Tomorrow, the House Natural Resources Committee will vote on a piece of critically important legislation for wildlife, the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, and we need your help in asking Idaho Congressman Russ Fulcher to vote “yes”!

Idaho houses some of the most iconic wildlife in the nation including bighorn sheep, mountain goats, and anadromous salmon and steelhead. But those species, and hundreds more in Idaho, are at risk. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act would provide $1.4 billion annually to state and tribal wildlife agencies across the nation. The money would aid local, on-the-ground work benefitting hunters and anglers and anyone who appreciates Idaho’s diverse and iconic wildlife species.

Please join us in asking Representative Fulcher to stand up for Idaho’s sportsmen and women through his support of this monumental legislation.

Follow THIS LINK to email Congressman Fulcher.

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Christmas Party details 2019

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It is that holiday time of year when the generous members of Back Country Horsemen – Squaw Butte Chapter donate food, funds and pet supplies to local organization in Gem county.

Food & Funds will be collected at the December monthly chapter meeting Thursday December 5th, and at the Holiday Pot-Luck Saturday December 7th.

2019 Food-Pet Drive Information

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http://www.bcha.org/home-mem/
http://www.bcha.org/education/

US Forest Service Trail Fundamentals

As a BCHA member who communicates to the Forest Service on public trail issues should be familiar with the trail fundamentals that include five key concepts that are cornerstones of Forest Service trail maintenance and management, Trail Type, Trail Class, Managed Use, Designed Use, and Trail Design Parameters.

The US Forest Service provides a website with training material and documents on Trail Classification, or as it is referred to on the site is Trail Fundamentals.

This training was given to BCH members at a previous national convention, it is available for download.

Introduction to Trail Classifications, Download – PDF, and PDF1
Part 1 –Why we need to be Concerned, Download – PDF, or PPT Presentation
Part 2 – Understanding Trail Fundamentals, Download – PDF, or PPT Presentation
Part 3 – Approaches for Obtaining and Validating Data, Download – PDF, or PPT Presentation
Part 4 – Example Responses, Download – PDF, or PPT Presentation
Planning Process, Download – PPT Presentation

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You are receiving this newsletter because you have an active Membership or have purchased a gift membership with Life Flight Network.

We know there are many reasons why you have purchased a membership and we thank you for this support. Membership not only protects you and your family members from ANY out-of-pocket expenses when transported by Life Flight Network or a reciprocal partner, it also contributes to the transport costs for patients for whom we receive little or no reimbursement. Your membership fees also support emergency medical services in your community. For instance, last year Life Flight Network provided over 300 education and safety trainings across the Northwest and Intermountain West for EMS, law enforcement, ski patrol, etc., and all was done free of charge. We want to ensure in your time of need, our EMS partners and Life Flight Network are coordinated. Together we are providing the timely and world-class care you deserve.

Are you ready for winter? Whether it’s time to stay in where it’s warm or get out in the great outdoors for some adventure, your decision to remain a member with Life Flight Network is a good one. We have you covered. Throughout 2019 we have continued to focus on the highest levels of Customer Service, Patient Care and Safety.
Life flight 2019 Fall Newsletter

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This is a reminder that Giving TrailsDay is 12/3/19. Our goal is $5,000. Two very generous donors are matching your donation up to a combined $1,500! But why stop there? Facebook will also match up to $7 million, on a first come first serve basis, so you must make your donation on our BCHA Facebook page at 8:00 a.m. ET, 5:00 a.m. PT on 12/3/19. 100% of your donation comes to BCHA when donated through Facebook and supports our work of keeping trails open for you! Click the above dates to easily add this important date to your calendar.

And watch this fun video of the amazing work we’re doing sent in by Danny Riddle, High Desert BCH, Nevada!

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1OmvrZS20V5gKgjD_evXbJJaIYk3GQXH7/view?usp=sharing

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Heather Donesky
Sunday, November 10, 2019

Rob, thanks so much for being the fearless leader on our ride in the Wilson Creek area of the Owyhee’s and for bringing a horse for Elena. She had a great time and she looked pretty comfortable most of the time. Her experience out on trails is very limited. I’ve really lucked out with Natasja. She is bold, curious and unafraid of work, so she pitches in and helps me, making these adventures easier. Plus she rides very well.
Again, thanks.
Heather

Natasja (Denmark) and Elena (Spain) are high school exchange students spending a year in the Emmett area. Both are amazing young woman.

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Back Country Goat Packing

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AMAZONSMILE – how to sign up (BCHI Foundation)

About AmazonSmile

What is AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from over one million organizations to support.

How do I shop at AmazonSmile?

To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to smile.amazon.com to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.

Which products on AmazonSmile are eligible for charitable donations?

Tens of millions of products on AmazonSmile are eligible for donations. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their product detail pages. Recurring Subscribe-and-Save purchases and subscription renewals are not currently eligible.

Can I use my existing Amazon.com account on AmazonSmile?

Yes, you use the same account on Amazon.com and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same.

How do I select a charitable organization to support when shopping on AmazonSmile?

On your first visit to AmazonSmile smile.amazon.com, you need to select a charitable organization to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. We will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make at smile.amazon.com will result in a donation.

Can I change my charity?

Yes, you can change your charity any time. Your AmazonSmile purchases after the change count towards your newly selected charity. To change your charity, sign in to smile.amazon.com on your desktop or mobile phone browser and simply select “Change your Charity” in “Your Account.”

What charities can I choose from?

You can choose from over one million eligible 501(c)(3) public charitable organizations.

What if my selected charity does not register to participate in the AmazonSmile program or becomes ineligible?
If your selected charity does not register to participate, becomes ineligible, or requests to be removed from the program, you will have a chance to select a different charity to receive the accrued donations that have not yet been disbursed to your charity. If you do not select a different charity, the accrued donations will be distributed to other organizations receiving donations.
If I represent a charitable organization, how can I learn more about registering my organization for AmazonSmile?

Go to org.amazon.com to learn how to register your organization to receive donations.

How much of my purchase does Amazon donate?

