BLM: Off-roading can damage lands
The Bureau of Land Management is reminding off-road-vehicle users to avoid "mudding" in wet meadows and riparian areas. Recently, a sensitive meadow in Martin Canyon near Bellevue was found to have deep tire tracks and spin-outs next to a designated roadway, destroying the meadow complex, compacting soils and opening the area to accelerated erosion and infestation of weeds.
"Riparian areas are important habitat for wildlife," said BLM Shoshone Field Office Manager Ruth Miller. "When an area is disturbed like this, noxious weeds will take root, replacing good vegetation with bad."
Miller said BLM works diligently with its partners and livestock permittees to manage riparian areas in a way that maintains wildlife habitat.
"It could take years to restore the riparian area that took minutes to destroy," she said.
Anyone with information related to the destruction of the area is asked to contact Miller at (208) 732-7200.
Idaho tourism shows signs of hope
BOISE, Idaho (AP)—Idaho's $3 billion tourism industry is showing fledgling signs of recovery, with outfitters among those who expect their businesses to expand this year after the poor economy caused guests to stay away during the past two years.
Karen Ballard, tourism chief at the Idaho Department of Commerce, said revenues from the 2 percent bed tax on hotel, motel and private campgrounds were up statewide in May and June, which could indicate an improved summer tourist season.
That's after the tax revenue had dropped for 19 straight months.
New maps aid motorized use of trails
Recreationists looking for motorized-vehicle trails in the Salmon-Challis National Forest can now procure motor-vehicle-use maps online or at various ranger districts.
The new maps designate routes open to motorcyclists and ATV users and can be found at www.fs.fed.us/r4/sc/recreation/Travel Plan. Some listed routes may not be open due to ongoing inspections by the Forest Service, but will be opened as work is completed.
Forest Service spokesman Kent Fuellenbach stated in a press release that the new maps should be used with the Salmon-Challis National Forest maps, which are more detailed.
Motorized users who discover errors in the new maps are encouraged to notify the local district ranger. Forms for error recording are located at the district offices and at the supervisor's office in Salmon.
YAK members volunteer in Boise
St. Luke's Wood River took three Wood River Middle School and four Wood River High School YAK members to volunteer at the Idaho Food Bank in Boise on Friday, June 25.
The students learned first-hand how the Idaho Food Bank helps those in need in the Wood River Valley. They were also responsible for bagging 1,400 pounds of dehydrated refried beans. St. Luke's YAK is planning to volunteer at the Boise Zoo, Boise Rescue Mission and on the Boise River throughout the summer.
For details, call 727-8735 or visit stlukesonline.org/YAK.
Help 'Chairs for Chair-ity'
The nexStage Theatre in Ketchum is seeking artists, designers and architects to create an art piece from a chair or table in any medium for its "Chairs for Chair-ity" benefit on Saturday, Sept. 18. An artists' reception with works on view for silent auction will take place Tuesday, Sept. 14, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For details, call 726-9124 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Allred sets event in Hailey
People can meet Democratic candidate for governor Keith Allred at a garden party hosted by Hailey resident Steve Kearns on Sunday, July 11, from 1:30-3:30 p.m. at 231 Broadford Road.
RSVP to email@example.com. A suggested donation is $25.
Land Trust hires coordinator
Hailey resident Erika Green Philips will join the Hailey-based Wood River Land Trust on July 19 as project coordinator.
According to a news release, Phillips will work on projects such as the new boardwalk along the Big Wood River west of Hailey and the Hulen Meadows floodplain north of Ketchum.
She holds a master's degree in resource ecology from Duke University.
"I am excited about this opportunity to promote conservation and habitat restoration here in the Wood River Valley," Phillips said.