Public Comment Sought on Bear Lake Management Plan

The Utah Division of State Parks and Recreation has developed a draft resource management plan (RMP) for Bear Lake State Park. The draft RMP identifies issues relating to public use, resource management and future development at the park and will make recommendations to guide park managers for the next ten years.

A planning team consisting of park users, local citizens, neighboring agency representatives and park managers developed the draft plan through a series of team and public meetings.

The plan is located for review online at:, or in hardcopy at the Utah State Park office at 1594 West North Temple, Suite 116, Salt Lake City, Utah; the Bear Lake State Park Marina office, Garden City, Utah; and the Garden City office building, 145 West Center, Garden City, Utah.

Comments will be accepted until Wednesday, November 16, 2005 by: E-mail to:

Regular mail to: Utah State Parks: Planning Section
P.O. Box 146001
1594 West North Temple, Suite 116
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6001

Public comments needed on Escalante State Park Management Plan

The Utah Division of State Parks and Recreation has developed a draft resource management plan (RMP) for Escalante State Park. The draft RMP identifies issues relating to public use, resource management and future development at the park and will make recommendations to guide park managers for the next ten years.

A planning team consisting of park users, local citizens, neighboring agency representatives and park managers developed the draft plan through a series of team and public meetings.

The plan is located for review online at:, or in hardcopy at the following locations:
Utah State Park Office, 1594 West North Temple, Suite 116, Salt Lake City, Utah
Escalante State Park Office, 710 North Reservoir Road, Escalante, Utah
Escalante City Office, 56 North 100 West; Escalante, Utah
Garfield County Office, 55 North Main, Panguitch, Utah
Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument Visitor Center, 755 West Main, Escalante, Utah

Comments will be accepted until Wednesday, November 16, 2005 by: E-mail to:

Regular mail to: Utah State Parks: Planning Section
P.O. Box 146001
1594 West North Temple, Suite 116
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6001

19th Annual Buffalo Roundup awaits at Antelope Island

The public is invited to attend a modern, western roundup Saturday, October 29 when helicopters, horseback riders, and four-wheel drive units move the Antelope Island bison herd from the southern tip of the island, to the handling facility located at the park's northern end.

The roundup is scheduled 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. This annual event is an opportunity for the public to see the roundup of one of the nation's largest and oldest public herds.

For the safety of all involved, visitors are kept one mile away from the bison. A complete and sweeping view of the action is available from that distance. Visitors are encouraged to bring binoculars for a closer view of the animals and handlers.

From November 5 - 7 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. daily, visitors may observe as the bison are weighed, blood-tested, inoculated, and scanned. All bison have a microchip implanted behind the ear, which serves as permanent identification and stores the animal's health history.

Food, drink, and memorabilia, such as t-shirts and sweatshirts, are available for purchase throughout the roundup. To reach Antelope Island State Park, take I-15 to exit 335 (Syracuse- Freeport Center) and travel west on Antelope Drive to the entrance station. Park fees are $8 per vehicle or $4 for bicyclists and walk-ins. For more information, please contact Antelope Island State Park at (801) 773-2941.
Upcoming State Park Events scheduled

October 28 and 29 Snow Canyon State Park - Ivins
Halloween Storytelling Trail: Bring the entire family and enjoy a short Halloween night hike full of storytelling fun sprinkled with a dash of fright beginning at 7:30 p.m. Space is limited and registration is required. For more information, please call (435) 628-2255.

October 29 Camp Floyd- Stagecoach Inn State Park and Museum - Fairfield
The Ghosts of Camp Floyd: Trick-or-treat through a Civil War encampment; enjoy tours of the Stagecoach Inn with spooky stories told in various rooms by those in period attire. Hot chocolate and donuts provided. For more information, please call (801) 768-8932.

October 28 Wasatch Mountain State Park - Midway
Night Hike: Nighttime sights and sounds often evoke feelings of fear as we face the unknown. But night holds some wonderful and fascinating stories. Join the park naturalist beginning at 7:30 p.m., to discover the wonders of the night on this hike along a portion of the Deer Creek Trail. Participants should meet at the Soldier Hollow train platform and dress for the weather. For more information, please call (435) 654-1791.

