Thursday, September 25, 2014

Give back to the earth on National Public Lands Day; volunteer to improve the land

Hi all,

Do you ever think about how wonderful it is to live in a state like Idaho that's richly endowed with public lands? I do. I've spent a lifetime trying to explore Idaho's national forests, state parks, state lands, BLM lands -- hiking, biking, camping, boating, skiing, backpacking, fishing, hunting, etc. etc. All of those adventures are what we live for. They give us a rich quality of life. Friendships. Hardship. Tons of fun! Thus, we should take a moment to cherish our public lands this weekend in observance of National Public Lands Day on Saturday, Sept. 27.

Trail volunteers assembled for a similar project in the Big
Jacks Creek Wilderness last year. 
One way to do that is head out for an adventure. Another is to give back. The weather looks crummy, so you might consider giving back. There are a number of volunteer opportunities going on in SW Idaho as part of National Public Lands Day. 

My #1 pick is to help out with finishing a BLM trail into Shoofly Creek and Between the Creeks in the Little Jacks Wilderness, near Grand View. You can either camp out Friday night or meet up Saturday morning at 9 a.m. at the Poison Creek picnic area on Mud Flat Road, south of Grand View. The Idaho Trails Association is a project co-sponsor along with Boise REI and the Idaho Conservation League.

This year, the NPLD theme is to recognize and celebrate the 50th anniversaries of the Wilderness Act and Civil Rights Act. There will be speakers there to talk about both. 

Getting there: Take I-84 east of Boise to Simco Road. Turn right and drive to Grand View. At the T-junction in Grand View, turn left and drive to the signed right-hand turnoff for Mud Flat Road, the Owyhee Uplands Backcountry Byway. Follow Mud Flat on pavement and dirt until you seen the Poison Creek picnic area on the right. It's good gravel road for any 2WD to reach this point. 

Bring your rain gear. The BLM is serving breakfast and lunch. 

For more information, contact Dave Draheim, at the Boise BLM 208-384-3358 or 

  • Volunteer to help enhance the Deer Flat National Wildlife Refuge for wildlife and visitors. Meet at the Deer Flat Visitor Center at 9 a.m. Saturday. For more information contact Kacey Kai at 467-9278.
  • The BLM is leading a project to plant sagebrush seedlings on Kuna Butte near Kuna. There also will be birds of prey on display at lunchtime, a swainson's hawk, great-horned owl and gold eagle. For more information, contact Barb Forderhase of the BLM, 384-3485 or
Looking for a used Stand up Paddle Board? I saw that Idaho River Sports is having a September blowout sale ... they're calling it, SUPtember. IRS actually has a whole bunch of sweet deals going on through the end of this month, including half-price SUP rentals and great discounts on SUPs, canoes and other gear. Check it out! 

Have fun!
-- SS 

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