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Out & About

Sea Kayak Adventures has trips to the Sea of Cortez and other destinations. (Sea Kayak Adventures)
Sea Kayak Adventures has trips to the Sea of Cortez and other destinations. (Sea Kayak Adventures)

OUTBOUND – Two Coeur d’Alene-based outdoor adventure companies are the ticket for people prompted by this week’s snow and cold to start planning an active getaway.

• Sea Kayak Adventures ( is booking a variety of paddle trips to the Sea of Cortez, including tours that specialize in families, yoga or seeing gray whales.

“People have called us concerned about the violence they hear about from Mexico,” said Terry Prichard, who runs SKA with his wife, Nancy Mertz. “Mexico is a huge country and our base in Loretto is far from the danger,” he said.

For example, people who read about violence in Miami shouldn’t fear an outdoor adventure based out of West Yellowstone, Mont., he said.

Info: (208) 765-3116

New this year, SKA is leading trips to South America that mix paddling for whale-watching and trekking in Patagonia.

ROW Adventures ( is taking a fun-seeker’s twist to Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

This week, they’re featuring Adventure Tuesday. Starting at 9 a.m. they’ll be offering travel deals on spring whitewater rafting trips on the Lochsa River and summer Salmon River trips as well as far-flung tours to the Galapagos Islands.

Owner Peter Grubb said he’s keeping details secret until Monday, but since ROW operates in 17 countries, there could be discounts on trips ranging from Idaho to Croatia.

Like Black Friday, the deals will be limited and first-come first-served, he said.

Sign up for a Monday e-mail with the list of deals by calling (800) 451-6034 or e-mail

Christmas tree permit required

OUTCUT – Ho, ho, ho! It’s time for many to honor the family tradition of heading to a national forest to cut down a Christmas tree.

The first stop should be to a U.S. Forest Service office to get a $5 permit. Families can purchase up to three “tags.”

In Spokane, get the permits in the federal map and information center at the BLM office, 1103 N. Fancher Road Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

The Coeur d’Alene River Ranger District offers a “permit by mail” system. Get the order form online at (

Use the tree-cutting expedition to help forest managers. Drive or walk up little-used back roads or even gated roads and cut trees growing within the road prism – from the top of the cut bank to the bottom of the fill slope. This helps to reduce the number of trees that grow large and encroach on the road.

Private land access improves for hunters

OUTFIELD – Private farm and ranch acreage enrolled in Washington’s “hunting by written permission” program has increased since last year, the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department says.

Lands posted with the familiar yellow signs and landowner contacts have increased by 57,939 acres since last year to a total of 634,610 acres in Eastern Washington.