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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Outdoors blog archive for Jan. 1, 2011

FRIDAY, JAN. 14, 2011

Hunter haunted by local shooting comment 

OUTDOOR ETHICS -- During a public meeting Tuesday in Spokane attended mostly by hunters and anglers, Washington Fish and Wildlife Department Director Phil Anderson was asked why the state isn't more aggressive about killing wolves. Anderson explained the recent federal court ruling that returned the…

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Dining out in the duck blind

WATERFOWLING -- A friend told me today that his fingers were cramping shut after plucking waterfowl from a productive hunt. Been there, done that. Nowadays I tend to breast-out most of my waterfowl. A fun way to use duck legs is in the blind itself.…

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Oregon to charge for wildlife area access

PUBLIC LANDS -- The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission has approved an expanded permit program for state wildlife areas starting January 2012. The program will require either a $7 daily parking permit or a $22 annual permit, and will be phased in over three years…

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 Elk cross the Gardner River near Mammoth in Montana in Yellowstone National Park last April.  (Associated Press)

Yellowstone elk numbers drop suddenly

WILDLIFE -- The Yellowstone National Park elk herd, the most observed and photographed elk in the country, declined by an astonishing 24 percent in December. The annual aerial survey counted 4,635 elk last month, compared to 6,070 elk counted at the same time last year.…

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Joe Hagengruber, 10, of Helena poses with shovelnose sturgeon. Joe loves fishing and has set a goal of catching all 86 fish species found in Montana. (Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks)

Kid inspires with his zest for fishing

FISHING -- Out of Montana comes a rare story of a youngster whose life revolves around something as age-old as fishing. Joe Hagengruber, a 10-year-old from Helena -- an angler who lets his fishing rod do most of the talking --means every word when he…

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Conservation a priority on some BLM lands

PUBLIC LANDS --Conservation got an edge in management considerations on a portion of western Bureau of Land Management areas under an order signed late last year by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. Salazar's order clarifies that the Bureau of Land Management should treat conservation as a…

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THURSDAY, JAN. 13, 2011

Avalanche danger rated high region-wide

WINTER SPORTS -- Joining the Idaho Panhandle's warning posted on Wednesday, the Washington State Avalanche Center is warning of a high avalanche danger today in the Washington Olympics, Cascades and the Mount Hood area of Oregon. The center says winds and rains could weaken layers…

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Austin Andersen, 13, left, and Micah Smith, 14, use their cell phones to document a large Nordic speedboat powered by twin Chrysler Viper engines at the Spokane Boat Show Saturday, Jan. 30, 2010 at the Spokane Fair and Expo Center. Hundreds of boats, from kayaks to large cruisers, are on display, along with accessories like skis, fishing tackle and boat docks.   (Jesse Tinsley)

RVer's kick off outdoor show season

The boat, RV and sportsmen’s show season is under way, giving outdoor enthusiasts a chance to see the latest products from manufacturers and learn sporting techniques at seminars. Two notable shows won’t be in area the Spokane-Coeur d’Alene area lineup this year: The Outdoor Sports…

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Angler do-it-yourself on Yakima River

FLY FISHING -- Jeff Mayor knows the advantages of fishing with guides, especially in a drift boat on unfamiliar stretches of river. But he and two buddies had a great time recently fishing on their own in a rented drift boat on the Yakima River.…

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WEDNESDAY, JAN. 12, 2011

Muddy water in Hangman Creek generally is a signal to kayakers, canoests and rafters that the stream is in rare good form for paddling. (Rich Landers)

River runners rev up to soggy forecast

PADDLING -- The rain-on-snow event that's making Inland Northwest roads and landscapes a mess is an opportunity to behold for paddlers and rafters. E-mails were buzzing today with the possibility of a rare opportunity this weekend to run boatable flows down Hangman Creek and the…

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Avalanche bulletin: Danger rated high

WINTER SPORTS -- The Idaho Panhandle National Forests has issued a warning that avalanche danger is rated as high in many areas as a storm and changing weather conditions engulf the Inland Northwest. Mountain visitors are urged to check weather and avalanche reports, and use…

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National parks waive entrance fees

PUBLIC LANDS -- National parks will be waiving entrance fees this weekend as an incentive for families to enjoy the outdoors and national heritage. The parks will be waiving fees for a total of 17 days in 2011, including National Park Week (April 16-24), the…

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Sarah Palin sits next her husband Todd's boat in Dillingham, Alaska, in July 2010 as part of a documentary for the TLC channel.  (Associated Press)

Palin's Alaska ending despite its cable success

OUTDOORS TV -- "Sarah Palin's Alaska" concluded Sunday with the final episode of the eight-part documentary series showing the former governor and her family having assorted adventures in their home state. The show appeared ripe for a second season on the TLC channel after attracting…

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TUESDAY, JAN. 11, 2011

Canadian Ski Marathon weeds out weenies

NORDIC SKIING -- You don't have to leave North America to participate in one of the longest, toughest nordic skiing events on the planet, but it might help to brush up on your French. The annual Canadian Ski Marathon involves skiing 100 miles over two…

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Wildlife officials discuss agency cuts tonight

WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT -- Washington Fish and Wildlfie Department Director Phil Anderson is scheduled to discuss legislative proposals for budget cuts and agency mergers during a public meeting tonight starting at 6:30 p.m. at the Inland Northwest Wildlife Council, 6116 N. Market in Spokane. Deputy Director…

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A bird attacks a kite designed like it during the International Kite Festival in Ahmadabad, India, Monday, Jan. 10, 2011. Kite-flyers from 36 countries are participating in the festival which runs from Jan. 9. to Jan. 14. (Ajit Solanki / Associated Press)

Hawks higher than a kite

WILDLIFE -- Hawks aren't fond of competition in their territory, as we see in this photo of a bird attacking a hawk-shaped during the International Kite Festival in Ahmadabad, India, on Monday. Kite-flyers from 36 countries are participating in the festival. No word on how…

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MONDAY, JAN. 10, 2011

Skijoring debuts at Sandpoint Winter Carnival

WINTER SPORTS -- The 37th annual Sandpoint Winter Carnival is adding some horsepower to its 37th annual event, which runs Wednesday through Sunday between venues from Sandpoint to Schweitzer Mountain Resort. Skijoring -- horses towing skeirs on a loop track and over jumps will debut…

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Learn basics of fly tying in two days

FLY FISHING -- Winter is prime time to learn fundamentals of fly fishing before the spring waters warm and the bite is on. Here are two local opportunities: Jan. 24-25, Begining Fly Tying Course at Silver Bow Fly Shop: Learn to tie six reliable fly…

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Avalanche workshop for snowmobilers

WINTER SPORTS -- Free avalanche workshops for snowmobilers are being offered in North Idaho in the next few weeks by the state Parks and Recreation Department and the Idaho Panhandle National Forests avalanche experts. The schedule: Jan. 14-15, based in Coeur d’ Alene. Jan 28-29,…

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SUNDAY, JAN. 9, 2011

On Jan. 8, 2011, the matched pair of whitetail buck antlers above were photographed just as Rich Landers found them in the Snake River breaks.  This buck appears to have snapped his head down and shed both antlers at once.  Ah, relief.

 (Rich Landers)

New-year deer feel light-headed

WILDLIFE -- It's the shedding season for the area's deer, elk and moose. Even the biggest bucks and bulls are getting rid of their head-gear and looking a lot like the girls. In early December, Hal Meenach, a landowner south of Spokane, reported seeing the…

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Outdoors blog

Rich Landers writes and photographs stories and columns for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including Outdoors feature sections on Sunday and Thursday.

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