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Outdoors blog archive for Jan. 1, 2014

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 10, 2014

Soaring high: A bald eagle wheels patiently high above Lake Coeur d’Alene on Friday during the annual gathering of eagles in December to feast on spawned-out kokanee salmon. Though fewer in number than in other years, several birds were feeding Friday near Higgens Point on Wolf Lodge Bay with others stationed around Beauty Bay. (Jesse Tinsley)

34 bald eagles counted at Lake CdA 

WILDLIFE WATCHING -- Carrie Hugo, U.S. Bureau of Land Management wildlife biologist, counted 34 bald eagles today in the Wolf Lodge Bay area of Lake Coeur d'Alene. That's up from 18 eagles counted last week during her weekly survey. Two weeks ago she counted only...

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A a bike-ski-raft traverse of Alaska's Denali is among the great wilderness adventures documented by wilderness adventure traveler and filmmaker Luc Mehl. (Luc Mehl)

Wilderness endurance traveler to present program

ADVENTURE – Alaska wilderness endurance traveler and adventure filmmaker Luc Mehl will present a program featuring some of his mind- blowing expeditions, 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 15, at Mountain Gear Corporate Office, 6021 E. Mansfield in Spokane Valley. Mehl has traveled more than 4,000...

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TUESDAY, DEC. 9, 2014

A buck white-tailed deer in December. (Jaimie Johnson)

Whitetail buck a warrior, survivor

WILDLIFE WATCHING -- The dust has settled from the rut. Whitetail bucks are licking their wounds and trying to recover their strength after the rigors of avoiding hunters while displaying dominance and winning the chance to mate. But it's a tough life, even for the...

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Colchuck Lake in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness photographed Sept. 15, 2012, under smoky skies from nearby forest fires. (Stephanie Akker)

Wilderness compromises don't please everyone

PUBLIC LANDS -- While some groups are pleased with compromises that have prompted Congress to finally take some action on wilderness bills and other public lands initiatives, some groups say the deals went too far. Groups ask senators to pull public lands package from defense...

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MONDAY, DEC. 8, 2014



Firefighters hold two mountain lion cubs rescued from under a burning log in this Aug. 29 photo provided by Bitterroot National Forest in Montana. A fire crew working near the log heard the cubs. (Associated Press)

Time to apply for Forest Service seasonal jobs

OUTDOORS -- The U.S. Forest Service is employing a new centralized hiring process for temporary or seasonal jobs in national forests throughout Oregon and Washington. The new phased process started last week. The deadline to get applications turned in is shorter than in the past....

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FRIDAY, DEC. 5, 2014



The early morning sun hits fresh snow on Steamboat Mountain in the Rocky Mountain Front Range as a pickup travels south on Interstate 15 near Ulm, Mont., on Wednesday. A storm dumped large amounts of heavy, wet snow across parts of Montana on Tuesday evening. 
 (Associated Press / The Spokesman-Review)

Congress finally gives wilderness a nod 

PUBLIC LANDS -- Congress shook its inability to work across the aisle this week and passed public lands legislation that's been years in the making. The U.S. House on Thursday passed a defense spending bill containing a broad public lands package for the West. In...

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THURSDAY, DEC. 4, 2014


Reese Witherspoon stars in the movie Wild, depicting a woman trying to find herself by hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.

Will Reese Witherspoon spur a backpacking boom? 

HIKING -- Industry insiders are wondering whether the soon-to-be-released movie "Wild" featuring Reese Witherspoon will provide the boost for backpacking that A River Runs Through It, featuring Brad Pitt, bestowed on fly fishing. The buzz is already buzzing. “The movie follows the book by Cheryl...

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WEDNESDAY, DEC. 3, 2014


The winter gathering of migrating bald eagles peaks in mid-December at Lake Coeur d’Alene. (File)

Bald eagle gathering grows at Lake CdA

WILDLIFE WATCHING -- Bald eagles are finally showing some interest in their traditional winter feast of spawning kokanee at Lake Coeur d'Alene. Carrie Hugo, U.S. Bureau of Land Management wildlife biologist, counted 18 bald eagles today in the Wolf Lodge Bay area. That's up from...

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Wind and waves regularly greet visitors to the isolated beaches and towns that span along the beautiful Oregon coastline.  (Associated Press / The Spokesman-Review)

Oregon state parks eliminate winter discounts

PUBLIC LANDS — Oregon state parks are ending their annual winter discounts on camping fees. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department says the across-the-board discounts will be replaced by targeted deals starting next year. The 20-year-old “discovery season” program reduced tent and recreational vehicle campsite...

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Theodore Roosevelt stands with a saddled horse in the Badlands of Dakota Territory in 1884. Roosevelt originally came to what is now North Dakota to hunt buffalo and was enamored with the rugged, beautiful territory of the badlands. (Theodore Roosevelt Center)

Nominations open for Washington's Outdoor Hall of Fame? 

OUTDOOR PEOPLE — Montana’s Outdoor Legacy Foundation and several other co-sponsoring conservation and historical organizations will announce the first round of inductees into the newly formed Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame on Saturday. The first batch of 12 inductees includes people still alive and some...

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TUESDAY, DEC. 2, 2014


The north-central Washington sun gods shine on Sam Schlieder of Spokane Valley as he cross-country skis along the Echo Ridge Nordic Trails near Lake Chelan.  (Rich Landers / The Spokesman-Review)

Chelan's Echo Ridge nordic ski area open

WINTERSPORTS -- The snow that had accumulated on Mount Spokane's cross-country ski park last week was rendered to a few inches of ice and hardpack by the rains that followed. Be patient. But as we reported yesterday, the Methow Trails are groomed and open for...

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Cacti and yarrow survived in the blackened landscape of the Big Cougar Fire at Idaho's Craig Mountain Wildlife Management Area. (Idaho Fish and Game)

Idaho won’t charge hunter who killed 2 rams 

HUNTING -- A hunter from Washington who shot two bighorn sheep on Craig Mountain in Idaho will not be charged. An Investigation by Idaho Fish and Game determined the shooting was a freak accident. Authorities issued a written warning to the hunter, Kevin Klumper of...

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Idaho sockeye salmon success could be blueprint 

FISHING -- The fishing scene is roughly beginning to resemble the good-ol' days on the Snake-Salmon river systems of Idaho. You've read about the spring and fall chinook plus the coho comeback this year. Here's the latest good news on sockeye recovery. By KEITH RIDLER/Associated...

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The avalanche that killed a Bozeman snowmobiler and partially burried another as they were riding in the Gallatin Mountains of Montana on Jan. 1, 2014. (Gallatin National Forest)

Avalanche safety course for snowmobilers Dec. 10

WINTERSPORTS -- A free snowmobile-centered Avalanche Safety Course is being offered by on Dec. 10, from 6:30 p.m.-9 p.m. at Liberty Lake, Wash. Pre-registration required. Contact Blair Geiger, email Blair.Geiger@idpr.idaho.gov or call (208) 769-1511 Approximately half of all avalanche fatalities are snowmobile related, says Idaho...

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Outdoors blog

Rich Landers writes and photographs stories and columns for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including Outdoors feature sections on Sunday and Thursday.




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