|Rifle hunting seasons are kicking in statewide as of today ...|
Well, it's that time of year again ... General deer season opens statewide today, Thursday, Oct. 10, and it runs through the end of the month in many areas, including Unit 39 in the Boise River Mountains area. Duck season opens on Saturday, so if you planned on going for a hike near Swan Falls, be aware that duck hunters might be hiking out there, too, jump-shooting ducks.
Rifle elk season kicks in on Nov. 1-9 in Unit 39, and in some areas, such as in the McCall area, elk season overlaps with a portion of deer season, from Oct. 15 through Nov. 3.
The upshot is if you want to go camping, backpacking, hiking or mountain biking in the backcountry this coming weekend, you should expect to see hunters, hear gunfire, and harvested animals hanging in camp. If this makes you feel uncomfortable, then consider going to places where you won't encounter hunters. See below.
|Put some bright colors on your pup, too ...|
Check the Idaho Department of Fish and Game hunting page to check on the hunting seasons where you are planning a backcountry adventure. The hunting seasons are set up according to big game unit. It'll take a few minutes to figure out the regulations. They are very complicated to say the least, and in general, the seasons are tied to specific animals, such as deer, elk, black bear, mountain lion, wolves, moose, etc.
Here are a two places where you will not see hunters:
- Lower Boise Foothills Trails - Any of the lower foothills trails should be safe, except for the lower trails near Harris Ranch ... those trails are in the Boise River Wildlife Management Areas, and you will see hunters out there.
- Idaho State Parks - All of the state parks are closed to hunting. And they're not affected by the federal shutdown.
- Boise River Greenbelt - This is a safe bet for the length of the pathway from Eagle to Lucky Peak.
- Wood River Trail - The paved Wood River Trail from Bellevue to Ketchum is a safe place to go, too. The colors might be turning in the Wood River Valley, too.
Have fun out there!