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  • Horn Night

    Jan 11, 2024

    Sundance Rod and Gun Club recently held their annual Horn Night. In the youth category, the Best Elk was Cash Peterson, Best Deer was Silas Speidel, Best Turkey was Brady Bock, Best Antelope was Silas Speidel. Best Overall was Elk Nick Ferderer, Best Deer was Silas Speidel, Best Turkey was Brady Bock and Antelope was Duane Ferderer. Winner of the Grand Slam (best average score of all four species) was Brian Bock. In the fish category, Best Rainbow was Parker Seely and Best Walleye was Mike...

  • Wyoming State Parks launches new booking website

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 4, 2024

    Wyoming State Parks has announced the launch of a new reservation and permit sales system that it says will offer a more streamlined experience for recreationists looking to enjoy the state’s outdoor opportunities. The new website allows you to refine your needs when staying in a state park, from the type of camping or lodging you’d prefer through to the type of camping equipment you will bring. Once you select from the available options, you can view maps detailing exactly where each available site is located and additional information, suc...

  • Black Hills Snow Course Readings

    Jan 4, 2024

    Site Name Elevation (ft.) Current Snow Depth (in.) Current Snow Water Equivalent (in.) 30-year Median SWE Last Year’s SWE Current Percent of 30-year Median SWE Blind Park Snotel 6870 8 1.3 3.2 * 41 Cole Canyon Snotel 5870 5 1.3 2.5 * 52 Ditch Creek 6880 5.5 0.6 1.9 * 32 Little Bear Run 6240 1.7 0.2 1.7 * 12 Mallo 6240 8.8 1.1 3 * 37 Mount Tom 5560 6.8 0.6 2.3 * 26 North Rapid Creek Snotel 6250 11 2.9 3.2 * 91 * No data collected. Submitted by Sherry Burr, NRCS...

  • No mussels found in state waters

    Sarah Pridgeon|Dec 21, 2023

    Wyoming Game & Fish announced this week that, despite breaking records for high-risk watercraft inspections this year, the state’s waters appear to still be free from invasive mussels. According to the announcement, the department inspected over 73,000 boats across the state. Personnel decontaminated 1154 watercraft and found mussels on 64 of them, both the highest number since the Aquatic Invasive Species program began in 2010. “This year we saw another increase in high-risk watercraft moving through Wyoming’s check stations,” said Josh Le...

  • Seasonal closures now in effect

    Dec 21, 2023

    Seasonal gates and recreation sites that are not open through the winter on the Black Hills National Forest were closed on Friday, December 15. Gates are closed to provide seasonal refuge for wildlife, protect natural resources and provide for public safety as some roads are converted to snowmobile trails. Seasonally closed roads and trails are identified on the current Motor Vehicle Use Map (MVUM). Snowmobile trails are open from December 15 to March 31 annually. Wheeled vehicles are not allowed on the snowmobile trails during that time...

  • Forest Service completes assessments for revised forest plan

    Sarah Pridgeon|Dec 14, 2023

    The assessment phase is now complete for the Black Hills National Forest Plan Revision process and a total of 20 revised, forest-wide resource assessments have been released. The 20 assessments evaluate existing information about current and relevant ecological, economic and social conditions, trends and sustainability on the Forest, according to a press release from the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). The purpose of conducting assessments is to identify the need to change the Land Management Plan. These will be used, according to the USFS, alongsi...

  • Feds look to regulate public climbing opportunities

    Sarah Pridgeon|Nov 30, 2023

    To guide how climbing opportunities are managed in national forests, grasslands and parks, public input is requested on new guidance for U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and National Park Service (NPS) personnel. The public comment period is open until January 16. The guidance covers all climbing types, including rock climbing, snow and ice climbing, mountaineering, canyoneering and caving. It affirms that this is an appropriate use of public lands, including wilderness, and that it should be managed in a way that protects cultural and natural resour...

  • Catch me if you can

    Nov 23, 2023

    The most popular creature in town this week makes a break for the safety of the trees. Happy Thanksgiving!...