The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases. The purchase price is the amount paid for the item minus any rebates and excluding shipping & handling, gift-wrapping fees, taxes, or service charges. From time to time, we may offer special, limited time promotions that increase the donation amount on one or more products or services or provide for additional donations to charitable organizations. Special terms and restrictions may apply. Please see the relevant promotion for complete details.

Can I receive a tax deduction for amounts donated from my purchases on AmazonSmile?

Donations are made by the AmazonSmile Foundation and are not tax deductible by you.

How can I learn more about AmazonSmile?

Please see complete AmazonSmile program details.

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05. November 2019 · Comments Off on Boise and Payette National Forests begin Christmas tree permit · Categories: Around The Campfire, Public Lands

Boise National Forest; 1249 S. Vinnell Way, Suite 200; Boise, Idaho 83709
(208) 373-4100     https://www.fs.usda.gov/boise
Contact: Linda Steinhaus     Phone: (208) 373-4106

Boise and Payette National Forests begin Christmas tree permit sales Nov. 23

Boise, Idaho November 1, 2019 –The Boise and Payette National Forest (NF) vendors will begin selling Christmas tree permits Saturday, Nov. 23. On Monday, Nov. 25, permits will be available at Boise and Payette NF District Offices and the Interagency Visitor’s Information Center located at 1387 South Vinnell Way in Boise, 83709. All tree permits are valid to Dec. 25.

Each permit allows one tree to be cut, with a limit of three permits per family. For both Forests, the cost of a permit for one tree is $10. The maximum height of a permitted tree is 12 feet. Permits are valid on both the Payette and Boise NFs. Forest offices will provide information about where a Christmas tree may be harvested, restrictions and helpful tips. A Christmas tree permit is for personal use only and the use of permits for commercial use is prohibited. Permits are not refundable for any reason. Purchaser must be at least 18 years in age.

In coordination with the “Every Kid Outdoors” program, fourth-graders who are participating in the program can receive a free Christmas tree Permit. The U.S. Forest Service is among several federal agencies that support the Every Kid Outdoors initiative which is a nationwide call to action to build the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts. The initiative provides a free pass to all fourth-grade students by going to: https://everykidoutdoors.gov/index.htm. Complete the voucher, print it and bring it to the Forest Service office.

To receive a free Christmas tree permit, the fourth-grader and a parent must go to a Forest Service office in person with the “voucher” they received from the online website at: https://everykidoutdoors.gov/index.htm

 Commercial vendors will not be issuing a free Christmas tree permit to participants of the Every Kid Outdoors program, and free Christmas tree permits cannot be sent through the mail or electronically.

Participation in the Every Kid Outdoors program also offers benefits at National Parks and on other public lands and facilities across the United States.

“Harvesting a Christmas tree is a fun adventure and often a traditional family event,” said Ruth Rieper, Boise NF Tree Coordinator. “Please review the Christmas tree brochure and map for optimal areas.”

If an unusually heavy snowfall occurs in southwest Idaho, and forest roads become a safety concern for the public, some areas may be closed early to Christmas tree gathering. Forest roads are not plowed. Call ahead and check websites for road conditions before heading out. Please do not block private or county roadways at any time. For further information call the Boise NF at: 208-373-4007 and check out our website for updates and closures at:

https://www.fs.usda.gov/alerts/boise/alerts-notices.

To provide for family safety, officials advise a few simple guidelines:

  • Use the brochure with instructions provided.
  • Practice winter survival and driving techniques.
  • Bring the right tools, such as a saw and a shovel, so the tree can be cut to within 6” of the ground’s surface.
  • Take along emergency equipment, plenty of food and water, and try to use a 4-wheel drive vehicle if you are planning to travel in snow country.
  • Always inform neighbors and family friends of the route you intend to take, include a map of your destination, and the time that you plan to be gone.
  • Be prepared for the possibility of a long hike or snowmobile ride while searching for the perfect tree.
  • According to Idaho state law, any vehicle carrying a load that extends more than 4 feet past the tailgate, must display a red or florescent orange flag tied on the end of the load to caution other drivers.

The Idaho City Ranger District 208-392-6681

3833 Highway 21; Idaho City, ID  Hours: M-F 8 a.m– 4:30p.m

Idaho City may or may not be open on weekends. Please call ahead.

 Lowman Ranger District 208-259-3361

7359 Highway 21;  Lowman, ID 83637

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Emmett Ranger District 208-365-7000

1857 Highway 16, Suite A;  Emmett, ID 83617

Hours: M-F 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Cascade Ranger District 208-382-7400

540 North Main Street;  Cascade, ID 83611

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

 Mountain Home Ranger District 208-587-7961

3080 Industrial Way;  Mountain Home, ID   83647

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

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02. November 2019 · Comments Off on Alert – BCHA Tahoe National Forest Lawsuit · Categories: BCHI /BCHA

As Chairman, I want to communicate directly with you about litigation that BCHA and its partners filed last week in Federal District Court in order to protect our ongoing use and enjoyment of national forest trails. BCHA rarely enters into litigation. The last time we did so was in 2006, when the US Forest Service unilaterally, and without seeking public review and comment, proposed a change in its Trail Classification Standards that would have harmed the interests of BCHA and its membership. We ended up settling that lawsuit with the agency and, remarkably, our relationship ended up stronger as a result.

Tahoe National Forest Authorization of Electric Bikes on 132 Miles of Non-Motorized Trails

On October 23rd, 2019, the Western Environmental Law Center (WELC) filed a lawsuit with the Eastern California Federal District Court on behalf of BCHA, BCH California and its Mother Lode Unit, The Wilderness Society and two local organizations over the Tahoe National Forest’s stealth authorization of electric bike (e-Bike) use on 132 miles of non-motorized trails. The authorization happened early this summer and without any opportunity for public review, comment, and environmental analyses. The text of the lawsuit can be found here. For more background on this and the broader e-Bike issue, please refer to the Public Lands Report in BCHA’s Fall 2019 newsletter.