October 29 Rock Cliff Nature Center/ Jordanelle State Park - Francis
The Scariest Thing You Have Ever Seen Halloween program: Join park staff from noon until 4 p.m. for a hike through the campground, refreshments and s'mores around the campfire. Bring roasting sticks and campfire stories to share. Entrance fee is $7 per car with up to eight people or free to Utah State Parks pass holders. For more information, please call (435) 782-3030.

Cherie Call announces upcoming Concerts

Tuesday, October 25th
Cherie Call and Katie Thompson at Fat, Dumb and Happy's "Acoustic Tuesdays"
1350 W. 1140 S., Suite 110, Orem, Ut
8 p.m.
Admission is $5 per person.
All ages are welcome, the usual 18 and older policy does not apply for this event.

Friday, November 4th
7:00-8:30 p.m.
Cherie Call playing at the Tahitian Noni Cafe at the Riverwoods in Provo Free admission

Wednesday, November 9th
7:00 p.m.
Kingsbury Hall, Salt Lake City
University of Utah campus
World Premiere of True Fans Forever screening with the original True Fans, winner of the People's Choice Award at the Banff Mountain Film Festival

Book reading with projected images and sound effects
Live music from Cherie Call and Lincoln Highway with special guests Michael Chipman and Uncle Gary
Tickets: $7 at the door or by visiting
For more information or to get tickets, call Rob Jones at the University of Utah Outdoors program: 801-581-8516, or contact Dan Austin at 801-554-3231, or at .
Visit to find out more about Dan Austin, his films, the book, and this event.

Two Deer Taken During Muzzleloader Hunt test Positive for Chronic Wasting Disease

Two buck deer taken during this year's Utah muzzleloader hunt have tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD), the Division of Wildlife Resources announced Oct. 17. The first deer was a yearling buck taken near the south end of Flaming Gorge Reservoir. This is the first CWD-positive deer found in Daggett County. Other CWD-positive deer have been found in the past just 20 miles to the south, near Vernal.

The second deer to test positive was a mature buck taken on the LaSal Mountains in southeastern Utah. Both of the hunters who took the deer have been notified that their animals tested positive for CWD.

"We've tested approximately 450 deer and elk so far this year, and these are the only animals that have tested positive for CWD," said Leslie McFarlane, wildlife disease specialist for the DWR. "Nearly all of the testing has been completed on samples collected during the
archery and muzzleloader hunts. We expect to collect nearly 2,000 samples during the rifle deer hunt that starts this weekend."

The Utah Veterinary Diagnositic Laboratory in Logan is testing the samples for the DWR.
The latest finds bring to 20 the number of deer that have tested positive for CWD since the disease was first found in Utah in February 2003. Fourteen of the 20 deer have come from the LaSal Mountain area, where DWR biologists estimate about 2 percent of the deer have the

Of the remaining deer, four came from the Vernal area, one was taken near the south end of Flaming Gorge, and one was killed near Fountain Green in central Utah. CWD is fatal to deer and elk that contract it. However, according to the World Health Organization, "There is currently no evidence that CWD in cervidae (deer and elk) is transmitted to humans."

For more information about CWD, visit the DWR's Internet Web site at
Expect a Slightly Better Pheasant Hunt

Depending on where they hunt, pheasant hunters might see a few more birds in Utah this season. Utah's 2005 pheasant hunt opens Nov. 5. The state's quail season
also opens Nov. 5, and the sharp-tailed grouse season opens Oct. 29. Quail and sharp-tailed grouse hunting is expected to be fair to good.

Dean Mitchell, upland game coordinator for the Division of Wildlife Resources, provides the following preview for each hunt:

Ring-necked Pheasant

Despite the fact that Utah pheasant populations have declined considerably over the years, many Utah hunters will be afield this year for the wily ringneck. Hunters should expect slight increases in pheasant populations this year. Spring and early summer rain throughout Utah improved the habitat pheasants need to successfully nest and raise chicks.

Hunters should concentrate their efforts in areas that still have good pheasant habitat. Most of Utah's pheasant hunters hunt only during the opening weekend. Those with persistence and who hunt during the weekdays are usually successful in harvesting some birds.

The 2005 Utah pheasant hunt should be fair throughout much of the state. Here's a preview for each of the DWR's five regions:

Northern Region: In Box Elder County, hunters should see improved habitat conditions and a slight increase in pheasant populations from previous years. In Cache County, pheasant populations appear stable and similar to last year.

