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Tannerite Fire, Sunday evening, August 22. Photo by Rita Donham, Wyoming Aero Photo
Tannerite Fire view Rita Donham took pictures of the Tannerite Fire from the air on Sunday evening August 18. Additional info and photos here:Tannerite Fire updates and photos Photo by Rita Donham, Wyoming Aero Photo.
Mop up on the Tannerite Fire. Photo courtesy Bridger-Teton National Forest.
Tannerite Fire The Tannerite Fire started on Saturday, August 17th, burning southeast of Pinedale near Boulder Lake. As of Wednesday, August 21st, the fire is 35% contained. It remains at 1340 acres and has seen no additional growth for the past several days. Pictured here are crews doing mop-up on hot spots in the fire area. The evacuation orders have mostly all been lifted, although residents in the area are still in "Set" mode for evacuation in case conditions change. Current updates are posted on the Sublette County Sheriff's Office and Bridger-Teton National Forest Facebook pages. See this link for more pictures and info Photo by Bridger-Teton National Forest.
Tannernite Fire perimeter map on Sunday, August 18. Map by Bridger-Teton National Forest.
Tannerite Fire perimeter As of Sunday, August 18, the fire is reported to be approximately 1340 acres and 20% contained. Updates are being posted to the Sublette County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page as well as Sublette County Emergency Management Facebook page. Additional information can be found on the Bridger-Teton National Forest Facebook page. For more pictures and the timeline, see our Pinedale Online Tannerite Fire page Photo by Bridger-Teton National Forest.
Gas Prices
August 18, 2019
Big Piney2.919
Regular unleaded average.
WY & US provided by AAA.
Diesel Prices
August 18, 2019
Big Piney3.119
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Pinedale Local:

Sublette County Rural Health Care District Board Meeting Aug. 21
Sublette Board of Equalization meeting August 28 & 29
Sublette Commissioners agenda for August 20, 2019
Garden of Beauty – Cassie and Tom Johnston
New Curator at Museum of the Mountain Man
David Rule swims Fremont Lake for 4th time
MESA Annual Horse Show
‘Pounds for Paws’ Aug. 24

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August 24: 'Pounds for Paws' - a Fundraiser for Axel - Axel is a rescue dog that got hit by a car and injured in late June. He underwent surgery and has intensive recovery to help heal his underside and loss of his tail. Happy Endings Animal Rescue is partnering with The Garage and Ela Photography to do a 5K Run/Walk and a pet photo session. Preregister for the 5K by August 16th, $15. Late registration $20. The registration, 5K and photos at The Garage Gym, 230 S Cole Ave in Pinedale. Starts at 8AM. The Pet Photo Session is with Ela Photography - photo session packages by donation. Unable to make the day? Donate at For more information call 307-360-6382.
August 24: Open House at the Deadline Ridge Fire Lookout - Located in the Wyoming Range on Deadline Ridge (takes about 45 minutes to get there from Big Piney). Take Calpet Road south of Big Piney and follow the signs. 11AM to 2PM. The lookout has been restored. Cookies and lemonade refreshments, bring your own bigger lunch. Parking limited, carpooling strongly suggested. Bring a folding chair if you want to be more comfortable. Smokey Bear, Forest Service, and historical community people will be on hand to talk about the project. More related info and directions
September 1: Sommers Homestead Living History Museum Open House & honoring the 2018 Sublette County inductees into the Wyoming Cowboy Hall of Fame - Open House from 10AM to 3PM. Free lunch of roast beef, potatoes, beans, salad, delicious homemade desserts. Lunch starts at 11:30AM (don't be late). Live music by Jared Rogerson. Wyoming Cowboy Hall of Fame program starts at 1PM. Call the Sublette County Historical Society for more info (Museum of the Mountain Man 307-367-4101).
September 6-7: Wyoming State Historical Society Annual Meeting in Pinedale - Hosted by the Sublette County Historical Society and the Museum of the Mountain Man. Click here for registration form.

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Pinedale Online is Pinedale, Wyoming on the web. We give our viewers, locals and out-of-area visitors, a "slice of life" snapshot window into our world view of what is happening in Pinedale. Visit us for current local news on what is happening, photos of local events, links to area businesses and services and more. We are long-time area residents and are happy to answer questions if you are planning a visit to our area. Much of our information is by community contribution.


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Boulder Lake Fire Update 8/23/2019 (posted 8/23/19)
Bridger-Teton National Forest
PINEDALE, WYOMING, August 23, 2019 –
Location: South of Pinedale, WY near Boulder Lake

Fire Start Date: August 17, 2019

Cause: Human

Acres: 1359

Containment: 85%

Resources: 3 Type 6 engines, 8 person helitack crew, and 1 Type 3 helicopter. Total 24 personnel

Closures: None

The Burnt Lake Road is now open, however, the public is being asked to drive slowly and watch for firefighters and engines along the road. Crews are still working in the area.

Fire containment has been increased to 85%.

