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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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Copyright © 2001 Express Publishing Inc.
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For the week of January 16 - 22, 2002


Success story

It was welcome news to learn that one of the last threatened stretches of Silver Creek will be protected with a conservation easement.

With conservation easements, landowners receive tax benefits in exchange for agreeing to limit development on property like the 510 acres and one mile of creek frontage included in the new easement. They are a winning solution for owners, the public and wildlife.

The new easement on Silver Creek was granted by new property owners John and Elaine French, and will be administered by the Nature Conservancy. The easement limits development to two homes and some outbuildings placed well away from the world-famous trout stream.

Silver Creek is a magnet for fishermen and wildlife enthusiasts from all over the world. The Nature Conservancy’s Silver Creek Preserve is famous for its stewardship of this Blaine County jewel.

Over the years, property donations and easements from many landowners have protected the creek’s crystalline waters and riparian areas while not infringing upon agricultural activities.

Silver Creek’s fate likely would have been quite different without the support of people like the Frenches. Its banks could be lined with streets and houses instead of willows, grasses, and a multitude of birds. Its streambed could be the disposal route for street runoff and agricultural waste, instead of a blue-ribbon trout stream. It could be renowned as an ecological disaster instead of a delight.

The generosity of many people and the efforts of a fine conservation organization have protected the wonder of this desert stream for generations to come. Silver Creek is a success story that should inspire others to lend their efforts to the art of the possible.


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.