Campsites available for Memorial Day Weekend

It's not too late to reserve a campsite as several Utah State Parks have campsites still available for the Memorial Day holiday weekend. Sites await at Antelope Island, Bear Lake, Fremont Indian, and Jordanelle's walk-in and car camping sites. In addition, sites are available at Scofield, Starvation, Steinaker, Wasatch Mountain and beach camping at Yuba.

Reservations may be made up to two days before your arrival. To make a reservation or for more information, call 322-3770 from within the Salt Lake calling area and (800) 322-3770 from outside the area.
Last Chance to Comment on Wolf Plan

Wildlife enthusiasts are invited to participate in the planning process as a final opportunity awaits to comment on how wolves would managed in Utah, should they be removed from the threatened and endangered species list. This plan is available for review at the Division of Wildlife Resources' Web site ( ).

Awaiting May 24 at 6:30 p.m., this meeting is scheduled at Springville Junior High School, located at 165 S. 700 E. in Springville. Those who attend can learn about the plan and provide suggestions to Regional Advisory Council citizen representatives. The RAC representatives will then take public input received to the Utah Wildlife Board when it meets June 9 in Salt Lake City to approve the plan. A strategy to help Utah's most sensitive wildlife and wildlife habitats, and upland game hunting rules for Utah's 2005 - 2006 season, also will be discussed at the meetings.

Utah's 96-page Wolf Management Plan was put together by the state's Wolf Working Group, consisting of 13 citizen sportsmen, wolf advocates, ranchers and others with wolf-related interests. The DWR assembled this group in 2003 to draft a plan that will guide the management of wolves that may one day make their way to Utah from surrounding states.

At the group's April 12 meeting, a sportsmen's representative left the group and refused to endorse the draft plan that will be taken to the public meetings. He was concerned that the plan doesn't protect Utah's big game animals enough from wolves.

Kevin Bunnell, mammals program coordinator for the DWR, commented, "We're happy with the plan the group put together, but we're disappointed that the group couldn't reach agreement on the final version of the plan. We were directed by the legislature to put together a wolf management plan for Utah. The plan the group put together will be taken to the public for comment, even though one of the group members didn't give his final approval."

Bunnell says the DWR is committed to having a wolf management plan in place. "Wolves are still listed on the federal list of threatened and endangered species, and all of the wolf management in the country is currently handled by the federal government," Bunnell said. "The plan people will comment on at the May meetings will guide how the DWR manages wolves in Utah, if wolves are ever taken off the federal list. If that happens, it will be a big help to already have a plan in place."
Twenty-one Pound Brown Trout Netted and Released at Jordanelle

Fish appear to be doing well in Jordanelle Reservoir as a 21-pound brown trout was caught and released during a recent gill net survey. In addition to the large brown, many trout in the 3- to 5-pound range also showed up in the nets, used by Division of Wildlife Resources aquatics biologists.

The DWR has stocked approximately 60,000 rainbow trout annually in Jordanelle Reservoir over the past few years. In addition to the successful rainbow and brown trout fishery that has developed at the reservoir, anglers also are being drawn to it for the reservoir's
healthy smallmouth bass population. "I love this reservoir because of its diversity," one angler reported to the DWR. "If I get tired of fishing for trout, I often change tactics and go after the smallies. Some of these bass are going over 5 pounds!"

He added, "I really like fishing here in the spring and fall because the recreational boating traffic is very light and I have much of the reservoir to myself." June is typically a good month to fish for smallmouth bass as the water temperature usually approaches 60 to 65 F., which is great for smallmouth bass fishing.

Every spring and fall, DWR biologists conduct surveys using gill nets at the reservoir, located five miles north of Heber City. These nets consist of monofilament and have various mesh pattern sizes that ensnare fish of all sizes. Eight gill nets are set at eight different locations
throughout the lake during May and October. After letting the nets set for a few hours, biologists retrieve them and look for trends in the fish that are caught. The trends biologists are looking for include the number of fish sampled, the types of fish caught, the condition and health of the fish, their average size and what the fish have been eating.

Because of the healthy condition of the fish in the reservoir and the care the DWR takes in managing the fishery, aquatics biologists anticipate good fishing success this year and many more stories of anglers taking large fish from Jordanelle.