Fire activity has been minimal on the fire. Some vegetation continues to smolder in aspen stands and may be visible to visitors in the area. Firefighters will continue to utilize the engines, helitack crew, and Type 3 helicopter to access all portions of the fire to secure the control lines and mop up some of the interior pockets of heat and smoldering vegetation.

A red flag warning is in effect today until 8 pm tonight. Occasional strong winds blowing over the fire have caused large clouds of ash and dust to blow off of the burned areas of the fire. These clouds can be seen from quite a distance and can be mistaken as smoke.

A Burned Area Response Team (BAER) has been ordered for the fire and will arrive next week. The BAER program is designed to identify and manage potential risks to resources and reduce these threats through appropriate emergency measures to protect human life and safety, property, and critical natural or cultural resources. BAER is an emergency program for stabilization work that involves time-critical activities to be completed before the first damaging event.

WA removes OPT wolf pack (posted 8/22/19)
Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife
On the morning of Aug. 16, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) lethally removed the four known remaining members of the OPT wolf pack. A series of WDFW investigations had shown the pack responsible for 29 depredation incidents.

WDFW Director Kelly Susewind reauthorized the lethal removals on July 31, in response to continuing depredations of cattle on federal grazing lands in the Kettle River range of Ferry County.

The removal decision was made with guidance from the state’s Wolf Conservation and Management Plan and the lethal removal provisions of the department’s wolf-livestock interaction protocol.

The OPT pack has been involved in 14 livestock depredations in the last 10 months, with nine in the last 30 days, and a total of 29 since Sept. 5, 2018. The livestock producer who owns the affected livestock took several proactive, nonlethal, conflict deterrence measures to reduce conflicts between wolves and livestock, and WDFW will continue to monitor for wolf activity in the area and work closely with producers.

This was the fourth time Director Susewind has authorized lethal removal in the OPT pack since Sept. 12, 2018.

Plaintiffs, supported by the Maryland-based Center for a Humane Economy, filed a petition for review of Director Susewind’s July 31 reauthorization, and sought a temporary restraining order in King County Superior Court on Aug. 1. The motion for a restraining order was denied by a court commissioner at the time, allowing the removal effort to continue. The hearing on a motion for preliminary injunction was scheduled for Aug. 16, when the court was expecting to, and did, hear an update on the department’s removal activities.

According to Donny Martorello, wolf policy lead for WDFW, the department had been working steadily to meet its stated intentions since the courts gave it the clearance to move forward on Aug. 1. To date the department has removed:

On Aug. 7, one wolf
On Aug. 8, one wolf
On Aug. 13, one wolf
On Aug. 16, four wolves

WDFW believes it has removed all members of the OPT pack, although another wolf was sighted in the area late this spring. That wolf may have dispersed from a different pack.

"I know this is an extremely difficult time for many of our communities around the state and having to carry out lethal removals of wolves is something we take very seriously," said Director Susewind. "Hopefully we can pull from a diversity of perspectives, ideas, and approaches to find better solutions for coexistence.

Counsel for WDFW appeared in court today for the preliminary injunction hearing. The court was informed of the lethal removals that have occurred since the Aug. 1 hearing. At the end of the hearing, King County Superior Court Judge John McHale ruled from the bench and issued a preliminary injunction that would prohibit WDFW from lethally removing any remaining wolves from the OPT pack until the court has a chance to hear the merits of the case.

In April 2019, the department reported 27 wolf packs in Washington. A summary of Washington wolf recovery and activity can be found at

Related Links:
- Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife
Wolf Watch - by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!

Daily Fire Update August 22 – Boulder Lake Fire (posted 8/22/19)
Previously called Tannerite Fire
Bridger-Teton National Forest
Daily Fire Update
Location: South of Pinedale, WY near Boulder Lake

Fire Start Date: August 17, 2019

Cause: Human

Acres: 1359

Containment: 80%

Resources: 3 Type 6 engines and 1 Type 3 helicopter

Closures: Burnt Lake Road above the Boulder Lake Dam road, Timico Trailhead

Type 4 Incident commander, Patrick Tenney, assumed command of the fire at 6:30 this morning. The fire has been re-named the Boulder Lake Fire in reference to the geographic location of the incident.

The fire was flown yesterday and a more accurate acreage was mapped for a total of 1,359 acres. The change in size is not due to any new spread of the fire. Crews were successful in mop up operations and have increased containment to 80%.

Today, crews will continue to patrol for any remaining hot spots and monitor control lines watching for smoke.

The Burnt Lake Road will be re-opened Friday morning. There will continue to be significant fire traffic on this stretch of road through Thursday night.

The fire burned on multiple jurisdictions including US Forest Service - 776 acres which was 53 % of the total acreage, State (Wyoming Game & Fish) - 568 acres or 42%, private land - 35 acres 3%, Bureau of Land Management - 29 2%. Since the fire started on the BLM, they are the lead agency.

