don’t forget your dog, see CDC’s where to check your pet for ticks.
* Shower soon after being outdoors. Showering within two hours of coming can reduce your risk of getting Lyme disease and may be effective in reducing the risk of other tick-borne disease. Showering can wash off unattached ticks and it is a good opportunity to do a tick check.
* Check your body, your child and pets thoroughly for ticks. Carefully inspect areas in and around the hair, head, neck, ears, under arms, inside the belly button, around the waist, between the legs, and behind the knees. Ticks can be very small before they feed—look for what may appear like a new freckle or speck of dirt. Continue checking for two to three days after returning from areas with ticks.

Mosquitoes – West Nile

* Remove standing water
* Wear long sleeves and pants during morning/evening hours
* Use a good repellent with DEET (our bugs laugh at “backyard” formulas.
* Vaccinate your horses and mules! West Nile can be fatal to equines.
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Yellow Pine US Mail

Starting Aug. 29, USPS will raise prices of first-class postage stamps to 58 cents from 55 cents.

Attention Mail Route Customers – FedEx Ground has changed their policy, and they will no longer pay for Mail Plane or Truck freight. If you can avoid it, we strongly encourage you to use UPS or USPS to receive packages. If you do order a FedEx Ground package, you will be billed for: Air Freight @ $0.45/lb, or Mail Truck Freight @ $0.05/lb. We are truly sorry this is the case, and are working very hard to make sure you still receive your orders. – Arnold Aviation

The 6-day a week mail delivery started June 1st. The Post Office in Yellow Pine is open six days a week year around: M-F 845am-245pm Saturday 9am-245pm. Forever Stamp: 58 cents. Support our local post office and purchase your holiday stamps here.
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Yellow Pine Transfer Station

Report Sunday (Aug 22) The dump is about 25% full and very clean and tidy.

Locals have worked hard to clean up the area, please be respectful.

20190429Dump2-bYellow Pine Transfer Station (aka, the dump)

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.

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


We are still under a Boil Order. Please conserve water. No outside watering after 2pm, nor on holiday weekends and especially not during the festival.

July 25 Update:

The Yellow Pine Water Users Association Board asks that individuals refrain from using domestic water to dampen the road. The Water Corporation is doing its best to provide water for domestic use during the low water period but as the supply becomes more limited, it is incumbent upon each of us to be judicious with its use. Thank you for your cooperation in ensuring that all community members have an adequate supply of water.

The corporation has received the first $150k grant of the anticipated $450k. We are hoping to have some of the supply lines replaced by winter. Thanks to those who wrote letters of support. They were very beneficial in securing the grants. – Willie Sullivan

July 8, 2021 Update

Yellow Pine Water Users PWS 4430059
Due to insufficient treatment
We routinely monitor the conditions in the drinking water distribution system. On 4-19-2020 we experienced a period of insufficient treatment due to extreme water demand which exceeded the capacity of the treatment system. A drop in water pressure is a signal of the existence of conditions that could allow contamination to enter the distribution system through backflow, by backpressure, or back-siphonage. As a result, there is an increased chance that the drinking water may contain disease-causing organisms.
What should I do?
* DO NOT DRINK THE WATER WITHOUT BOILING IT FIRST. Bring all water to a boil, let it boil for one minute, and let it cool before using, or use bottled water. Boiled or bottled water should be used for drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes, and food preparation until further notice. Boiling kills bacteria and other organisms in the water.
* Inadequately treated water may contain disease-causing organisms. These organisms include bacteria, viruses, and parasites, which can cause nausea, cramps, diarrhea, and associated headaches.
* The symptoms above are caused by many types of organisms. If you experience any of these symptoms and they persist, you may want to seek medical advice. People at increased risk should seek advice about drinking water from their health care providers.
What is being done?
Efforts are under way to curtail water use. Once water use is diminished, the water treatment system will again be operational and the boil water order can be lifted
We will inform you when you no longer need to boil your water. We anticipate resolving the problem within 180 days.
For more information, please contact Warren at 208-573-6261 or .
Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.
This notice is being sent to you by Yellow Pine Water Users Assoc. .
PWS ID #: 4430059. Date distributed: 7-8-21.

