© 2024 Boise State Public Radio
NPR in Idaho
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
From air quality concerns to evacuations, wildfires impact pretty much everyone. We've rounded up some resources to make sure you're prepared as we head into Idaho's wildfire season.

Northwest’s Fire Season Overlapping With Hunting Season

Dennis Stern
USFS Gila National Forest

Evacuation notices around the Northwest have subsided as fire crews beat back the threat of wildfire to homes and subdivisions.

Officials have removed an alert near Sisters, Oregon, where the Pole Creek Fire is 80 percent contained. In Idaho, the Idaho County Sheriff lifted an evacuation order near the McGuire Complex in the Nez Perce National Forest. And crews at the Wenatchee Complex in Washington have been reduced by half since last weekend.

But a dry spell in the region has pushed fire season … into hunting season. This means some hunters may have to forgo their favorite spots this year.

The Wendling Travel Management Area near Eugene is a popular spot for Oregon deer hunters. Last year, 600 people showed up on the season’s opening day. This year, it’s a no go -- closed due to fire danger.

In central Washington, hunters are finding some prime hunting grounds are either closed off because of nearby fires, or are on fire.

In Idaho, rather than bagging a big horn sheep or a mountain goat, a handful of hunters had to be satisfied with bagging a state-issued rain check for next year.

But eastern Idaho wildlife manager Tom Keegan says the big game is still out there.  “The animals tend not to flee from the fires as you might imagine watching a Bambi movie or something like that. They tend to hang around then come back in.”

Keegan says the singed forests could actually make it easier for hunters to see their prey. Of course the dry weather also creates a problem for the hunter: Crunching leaves.

Copyright 2012 Northwest News Network

You make stories like this possible.

The biggest portion of Boise State Public Radio's funding comes from readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

Your donation today helps make our local reporting free for our entire community.