BCHA has never been quick to support litigation. It can result in strained relationships and comes with several potential downsides, including not yielding the result we might want. But in this case, members of our co-plaintiff team were consistently rebuffed by personnel from the Tahoe National Forest when we inquired about this (unannounced) change in policy. In addition, our joint “demand letter” to the Forest Supervisor, which we submitted on September 9, 2019, went unanswered. Given the magnitude of pressure being exerted by e-Bike proponents on federal land management agencies, we felt compelled to take a stand.

Objectives of the Lawsuit

Our primary objectives for filing this lawsuit were to compel the Tahoe National Forest to rescind its approval of e-Bike use on non-motorized trails, close these trails to e-Bike use, and to cease advertising the new system of trails via the forest’s website. If the agency still felt compelled to re-designate trails for e-Bike use, we would insist on a public process where all stakeholders could review and provide formal comment. We further hope the lawsuit will act to place a “freeze” on any national forest that might be poised to authorize e-Bikes on non-motorized trails in the absence of a transparent and public process.

Next Steps

WELC has yet to be notified about which judge the District Court will assign to this case. Importantly, the filing of the lawsuit should not affect your day-to-day interactions with the US Forest Service. If anything, it might serve as a feather in our cap that demonstrates to agency personnel BCHA’s commitment to, and support of, the need for a full public process when decisions are made that affect trail classification standards and trail management objectives. I would be interested to hear from you if, however, you receive any negative feedback from Forest Service personnel regarding the lawsuit. It never hurts to better understand any criticisms leveled at BCHA and our tactics in keeping pack and saddle stock trails open and enjoyable to our membership.

Should you or your chapter receive any inquiries from the press/media about this case, please convey that BCHA’s spokesperson on this issue is Randy Rasmussen, BCHA’s Director for Public Lands & Recreation (WildernessAdvisor@bcha.org). Please refrain from providing your personal opinion to the media, as BCHA wants to ensure our public message remains consistent with that of our fellow co-plaintiffs.

Working Proactively to Address Threats to Our Mission

I hope you’ll agree that by taking this action, BCHA is being proactive on behalf of our membership in order “to perpetuate the common sense use and enjoyment of horses (and mules!) in America’s backcountry and wilderness.” I believe this is yet another valuable role that BCHA serves our 31 states and nearly 200 chapters. Moreover, BCHA’s exploration and implementation of this lawsuit was done in close coordination with, and with the unanimous support of, BCH California and its Mother Lode Unit. As Chairman, it’s another example of the incredible value that is realized when all three elements—BCHA national, BCH state, and the local BCH chapter—work in unison to advance the interests of our membership.

Respectfully,  Darrell Wallace Chairman

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27. October 2019 · Comments Off on 6 wilderness first aid training videos · Categories: Education

Wilderness Medicine | Patient Assessment

Wilderness Medicine | Focused Spine Assessment

Bleeding Control: Venous Bleeding

Bleeding Control: Arterial Bleeding

Improvised Traction Splint | Wilderness Medicine

Wilderness First Aid – Field Training

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25. October 2019 · Comments Off on BCHA Alert: Motorized Electric Bikes Off Non-motorized Trails · Categories: BCHI /BCHA, Public Lands

***************************************************************************************
Key points about electric motorized bikes

America’s backcountry should not be motorized.

E-bikes do have a place on public lands – they should be allowed in places designated for motorized vehicles.

The bicycle industry should not be dictating policy about how our public lands are managed. There is a public procedure for travel management policy on these lands.

As outdoor recreation in general becomes increasingly motorized, trails reserved for non-motorized use become even more vital to the millions who prefer travel by foot, cross country skis, horseback or traditional mountain bikes on our shared public lands.

Motorized bikes will disturb wildlife deeper into their backcountry habitat.

“Non-motorized” means no motors. So allowing any motorized vehicles onto non-motorized trails violates that principle, and it would signal the beginning of the end for non-motorized trails on our wild lands.

Any kind of electric bikes on non-motorized trails would undermine nearly a half century of policy and practices. It would be unmanageable and send federal land agencies down a slippery slope toward further motorization of our trails and backcountry.

The agencies that manage our national lands do not have the resources to monitor or police e-bikes on trails.

Like many other groups that care about trails on our public lands, we strongly oppose any effort to change existing trail management rules or policies and encourage all federal land management agencies to reject any effort to open non-motorized trails to e-bikes or other motorized vehicles.
**********************************************************************************************

Subject: California Groups Sue to Keep Motorized Electric Bikes Off Non-motorized Trails in Tahoe National Forest

We’re a plaintiff here. Our statement is below, which highlights the California partners in the suit.  Press statement below, talking points attached as a heads up.  Thanks Alison Flint, Michael Carroll et al for the heavy lifting.

Michael Reinemer

Deputy Director, Communications Strategy

1615 M Street N.W. Washington DC  20036

202-429-3949 | cell 703-966-9574

The Wilderness Society The Wilderness Society Action Fund

California Groups Sue to Keep Motorized Electric Bikes Off Non-motorized Trails in Tahoe National Forest

Dramatic change in trail policy was made without public input

SACRAMENTO, October 23, 2019 – Backcountry trail and forest groups in California joined together in a suit filed today that challenges the U.S. Forest Service decision to allow motorized bikes to operate on non-motorized trails in the Tahoe National Forest.

Plaintiffs in the suit include the Gold Country Trails Council, Backcountry Horsemen of California, Back Country Horsemen of America, the Forest Issues Group and The Wilderness Society. The groups are represented by the Western Environmental Law Center.

Helen Harvey, President, Gold Country Trails Council, Nevada County 

“Allowing motorized bicycles on non-motorized trails meant for hikers, backpackers and equestrians poses risks and conflicts for the many visitors who enjoy that type of quiet recreation.  It also undermines the trail building and maintenance time and money our volunteers have contributed in the Tahoe National Forest for decades.”

The groups cite several violations of law and policy, including the Travel Management Rule, which confines motorized transportation to certain trails to prevent harm to nature and conflicts with other trail users. Also, the Forest Service did not assess the environmental impacts of its decision, as required by the National Environmental Policy Act, one of the nation’s bedrock conservation laws.