YPWUA 2021 Annual Shareholder Meeting July 4, 2021 at the Community Hall at 10am
Link: to 20210704 YPWUA minutes.rtf

YPWUA 2020 Annual Shareholder Meeting held July 5, 2020 at the Community Hall 2pm.
link: minutes 20200705YPWUA.docx

Water Board:
Steve Holloway
Willie Sullivan
Dawn Brown
Stu Edwards
Candy Hardisty
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VYPA News:

Sept 11, 2021 – VYPA Meeting 2pm at Community Hall
Aug 14, 2021 VYPA Meeting Canceled (lack of quorum.)
July 10, 2021 VYPA meeting minutes link:
June 12, 2021 VYPA Meeting Minutes link:

VYPA Meetings are the 2nd Saturday of June, July, August, and September (June 12, July 10, August 14, September 11) at 2:00pm at the Community Hall.

Village Council members:
Deb Filler, Chairman
Matt Huber, Vice Chairman
Ronda Rogers, Treasurer
Hailey Harris, Secretary
Rhonda Egbert, Member at Large

VYPA Bylaws adopted 8/8/2020 (link)

YPAC Corp Bylaws (link)
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YPFD News:

Elections for Commissioners for both District 2 and 3 will be held in November 2021.

August 28, 2021 – YPFD Meeting to discuss upcoming election (no minutes yet.)

July 10, 2021 – YPFD Meeting Minutes.
Link: to 20210710 YPFD Meeting.docx

June 12, 2021 – YPFD Meeting Minutes.
Link to minutes: 2021 June 12 YPFD meeting minutes.docx

May 15, 2021 – YPFD Meeting Minutes.
Link: to 20210515 YPFD MeetingNotes_Final.docx

YPFD had a budget meeting on September 30, 2020 at 10am at the fire station. (No minutes yet.)

2021 Meeting schedule for the YPFD. All meetings are at the YPFD Station
Sat. May 15 at 10am
Sat. June 12 at 10am
Sat. July 10 at 10am
Sat. September 11 at 10am Budget Meeting

Also if you are burning any piles of forest litter and debris – please have a connected and charged garden hose that can reach your piles. If your hose cannot reach where you are burning, follow the good advice of having a shovel, axe, and water bucket at the scene. Rake away from anything that could ignite. Stop burning if winds become an issue. Make sure your fire is out before you leave the area. Nothing like getting surprised by a escaped fire in the middle of the night!

Better yet, “Rake It and Take It” your yard waste (limbs, pine needles, brush, etc.) to the burn pile at the Transfer Station on the south end of the turn-around. Remember, keep the pile neat. Woody debris only, no nails, no cardboard and no furniture! The Boise NF will burn the pile in the fall when it is safe.

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

Valley County Wildfire Evacuation Checklist
A wildfire evacuation checklist that property owners in the Yellow Pine area might find useful.
link: Valley County Evacuation Checklist – 2021.pdf

link: YPFD Covid-19 SOP
link: Covid-19 EMS

YP Fire Commissioners:
Lorinne Munn – District 1
Phil Jensen, Acting – District 2
Merrill Saleen – District 3
Tim Rogers – Fire Chief
Secretary Ronda Rogers
Treasurer Nikki Saleen

Biz Listings:

The Corner (208) 633-3325
Hours: 1pm-8pm, closed on Tuesdays
We offer smoked tri tip, brisket, and chicken sandwiches and also burgers and chicken wings.
Firewood Permits available May 15th.
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Yellow Pine Tavern (208) 633-2233
Open daily: 8am to 9pm
Sunday 8am to 2pm
Indoor Dining and Outdoor Dining Available.
Full Breakfast Menu. Burgers, Pizza, Fajitas, Beer Wine and Pop
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Yellow Pine Lodge (208) 633-3377
Opened June 12th for Summer
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Yellow Pine General Store (208) 633-3300
Store hours: 10am to 5pm, Monday – Sunday. Gas and Diesel now available. The Liquor Store is now reinstated. Now Selling Black Rifle Coffee.
The store is stocked with basic convenience store items such as food, fuel, liquor, beer, wine, tobacco, ice, non alcoholic beverages, snacks, ice cream. New Yellow Pine branded shirts, hats and koozies have arrived. We are going through the process of installing a propane dispenser and bottle exchange service.
For any particular store item requests, please call 208-633-3300 or Email
For room reservations, please call 208-633-3300 or Email for reservations
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Murph’s RV Park and Mary’s Cabins
FB page link
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Knotty Kat Crochet Works – 509-406-2221
FB page link
open Tue – Sat, 9-5
Yellow Pine eggs $3/doz
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Buckhorn Outfitters LLC 208-633-3614
Our Elk & Deer hunts are booked for our 2021 season, we do have a couple openings for our 2022 Elk & Deer hunts. We Also have a couple openings for Mountain Lion hunts December 2021 through February 2022 and Spring Bear hunts May of 2022. Please see our Website site for further details.
Tom & Sarah Lanham
156 Yellow Pine Ave, Yellow Pine Id 83677