Personnel at the DWR's Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area report similar or slightly fewer pheasants compared to previous years. At the Ogden Bay WMA, pheasant production was good with late hatches observed. In general, pheasant hunting will better at Ogden Bay, Howard Slough and Willard Bay than it was last year. Personnel at the Salt Creek WMA report a good to excellent pheasant hatch. Hunters should see more birds this year than in years past. At the Public Shooting Grounds WMA, pheasant numbers are similar to last year and poor hunter success is anticipated. Hunters should be prepared for thicker and taller than normal cover on waterfowl management areas in northern Utah.

Central Region: Habitat conditions are ideal this year in agricultural areas where pheasants are found. Early, wet spring weather and a few strategic summer showers provided excellent habitat conditions for nesting and brood rearing this year. Summer brood surveys were not
conducted this year, but the hunt is expected to be fair and maybe a little better than last year. Because of continued development, places to hunt in Utah County seem to be more restrictive every year, making Sanpete County a little better bet for pheasants in the region.

Pheasant hunting in the West Desert is marginal at best. Agricultural areas harbor some birds. Hunters are reminded that written permission is required to hunt agricultural fields. Limited public hunting is available on the James Walter Fitzgerald and Carr Fork wildlife
management areas.

Northeastern Region: Fair hunting is expected in both Duchesne and Uintah counties.

Southeastern Region: Below average hunting is expected across the region.

Southern Region: Pheasant populations are generally low throughout the region. Some areas appear to have had good pheasant production and others have not. A few birds have been observed in the Delta area, and pheasant hunting is expected to be fair in the area.

The 2005 pheasant hunt will not compare with the heyday of pheasant hunting in Utah, which happened in the 1950s and 1960s. Too much habitat has been lost or degraded. DWR biologists are anxious to work with landowners who desire to improve and enhance pheasant habitat on private property. Funds are available through the DWR Habitat Fund for habitat project cost-share payments to landowners who are interested.

Please contact the DWR Regional Habitat Manager in your area for more details. Pheasant hunting strategies in Utah are fairly different than in the past. Most of the best habitat for pheasants is still found on private lands throughout the state. However, hunters can no longer expect to go afield and have access to private lands on opening morning without talking with the landowner. Hunters need to invest some time ahead of the pheasant season opener to secure permission on private lands they desire to hunt. Hunters on lands that are "cultivated" or that have
been "properly posted" as "No Trespassing" are required to have written permission from the landowner or person in charge to be there.

This applies to family members as well who are not the actual landowner or person in charge of the land. To determine who owns a parcel of private land you desire to hunt, you
should visit the county recorder or assessor office for the county you desire to hunt in. Ask to review the "Plat maps" for the area you're interested in hunting. Plat maps provide information on who owns a particular parcel of land. Some county offices will provide telephone numbers or mailing addresses for landowners. This information can be used to contact the landowner to attempt to secure permission to hunt. In some cases, the hunter may have to use the local telephone
directory to determine landowner contact information.

Hunters are encouraged to complete and have the landowner sign the landowner permission card located on the DWR Internet Web page at

Most landowners are more than happy to allow pheasant hunters onto their land. They simply want to know who's out there. A simple telephone call or personal introduction goes a very long way in securing permission to hunt on private land. Please take the time to do so! One
trespasser is all it takes to close private property to hunters.

Pheasant and other upland game hunters are strongly encouraged to pick up all spent shotgun shell hulls in an effort to be respectful of private and public lands that may be hunted. Old decaying shotgun shell hulls left afield are unsightly and litter Utah's landscape. Please do your part and pick up and pack out any shotgun shell hulls that you may expend while afield. Also, please pick up and pack out any expended shotgun shell hulls left by others. We all need to do our part as ethical and responsible hunters. An uncluttered landscape left by hunters goes a long way toward getting invited back to private lands.

While in the field for pheasants, hunters are encouraged to pay close attention to their shot zones. Annually, DWR conservation officers respond to complaints from landowners concerned about buildings, livestock and farm equipment being "peppered" by shotgun pellets.
All it takes is one event like this to close private property to hunting for good! As more and more of Utah's pheasant habitat is replaced by urban and industrial development, it's essential to pay attention to your shot zone! Although not required by law, it's also an excellent idea to wear hunter orange clothing and caps while afield for pheasants.