Background
The Tahoe National Forest recently permitted “Class 1” electric mountain bikes on more than 130 miles of trails that had been developed and managed for hiking and other non-motorized uses. The Tahoe already has about 2,500 miles of trails and roads available for motorized uses.

The Tahoe’s decision undermines long-standing travel management laws and policies that help ensure higher quality recreation experiences for both motorized and non-motorized users, prevent avoidable damage to water, wildlife, and other resources, and alleviate public safety concerns and conflicts between users.

Prior to opening non-motorized trails to motorized bicycle use, the Tahoe National Forest should have followed the required travel management planning procedure, which is a public process that includes analysis under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Sometimes called the Magna Carta of conservation law, NEPA requires environmental analysis and public participation in federal decisions that affect public lands.

Earlier this year hundreds of trail advocates and conservation groups sent a joint letter to federal land management officials opposing any effort to allow e-bikes on non-motorized trails. The letter noted that non-motorized trails were created to ensure that the public could find recreational trail opportunities free from the ever-growing motorization and mechanization of our public lands. Millions of public land users including hikers, backpackers, hunters, horse packers, climbers and mountain bikers value non-motorized trails for recreation.

Additional comments from plaintiffs

Randy Hackbarth, President, Back Country Horsemen of California, Mother Lode Unit
“We are disappointed that the rules for using trails in this wonderful natural area were changed behind closed doors without public participation. This is particularly disappointing for our members who are proud of the stewardship and care they bring to the non-motorized trails on public lands. “

Lloyd Erlandson, President, Backcountry Horsemen of California
“This move by the Forest Service would benefit the e-bike industry at the expense of the users that non-motorized trails are supposed to serve. The appeal of quiet recreation and the quality of wildlife habitat in California will suffer unless this decision is reversed.”

Darrell Wallace, Chairman, Back Country Horsemen of America
“This decision sets the stage for motorizing America’s backcountry, which violates the principles and partnerships that we have worked so hard to secure over many years. We believe there is a place for motorized bikes, but non-motorized trails – by definition — are not the right place.”

Susan Jane M. Brown, Staff Attorney, Western Environmental Law Center
“The Forest Service cannot simply disregard its own rules when it comes to allowing electric bikes on non-motorized trails on the Tahoe National Forest. With this lawsuit, we seek to compel the agency to follow those rules.”

Alison Flint, Director, Litigation & Agency Policy, The Wilderness Society
“The Tahoe’s decision violates decades of established laws and policies designed to ensure that decisions about where motorized recreation occurs on our shared public lands are subject to public input and environmental analysis. Motorized bicycles are not exempt from those requirements.”

Contacts:
Randy Rasmussen, Back Country Horsemen of America, WildernessAdvisor@bcha.org, 541-602-0713
Michael Reinemer, Wilderness Society, michael_reinemer@tws.org, 202-429-3949
Alison Flint, Director, Litigation & Agency Policy, The Wilderness Society, Alison_flint@tws.org, 303-802-1404
Sangye Ince-Johannsen, Western Environmental Law Center, sangyeij@westernlaw.org, 541-778-6626

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24. October 2019 · Comments Off on Vinyl Truck or Trailer Signs – Squaw Butte Logo · Categories: Around The Campfire

Squaw Butte Signs
615 S. Washington Ave
Emmett, ID 83617
208-365-2285

They have this Squaw Butte Pattern.  These are going on my Truck Doors.

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22. October 2019 · Comments Off on US Public Land Workers Getting Assaulted, Threatened on Job · Categories: Public Lands

Federal employees overseeing U.S. public lands were assaulted or threatened at least 360 times over a five-year period marked by heightened tensions with anti-government groups.

  • PUBLISHED 21 OCTOBER 2019

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Federal employees overseeing U.S. public lands were assaulted or threatened at least 360 times over a five-year period marked by heightened tensions with anti-government groups, according a Congressional watchdog agency.

The Government Accountability Office in a new report highlights anti-government tensions that at times have boiled over. That includes the six-week armed occupation of a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon in 2016, and other standoffs with armed protesters in Montana and Nevada.

The Associated Press obtained GAO’s report ahead of its scheduled release.

It cataloged incidents ranging from threatening phone calls to the stabbing of a Bureau of Land Management worker outside a federal building. Some of the assaults triggered FBI domestic terrorism investigations, although the precise number was not disclosed because it is considered sensitive information.

The report did not say whether rates of assaults and threats were increasing. But it noted a dwindling number of federal officers patrolling the nation’s vast forests, parks, wildlife refuges and other open spaces, which cover more than 670 million acres (1.1 million square miles) primarily in 12 western states.  Read More

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21. October 2019 · Comments Off on 2019 Hours & Miles – Squaw Butte Chapter · Categories: BCHI /BCHA

2019 PRESIDENT Year End Report
2019 Volunteer Miles-Hours SummarySquaw Butte Hours and Miles Summary 2019-2014

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14. October 2019 · Comments Off on Tripod Peak – Fall Ride [TR-131] south · Categories: Fun Rides

Sunday morning October 13 dawned clear but cold. There was frost on the truck windshield and a snap to the air. Looking at the peaks, a light frosting on snow was still visible from the front that had come through earlier in the week. Our last chapter ride was planned for the Tripod peak area, north west of Smith Ferry off forest road 626 with parking planned at Sage Hen meadows.Members started arriving at the meadows by 10:00 and all were saddled and ready to go by 10:30. In the shade snow lingered and the gravel road to the trail head was frozen and had hard packed snow on it that made for some slippery footing at times. Our party was eight riders and all were excited to be up in the mountains one last time with our stock. The trail bed was frozen in the shade but softer in the sun, making for some tricky footing at times, but the stock did well and we make good time up the trail. After riding for 90 minutes and gaining over a thousand foot of elevation we crested a ridge into a meadow with some logs and rock to sit on and stopped for a shack in the sun and enjoyed the views. We had traveled 3.5 of the 5.2 miles up the the fire lookout. The trail bed was getting slicker as the sun melted the snow so we choose to turn around and make our way back to the trailer. As this was the first weekend of deer season we expected that highway 55 would be heavy with south moving traffic later in the afternoon and wanted to avoid it if possible. It was a great ride and all who attended left with pink cheeks and smiles.