The current National Preparedness Level is 2 on a scale of 1-5 (5 being the highest). This preparedness level indicates the amount of fire activity; new starts or initial attack fires being responded to, and the number of ongoing large fires in the nation. The number of firefighting resources available to respond to these fires is also a major factor. "At this time last year we were at a national preparedness level 5. That means a lot of large fires were burning, and those fires were a high priority because they were threatening homes in California and elsewhere," said Nan Stinson, Public Information Officer. "Geographic Area Coordination Centers (GACC’s) look at all the resource orders and prioritize which incidents have the greatest need. With this fire, they were fortunate to get all the resources they needed at the time."

For information visit or call the Pinedale Ranger District at 307-367-4326.

Southern areas of Forest go to Very High Fire Danger (posted 8/22/19)
Greys, Kemmerer and Big Piney Ranger Districts increased to Very High
Bridger-Teton National Forest
Teton Interagency fire managers and staff are busy responding to fire incidents locally, regionally and nationally. The Teton Interagency area, including Grand Teton National Park, Bridger-Teton National Forest and National Elk Refuge, has had warm temperatures, low humidity and some winds the past few days. These conditions can rapidly dry vegetation and create ideal conditions for wildland fire combustion and rapid spread. Similar weather conditions are predicted throughout the next week.

The Greys River, Big Piney, and Kemmerer ranger districts, including the Wyoming and Salt River Ranges, of the Bridger-Teton National Forest have moved to "very high" fire danger. The remainder of the Teton Interagency area remains "high" fire danger.

Fire danger ratings are determined by considering a number of factors. To decide a fire danger rating, fire managers consider the moisture content of grasses, shrubs, and trees. They also look at predicted weather conditions including temperatures and possibility of rain, lightening, or wind. Fire managers consider the ability of fire to spread after ignition, and availability of firefighting resources across the country. The Wyoming Range is drier than surrounding areas and areas to the north because it did not get recent precipitation.

Everyone, including visitors to public lands, should always use extra caution with fire. It is critical to put out all campfires and warming fires. As of today, 105 campfires have been abandoned in the Teton Interagency Dispatch area. Anyone choosing to have a fire should be in attendance of their fire at all times. Before leaving, drown any fire with plenty of water, stir all ashes and coals until they are soaked, and cold to the touch. Explosives, including fireworks and exploding targets, are illegal on national park and national forest lands. Do not park or drive on dry grass, ensure chain saws have working spark arrestors, and when smoking outside ensure cigarettes are crushed and do not flick ashes on dry vegetation.

There are currently no fire restrictions in place. Conditions and contributing factors are being evaluated daily by fire managers with coordinated conversations among counties and land management agencies on this topic. Last year, during late August and September, there was an increase in fire incidents due to dry conditions and human actions.

Please visit the Teton Interagency Fire website to learn more about current fires, fire safety, and any fire regulations that may be in place. To report a fire or smoke, call the Teton Interagency Fire Dispatch Center at 307-739-3630.

Aubree Corona's body was found on Tuesday, August 20th in the mountains northwest of Dubois in Fremont County. The cause of death is unknown at this time. She had been missing since mid-July.
Aubree Corona's body was found on Tuesday, August 20th in the mountains northwest of Dubois in Fremont County. The cause of death is unknown at this time. She had been missing since mid-July.
Missing woman found deceased (posted 8/21/19)
Aubree Corona went missing in mid-July
Sublette County Sheriff’s Office
PINEDALE, WYOMING –August 21, 2019
Yesterday, August 20th, 2019, search and rescue personnel found the body of Aubree Corona who had been missing since mid-July. A new joint search and rescue mission conducted by Fremont and Sublette County was initiated when the vehicle she was reported to be driving when she went missing had been discovered over the weekend. The vehicle, which was found on a remote non-traveled road, was located in Fremont County in the Leeds creek area.

The vehicle was found to have approximately a half of tank of gas remaining when it was found. The vehicle was found to be inoperable and would not be able to be restarted. Detectives also found the missing dirt bike to be leaned over inside the back of the truck consistent with reported sightings of her and the truck on the 13th of July.

Searchers had begun covering the area Monday where the truck was located. On Tuesday searchers had located Aubree approximately 1.3 miles away from where her truck was found. There was no cell phone coverage in that area making cell phone ping attempts ineffective. No foul play is suspected at this time, and the cause of death is unknown at this time. An autopsy has been scheduled by Fremont County, as they continue their investigation.

The Fremont County Sheriff’s Office as well as the Sublette County Sheriff’s Office wish to extend our deepest condolences to the friends and family of Miss Corona in this difficult time.