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

Big Creek Lodge

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 open 830am-5pm Monday-Friday, closed weekends.
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Outside Biz that will service Yellow Pine:

Arnold Aviation – (208) 382-4844

The Star-News

click to subscribe:
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

Garden Mountain Contractors
We would like to extend our services into the Yellow pine area if there may be a need. We dig a lot of dirt! If you need this give us a shout on our FB page below. – Larry Williamson
Garden Valley, Idaho FB Page:
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Follow The Yellow Pine Times on Facebook (updated more often than emails)

Local Observations:

Monday (Aug 23) overnight low of 38 degrees. This morning clear sky, light dew and light haze of smoke (Yellow Air Quality.) A robin calling and a steller jay visiting. Light traffic on main street. Clear, breezy and light haze of smoke before lunch time. Pleasant temperatures mid-afternoon, clear sky (very blue to the north, haze to the south) and light breezes, high of 79 degrees. Clear early evening, almost calm and light haze of smoke – Green AQ. Clear sky and good air just before dusk. Clear at midnight.

Tuesday (Aug 24) overnight low of 33 degrees. This morning clear blue sky, dewy grass and good air quality. No early birds visiting. Light street traffic. Clear and chilly light breeze before lunch time. Smoke moving in by early afternoon. Solid layer of smoke with probably clear sky above mid-afternoon, poor air quality and warm breezes, high of 80 degrees. Smoky and warm before sunset, very red sun, Yellow air quality. Cooler and smoky before dusk. Clear enough for Jupiter to shine over Golden Gate before midnight.

Wednesday (Aug 25) overnight low of 37 degrees. This morning clear above smoke (Yellow air quality) and light breeze. A lone steller jay calling. Light street traffic. Warming up, light breezes and sky covered in smoke at lunch time. Mail truck was a little late but reported no problems. Mostly cloudy, warm, breezy and quite smoky mid-afternoon – high end of Yellow air quality, high of 84 degrees. Increased traffic. Warm, breezy, mostly clear, less smoke and Yellow air quality before sunset. High thin wispy cloud over most of the sky after sunset, haze of smoke, warm and calmer. Looked clear to the east before midnight. Internet out after midnight. Still out at 6am.

Thursday (Aug 26) overnight low of 41 degrees. This morning overcast and smoky (Yellow air quality) and few minutes of “dry” sprinkles of rain evaporating on contact. A couple of very low flying airplanes. Light street traffic. Cool cloudy and smoky at lunch time. Helicopter over the village around 315pm. Warming up, mostly cloudy, light breeze and a bit thinner smoke (Yellow air quality) mid-afternoon, high of 80 degrees. Grasshoppers and a few dragonflies around, and a few long legged wasps. Mostly cloudy, warm, calmer and haze of smoke at sunset (low end of Yellow AQ.) Cooling off, partly cloudy, calm and haze of smoke at dusk. Looked hazy/cloudy before midnight.

Friday (Aug 27) overnight low of 43 degrees. This morning mostly cloudy with blue sky between clouds and light smoke (Yellow air quality) local smoke a bit thick by the Community Hall. Early air traffic. Steller jay visiting, no other birds around. Mostly cloudy at lunch time and light haze of smoke. Warmer, breezy and lighter smoke mid-afternoon, mostly cloudy to partly clear sky, high of 79 degrees. Pine squirrels gathering cones. Warm, mostly cloudy (partly clear) and lighter breezes before sunset, better air quality. Cooling off quickly at dusk, partly cloudy, calm and good air quality. A couple of bright stars to the east before midnight.

Saturday (Aug 28) overnight low of 36 degrees. This morning clear blue sky and good air (Green air quality.) OHV traffic in a hurry on main street. A steller jay visiting. Cool, clear and sunny at lunch time. Clear blue sky and pleasant temperatures mid-afternoon, light breeze and good air quality, high of 88 degrees. Two jays visiting. Warm and clear sky before sunset, thin haze of smoke (and dust) in the air. Cooling off, clear and slight haze at dusk. Looked clear before midnight, lots of stars. Late night traffic.