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07. October 2019 · Comments Off on 2020 Raffle Calendars Available · Categories: BCHI /BCHA

CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

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03. October 2019 · Comments Off on Idaho Wildlife Federation – Public Lands Blog · Categories: Current Events, Public Lands

LINK TO BLOG

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02. October 2019 · Comments Off on Squaw Creek Trail – TR-131 North · Categories: Fun Rides, Work Parties and Projects

On Saturday September 21, 2019 Squaw Butte members Kathy Luke, Rob Adams, Lisa Griffith, Kelly Wilkerson, Ron Fergie, David Benson, Shelly Duff & Kelly Ragland meet at the camping area along Squaw Creek near the trail head for the Squaw Creek(tr-131) and Poison Creek trails (tr-134).  Some of the members had come up on Friday night others were making this project a day ride.  Squaw Creek TR is 18 miles north of Ola, ID in the West Central mountains.By 10:00 we were saddled and on the trail, it is a short ride from camp to the trail head up the access road to the TH parking area.Bill & Marybeth Conger had been up a couple weeks before so the first few miles had been cleared of downfall, but we stopped and did some brushing were the trail was becoming overgrown.

This trail is rocky with some large slabs of granite, on one we stopped for a snack.

When we reached the point where Bill & Marybeth turned around, we started encountering down fall. We also encountered a group of bow hunters with stock. They were hiding in a bush next to a small clearing and became very unhappy when we pulled up, got out the saws and when to work removing a large tree that was blocking the trail. They left to go hunt elsewhere.

By 16:00 we were back at the trailers, having removed 14 down trees and over 1/4 mile of brush. This trail need a crew to go spend a week, doing a major brushing job and some tread work. All had a great time!

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30. September 2019 · Comments Off on Free Evening Education Classes CPR & Stop the Bleed · Categories: Education

20190930CPR-Classes

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26. September 2019 · Comments Off on BCHA – Electric Bikes on Public Lands · Categories: BCHI /BCHA
Electric Bikes Coming to Trails Near You?
BCHA has been diligently working the past two months on the rapidly-evolving issue of electric bike (e-Bike) use on federal public lands. Please see our two-page fact sheet that describes what BCHA and our partners are doing to prevent e-Bikes from being universally authorized on non-motorized trails within our national parks, national forests and BLM public lands.
As always, if you have concerns regarding this issue, I encourage you to share your concerns in writing with your local land managers and/or elected officials. Given that this issue is heating up, I ask that you please copy BCHA’s Director for Public Lands & Recreation on any such correspondence. His email is: WildernessAdvisor@bcha.org
Sincerely,
Darrell Wallace, Chairman

For more information in the fact sheet click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DnyOC4C49eZ60d1hoN4hhCktFhS8ibNLTKCPktbY6N0/edit?usp=sharing

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22. September 2019 · Comments Off on Ethical Practices for low-impact recreating · Categories: Around The Campfire, Education

Filmed in cooperation with the Bridger-Teton National Forest, this video goes over ethical practices

This video goes over ethical practices for low-impact recreating on backcountry public lands. When your enjoying your forests, remember whatever you pack in, you need to pack out. Leave nothing but your footprints. Camp at least 200 feet from lakes, rivers and streams to protect the watersheds. Try to avoid having campfires at all, but if you do have a campfire make sure you have cleared fuels down to mineral soil and when you leave, make sure it is dead out and cool to the touch. If you use rocks to make a fire ring make sure to dismantle the ring. Hang your food in bear country at 100 yards from your camp, at least 10 feet off the ground and 4 feet from any horizontal structures. Leave your forest cleaner than you found it. PLAY VIDEO

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22. September 2019 · Comments Off on Katie Wood, new Emmett District Ranger · Categories: Around The Campfire, Current Events

Boise, Idaho, September 16, 2019—The Boise National Forest welcomes Katie Wood, as the new District Ranger in Emmett.

Katie served as the Boise District, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Support Services and Operations Chief since February 2017. She has overseen a wide diversity of areas including: emergency stabilization and rehabilitation, engineering, heavy equipment, GIS, administration and noxious and invasive weeds.

“I look forward to working in cooperation with the public while serving in this role. My goal is to ensure the Emmett Ranger District is managed in a way that takes into account the needs of current users without losing sight that future generations will need, and rely on, public lands as much as we do. This is particularly relevant given the Emmett Ranger District’s proximity to Idaho’s largest population center and the mixed uses which occur on this land.” Said Katie Wood, Emmett District Ranger.

Her tenure as Challis-Yankee Fork District Ranger (Salmon-Challis National Forest) provided her critical experience in managing challenging natural resource issues including: threatened and endangered species, forest and rangeland management, restoration, recreation, and special uses.

Katie has completed a variety of details over the past 10 years including Assistant Field Manager, Planning and Environmental Coordinator, Forest Headwaters Reserve Manager, and Disaster Program Specialist for the United States Forest Service in Washington D.C.

Emmett District Ranger      Katherine.wood@usda.gov      208-365-7000

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19. September 2019 · Comments Off on Restore Our Parks & Public Lands · Categories: Current Events, Public Lands

Link to the Bill

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18. September 2019 · Comments Off on 9/12/2013 Middle Fork trail near Boiling springs campground · Categories: Fun Rides, Work Parties and Projects

Posted by Marybeth Conger

Another great ride with Bill Conger and our trusty four legged friends Cherokee, Scout, and Sis on the Middle Fork trail, near Boiling Springs campground, Boise National Forest. The scenery on this beautiful fall day was awesome. Completed some much needed trail clearing too with a chain saw and our mighty muscles. It just doesn’t get much better than this. If you look closely at Bill’s left lip, he is starting to smile.