Related Links:
Vehicle found in missing person case Sublette County Sheriff’s Office, August 18, 2019
Investigation continues in the search for missing woman Sublette County Sheriff’s Office, July 29, 2019
Investigation continues for missing woman Sublette County Sheriff’s Office, July 18, 2019
Search suspended for missing woman Sublette County Sheriff’s Office, July 17, 2019
MISSING PERSON: Aubree Shanae Corona Sublette County Sheriff’s Office, July 16, 2019

Union Pass Road reopens to Dubois (posted 8/21/19)
Road was closed for a bridge replacement at Tosi Creek
Road Update, Wednesday, August 21, 2019, 8:00AM: The Pinedale District of the Bridger Teton National Forest reports that the Union Pass Road is now open at the Tosi Creek crossing and open over to Dubois. The road was closed for a bridge replacement. ‘Thanks to everyone for their understanding and patience with this project.’

The Lookout is located at 10,000 feet in the Wyoming Range. The Open House will be Saturday, August 24th from 11AM to 2PM.
The Lookout is located at 10,000 feet in the Wyoming Range. The Open House will be Saturday, August 24th from 11AM to 2PM.
Open House at the Deadline Ridge Lookout August 24 (posted 8/21/19)
Sublette County Historic Preservation Board
The Sublette County Historic Preservation Board and Bridger-Teton National Forest invite the public to come to an Open House for the Deadline Ridge Fire Lookout on Saturday, August 24th from 11AM to 2PM.

The Lookout is remotely located on Deadline Ridge in the Wyoming Range, but it is well worth the trip, both for the view and to see this restored iconic structure that represents such an important part of the history of forest management.

Built in 1941 by the Civilian Conservation Corps, this fire lookout was used into the late 1960s. It was later decommissioned once airplanes and better communication technology allowed for faster ways to detect and report wildfires. As happens with so many of these structures that are no longer in active use, the lookout fell into disrepair and was deteriorating.

Very few of the original fire lookouts remain on the Bridger-Teton National Forest. Members of the Sublette County Historic Preservation Board took on the project of bringing this lookout and its important history back to life. Board members conducted a "Clean It, Fix It, Paint It" project which lasted three years. Board members repaired, rebuilt and replaced several windows, repaired and replaced roof shingles, and repaired the chimney on the roof. More dramatically, with cooperation from archaeologists from the Forest Service to find the original paint colors, the volunteers repainted the lookout back to its original colors. This included repainting the large white "8" on the roof which identified it from the air. Board members also worked with the Green River Valley Museum to put in an interpretive display about the lookout at the Museum.

The Deadline Ridge Fire Lookout is located high in the Wyoming Range. It sits at about 10,000 feet elevation and has an incredible view of the Wyoming Range and Snyder Basin area. It is about 45 minute drive southwest of Big Piney taking somewhat of a maze of backcountry forest roads to get there. The snow just recently came off from the area, and conditions are somewhat muddy in places. High clearance vehicles are recommended. Parking is very limited, so for the Open House, carpooling is strongly encouraged.

During the Open House visitors will have a chance to take in the sweeping scenic view, look at the restoration work, and sign the Lookout guest register. Forest Service representatives will be on hand with educational materials. 2019 is the 75th Anniversary of Smokey Bear for the Forest Service, so there will be additional information about 50 years of forest management and public education about fire suppression and fire’s role in the ecology of a healthy forest.

Refreshments (cookies and lemonade) will be served. Please feel free to bring your own bigger lunch if you wish. Bring a folding chair or picnic blanket if you want to be more comfortable. Accommodations are very rustic and there are no services or conveniences at the Lookout. Also, the wind can be very strong at times, so make sure whatever you bring can withstand the weather and won’t blow away. Very young children should be carefully supervised at this site. Sunscreen and mosquito spray also are recommended.

Directions are a bit complicated, so watch for the arrow direction signs along the way. From Big Piney, go south three miles and take the Calpet Road turn off and then follow the signs. For more info call 307-360-7689 or email

Related Links: More information about the Deadline Fire Lookout project (and directions and map)

Tannerite Fire Daily Update - August 20, 2019 (posted 8/20/19)
Bridger-Teton National Forest
Location: South of Pinedale, WY near Boulder Lake

Fire Start Date: August 17, 2019

Cause: Human-caused

Acres: 1340

Containment: 35%

Resources: 4 Engines, 3 Helicopters, 4 Hand Crews, 1 Water Tender, and miscellaneous overhead. Total personnel assigned to the fire is 95.

Incident Command: Ziegler’s Western Wyoming Type 3 Incident Management Team

Closures: Burnt Lake road above the Boulder Lake Dam road, Timico trailhead

Evacuations: None

Current Situation: Containment lines held throughout the day on Monday but were threatened in a few spots by actively burning and spreading fire. Ron Steffens, Operations Section Chief, said, "We had significant success yesterday. The fine fuels are burning out, but many areas are still holding quite a bit of heat. Firefighters were able to work these areas and keep the fire from escaping control lines."

According to Jon Ziegler, Incident Commander, the team is meeting the objectives that agency administrators established for the fire and there have been no injuries reported to date.

Sublette County Unified Fire (SCUF), a primarily volunteer fire organization, was the first initial attack resource on scene and has been actively engaged in fighting this fire since day one. These are dedicated members of the community who leave their jobs and families to respond to emergencies such as wildfires and other all-risk incidents when paged.