Sunday (Aug 29) overnight low of 36 degrees. This morning clear blue sky, and Green air quality. Very dry – street traffic kicking up clouds of dust. A couple of steller jays visiting. Clear, sunny and light haze at lunch time – smell of smoke. Warm, clear, slight haze and light breezes mid-afternoon, high of 87 degrees. Little chipmunk and 2 jays visiting. Clear sky, slight breeze and warm before sunset, slight haze of smoke and dust.


JR VanHoover

July 27, 1975 – August 28, 2021


Letter to Share:

Vaccines, masks still the best weapons in the war on COVID-19

By Gregory Irvine, MD

Eighteen months ago, I wrote in The Star-News that we were at war with SARS CoV2 and that all of us were going to have to pull together to fight this common enemy. We now know all too well what has transpired since those early days of the pandemic.

To extend the analogy, our enemy has changed tactics, mutating to multiple variants including the current Delta variant. The virus has changed its structure to be much more transmissible, and probably more virulent. That is a dangerous combination.

Someone who contracted the original version of the virus infected, on average, two to three other people. The Delta variant now infects, on average, six to seven individuals for each infected person, making it two to three times as contagious as the original virus.

That doesn’t sound like much, but when you calculate multiple generations of viral transmission, the effects are multiplied exponentially. That is why more than 90% of the new COVID-19 infections in the US and Idaho are the Delta variant. Our enemy has found a way to spread more rapidly and infect more humans, thereby increasing its survival in the environment.

The good news is that the vaccines in the U.S. remain effective at preventing hospitalizations and death from infection with the Delta variant, which has been our goal since the beginning of the pandemic. In Idaho, 98% of the hospitalizations and 98% of the deaths during the Delta surge have been in the unvaccinated.

We have learned that vaccinated patients can be colonized in their upper respiratory tracts with SARS CoV2, but the vaccine, which produces internal antibodies and cellular immunity, almost always prevents the virus from getting into their organs and making them severely ill.

No vaccine is perfect and immunocompromised people, in particular, can occasionally be sickened by the virus after vaccination. That is why the CDC changed its recommendations about indoor masking to include even vaccinated individuals.

The vaccine has become the most effective weapon that we have against this viral enemy. Misinformation abounds about the COVID vaccines, but they are incredibly safe with very rare serious adverse effects and dramatically reduce hospitalization and death from COVID-19.

The Pfizer vaccine, as of Monday, has been granted full authorization by the FDA and the Moderna vaccine will almost certainly be fully authorized soon. If you want to do your part to end this pandemic and protect yourself and your family, the most important thing that you can do is get vaccinated.

The vaccine is readily available at our local clinics and pharmacies. Our hospitals and ICUs in Idaho are overfilled with very sick COVID-19 patients, and we must do everything possible to urgently reduce viral transmission.

We are now seeing patients almost every day in our emergency room, full of regret that they weren’t vaccinated, and extremely ill from COVID-19. This includes younger people and a worrisome number of children than we saw early in the pandemic. Nationally, almost one in five hospital admissions for COVID-19 complications are now children under 18 years. It is a moral imperative that we protect the youngest among us.

The second-best measure to reduce viral spread is to always wear a high-quality properly worn (mouth and nose covered) mask in public indoor spaces and at crowded outdoor events. Despite the unfortunate misinformation about mask use, they are most effective when worn by everyone in an indoor setting outside of your home.

If we care about our students, teachers and staff in our schools, universal masking in schools is essential. If a student or teacher is unmasked in school and becomes infected, the entire class and anyone else exposed will have to be quarantined.

If that infected student is masked at school, only they will be required to quarantine. If we want our kids in school full-time and in-person this year, we must do everything possible to reduce the spread of the virus in these public spaces.

Vaccination is approved for children 12 years old and above. Studies have shown that the vaccine is extremely safe and highly effective for children in this age range. The risk-benefit ratio of vaccinating teenagers versus infecting teenagers comes down, undoubtedly, on the side of vaccination. Our children under 12 years old cannot be vaccinated yet. They are vulnerable and must be protected by universal masking in our schools.

Today, the Delta variant of SARS CoV2 is winning the war in Idaho, and elsewhere, by overwhelming the unvaccinated by sheer numbers. It is imperative that we use every weapon that we possess to stop this enemy. Get vaccinated, wear a mask. It is a civic duty and moral imperative for all of us.