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03. September 2019 · Comments Off on Trailmeister – Ode to Trail Workers · Categories: Around The Campfire, BCHI /BCHA

 

Many guidebooks, most maps, and the entire www.TrailMeisterwebsite are devoted to a series of squiggly lines. We study those streaks of ink, dream of being on them, and spend an inordinate amount of money to get to and follow them. Those of us that enjoy a life spent out of doors, and especially trail riders, spend a large amount of time on trails. But have we stopped for a moment to appreciate the trail workers who create and maintain the trails beneath us?

I’m not sure how many trail miles I’ve covered over the years. Between day rides,  frequent pack trips into wilderness areas, and even a few backpacking excursions over the past decades, I’d venture that the number foots well into the thousands, perhaps even into five digit territory.

Generally those miles have been made with little thought to the origins of the trails. Instead I often think about the upcoming views, the quality of the fishing, and where the next place to water the mules lies in the distance ahead. Despite the time I spend on the trail I rarely consider the hard work and efforts that go into creating the paths that grant us access into these hallowed places. Aren’t trails meant to be unnoticed?

Trail wokersIf you believe that your land managers (or trail fairies, take your pick) are able to maintain trails I can tell you about a Gilligan’s Island trip into the Pasayten Wilderness where a 3 hour ride became an 8 hour ordeal of trail clearing.

This past summer I had the opportunity to join groups of concerned riders for work projects across the Pacific Northwest.  People from hundreds of miles away loaded their trucks and trailers to join together to clear trail, rebuild equestrian camps, and reconstruct bridges in the Wilderness, with members of Back Country Horsemen of America.  READ MORE

Wilderness Work Party Video – Wilderness Work party in the Pasayten Wilderness of Washington with the Back Country Horsemen.

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03. September 2019 · Comments Off on Interior Secretary Bernhardt orders ebike access on National Parks & BLM Land · Categories: Around The Campfire, Current Events

By Bruce Brown September 2, 2019 6:38AM PST

Department of the Interior Secretary David Bernhardt signed an order that allows ebike access on federal land. Effective immediately, ebike riders can travel anywhere conventional bicycles are allowed on federally managed public lands.

The purpose of the order is “to increase recreational opportunities for all Americans, especially those with physical limitations, and to encourage the enjoyment of lands and waters managed by the Department of the Interior.” The specific effect is to simplify the rules for using electric bikes on federal lands and to reduce confusion for riders and enforcement personnel.  READ MORE

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01. September 2019 · Comments Off on Problem elk in Sweet removed · Categories: Around The Campfire

On Monday Aug. 19, the Sheriff’s Office assisted Idaho Fish and Game officers with removing a problem bull elk from the Sweet area. This animal had been had raised by a citizen who assumed that the calf was abandoned.

Fast forward approximately one and a half years and this elk calf had grown into large and very strong young bull with nearly two-foot of antlers. Given his hand raising and close interaction with humans he has no fear of humans; he also has no concept of his size and strength. We had several reports from Sweet residents that the elk was in the road causing a hazard, walking up to people and even one report of a woman being licked on the face while she was seated in her vehicle. This elk had become a hazard and potentially dangerous as well.

With the fall coming and the rut nearing he had begun to show some mild aggression towards people. The Idaho Department of Fish and Game decided that the elk would be captured and released elsewhere away from humans. On the morning of Aug. 19, the elk was located in the front yard of a Sweet residence. After attempts to lead him into a stock trailer failed he became skittish and the use of a net gun was employed. This is a tool that IDFG uses to capture wild animals for collaring or studying. This allows IDFG to capture without harm to the animal or people and without the use of drugs to sedate the animal. The elk was captured and loaded into the trailer unharmed and was later released far from human habitation.

Unfortunately, too often, well intentioned people remove young wildlife from their natural habitat believing the animal to be abandoned or in need of help. Please, if you come across a wild animal that you think is abandoned or in need of assistance do not remove that animal from the wild. Report the information and location to your local IDFG office and allow the conservation officers investigate. Animals that are removed from the wild and allowed to be handled become accustomed to people can become dangerous when they reach adulthood. They also have difficulty associating and assimilating with their own species. Reintegration of these animals is rarely successful.

October 21 Update

A human-habituated bull elk from the Sweet, Idaho area has found a “forever” home in Texas.

After six weeks at a Fish and Game facility, the elk left Idaho early Thursday morning, ultimately bound for Texas A&M University where it will become part of the school’s wildlife management and veterinarian programs.

The elk will join a number of native and exotic wildlife species which roam the university’s animal paddock including white-tailed deer, fallow deer, zebra, addax antelope and ostrich.

“Of the alternatives available, A&M was the best place for this elk to land,” Fish and Game wildlife veterinarian Dr. Mark Drew noted. “He will be well cared for and enjoy a good life at this world-class facility.”

Drew and his staff spent countless hours securing the needed paperwork to get the elk to the lone star state. Brucella and tuberculosis testing, chronic wasting disease certification, veterinary visits, transport and import permits and USDA Veterinary Services approval from Washington D.C all needed to be conducted or in place before the elk could leave Idaho.

The 400-pound bull elk, illegally removed from the wild in the spring of 2018 and raised in captivity, became a potential safety risk to the community of Sweet this summer as it roamed the streets and showed no fear of humans. The elk was captured and released in Bear Valley with the hope that it would integrate with wild elk herds in the area. Instead, the animal sought out humans, resulting in its recapture. That’s when the search began for an accredited facility that could take the animal.

Fortunately, Texas A&M University answered the call.

“This young bull elk is in a good place now,” Drew noted.