Information about DWR wildlife management areas that are open to hunting is available in a booklet titled, "Access to Wildlife Lands in Utah." The booklet can be purchased at any DWR office. It's also available on the DWR Web site at . In addition to providing information about the management areas, the booklet can help pheasant hunters who would like to hunt the 30-day
season in select counties as outlined in the Upland Game Hunting Guide.

Upland Game and Waterfowl Cooperative Wildlife Management Units (CWMUs), renamed from Posted Hunting Units during the 1997 legislative session, have been in existence in Utah for more than 50 years. As pheasant numbers have declined, so have the number of CWMUs. CWMUs are areas in which landowners form associations and open their private
property to upland game and waterfowl hunting for a fee. A list of CWMUs that provides information about permit sales, dates, times and CWMU operator information is available from all DWR offices.

California Quail

California quail populations are scattered throughout Utah. The state's main quail concentrations are found within urban areas along the Wasatch Front, east into the Uintah Basin and southeast into the Carbon and Emery county areas. If hunting adjacent to urban areas,
hunters should contact local authorities to learn the regulations regarding the discharge of firearms.

In some local areas, California quail populations appear to have increased somewhat over last year. Recent and ongoing transplants of California quail from the Wasatch Front to suitable habitats in outlying areas are the reason hunters are seeing quail in new areas. Duchesne,
Sevier and Uintah counties are traditionally the best areas to hunt.

Here's what to expect in each of the DWR's five regions:

Northern Region: Urban populations.

Central Region: Most of the quail habitat in the Central Region is along the Wasatch Front where hunting is very limited, if not restricted altogether. Caution should be used when hunting in the foothills above housing areas, taking note where city limit boundaries are to avoid
illegal shooting. The quail population is similar to last year or slightly improved.

Northeastern Region: Good hunting is expected in Duchesne County. The extended opportunity to hunt quail in the Uintah Basin through December has provided some good recreational opportunity for hunters.

Southeastern Region: Fair to good hunting expected. Limited distribution.

Southern Region: Fair to good hunting expected. Very limited distribution.

Gambel's Quail

Gambel's quail are found mostly in the Mohave Desert habitat of Washington County (in the very southwestern corner of the state) and scattered sporadically along Utah's southern border.

Quail waterhole counts for the area were down from last year, but production looks good and quail seem to be plentiful. Observations in the southern portion of the region indicate that quail production there was excellent. Success is expected to be good in the desert areas west
of St. George even though thousands of acres of quail habitat was destroyed by fire this summer. The increased moisture this past spring and summer has greatly increased the availability of water in the area, and birds may be distributed over a larger area than they normally are.
Hunters should concentrate their efforts along dry washes. Calling can be an effective technique to locate coveys of birds.

Sharp-tailed Grouse

Sharp-tailed grouse numbers in Box Elder County are similar to last year. Special permits are required to hunt these upland game birds in Utah, and all of the 330 permits available this year have been taken. Permit numbers are issued on a conservative basis, and each hunter is
allowed to take only two birds. Plenty of birds should be available, and hunters who obtained a permit should enjoy a good hunt.

Hunters are reminded that nearly all sharp-tailed grouse hunting occurs on private land in eastern Box Elder County. Hunters are encouraged to contact landowners and obtain permission to hunt before the season opens. A landowner permission card hunters can complete and have the
landowner sign is available on the Web at .
Nine-Day Rifle Deer Hunt Recommended for Southern Utah

Rifle deer hunters could hunt deer for nine days in southern Utah next fall under recommendations the Division of Wildlife Resources will propose at upcoming public meetings.

Those who attend the meetings can learn more about the DWR's 2006 big game hunting proposals and can provide their input and suggestions. Citizens representing Utah's five Regional Advisory Councils will take the public input received to the Utah Wildlife Board when it meets Nov. 22 in Salt Lake City to approve Utah's 2006 Big Game Proclamation.

Meeting dates, times and locations are as follows (please note that the Southern Region meeting will start at 5 p.m.):

Southern Region
Nov. 1
5 p.m.
Dixie High School
350 E. 700 S.
St. George

Southeastern Region
Nov. 2
6:30 p.m.
John Wesley Powell Museum
885 E. Main St.
Green River

Northeastern Region
Nov. 3
6:30 p.m.
Uintah Basin Applied Tech. College
1100 E. Lagoon St.