For Today’s Operations: Crews will continue to hold and secure containment lines and mop-up any residual heat that may threaten to spot or spread outside of the fire perimeter. Helicopters staged at the Pinedale Airport will be available to aid with bucket support or reconnaissance missions if needed.

Objectives: Ensure firefighter and public safety as well as protection of structures and private property.

Agencies in Unified Command: Sublette County Unified Fire, Sublette County Emergency Management, Sublette County Sherriff’s Office, State of Wyoming, High Desert District Bureau of Land Management Pinedale Field Office, US Forest Service Bridger-Teton National Forest Pinedale Ranger District

For more information visit or call the Pinedale Ranger District at 307-367-4326.

Progress made on Tannerite Fire (posted 8/19/19)
1340 acres, 20% contained
Bridger-Teton National Forest
PINEDALE, WYOMING, August, 19, 2019 – Despite high winds and red flag conditions, crews made good progress on the Tannerite fire yesterday (Sunday, August 18) and no new growth was reported. The fire held within the retardant lines and firefighters focused on holding and securing those lines and knocking down active flare ups inside containment lines.

Western Wyoming Type 3 Incident Management Team, Jon Ziegler - Incident Commander, assumed control of the fire at seven o’clock this morning. An Incident Command Post (ICP) has been set up at the Burnt Lake Elk Feedgrounds.

Evacuations have been lifted for the Boulder Lake Estates, Boulder Lake Campground and trailhead. Those residents who choose to return home are still in the SET stage. The road closures for Boulder Lake have also been lifted. The Burnt lake Road above the Boulder Lake Dam road will remain closed.

The weather will be of concern to firefighters again today with the third straight day of red flag warning conditions of high temperatures, low single digit relative humidity, and strong westerly winds.

The fire is currently 1,340 acres with 20% contained. Over one hundred personnel are assigned to this fire.

The primary objective for this incident is to ensure the safety of firefighters and the public. Protection of structures and private property is also a key objective. Homes and other structures are threatened but as of this morning, no primary residences have been burned.

The Tannerite Fire started Saturday, Aug. 17 burning on multiple jurisdictions and is under unified command. The fire is located between Burnt and Boulder Lakes south of Pinedale, Wyoming. This human-caused fire is currently under investigation.

For more information visit or Sublette Wyo at:
Information is also being posted on Facebook pages;
Sublette County Sheriff’s Office;
Sublette County Emergency Management;

Some evacuations lifted for Tannerite Fire (posted 8/18/19)
Sublette County Sheriff’s Office
The following evacuations have been lifted on the Tannerite Fire:
As of 8pm August 18th, the following evacuations have been lifted for the Tannerite Fire:
-Boulder Lake (County Road 23-125)
-Boulder Lake Country Estates
-Boulder Lake Campground
-Boulder Lake residents off of the Burnt Lake road BLM Road 5106

The Burnt lake Road above the Boulder Lake Dam road will remain closed. Those residents who choose to return home are still in the SET stage.

Tannerite Fire update Aug 18 (posted 9/18/19)
Size is estimated at 1340 acres, no primary residences burned
Bridger-Teton National Forest
PINEDALE, WYOMING August 18, 2019 - The Tannerite Fire, burning near Boulder Lake south of Pinedale, started Saturday, Aug. 17 at 12:52 pm on land managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The fire is human caused and is under investigation at this time.

The primary objective for this incident is to ensure the safety of firefighters and the public. Protection of structures and private property is also a key objective. Homes and other structures are threatened but as of this morning, no primary residences have been burned.

A Western Wyoming Type 3 Incident Management Team is shadowing current leadership and will be assuming command of the fire by tomorrow morning. The fire has burned on multiple jurisdictions and is under unified command with the BLM as lead agency. Sublette County stood up an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at the Sublette County Emergency Management office, 307-367-3378.

Current fire size is estimated to be 1,340 acres burning in sage, grass and timber.

Evacuations are in effect for the Boulder Lake Estates, Boulder Lake Campground, Burnt and Meadow Lake and associated trailheads. Red Cross has set up a shelter (at the LDS Church in Pinedale) for people with primary residences in the evacuation area, although there were no persons requiring shelter last night. No additional evacuations are foreseen.

Road closures are in place on the Boulder Lake and the Burnt Lake roads.

Resources fighting the fire include: 7 engines (both Type 4 and Type 6), 1 water tender, 2 Type 3 helicopters, 2 Type 1 helicopters, 1 Type 2 IA handcrew, 8 smokejumpers, 5 person fire module, 5 helitack crewmembers, air attack and fixed wing retardant tankers as needed.

Crews will be facing red flag conditions again today through Monday evening. High temperatures, low humidity, and strong winds will make control efforts challenging.