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31. August 2019 · Comments Off on Panel Shelter – 24 x24 corral with two 12 x 12 covers · Categories: Around The Campfire


I was at D&B the other day and a U of fence panels with a arched roof caught my eye. The roof was called a corral shelter and covered a 12 x 12 space, they were storing pellet stove fuel in it.  The price seemed reasonable and I had seven unused regular panels and a gate panel and got the idea to build a 24 x 24 feeding and shelter area.  I purchased two corral shelters and an extra panel to divided the area into two 12 x 12 feeding areas.
I assembled the first shelter frame in place on top of the supporting panels spending a lot of time standing on a ladder,  it took me about three hours and was sort of a pain. To build the second one, I contacted Terry MacDonald who came over and we had the second one build and placed on top of the fence in a bit over an hour. As only one frame could sit on top of the center fence panel, the other one had to be bolted to the first with some spacers, this approach seems to be working quite well.  I needed enough space between the two shelters for the covers.
Side panels are available, but sort of $$ so for this winter I used 12 x 10 plastic tarps.I have about 8 hours total in putting it together, and hope my stock will enjoy using it when it is raining or snowing this fall/winter. // Rob Adams

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27. August 2019 · Comments Off on Anonymous Bike Advocate Trolls Local Government With Passive-Aggressive Trail Signs · Categories: Around The Campfire


After Jefferson County Open Space officials posted signs asking bikers to exercise caution, a vigilante trail user posted more etiquette signs — for everyone. And it was glorious. READ MORE

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21. August 2019 · Comments Off on THE BCHI STATEWIDE CHALLENGE · Categories: BCHI /BCHA

“Squaw Butte Chapter President Ron Fergie presents $500.00 check to the BCHI Foundation President Bill Holt” says BCHI’s Roving Reporter

SBBCH challege check – Read More!

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19. August 2019 · Comments Off on Squaw Butte’s Member Bill Selkirk – Wilderness Volunteer Pack-In · Categories: Work Parties and Projects

Link to more pictures
It is a long way from Mattawan, Michigan to Stanley, Idaho but member Bill Selkirk has made that trek a number of year to work on projects with the Squaw Butte chapter. Life long friend of Rob Adams, Bill joined BCHI in 2004, and has participated in both packing support and trail clearing project. The latest is a pack-in support project for the Wilderness Volunteers.Central Idaho’s Sawtooth National Recreation Area and Sawtooth Wilderness are known for the rugged grandeur of their soaring 10,000 foot peaks, flowery mountain meadows, crystal clear lakes, towering alpine forests, and abundant wildlife, including elk, mountain goats, black bear, wolves, wolverines and pikas! Backpacking and hiking are spectacular in this country, and trout fishing is exceptional in backcountry lakes and streams. Our journey will begin at the beautiful Stanley Lake – just a few miles outside of the alluring mountain community of Stanley, Idaho. The area has several accessible hot springs, historic sites and other great places to play in and explore.

Our service project will be trail maintenance in the remarkable Sawtooth Wilderness. We’ll set up a base camp at McGown Lakes at 8505’ elevation after a backpack of 7.9 miles with 1,900′ elevation gain with pack support for tools, food and commissary supplies. Crew will camp at McGown Lakes and hike about a mile to project location on other side of 8,800’ pass. Our project will be to assist the Forest Service to complete trail maintenance of many of the trails out of our basecamp at McGown Lakes. Most of the work will be focused on heavy trail maintenance and tread repair (Iron Creek – Stanley Lake Trail 640) above Sawtooth Lake. Tread will need to be regraded to standard width with hand tools, rocks removed with hand tools and some rock wall constructed. Free time can be spent exploring the ever beautiful Sawtooth Wilderness – relaxing, fishing in alpine lakes, taking pictures, or setting off on a more strenuous hike to the secluded Trail Creek Lakes.

We highly recommend that those coming from low elevation (anything below about 5,000 feet) plan an extra couple days in the area before the trip to acclimate to the elevation for your own safety. Altitude sickness is a concern when traveling from low elevation to high elevation and getting acclimatized before the trip is one of the easiest ways to prevent it. If you need ideas on things to do/see before the trip contact your leaders.Trail Head at Stanley Lake
Elevation: 6,525.59 ft. Lat: 44.255891 Lon: -115.046060

McGown Lake
Elevation: 8,517.06 ft. Lat: 44.178483 Lon: -115.076432

On Saturday August 17, Tom Zahradnicek, David Benson, Bill Selkirk and Rob Adams joined a Wilderness Volunteer seven member crew and Bryce Parker (Sawtooth lead wilderness ranger) at the Stanley Lake overflow area. The WV crew were going to back pack in their personal stuff, while we were packing in tools, kitchen and food. Between us we had seven pack stock and it look like they were going to have light loads.  During the night one of David’s mules got her self tangled in high line and lead rope and ended up on her back with her legs tied up like a calf at a rodeo.  She seems to have suffered no major damage, but in the morning had a very swollen leg and a nice limp so David and his stock needed to head back to Caldwell and not into the mountains.  With five pack stock left, we divided the gear and built loads and by 09:30 were heading up the trail for the 9.8 miles to McGown Lake.

The trail up Stanley creek canyon is a very easy ride for about 2/3 of it length with a number of crossings of the creek for water opportunities for the stock. The last section to the saddle that crosses into the Payette river drainage is a number of switch backs up a steep and rocky wall. At the sign for McGown lake the trail turns into a goat path that climbs over a ridge and down into a basin that contains a number of ponds and small lakes, the largest and most scenic we left the equipment we packed in.At 5 pm we arrived back at the trailers, tired, sore and very satisfied at the days work. Bill will be heading out soon to visit his brother in New Mexico, but he will have some great memories of his day in the Sawtooth mountain visiting an area he had not ridden before. Link to more pictures

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17. August 2019 · Comments Off on Four Rivers RMP needs a Sportsman’s Voice · Categories: Current Events

The Bureau of Land Management is accepting comments on the Four Rivers Field Office Draft Resource Management Plan until August 22nd. Once finalized, the RMP will guide the management of 800,000 acres of public land within an 8-million-acre planning area spanning from the Bennett Hills, across the Boise Front, and to the banks of Brownlee Reservoir for at least two decades.

You can submit your own comments here.

Several hundred pages (and even three pages of acronyms) spell out the proposed management each alternative would take, comparing them to the current condition and management directive. Fire management, minerals and energy, wildlife, recreation, grazing, cultural resources, socioeconomics – you name it, it’s evaluated in this plan.