  • Christmas tree permits now available

    Nov 23, 2023

    This is the time of year to celebrate old and new traditions with family and friends, like venturing into your favorite national forest to harvest your own Christmas tree. Black Hills National Forest Christmas tree permits are now available for purchase either online at Recreation.gov, from your local Forest Service office or from private vendors throughout the Black Hills. To purchase a permit online, visit Recreation.gov and search for Black Hills National Forest Christmas Tree Permit. It is important to carefully read the overview and...

  • BLM to burn slash piles in Crook and Weston counties  

    Nov 16, 2023

    The Bureau of Land Management Newcastle Field Office plans to burn slash piles this winter on BLM-administered lands in Crook and Weston counties. Burning may continue as conditions permit through April 2024. All prescribed burn projects are conducted in accordance with approved burn plans and burning is contingent on fuel moisture and weather meeting appropriate treatment conditions on site. Smoke may be visible from the surrounding areas during burning operations and days following as slash materials consume. The purpose of the planned burns...

  • Shawn Cochran named Forest Supervisor

    Nov 16, 2023

    Regional Forester Frank Beum has selected Shawn Cochran as the new permanent Forest Supervisor for Black Hills National Forest. Cochran has served the last five years as Forest Supervisor on the Monongahela National Forest in West Virginia. He replaces acting forest supervisor Ivan Green. Cochran reports to the Black Hills National Forest effective Jan. 14, 2024. "We are happy that Shawn has accepted the position of Forest Supervisor on the Black Hills," said Beum. "Keeping the important work of the Black Hills National Forest moving forward...

  • Frosty morn

    Nov 2, 2023

    Frost-covered trees brings a touch of beauty to a cold and foggy day on East Main Street Friday morning, after the first snow of the season....

  • Pick up your pumpkins, says Game & Fish

    Nov 2, 2023

    Wyoming Game and Fish is asking residents to properly dispose of pumpkins instead of leaving them out for wildlife to eat. While it may seem harmless to leave pumpkins out, it is quite the opposite, especially for mule deer whose digestive system cannot process unnatural foods. This often leads to sick animals. Additionally, pumpkins left outside can attract scavenging animals, from raccoons to bears. “This time of year we get many calls about sickly deer fawns and much of this can be attributed to these deer eating foods that offer little nutr...

  • Game & Fish reports local wildlife violation totals

    Sarah Pridgeon|Oct 26, 2023

    Wyoming Game & Fish (WGF) has released its law enforcement statistics for the year of 2022, showing that both the regions that encapsulate Crook County saw a modest decrease in violations. Sundance forms part of the Casper region, while Moorcroft, Pine Haven and Hulett sit in the Sheridan region. Within the Casper region, WGF has seven district game wardens, one access coordinator, a regional game warden and a regional wildlife supervisor. In 2022, law enforcement documented 522 violations in this region, which was a decrease of 20% from the...

  • Members sought for Black Hills National Forest Advisory Board

    Oct 26, 2023

    The Black Hills National Forest is seeking nominations for positions on the Black Hills National Forest Advisory Board which was established in 2003 for the purpose of providing advice and recommendations on a broad range of forest issues such as forest plan revisions or management, forest monitoring and evaluation, recreation fees, and site-specific projects having forest-wide implications. The nomination period closes December 1, 2023. The committee is comprised of 16 members who represent the following categories of interests: 1. Economic...

  • Fall gathering

    Oct 19, 2023

    A crew of young and old trail a herd of cows and calves headed for the sorting pens south of Sundance early Tuesday morning on the Kara Creek Ranch....

  • Game & Fish sends out hunter surveys

    Oct 19, 2023

    Hunters will begin receiving surveys through the mail or online this week from the Wyoming Game & Fish Department. The intent is to gather feedback on this year’s hunting season to inform wildlife managers when making future decisions. Licensed hunters are selected by random sampling for antelope, deer and elk, but nearly everyone who holds a license for moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goat, black bear, mountain lion, gray wolf, turkey, furbearer, sandhill crane, small game, upland game, migratory game bird, light goose conservation order or s...