(Gregory Irvine, MD, is Chief of Staff of St Luke’s McCall Medical Center.)

source: The Star-News August 26, 2021

Idaho News:

Total COVID-19 cases since pandemic’s start tops 1,000

By Tom Grote for The Star-News August 26, 2021

The total number of cases reported by the two Valley County hospitals since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020 has now gone over 1,000. The total as of this week was 1,011 cases.

A total of 57 new cases of COVID-19 were reported in the past week by the hospitals, just under the 58 new cases reported the previous week.

St. Luke’s McCall reported 47 new cases in the last week, while Cascade Medical Center reported 10 new cases.

The two hospitals have reported a total of 151 new cases since Aug. 1, which is more than double the 63 new cases reported during all of July.

St. Luke’s McCall offers walk-in COVID-19 vaccines from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at St. Luke’s Clinics – Payette Lakes Family Medicine, 211 Forest Street, McCall.

Appointments also can be scheduled online through St. Luke’s myChart or calling 208-381-9500 or by calling 208-634-2225.

Cascade Medical Center offers a daily walk-in vaccination clinic Mondays through Fridays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

full story:
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COVID-19 Updates: 834 new Idaho COVID-19 cases, 8 new deaths

August 27, 2021 Local News 8

Idaho officials reported 834 new COVID-19 cases and 8 new deaths Friday.

That brings the total confirmed and probable cases reported since March 2020 to 217,887.

The state said 813,709 people have received the vaccine, and 1,480,615 total doses have been administered. 727,815 people are fully vaccinated.

The age group with the most cases is 18-29 with 53,967 cases.

The state said 23 new hospitalizations have been reported bringing the total number to 9,730, and 6 new cases have been admitted to the ICU bringing the total to 1,612.

8 new deaths were reported bringing the total recorded deaths to 2,327.

full story: [Valley County 1065 cases 6 deaths.]
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How bad is the COVID situation in Idaho hospitals? Here’s what the data says

by Deni Hawkins 

The blue bars on the graph below show the hospitalization trends across Idaho. While not every hospital has reported data every day, it’s clear that the current surge is happening much faster than the one we saw last fall.

ICU numbers (in purple below) are also at their highest point since the pandemic started in Idaho. During the previous peak, there was a record 122 patients in Idaho ICUs on December 18, 2020. This year, we’ve spent 10 days above that benchmark, starting on August 14. On August 18, there were a record 140 people being treated for COVID in an ICU.

Idaho coronavirus hospitalization data (last update: Aug 23, 2021).

full story:
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Idaho’s worrisome COVID-19 week: Nearly 5,000 cases, 44 deaths, packed hospitals

By Idaho Statesman Aug 27, 2021 (KIVI)

There are more COVID-19 patients in Idaho ICUs right now than at any point during the pandemic, and current hospitalizations are at levels not seen since last December, according to updated data from the Department of Health and Welfare.

As of Wednesday, there were 139 COVID patients in ICU units, which is higher than the Dec. 18 peak of 122. There were also 457 patients with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 hospitalized, which is approaching last year’s peak of 496, reached on Dec. 1.

The state added nearly 5,000 COVID-19 cases this week and 44 deaths, according to Health and Welfare. Of the eight deaths recorded on Friday, two were individuals in their 40s and one was in their 30s.

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Estimates of Americans with long COVID-19, per state

Gabrielle Masson – Tuesday, August 24th, 2021 Beckers Hospital Review

About 11.1 million Americans are living with long COVID-19, according to new estimates from The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

Long COVID-19, or persistent symptoms up to six months after being cleared of the illness, affects around 30 percent of individuals who had COVID-19, according to two recent publications from the Journal of the American Medical Association. Symptoms of long COVID-19 are varied and may include neurological challenges, cognitive problems, shortness of breath, fatigue, pain and mobility issues.

Idaho = 63,197

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St. Luke’s McCall to open walk-in urgent care clinic

By Tom Grote for The Star-News August 26, 2021

A walk-in urgent care clinic that will be open every day has been announced by St Luke’s McCall.

The new clinic, expected to be open by the end of 2022, will be located in the current Allen-Nokes building on Forest Street across from St. Luke’s McCall.

The $2 million project will remodel the building to accommodate the new clinic, which will share space with the hospital’s orthopedic clinic, said Amber Green, St. Luke’s McCall chief operating officer and chief nursing officer.

