In brief: Turnbull youth hunt applications due

Youths up to age 16 who’ve passed their hunter education requirements have until tomorrow to enter a drawing for a blind in the 2014 Youth Waterfowl Hunt at Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge.

The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service will open up to eight hunting blinds at the Cheney-area refuge to a limited-entry hunt during Washington’s Sept. 20-21 youth-only waterfowl season.

Two hunters under the age of 16 and the accompanying non-hunting adults (at least 18 years of age) will be allowed at each site.

Applications, one per hunter, are being accepted at the Refuge or by mail through tomorrow:

• Submit applications on a standard U.S. Postal Service postcard and include the youth’s full name, address and telephone number.

• Youths may apply with a youth friend or youth sibling on the same application.

• Mail postcards to Refuge Manager, Turnbull NWR, 26010 S. Smith Rd., Cheney, WA, 99004.

Drawing results will be posted on the Refuge website and letters of confirmation and a youth waterfowl hunt brochure will be mailed to selected youths by the end of August.

A workshop will be held in partnership with the Spokane Chapter of the Washington Waterfowl Association to select hunting sites and provide waterfowl identification and hunting tips on the Saturday prior to the hunt.

Youths under 16 need a state hunting license and migratory bird validation but not a federal migratory waterfowl stamp.

Info: Turnbull Refuge headquarters, (509) 235-4723.

Backcountry hiking

A North Idaho conservation group has led group trips to acquaint the public with special backcountry areas this summer.  Some choice Inland Northwest destinations remain on the schedule in August and September.

Experienced leaders with the Idaho Conservation League have stepped up to organize the treks – mostly hikes but also some kayak paddles. The treks have ranged from easy to strenuous.

Assess your abilities accordingly as you check out these offerings:

• Sunday, West Fork Lake and peak – Moderate 6- to 7-mile hike in the Selkirks, Bonner Ferry Ranger District.

• Aug. 31, Snow Lake – Moderately strenuous hike of nearly 10 miles roundtrip in the Selkirk Mountains, Bonners Ferry Ranger District. Option to scramble to West Fork Peak for fantastic views of the Selkirk Crest.

• Sept. 6, Chimney Rock – A moderately strenuous 11-mile roundtrip hike from the Pack River to the iconic granite spire of the Selkirk Crest.

• Sept. 7, Upper Priest Lake kayak – Paddle up the “Thorofare” from Beaver Creek Campground area, at least 6 miles round trip.

• Sept. 12, Trout and Big Fisher lakes – A moderately strenuous 12-mile round- trip hike to a pair of nifty mountain lakes.

Visit the ICL website, idahoconser- vation.org, or call (208) 265-9565 to sign up for these trips and to see other trips listed for September.

Fire danger

Extreme fire danger has prompted the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to join Washington state agencies in prohibiting campfires in Eastern Washington, including in developed recreation areas.

The federal agency is prohibiting fire of any type on lands it administers on the east side of the state.

Bicycling events

Whether you want to stay close to Spokane or travel across borders to new terrain, August and September offer a huge assortment of organized bicycling events to pique your interest in pedaling.

On the Web

Check out details and contacts under Rich’s Links/Calendars at spokesman.com/outdoors.

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Rich Landers

Rich Landers

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