Central Region
Nov. 8
6:30 p.m.
Springville Junior High School
165 S. 700 E.

Northern Region
Nov. 9
6 p.m.
Bridgerland Applied Tech. College, Room 171D
1301 N. 600 W.

Rifle deer hunters in the Southern and Southeastern regions could find themselves hunting four extra days next fall, including an extra weekend, under recommendations the DWR will present at the meetings.

"Deer herds in Utah are continuing a slow but steady climb, and we believe the rifle hunt in the two regions can be lengthened without a negative effect on the deer herds," said Craig McLaughlin, big game coordinator for the DWR.

In 1999, hunters in the Southern Region asked that the season be cut to five days on the Pine Valley, West unit to try and improve the number of bucks on the unit. Five-day seasons were eventually expanded to cover all of the units in the region.

Hunters in the Southeastern Region asked for their first five-day season in 2000. "The problem is that five-day seasons don't do what they're intended to do," McLaughlin said. "Most of the deer taken during the rifle hunt are taken during the opening weekend, so a five-day
season really doesn't save many deer. And five-day seasons take an opportunity away from hunters to get outside and enjoy the outdoors.

We'd like to bump the season back to nine days and give deer hunters a chance to enjoy a few extra days of hunting."

McLaughlin says deer herds in Utah have improved to the point that the rifle hunt can be lengthened to nine days without a big effect on the herds. "Deer numbers in Utah declined for several years because of the drought, but the herds started to rebound in the spring of 2003. And
deer did even better in 2004," McLaughlin said. "We had a good, wet winter and spring that year, and all of the moisture that was received improved rangeland conditions for deer across the state. As the range conditions improved, so did the survival of deer fawns."

During surveys this past March and April, DWR biologists found an average of 70 fawns per 100 does across Utah. "We were happy to see that most of the fawns born in the spring of 2004 made it through this past winter," he said.

And more snow and rain fell this past winter and spring. "We'll start our post-deer hunt surveys in November, and I'm sure we'll see that a good number of fawns were born this past spring," he said.

In addition to counting the number of fawns, DWR biologists will also count the number of bucks. "If we find that the number of bucks per 100 does doesn't meet the minimum goal of at least 15 bucks per 100 does, we can address that next fall when we set recommendations for the
2007 hunt," he said.

"Lengthening the rifle season to nine days in the two southern Utah regions for one year is not going to have a big impact on the regions' deer herds, even if we find that the buck to doe ratio has dropped to less than 15 bucks per 100 does."
Applications for 2006 Sportsman Permits Available by Nov. 2

Applications for some of next year's most prized Utah hunting permits -- 2006 Sportsman permits -- will be available by Nov. 2.

Only Utah residents may apply for Sportsman permits. One Sportsman Permit is offered for each of the following species: Desert bighorn ram, Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep ram, buck deer, buck pronghorn, bull elk, bull moose, hunter's choice bison, hunter's choice Rocky Mountain
goat, black bear, cougar, sandhill crane and wild turkey.

The 2006 Sportsman Permit hunt runs Sept. 1 - Dec. 31, 2006. Hunters may hunt on any unit open for the respective species, except Antelope Island for bison; the Pilot Mountain unit for elk; and the Pine Valley, Virgin River unit for desert bighorn sheep.

"The long season dates and ability to hunt every open hunting unit in the state except three make Sportsman permits a highly prized item," says Judi Tutorow, wildlife licensing coordinator for the Division of Wildlife Resources.

Beginning Nov. 2, hunters who have a major credit card can apply for a Sportsman Permit online at the DWR's Web site ( ). Hunters who don't have a major credit card must mail their application in. Sportsman Permit applications will be available by Nov. 2 from almost 400 hunting and fishing license agents statewide and the DWR's six offices.

Applications submitted through the DWR's Web site must be received no later than 11 p.m. on Nov. 16 to be entered in the draw for permits. Mail-in applications must be received no later than 5 p.m. on Nov. 16.

"Those who don't apply on the Internet are reminded that it will take a few days for their application to arrive through the mail and to mail it as far in advance of the Nov. 16 date as possible," Tutorow said. She also reminds hunters that a $5 nonrefundable handling fee is
required for each species a hunter applies for.