The new clinic likely will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Green said. It will replace the current appointment-only same-day clinic at the nearby St. Luke’s Clinic – Payette Lakes Family Medicine

The urgent-care clinic is also intended to reduce the number of patients who now go to the hospital’s emergency room when the current clinic is not available, Green said.

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Valley County Commissioners vote against Dr. Cole for CDH Board

KIVI Staff Aug 24, 2021

The Valley County Commissioners voted against appointing Dr. Ryan Cole to the Central District Health board on Monday. The decision comes after the Ada County Commissioners voted to appoint him to the board position earlier this month.

One Valley County Commissioner, Sherry Maupin, voted in favor of Cole.

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Applications accepted to fill Valley County treasurer position

The Star-News August 26, 2021

Applications are now being accepted to fill the pending vacancy in the position of Valley County treasurer.

The selected applicant will replace current Valley County Treasurer Gabe Stayton, who has announced his resignation effective Aug. 31 due to personal reasons.

Applicants have until 5 p.m. Sept. 6 to submit an application. Applicants must be at least 21 years old, live in Valley County and be registered Republicans.

Anyone interested in the position must contact their Republican precinct committeeman to request to be nominated, or they may contact Valley County Republican Central Committee Chair Pam Thier at 208-860-1120 or

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Former Cascade police building sells for $455,000 in auction

By Tom Grote for The Star-News August 26, 2021

The building that formerly housed the Cascade Police Department was sold for $455,000 last Saturday

The building was purchased by the Scott & Angie Nunes Trust of Nampa.

“We purchased the building as an investment opportunity,” Angie Nunes told The Star-News. She declined to elaborate.

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Idaho auctions 16 Priest Lake lots for more than $13 million

KTVB Staff 8/23/2021

The Idaho Department of Lands auctioned off 16 state endowment-owned lake front lots at Priest Lake during an auction in Coeur d’Alene on Saturday.

The land sales generated $13,161,440, which is $3,560,440 over the appraised value, for the endowment fund that supports public schools, with five properties selling for the appraised value and 11 selling to competitive bidding.

The Idaho Constitution requires a public auction for the disposal of state endowment trust lands, and IDL can accept no less than the appraised value of the properties.

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Idaho potato growers brace for poor crop amid drought, heat

Where there are potatoes, there are fewer than normal, and most of the tubers are undersized and misshapen.

Associated Press August 25, 2021 (KTVB)

The hot, dry and smoky growing season has left some Idaho potato farmers bracing for a poor crop.


Labor Day Events

Yellow Pine Saturday September 4th

10am – Golf Tournament to benefit the YPFD.

4pm – Potluck at the Yellow Pine Tavern
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Meadows Valley Days will see most events return during Labor Day weekend

The 56th annual Meadows Valley Days will return with most of its usual line-up of events during Labor Day weekend in New Meadows.

The event will run Saturday, Sept. 4, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Social to return to Roseberry Sept. 4

The Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Social will return on Saturday, Sept. 4, at Historic Roseberry, located one mile east of Donnelly. The Ice Cream Social features vintage cars, children’s games, demonstrations, ham radio operators, music, food and, of course, ice cream. Many flavors will be available, with huckleberry being the fan favorite.

Ice cream is offered free but donations will be accepted to help maintain and preserve the grounds and buildings of the museum complex.
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P&IN Depot to host exhibit, yard sale Labor Day weekend

The Adams County Historical Society will have an outdoor Porch Exhibit on the porch at the P&IN Railway Depot in downtown New Meadows during the Labor Day weekend.

The exhibit will feature historical information on local porches and the valley. It will be held in conjunction with a fundraiser rummage sale at Freight Room.

The depot will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 4, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 5.
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Tamarack Resort to host ‘Bikes, Brews & Bluegrass’ Sept. 5

Tamarack Resort will help send out summer with a bang by hosting its first “Bikes, Brews & Bluegrass” celebration on Sunday, Sept. 5 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. in The Village and on the mountain.
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Meadows Valley Community Center to hold pie sale Sept. 5

The Meadows Valley Community Center will hold its annual pie sale on Sunday, Sept. 5, during Meadows Valley Days in New Meadows.

