Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Living wild

Get to know wildlife neighbors on their undisturbed turf


By JENNIFER LIEBRUM
Express Staff Writer


No telling who will see who first, but the thrill is in the journey with several guided opportunities to spot mountain goats and the elusive wolf this winter.
Courtesy photo by Nappy Neaman

    How better to celebrate the nation’s “50 Years of American Wilderness” than a field trip?
    This year, the nonprofit Idaho Conservation League and Sun Valley Trekking have collaborated to offer six special outings, from wolf tracking and ecology tours at the Boulder Yurt, mountain-goat-viewing snowshoe tours in the Boulder Mountains and a winter ecology and animal-tracking snowshoe tour along the riparian corridor of the Big Wood River.
    On Sept. 3, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Wilderness Act, an historic bill that set aside an initial 9.1 million acres of wildlands for the use and benefit of the American people. Over the past 50 years, and as a result of America’s support for wilderness, Congress has added more than 100 million acres to this unique land preservation system.
    “Wilderness” is defined as “areas where the earth and its communities of life are left unchanged by people, where the primary forces of nature are in control, and where people themselves are visitors who do not remain,” according to the website www.wilderness50.org.
    Become an ambassador for the wild by trying one of the treks, which start this this weekend and continue through April 6.
    The winter adventures begin Sunday, Feb. 2, with a snowshoe hike on the riparian corridor of the Big Wood River led by Molly Reeve. This is an easy, family-friendly, two-mile roundtrip hike along the river to learn about plants, animals and human adaptations to winter.
    For a complete listing, contact Sun Valley Trekking at 788-1966, visit www.idahoconservation.org or contact the ICL’s Ketchum office at 726-7485. Costs per session vary. Space is limited and registration is required.




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