For more information visit or Sublette Wyo at: Information is also being posted on Facebook pages; Sublette County Sheriff’s Office,, Sublette County Emergency Management;

Related Links:
Tannerite Fire updates and photos Pinedale Online!

Tip Top Search & Rescue helps rescue climbers needing medical attention in the Wind River Mountains. Photo courtesy TTSAR.
Tip Top Search & Rescue helps rescue climbers needing medical attention in the Wind River Mountains. Photo courtesy TTSAR.
Tip Top SAR keeps busy with searches and rescues (posted 8/16/19)
Kenna M. Tanner, Tip Top Search & Rescue
PINEDALE, WYOMING, August 16, 2019
As of August 16, Tip Top Search and Rescue has responded to 19 missions this calendar year, with 11 happening since July 1st.

Tip Top Search and Rescue has been busy in the Wind River Mountains the past few weeks assisting hikers and climbers. These outdoor enthusiasts were affected with altitude mountain sickness and needed assistance out of the mountains to seek medical attention. We want to remind those considering trekking into the high country to take extra time to acclimate if you have come from lower altitudes, hydrate well, rest as needed during the trip, and be alert to the signs and symptoms of altitude sickness to thwart any serious medical conditions that can ruin any adventure.

Tip Top SAR has also been helping our neighboring counties with specialty equipment and the expertise of specially-trained members. Tip Top SAR has side-scan sonar equipment that uses sonar technology to provide the trained user with visual images during underwater searches. A towfish is lowered into the water and the sonar sends out signals that reflect off objects underwater and creates visible shadows that our team uses to determine if further investigation is needed. Once enough plausible clues are gathered, Tip Top SAR can lower a remote-operated vehicle (ROV) that has a live camera, a grasping claw device, and thrusters to allow the operator to move it around. The live-feed is then analyzed on the deck of the boat via computer. Tip Top SAR’s underwater team is led by John Linn who has been a member since 1984. John has traveled the country learning about side-scan technology, teaching his fellow SAR members, and has spent the past few decades helping locate missing people in the Rocky Mountain West since.

On July 26-28, 2019 Tip Top SAR was requested to assist Wasatch County Utah SAR with the search for two missing fishermen in Strawberry Reservoir. John Linn and Gary Wilson worked with several other SAR units to locate both drowned fishermen with our sonar device. The ROV enabled dive teams to successfully retrieve the victims. Tip Top SAR is also currently helping South Lincoln County SAR with a search for a missing man who fell out of a canoe on Lake Alice on August 12. Not only is John Linn joined by fellow Tip Top members Thom Rinker, Bruce Bartley, and Sublette County Sheriff K.C. Lehr, but Lincoln SAR members have been helping get the necessary equipment into the lake that is in a remote area not accessible by motor vehicle. Sublette County’s leased Air Resources helicopter and pilot, Jason Legge, used a long-line to sling all necessary equipment to the water’s edge Thursday, August 15. The team is currently attempting to rig the equipment onto a small boat to begin the search for the canoeist despite fierce winds that have plagued our county for the past week.

On August 10, 2019 Fremont County Sheriff’s Office requested assistance with an injured climber on Pingora Peak, Cirque of Towers, in the Wind River Range. The initial request was for use of the leased Air Resources helicopter and Helicopter Manager to assist flying Fremont’s High Angle team members into the Cirque so they could help the injured. The report was the climber had fallen on Pingora at about 11,800 feet. Winds grounded any air rescue activity from both the Fremont County side as well as the Sublette County side of the Wind River Mountains. Sublette County’s Short-Haul team was placed on stand-by in case a window of opportunity opened to assist. This team is trained and specializing in rescue using Sublette County and Tip Top’s helicopter is stationed about 12 minutes away from the Cirque of Towers if conditions cooperate. When the weather was safe to operate, Tip Top SAR was requested by Fremont County to go forward and attempt a Short-Haul Rescue. A reconnaissance flight was performed to see if the helicopter could safely get rescuers in and out of the area. Tip Top SAR members Milford Lockwood, Cody Wilson, and Lesta Erickson, under the care of pilot Jason Legge, were then able to successfully able to locate, package and fly the injured 67-year-old climber off the mountain ledge. The climber was lowered to the valley floor near Lonesome Lake and due to the extent of his injuries, the injured climber was immobilized in a vacuum mattress splint and prepared for transfer of care. Due to the winds and inability of a medical helicopter to meet us in the backcountry, the Pinedale Medical Clinic was chosen as the nearest destination with clinic staff and EMS personnel awaiting our arrival. A return flight to the Cirque to retrieve equipment and remaining TTSAR members finalized the rescue of this individual. It was at this time we learned that an additional climber had fallen in the same area and had succumbed to his injuries. Tip Top SAR members attempted for two days to enter the Cirque safely, but the dangerous high winds swirling inside the Cirque denied them access to Pingora Peak and from assisting Fremont County in retrieving the deceased climber. Fremont County was able to hike into the area and bring the climber to the care of the Fremont County Coroner.

