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Field reports: Volunteers spiff up Spokane River, Dishman Hills

The team from GreenCupboards.com, a Spokane-company started by a student team from Gonzaga, participated in the Spokane River Cleanup Oct. 2, 2011 and received a prize for hauling a huge, heavy, phonebooth out of the River, and up a very steep bank.
 (Courtesy photo)
The team from GreenCupboards.com, a Spokane-company started by a student team from Gonzaga, participated in the Spokane River Cleanup Oct. 2, 2011 and received a prize for hauling a huge, heavy, phonebooth out of the River, and up a very steep bank. (Courtesy photo)

OUTSTANDING – Volunteers celebrated National Public Lands Day in a big way last weekend with hard-working turnouts for two major annual events:

• Dishman Hills Service Day – About 60 volunteers worked on habitat restoration, noxious weed control; volunteers included Gonzaga University students and geocachers, with support from REI and Avista.

• Spokane River Cleanup: More than 600 volunteers collected 8,067 pounds of trash and debris. Of that 2,537 pounds of material were recycled.

Lewis and Clark won the High School Clean Up Cup with 48 student volunteers.

City of Spokane won the corporate cup for participation.

Coming up: Friends of the Bluff High Drive Work Project, scheduled Saturday, encourages users of the popular South Hill trails to help thin and prune the area to reduce fire danger while retaining natural look of the area. Info: Diana Roberts, 477-2167, robertsd@wsu.edu.

Outdoor programs scheduled this week

Nature – Dan Matiatos, Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge manager, will talk about refuge history and recreational opportunities for Coeur d’Alene Audubon, 7 p.m. Tuesday at Lutheran Church of the Master, 4800 N. Ramsey Road.

Fly fishing – John Shewey, veteran angler and author, will present a free program on fly fishing for steelhead, 7 p.m. Wednesday at St. Francis School, 1104 W. Heroy, for the Spokane Fly Fishers.

Birds – Mike Rule, Turnbull Wildlife Refuge biologist, will talk on bird-monitoring research, 7 p.m. Wednesday at Riverview Community Building, 2117 E. North Crescent Ave.

Coming next week: Outdoor Diva Night, 5:30-8:30 p.m., Oct. 18, at REI involves 25 presenters talking about a range of activities geared to helping women get involved with outdoor activities. Topics include snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, cycling, running, climbing, camp cooking and more.

The featured presentation is Dr. Lisa Bliss, a local ultramarathoner who did a self-supported run from the bottom of Death Valley to the top of Mt. Whitney.

Preregister: rei.com/Spokane.

Commission endorses Idaho ballot initiative

ELECTIONS – Idaho’s Fish and Game commissioners have endorsed a constitutional amendment establishing the right to hunt, fish and trap in the state. The amendment was approved by lawmakers earlier this year with light opposition.

The commission says its legal authority to regulate hunting, fishing and trapping and requiring licenses is not impacted by the amendment.

During legislative debate, supporters claimed inscribing such rights into the constitution protects against potential action by animal-rights groups to curtail those activities.

It needs majority support from voters in November to be added to the constitution.

Wildlife agency goes Spanish on Web

WILDLIFE – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has launched the first of several planned Spanish-language websites: fws.gov/pacific

/es_site/index.html.



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North Idaho trail volunteers needed

UPDATED: 11:08 a.m.

The Idaho Trails Association is looking for volunteers to work on two North Idaho trail projects this summer. The first project, Russell Ridge, runs July 22-28. The week-long project aims to repair a ridge-top trail in the Selkirk Mountains of North Idaho. Water, food and camp gear will be packed in and a cook provided. Work will include digging tread, cleaning water bars and reconstructing trail.