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Trails conference set in Spokane

Trail enthusiasts of all persuasions are invited to the 2008 Washington State Trails Conference on Oct. 3-4 at the Spokane Convention Center.

The 10th annual conference, making its first appearance in Spokane, will offer informative sessions and breakouts presented by non-profit organizations and government leaders at the local, state, and federal level, said Kaye Turner, executive director for Friends of the Centennial Trail and local director for the conference.

“If past experience is any indication, this gathering, sponsored by the Washington State Trails Coalition, will be well attended by all those who travel by foot, bicycle, kayak, snowmobile, cross-country ski, off-road vehicle and horseback,” Turner said.

Attendees can sign up for pre- and post-conference trips to visit stand-out trails in this region, including the Centennial Trail, Fish Lake Trail, and (for kayakers) the Little Spokane River Trail.

Said Turner, “This is a conference for “the dreamers, advocates, planners, funders, builders, users, and volunteers who make Washington state such a great place to recreate.”

Info: Kaye Turner, 624-7188.

Preregistration and details:

Rich Landers


Salmon returning to White Salmon

Reaches of southwest Washington’s White Salmon River devoid of salmon for 90 years should again be teeming with spawners this autumn.

In preparation for next year’s removal of Condit Dam, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is transporting 500 fall chinook tule salmon past the dam and releasing them upstream to spawn, said agency spokeswoman Amy Gaskill.

The spawners are fish that returned to the federal agency’s Spring Creek National Fish Hatchery as well as wild spawners returning to the river being trapped by a research team, she said.

The hatchery’s tule program was started with wild broodstock from the White Salmon River 100 years ago, Gaskill said.

The transport effort began Sept. 8 and continues through Oct. 2.

Condit has long blocked salmon’s upstream passage. It was completed in 1913, equipped with a fish ladder. But the ladder washed out in 1918 flooding and was never replaced.

Dam removal will give fish access to about 14 miles of chinook and 33 miles of steelhead habitat that has been blocked since the dam was built.

Staff and wire reports


World traveler pedals in Spokane

Free-wheeling entertainer Willie Weir, who’s ridden his bicycle through India, Turkey, Thailand and Bosnia, to name a few of the highlights, will be in Spokane on Wednesday to present a program of anecdotes, observations and photographs on this travels.

“Scooters In the Bike Lane,” will start at 7 p.m. at the WSU Riverpoint Campus, South Campus Facility (next to The Bookie) at 410 Spokane Falls Blvd.

The program is a benefit for the Bicycle Alliance, eastern Washington office. Cost: $10 in advance from North Division Bicycle Shop, $12 at the door.


Rich Landers


Hunting areas going to pot

Hunters might stumble across marijuana plantations this fall in remote, difficult-to-access areas of forests in north-central Washington.

Last month, police found about 74,000 marijuana plants throughout the Okanogan- Wenatchee National Forests.

The Forest Service recommends that tunters who discover marijuana plants or planting activity should leave the area immediately and report the discovery to law enforcement personnel.

Marijuana plantations often can be identified by forest damage, terracing, rat poison, fertilizer bags, plastic irrigation pipe, wire fencing and litter.

Staff and wire reports