The lengthy time needed to accomplish these extensive missions are great reminders of the sacrifice the volunteer members make to help when the need arises. It is not only the dedication of the members, but also their employers and families that allow our members to drop and run when they are needed. A HUGE thanks to our neighboring counties for trusting in our skills and requesting our assistance, to our Sublette County Commissioners who support our program, and to each member that has spent countless hours training to provide the absolute best care possible.

Click on this link for more pictures.

Related Links: Tip Top Search & Rescue

Wolf News Roundup 8/15/2019 (posted 8/15/19)
Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!
Wolf Attack
A wolf attacked a man who was sleeping in tent (one of four family members in the tent) at a busy campground in Canada¡¯s Banff National Park. The injured man was hospitalized with serious injuries, and nearby campers helped to scare away the wolf. Wildlife officials shot a wolf nearby the next morning, and confirmed through DNA testing that the wolf killed was the one that attacked the man.

Wolves, Lions, & Elk
A new paper in the Journal of Wildlife Management examines the effects on wolf pack size and winter conditions on elk mortality, as well as the influence of mountain lion predation on elk. Researchers monitored elk survival throughout Idaho from 2004-2016 and developed predictive models for mortality, assessing wolf pack size, winter conditions, and individual-level characteristics. They found that "chest girth had the largest effect on risk of mortality for calves followed by pack size and snow depth.

"Other than the effect of senescence in the oldest (>15 yr) individuals, pack size and snow depth had the largest effect on risk of mortality for adult females. We estimated cause©\specific mortality and predation was the dominant cause of known©\fate mortalities for adult females (35% mountain lion [Puma concolor] and 32% wolf) and calves (45% mountain lion and 28% wolf), whereas malnutrition accounted for 9% and 10% of adult female and calf mortalities, respectively. Wolves preferentially selected smaller calves and older adult females, whereas mountain lions showed little preference for calf size or age class of adult females.

"Our study indicates managers can increase elk survival by reducing wolf pack sizes on surrounding winter ranges, especially in areas where, or during years when, snow is deep. Additionally, managers interested in improving over©\winter calf survival can implement actions to increase the size of calves entering winter by increasing the nutritional quality of summer and early fall forage resources. Although our study was prompted by management questions related to wolves, mountain lions killed more elk than wolves and differences in selection of individual elk indicate mountain lions may have comparably more of an effect on elk population dynamics."

The Duluth News-Tribune has an article about the wolves of Voyageurs National Park, including details about the life of wolves in this unique environment ¨C from prey encounters to social interactions.

Check out the links below for details on these stories.

Related Links:
Wolf Attack - The Western Star
Details of attack - CBC.CA
Wolves, Lions, & Elk - Journal of Wildlife Management
Voyageurs - Duluth News-Tribune
Wolf Watch - By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!

2019 Sailing Regatta on Fremont Lake. Photo by Mindi Crabb.
2019 Sailing Regatta on Fremont Lake. Photo by Mindi Crabb.
2019 Sailing Regatta on Fremont Lake (posted 8/15/19)
The 2019 Little America’s Sailing Regatta on Fremont Lake was held on Saturday and Sunday, August 10 & 11th. The regatta was organized by Jason and Cheryl Essington and hosted by Lakeside Lodge.

1st Place Winners:
Catamaran: Riley Bennett
Centerboard: Allison Bolgiano/Michelle Stauthamer
Cruisers: Randy Bick/Jon Peek
Full Results (PDF)

Click on this link for more pictures: Sailing Regatta

Related Links: Lakeside Lodge

BLM Kemmerer Field Office offering forest product permits online (posted 8/12/19)
Bureau of Land Management
KEMMERER, WYOMING – As part of its ongoing efforts to better serve the public, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Kemmerer Field Office has begun a pilot program offering permits for fuelwood and Christmas trees online.

"The BLM works to maintain healthy forests and woodlands that include abundant opportunities for harvest and use of forest products," said Aaron Mier, Kemmerer Field Office Manager. "We are pleased to offer this pilot program enabling members of the public to purchase fuelwood and Christmas tree permits online."

The BLM has long offered permits to members of the public for harvest of forest products from BLM-managed land. However, before the pilot program began, customers had to drive to their local BLM office – sometimes over very long distances – to buy these permits.

Now, customers in participating field offices can visit to purchase fuelwood and Christmas tree permits online. (Permits for other forest products still require an in-person office visit.) Once at the web site, users can simply answer a few questions, enter payment information, and print their permit.

Participating BLM field offices include Glennallen (Alaska), Pocatello (Idaho), Albuquerque (New Mexico), Taos (New Mexico), Prineville (Oregon), and Kemmerer (Wyoming).

During the pilot, online permits will be available – depending on the office and season – for fuelwood and Christmas trees 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, while over-the-counter permits for these and other forest products will still be available during normal business hours.

The pilot program is intended to run for about a year, and the BLM plans to evaluate it for potential continuation and expansion over time.