  • Veto override fails on bat endangered species listing

    Sarah Pridgeon|Oct 5, 2023

    U.S. Senator Cynthia Lummis and all members of the Senate Western Caucus on which she serves as chairman, as well as U.S. Senator John Barrasso, voted to override President Joe Biden’s veto of the resolution that questioned the listing of the northern long-eared bat as an endangered species. In total, 47 senators voted for and 45 against, failing to meet the two-thirds majority required to overturn the veto. “The Biden administration’s heavy-handed interpretations and ongoing abuse of the ESA continues to punish private property owners rathe...

  • Forest Service collecting traffic survey data

    Oct 5, 2023

    Individuals wearing orange vests will be out and about in the Black Hills National Forest over the next year collecting input on traffic within the forest. Contract employees will be stationed in developed and dispersed recreation sites and along forest service roads and will be out in all types of weather conditions near signs that say “Traffic Survey Ahead.” The National Visitor Use Monitoring (NVUM) survey began on October 1 and will go through September 30, 2024. The information gathered is useful for forest planning as well as local com...

  • Regulation changes will affect youth hunters

    Sarah Pridgeon|Sep 28, 2023

    Wyoming Game & Fish is reminding hunters of a regulation change this season that affects youth deer license-holders. Due to low populations, a full-price, youth deer license does not permit the harvest of mule deer does or fawns during an antlered deer season. This year, youth hunters possessing a full-price, youth deer license may take an antlered mule deer or any white-tailed deer (including does and fawns) during an antlered deer season in accordance with the species limitation of their license in the hunt area(s) where their license is vali...

  • Boating season winds down, but inspections still needed

    Sarah Pridgeon|Sep 28, 2023

    As the nights draw in and the weather gets colder, boating season is winding down in Wyoming – and so are the check stations that protect local water bodies from invasive aquatic species. Check stations will begin to close or reduce their hours this month, but the Wyoming Game & Fish Department still requires that any watercraft transported into Wyoming until November 30 undergo a mandatory inspection by an authorized inspector. “Boaters who need to get their watercraft inspected between now and the end of November can stop by a Game and Fis...

  • Initiative to bring more hunting, fishing, conservation opportunities to schools

    Sep 28, 2023

    Wyoming Game and Fish Director Brian Nesvik, Superintendent of Public Instruction Megan Degenfelder and Governor Mark Gordon joined forces last week to announce a collaborative initiative to expand conservation education opportunities for Wyoming’s youth under Game and Fish’s Inspire a Kid campaign. “Wyoming’s conservation heritage is a through-line that goes back generations,” Governor Gordon said. “Ensuring students have opportunities to experience hands-on learning and gain crucial outdoor skills and knowledge should be part of our commitm...

  • Sign o' the times

    Sep 14, 2023

    The first signs of fall are beginning to appear around the area. Up on Warren Peak early this week, yellowing leaves are now dotted throughout the canopy....

  • Hunting season promises mixed results

    Sarah Pridgeon|Sep 7, 2023

    Hunting seasons this fall may be negatively affected by poor deer numbers, according to Sundance Game Warden Nate Holst, but elk and turkeys are doing just fine and should make for plentiful harvest opportunities. Deer The deer population in this county was hit by an outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) a couple of years ago, which affected both white-tailed deer and pronghorn antelope. Cases were identified across the east of the state, including in Crook County, in 2021. EHD is not...

  • County lays out stance on BLM plan

    Sarah Pridgeon|Aug 31, 2023

    The Crook County Commission has submitted comments on the Bureau of Land Management’s plans to revise its resource management plan (RMP) for northeast Wyoming. Pointing out that the county needs its natural resources to survive economically, the commission’s letter urges the federal agency to be mindful of the priorities laid out in the Crook County Natural Resource Management Plan (NRMP), which was adopted at the end of 2020. “Crook County’s economic viability is highly dependent on the availability and utilization of natural resourc...

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