The BLM has set a range of alternatives with varying degrees of resource extraction availability, wildlife protections, and access considerations. Idaho Wildlife Federation urges the BLM to take proactive measures to protect highly productive chukar habitat, pronghorn and mule deer winter range.  READ MORE

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17. August 2019 · Comments Off on Endangered Species Act · Categories: Current Events

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15. August 2019 · Comments Off on SRA-Bull Trout Lake · Categories: Horse Camping

Aug 2019 – Marybeth Conger

“There is nothing better than having one of your favorite trail friends get that itch!” says Marybeth Conger. Cherokee and Scout are showing us how to get the job done.

Just got home from an amazing backcountry trip. Four great days near the Warm Springs trail head, ID with Bill Conger along with Lynn and Peggy Garner. Our four-legged animals all got along, the weather was absolutely great, we saw some breathtaking backcountry views, and the food/meals got an average 4.5 star rating. All of us had fun even when we cleared trails on two of the riding days. Just need to log our volunteer trail clearing hours since they give the BCH organization leverage in terms of the financial impact they have.

This trip is why I joined the Backcountry organization some 30 years ago. Great riding adventures with friends as we put our mighty muscles to work clearing trails. One difference I did notice between then and now is how I only have so many “get on and offs” before I start groaning!

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14. August 2019 · Comments Off on Bolder-White Cloud PT – Sage Writer Trail Log 8-3-2019 · Categories: Around The Campfire, Horse Camping

Pictures & Story by Laurie BryanRead the whole story / Link to Pictures

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12. August 2019 · Comments Off on BCHI & Idaho Horse Council · Categories: BCHI /BCHA, Current Events

BCHI 2019 IHC report / Link to Web Site

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12. August 2019 · Comments Off on Happy 75, Smokey · Categories: Around The Campfire, Current Events, Education

A Better Way to Think About Wildland Fires

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10. August 2019 · Comments Off on Back Country 911 – When training and having the right tools produce a good outcome! · Categories: BCHI /BCHA, Education

911, when Cell phones are not an option

On Wednesday August 7, 2019 Lisa was thrown from her horse while on a pack trip with other BCHI members in the Frog Lake area of the Bolder White Cloud Wilderness.  Many of the members on this trip had attended one or more Wilderness First Aid training opportunities and their training kicked it.  It was quickly determined that Lisa had suffered a major trauma with possible injury to her head, neck, back and pelvic regions.  It was obvious that advance medical treatment was called for and air evacuation was her best option.

 Accident > inReach[SOS]GEOS Response CenterIdaho State Comm’sLife Flight dispatch  > Advanced medical help arrives

BCHI Education 911- READ MORE

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03. August 2019 · Comments Off on Sawyer – Using & Maintaining Crosscut Saws · Categories: Education, Public Lands

Visit Dolly Chapman’s Website for lots of great information

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24. July 2019 · Comments Off on My First Trail Project – Wilson Corral – West Central Mountains · Categories: Work Parties and Projects

Today, I really enjoyed the opportunity to help clear the Wilson Creek Trail near Ola, Idaho. It’s great to ride and work with a well-organized team and also with a talented and knowledgeable leader like Rob Adams. I had a great time and even at my age and long-time trail experience, I still learned a lot from Rob.

I look forward to the next adventure and wish there was more activities on the calendar I can’t wait to go again.

Thanks again!

Tom Zahradnicek



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23. July 2019 · Comments Off on Wilderness Ranger Intern – Blog Posts · Categories: Around The Campfire, Public Lands

Wilderness Ranger Inter Blog Posts

Briana Bienusa- Wilderness Ranger Intern – Montana State University

Marble Creek Drainage/Salmon-Challis National Forest

Read Briana Blog

Kris Mueller, Iowa State University
Wind Lakes / Grave Peak, Nez Perce / Clearwater National Forest

Read Kris Blog

Connor White – Wilderness Ranger Intern – Appalachian State University
Big Creek Bridge / Bitterroot National Forest

Read Connor’s Blog

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18. July 2019 · Comments Off on Scoot Boot · Categories: Around The Campfire, Tips, Tricks and Tid Bits

Visit Web Site 

Sizing

Fitting Video

Evaluation after 1 1/2 years

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16. July 2019 · Comments Off on BCHW Work Crew – Trail head project · Categories: Around The Campfire, Horse Camping

We visited Washington’s Haney Meadow horse camp and ran into a BCHW Work Crew. They’re a hard working group of dedicated group of people who are making the horse camp even better. Here’s a great conversation that we had with a few of the folks in the Back Country Horsemen of Washington making the Haney Meadow horse camp great again.


For more info on Haney Meadow and the Ken Wilcox horse camp here’s the link! – https://www.trailmeister.com/trails/haney-meadow-ken-wilcox-horse-camp/

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15. July 2019 · Comments Off on ITA – Alice Lake Packing Support · Categories: Public Lands, Work Parties and Projects

Camping location at the Tin Cup trail headTrail to Alice Lake
July 13 & 14   Alice Lake Pack-In
July 20th   MORE PICTURES & PACK-OUT

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09. July 2019 · Comments Off on BCHI Sawtooth Wilderness Project · Categories: BCHI /BCHA

All,

After extensive research I have decided not to commit to clearing the trails from Redfish lake to Spangle Lake for Idaho Business for the Outdoors the end of July first part of August.

I do not feel we have time or manpower to guarantee we could accomplish the work without checking the trails out before hand. FS said you can not access the area until after July 15th and there are often avalanches across the trail, plus no grazing is allowed for the entire length of the trails that they want cleared. There is no way to know if it would take two days to clear the 20 miles of trail or two weeks or more and I did not feel comfortable making a commitment that we could not fulfill.

Thanks to everyone that give me information and contacts as well as a few of you willing to help clear the trails.

Thanks, Rod Parks BCHI Chairman

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09. July 2019 · Comments Off on 5 day Applied Equine Podiatry class · Categories: Education

IDAHO 5 day course flyer 2019

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