For more information on the online forest products permit pilot program, visit or contact the Kemmerer Field Office at (307) 828-4503.

Firewood available from Skyline Fuels Reduction Work (posted 8/8/19)
Bridger-Teton National Forest
PINEDALE, WYOMING, August 7, 2019 – The Pinedale Ranger District would like to make the public aware that firewood is available to gather as a result of work recently done by Bridger-Teton National Forest fire/fuels personnel and contractors on the Skyline Wildland Urban Interface Fuels Reduction Project.

Trees in several thinning units along Skyline Drive, Kelly Park, and Sweeney Creek have been felled and the slash has been stacked in piles. Larger diameter wood that was cut near roadways has been left out of piles and is available as firewood. Please leave the slash piles undisturbed so that they may be burned during the fall or winter.

Kelly Park has approximately 100-150 cords of wood available for the public. This firewood has been felled and stacked in piles of random lengths from six feet to full tree lengths. Be aware that the Kelly Park access road is rough and rocky with no pullouts in the steeper sections. High clearance vehicles with four wheel drive and high clearance trailers are recommended. Forest Service fire crews are still working in the area.

Trees from active timber sales have been decked and are not available for firewood. Timber sale decks will be marked with signs.

A valid firewood permit is required to collect the wood, and logs must be cut to lengths measuring eight feet or less prior to removal.

The Skyline Fuels Reduction project was designed to lower the risk from wildfire to homes and private property by removing hazardous fuel loads in the Wildland Urban Interface. This effort will help moderate fire behavior during a wildfire and increase firefighter and public safety.

Call the Pinedale Ranger District at 307-367-4326 for additional information.

Public input sought on Wyoming Air Ambulance Medicaid Waiver (posted 8/5/19)
Meetings set in Cheyenne, Riverton
Wyoming Department of Health
Residents are invited by the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) to offer their thoughts, ideas and perspectives on a proposed Medicaid waiver plan for Wyoming air ambulance service during two upcoming public meetings or online.

Public meetings are planned in Cheyenne on August 5 from 5-7 p.m. at the Laramie County Library Willow Room and in Riverton on August 8 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Central Wyoming College in Health Sciences Room 214.

The waiver would expand Wyoming Medicaid to all state residents for the specific purpose of air ambulance transportation. Waiver goals include:
• Eliminate the surprise billing of patients
• Reduce the average cost of air ambulance flights while ensuring a set level of access and quality
• Increase price transparency for patients and employer groups

Under the plan, WDH would competitively bid for a selected network of air ambulance providers, make periodic flat payments (similar to a gym membership) to these contracted providers and then recoup the revenue needed to fund the system from the insurance plans and individuals already paying for transports.

A detailed plan presentation will be available beginning August 1 at Online comments may also be submitted using the same site.

People who might be particularly interested in voicing their opinions include:
• Members of the public who have had an air ambulance flight
• Medical providers who deal with air ambulance
• Hospital leadership and staff
• Air ambulance providers and staff

Two wildlife underpasses to go in north of LaBarge (posted 7/30/19)
The Wyoming Game & Fish has approved $1.25 million to help pay for two wildlife underpasses along US 189 north of LaBarge, Wyoming. The underpasses and associated fencing will go in along a five mile stretch of highway that has a record of vehicle collisions with mule deer. The road intersects an area where mule deer cross in the fall and spring traveling to and from their winter range habitats. The agency expects the underpasses will reduce collisions by up to 90 percent. The projects are expected to be completed by 2022.

3 Bridge replacement projects scheduled on BTNF (posted 7/28/19)
Union Pass Road & Half Moon Lake Road Bridges – some closures expected
Bridger-Teton National Forest
The Bridger-Teton National Forest has three bridge replacement projects scheduled on the Pinedale Ranger District in 2019. To mitigate future restrictions or potential closures, these bridges were selected by the regional engineer for replacement from the regional deficient bridge list. Two of these bridges are located on the Half Moon Lake Road (FS #743) and one is located on the Union Pass Road (FS #600).

Contractors have begun working on the Union Pass Road’s Tosi Creek bridge, located approximately 7 miles north of the forest boundary, approximately 3.5 miles northwest of the Kendall bridge. Work is currently being conducted on the south side of the new structure with work planned on the north side to begin the week of August 1st. Closures up to three weeks are expected for public and worker safety during construction on the north side. Actual closure dates will be published as soon as they are determined. For travel after August 1st, please contact the Pinedale Ranger District.

The Half Moon Lake Road bridges over Sweeney Creek and Half Moon Creek are scheduled to begin after Labor Day. This road provides accesses to private dwellings, Half Moon Lake Lodge, Half Moon Lake Campground, and the boat launch site. This road will be closed after Labor Day for the duration of the bridge replacement projects, up to four weeks, at which time the lodge will resume normal operations for the remainder of the fall and winter. Prior to closure for this work, an updated notice will be posted.

Please call the Pinedale Ranger District at 307-367-4326 if you have questions regarding this project.

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