Results of the 2006 Sportsman Permit Draw will be posted by Dec. 7. Successful applicants will also be notified by letter. Those with questions may call the nearest Division of Wildlife
Resources office or the DWR's Salt Lake City office at (801) 538-4700.
BLM Office Awarded $225,000 Grant to Save Heritage Sites

This week, the Monticello Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management received a Save America's Treasures (SAT) grant award of $225,000 to stabilize ten nationally significant Ancestral Puebloan sites located within a 25-mile radius of Blanding, San Juan County, Utah. These sites, including one that is the cornerstone of a National Historic Landmark, are relatively pristine architectural complexes of the Pueblo period, A.D. 700 to 1300. This grant will support stabilization and conservation of the sites in order to ensure their continued preservation. By law, each award requires a dollar-for-dollar non-Federal match. States, localities, corporations, foundations, and individuals who value America's heritage may pledge support for this important project through financial contributions and in-kind services, bringing the value of the award to $450,000.

Each of the ten sites retains unusually well-preserved standing architecture of outstanding scientific value. For modern Four Corners Native Americans, these also provide heritage continuity and represent the homes of ancestors. However, greatly increased levels of backcountry visitation, a form of ecotourism, has hastened the seven or more centuries of natural deterioration. This has led to the collapse of dwellings, store rooms, and kivas at thousands of similar sites which now lack well-preserved architecture. The immediate need includes documenting and stabilizing these important sites. Unlike sites within regional national parks or monuments, these ten sites, managed by the Bureau of Land Management, remain fully accessible to the public, and the impacts of public use.

Overall, the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH), the National Park Service (NPS), the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) jointly announced the awarding of $14.89 million in federal SAT grants. With these funds 61 organizations and agencies will act to conserve significant cultural treasures, which illustrate, interpret and are associated with the great events, ideas, and individuals that contribute to our nation's history and culture. The award to the BLM Monticello Field Office represents the only such award this year in the state of Utah, and the first SAT award to the BLM since 2001. For more information on SAT, log on at .

Details on the SAT grant award sites…..

In order to protect the sites through the period of stabilization, their specific locations will not be made public at this time. Significance and integrity. The minimal level of intervention (very little if any excavation; no stabilization) elevates these ten Ancestral Puebloan sites from the standpoint of scientific integrity; they are relatively pristine. As the number of sites with standing architecture shrinks due to degradation from natural and human agents, the value of these ten sites will increase.

These ten sites are unusually well preserved as compared to other sites in the general area, with one a fundamental part of a 1965 National Historic Landmark designation. Each site is listed in, or has been determined eligible for, the National Register of Historic Places and designated as nationally significant for its archaeology, architecture, art, education, and scientific values.

Condition and threats. While important and well preserved when compared to their fellows, these sites have undergone many years of gradual natural impacts. Most are in exceptionally good condition because they are protected in dry shallow caves. Nevertheless, they do receive run-off and precipitation during hard downpours, and groundwater percolation from springs or seeps at the bedrock rear of these alcoves is endemic to cave formation. The archaeological remains in alcoves also suffer impacts from rodents and other fauna such as boring insects, digging reptiles, and nesting birds, which weakens the architecture and churns up the centuries-old deposits of the human residents. Experience indicates that as wall base mortars and stones are dug away by rodents or worn away by ambient moisture, entire walls collapse. Ancillary impacts include insect boring or rodent transport of datable wood and fungal attacks on fragile wall plasters.

The exponential growth of Four Corners heritage tourism is a second major and escalating group of impacts. BLM recreation figures demonstrate thousands of people annually visit Ancestral Puebloan sites on Cedar Mesa and to these ten SAT sites. Although it is illegal for visitors to camp in the sites, entry for exploring, photography, or other pursuits is common and has cumulative impacts. Artifact collecting or piling, climbing on the architecture, accidental stone displacement, trampling original stratified deposits, graffiti, and even occasional vandalism are also not allowed, but have been by-products of these visits. With few exceptions, damage to each site is increasing parallel to the exponential growth of local heritage tourism.

