Tie my fly: Dennis to teach patterns in session
Fly fishing author Jack Dennis of Jackson, Wyo., is hosting two days of fly-tying lessons this week in Grand Junction.
Dennis will be offering classes from 6 p.m. until 10:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday at Western Anglers Fly Shop, 413 Main.
Each session costs $75 and includes video-enhanced, personal instruction for 11 different fly patterns and five fly-tying DVDs produced by Dennis.
Class size is limited and pre-registration is required. Participants should have a basic knowledge of fly tying.
Dennis is a popular figure around Grand Junction and has been the featured speaker at the annual Western Colorado Fly Tying Exposition.
The Colorado Wildlife Federation has issued a report on the potential impacts of energy leasing and development on mule deer, Rocky Mountain elk, Colorado River cutthroat trout and greater sage grouse.
The report, titled “Northwest Colorado’s Wildlife Habitat Today: Are We Losing Our Heritage?”, uses a series of maps and overlays to illustrate the extent of current development and leases across the region.
According to the CWF, the maps were developed by the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. The biological information was compiled by the Colorado Division of Wildlife and peer-reviewed wildlife research.
“CWF supports responsible energy development, but we need to assure that the needs of wildlife are fully factored in before energy development begins, not as an afterthought,” said CWF executive director Suzanne O’Neill.
“Planning is needed so development doesn’t result in a cumulative loss of important habitat that, in turn, will result in declining herds and fewer opportunities to hunt, fish and view wildlife.”
The report notes that the Division of Wildlife is already working with several companies in western Colorado on comprehensive development and mitigation plans aimed at protecting wildlife and habitat while allowing production of natural gas.
The report is available on the CWF Web site, http://www.coloradowildlife.org.
Forest Service changing discount
The U.S. Forest Service has plans to drop the 50 percent discount at National Forest campgrounds available to holders of lifetime Senior and Access (permanent disability) passes.
The change will apply at campgrounds operated by private concessionaires, which represent half of National Forest camping capacity and 82% of reservable campsites. According to a notice in the Federal Register, the new policy replaces the half-price rule that has been in place since the mid-‘60s with a 10-percent discount.
The policy would also require Senior and Access passholders to pay a fee at National Forest day-use sites that are currently fully covered by those passes.
According to the Western Slop No-Fee Coalition, the change came about after the Recreation Enhancement Act took effect in 2005 and no longer required concessionaires to honor the 50 percent discount.
“It’s hurting their bottom line,” said Coalition president Kitty Benzar. “The Forest Service is not showing good faith by changing the terms of the passes after the fact.
“Pay up or stay home now applies to everyone.” Benzar said the Forest Service is accepting comments on the proposed change until Feb. 1.
More information is available at http://www.westernslopenofee.org.
Stickers support trail restoration
The estimated half-million hikers and climbers spending some time each year on one or more of Colorado’s 14ers have a considerable impact.
To help offset the cost of needed restoration work and to help you remember your accomplishment, the Web site 14erstickers.com has developed 58 different 14er peak stickers, with 30 cents of each sale going to trail restoration.
The money will be go to various non-profit groups involved with improving trail conditions on the state’s highest peaks.
The two-inch square stickers are black-and-white screenprints showing the different peaks and their elevations.
Stickers cost $3.50 each and are available at http://www.14erstickers.com.