Hours will be 10 a.m. until the pies are sold. Whole pies only will be sold, no slices.
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Payette Lake Run entrants will have choice of 30K or 10K courses

Runners can race around the lake at the Payette Lakes Ski Club’s 30K or 10K Payette Lake Run on Sunday, Sept. 5, beginning at Legacy Park in downtown McCall.

The 30K run will begin at 8 a.m., and runners will make a complete lap around the lake.

The 10K run will begin at 9 a.m. Runners will head out to Lick Creek and then back.
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Sept. 4 used book sale to benefit McCall Public Library

Friends of McCall Public Library’s Used Book Sale will be Saturday, Sept. 4, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the Central Idaho Historical Museum’s lawn in McCall with COVID guidelines in place.

more info: The Star-News August 26, 2021

Public Lands:

Kirkham Hot Springs Update – Gate has been reclosed.

Boise NF Aug 27, 2021 (via FB)

Lowman Ranger District opened the gates Aug. 5, 2021, on trial basis but the Kirkham Hot Springs Day Use Area gate has been reclosed in response to increased littering and natural resource damage.

Glass has been found in the hot spring’s pools, signs have been broken and vandalized, and some visitors are not respecting the site’s open hours. Forest Service staff have reported clogged spring pipes and extensively modified upper pools which caused flooding and diverted the hot spring’s natural flow.

Hot springs are sensitive ecosystems that support specialized life forms of algae, bacteria, plants, birds, animals, and insects.

Trampling the pools’ surrounding riparian area and continually rebuilding rock walls has big consequences to those specialized critters and can even damage fish habitat downstream.

We know that most visitors respect this valuable resource, and we are working to make improvements through the Great American Outdoors Act.
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US Forest Service working to restore Idaho’s state tree

August 24, 2021 Associated Press (Local News 8)

The U.S. Forest Service is trying to bring back Idaho’s state tree to its former prominence.

Western white pine were wiped out in the early to mid-1900s by a fungus that arrived from Europe in 1910.

But efforts starting in 1950 to grow white pine trees resistant to the blister rust fungus are continuing at the Forest Service’s Coeur d’Alene Nursery, in northern Idaho.


Fire Season:

French Fire
Location 10 miles east of Riggins, Idaho
Percent of Perimeter Contained 100%
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2021 Payette Wilderness Fires
Three fires are burning in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness on the Payette National Forest. The Club, Rush Creek, and Vinegar fires were started by lightning on July 15, 2021. A Type 3 Incident Management Team took over the fires on July 19th. A closure order for trails has been put in place in and around these fires for public and firefighter safety to prevent any interference with suppression and response operations.
InciWeb: Maps and closure orders
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Boundary Fire
Salmon-Challis National Forest
The lightning-caused Boundary Fire ~2 miles W of Boundary Creek Boat Launch was detected on August 10.
InciWeb: Maps and closure orders
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Mud Lick, Haynes, and Iron Fires
Salmon-Challis National Forest
InciWeb: Maps and closure orders
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Dixie-Jumbo Fires
Nez Perce – Clearwater National Forests
InciWeb: Maps and closure orders
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Some useful links:

InciWeb Fire info
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Air Quality McCall
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National Fire Heat Map
link: (zoom in to our area)
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Fire Heat Map (Slow to load – be patient)

Weather Station at Stibnite

Real Time Lightning Map (zoom to our area)

GOES-West – Satellite Maps: Pacific Northwest

Critter News:

Water samples taken in Payette Lake after dog falls ill

Tests will seek signs of harmful toxin found in algae

By Tom Grote for The Star-News August 26, 2021

Water samples were taken in Payette Lake on Monday after a dog became ill after swimming in the lake earlier this month, Central District Health reported.

Three staffers from the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality took samples from three locations on the lake that will be tested for the toxins found in harmful algae blooms. Results of those tests are expected to be released next week.

On Aug. 17, the owners of a dog reported their pet became ill after swimming in the northwest part of the lake, DEQ Water Quality Standards Analyst Brian Reese said.

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FDA links hundreds of dog deaths, severe illnesses to recalled pet food

by WKRC Staff Sunday, August 22nd 2021 (CBS2 Idaho)

The Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers that a pet food company may be linked to the deaths or illnesses of hundreds of pets, saying the company needs to make changes.

Earlier this month, the FDA sent a warning letter to Midwestern Pet Food, Inc., citing multiple areas of concern after several inspections and recalls.

Officials say the conditions “likely contributed to the illness or death of hundreds of dogs.”