What the BLM will do to address the threats. Architectural specialists will visit the sites and assess the condition of each on a room-by-room, wall-by wall basis. Using standardized provenience terminology they will map at a scale sufficient to specifically record and rank conditions and threats. Although the general condition of the sites is known, the specific locations of wall failures, damage to sensitive plasters, distribution of wood available for tree-ring dating, etc., are not fully known. Threats and conditions vary widely across a site, and collecting assessment data represents only the first step in saving these treasures. Data are then entered into a database, threat severity ranked, and one of several courses of actions and schedules generated. These range from (1) intensifying documentation and photography, (2) installation of easily reversible silicone drip lines, and (3) more invasive treatments, such as masonry and plaster repairs. These must be done in concert with careful documentation in order not to comprise heritage or scientific values. Stabilization will not include reconstruction, and least invasive strategies are preferred whenever possible.

BLM intends to have these ten sites, their data, and base values preserved physically and in an architectural archival record. With a conditions assessment, each site will have a set of standardized baseline data that identifies the full spectrum and severity of threats for each architectural element at the site. This allows changes to be measured and maintenance recommended and scheduled in a programmatic manner; with rational for each level of stewardship clearly identified. Each site will have a preservation plan with a map and sufficient graphics to execute future work without compromising values. Sites will be placed on a monitoring schedule for periodic revisits and maintenance. Site values also will be preserved in detailed documentation and stored in a stable archival medium. Data will be compatible with Global Information System (GIS) format. Second, we currently cannot quantify the exact extent of emergency repair needs at each site, but we anticipate a need to implement emergency masonry or plaster repairs to architectural elements and to protect stratified deposits. We will use non-invasive methods when possible, such as run-off diversion techniques for bedrock modifications. Each application of an emergency technique will be described in a site-specific report.

BLM also plans to develop a model for off-site archeological interpretation at the 1965 National Historic Landmark. Unlike the other nine sites in remote alcoves, the ridge top setting of this site is subject to vehicular damage, and its valuable architectural remnants are predominantly subsurface and therefore not "showy" to the casual visitor. The plan here will include development of digital map sets similar to those of the other nine sites, but in addition to planning physical conservation, BLM intends to use published information of the site to create a virtual report that precludes much of the scientific need, or other public need, to visit the site, perpetuating its current (largely static) condition. In the future, some tourists may only visit this treasure via a website.

Public Benefit. The heritage tourism in this region is growing, with backcountry visitors seeking high quality and unsupervised experiences at exceptional sites. These visitors provide important economic support for San Juan County. At the same time, the BLM is required to protect and preserve these fragile and superior examples of ancient Puebloan architecture for future generations. We anticipate that successful implementation of this project will have a positive impact on site longevity and protection while accommodating increased public visitation.

Fall is a great time to fish

Contrary to what some people think, the fishing season doesn't end on Labor Day. The nonprofit Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) reminds families that some of the best fishing comes as the leaves change color.

From Seattle to Atlanta, parents and their children can grab a canoe or kayak and head to a nearby river or lake for a memorable day of fishing amidst the fall foliage. A trip to the local fishing hole can bring back some of the magic of summer, and has some advantages of its own:

The fish are biting. Fish are feeding in preparation for the winter.

The fish are more active. The colder water temperatures allow fish to roam all day.

The crowds are gone. The jet-skis and powerboats have stopped running for the year.

It's refreshing. Less heat and humidity make a day in the sun more enjoyable.

Nature is putting on a show. The changing leaves give the outdoors a seasonal splendor.

For those looking to enjoy time with family and friends on the water this fall, the RBFF offers the following tips for a great trip:

Visit the public service website to find bodies of water in your area and a wide range of fishing and boating information - from how to trailer a boat to where to get a fishing license to how to tie a fly.

Stop at your local tackle shop for fishing licenses, supplies and tips on what gear to use.

If you don't have a canoe or kayak, book a trip with a local drift boat captain or fishing guide.

Dress for the weather. Wear layers that can be added or removed with the changing temperatures.

Wear a personal floatation device.

Bring along a camera to capture the expression on your son or daughter's face when they catch their first fish.

The RBFF ( ) is a government-funded, nonprofit organization established in 1998 to increase participation in recreational angling and boating, thereby increasing public awareness and appreciation of the need for protecting, conserving and restoring America's aquatic natural resources. Recreational boating and fishing are America's favorite sporting activities, with more than 50 million people participating every year - that's more than play golf and tennis combined.