BOATING – North Idaho boat inspection stations will open Thursday to help protect waters of Pend Oreille and Priest watersheds from aquatic invasive species.
Idaho law requires all watercraft, including non-motorized vessels, to stop at a station.
Boats should be “clean, drained, and dry” when they come through inspection points, officials said.
The Bonner Soil & Water Conservation District will manage three stations:
•Samuels Station on U.S. Route 95 north
•Oldtown on U.S. Route 2
• South of Athol on Idaho Highway 95
Another inspection station is planned for Highway 200 at the Idaho-Montana border.
The stations will be open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. daily through Sept. 15.
The Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention program is funded by sticker sales, raising about $750,000 after being enacted last year.
New this year:
•Fees for required invasive species stickers have been increased to $7 for canoes, kayaks and drift boats and $22 for motorized vessels registered out of state. Only inflatables less than 10 feet long are exempt from the fees.
•A $1.50 vendor fee for sticker purchases.
•Sticker fees are covered in registration fees for motorized boats registered in Idaho.
•Stickers also will be sold at the new inspection stations.
Boats transported on highways present a high risk of carrying aquatic invaders such as quagga and zebra mussels, milfoil and mudsnails.
Info: (208) 263-5310; tinyurl.com/IDboat
Forest Service allows filming
FORESTS – After Idaho Gov. Butch Otter sent a letter to the U.S. Forest Service objecting to the agency’s denial of permission for Idaho Public Television to film a group of students in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness – on grounds that the public TV station’s filming is “commercial” – the Forest Service has now changed course. The agency announced Friday it would allow the filming.
Betsy Z. Russell
TRAILS – The Route of the Hiawatha rail trail is open for the season.
Info: (208) 744-1301; www.skilookout.com.