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IDFG is asking for hunters help in monitoring and preventing CWD in Idaho

By Lynsey Amundson Aug 25, 2021 KIVI

Big Game Hunting season is approaching, a season many Idahoans look forward to. But, Idaho Fish and Game is also ramping up their efforts to keep chronic wasting disease out of our state and they need hunter’s help.

“It is a pathogen that is a severe neurological degradation, so we start to see issues with brain lesions,” Dr. Nicole Walrath, IDFG Wildlife Veterinarian said. “Your neuro system between your spinal column or your brain starts to look like swiss cheese, and these animals are more likely to die earlier.”

This disease is devastating to deer and elk populations, something our neighboring states are already seeing with CWD-positive herds.

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Fish salvage ordered for 2 southeastern Idaho reservoirs

State wildlife officials eliminated limits on how many fish can be taken at Condie and Winder Reservoirs, which are being drained due to irrigation demands.

Associated Press August 26, 2021 (KTVB)

State wildlife officials have authorized a fish salvage and eliminated limits on how many fish can be taken at two southeastern Idaho reservoirs that are being drained due to irrigation demands.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game issued the salvage order this month for Condie and Winder reservoirs near Preston. The reservoirs contain bluegill, bass, perch and trout.


Letter to Share:

The Gamebirds Fall Fundraiser

The Gamebird Foundation

Preserving a legacy – Committed to ensuring thriving gamebird populations for generations to come. GIANT RAFFLE, Prize 1: Whole Heritage Pig +7 cu ft. Freezer + FREE cut and wrap; 2nd prize: 2 racks smoked BBQ ribs. 3rd prize: 4 GAMEBIRD porcelain cups. 4th prize: 4 Gamebird porcelain coasters.

Donation of $5.00/ticket or 5/tickets for $20.00. Drawing held October 10, 2021 at the Gamebird Foundation annual banquet. Winner need not be present to win.

Thank you for your support

The gamebird Foundation (TGF) is a 501©3 Organization and your donation is tax-deductible. You can order and pay for your tickets by going to (link). The payments are set in $5.00 increments so you can pay for the amount of tickets you order. Or just send a check (no cash please) to the gamebird Foundation PO Box 100, Viola Idaho. We will fill out your tickets and send you your stubs for a receipt. Any questions call me.

Jim Hagedorn
Executive Director
The Gamebird Foundation

Fish & Game News:

Tips for safely removing a bat from your house

By Terry Thompson, Regional Communications Manager
Thursday, August 26, 2021

If a bat finds its way into your home, don’t panic, there are ways to remove the bat from the house that keeps the homeowner and the bat safe.

A recent report of a rabid bat in Blaine County has raised concerns with homeowners who find a bat in their house and how to safely remove it. While the rate of rabies in bats in Idaho is extremely low, as with any wild animal, personal safety is always encouraged when handling and releasing any wildlife.

Bats, as with all mammals, are a natural host for rabies in Idaho under the right circumstances. A bite is the primary way rabies is transmitted. Other exposures that could also be considered high risk for infection include contacting nervous tissue (brain or spinal cord) from a potentially rabid animal.

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Roads on Cecil D. Andrus WMA will reopen to motorized traffic on Aug. 30

By Aaron Switalski, Wildlife Technician
Thursday, August 26, 2021

Starting Monday, Aug. 30, access roads on the Cecil D. Andrus Wildlife Management Area will be reopened to the public.

Due to seasonally dry conditions and high fire danger, WMA roads were temporarily closed to motorized traffic to mitigate the risk of fire and allow Fish and Game staff time to complete road maintenance to reduce the possibility of a vehicle-initiated fire.

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More F&G News Releases


Crazy Critter Stuff:

Adorable baby sloth snuggles up with mom in cute video

by Georgina Jadikovskaall – Zenger News Monday, August 23rd 2021

The two-toed sloth cub and its mother. The species is found in Central and South America and sleeps 15 to 20 hours a day. (Daniel Zupanc/Zenger)

A two-toed sloth born in an Austrian zoo is a big visitor attraction — and many saw it wrapped around its mother for the first time.

Tiergarten Schonbrunn Zoo in Vienna is now home to three sloths after mother Alberta and father Einstein welcomed their newborn on June 3.

Visitors observe the cub’s development, despite the fact it will cling to the hair of its mother’s back or stomach and hide there for its first six months.

continued: CBS2 Idaho

Seasonal Humor: