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Friday, March 23, 7:30AM: Dangerous avalanche conditions exist in the backcountry of the mountains of western Wyoming today. New wet snow has fallen creating slabs of snow that will be very sensitive to backcountry travelers and natural releases at higher elevations. At lower elevations, rain as weakened the snowpack and wet loose avalanche activity could easily initiate in steep terrain. Careful snowpack evaluation and conservative decision making is essential today and route choices are needed today by recreationists. Snowy weather through the weekend for the Upper Green River Basin, but not a lot of accumulation at valley floor level. Daytime temps in the high 30Fs and low 40Fs, nighttime lows in the 20Fs. Click here for more area weather and travel links.  
Glacier Hockey Jamboree 2018
Glacier Hockey Jamboree 2018 The Pinedale Glaciers held the Mountain Man Mite/Mini-Mite Jamboree Tournament vs Teton Valley March 16-18 at the Sublette County Ice Arena in Pinedale. Click on this link for more pictures Photo by Terry Allen.
Light pillars over Pinedale. Photo by Dave Bell.
Light Pillars over Pinedale, Wyoming Dave Bell was surprised to see light pillars over Pinedale Friday morning, March 16th. When conditions are right, light from below refracts upward into columns into the sky creating a curious display. Click on this link to see another spectacular light column display Dave caught over Pinedale in January 2017: Light Pillars over Pinedale Photo by Dave Bell.
Arsenic and Old Lace. Photo by Terry Allen.
Don't drink that! The Pinedale High School Drama Department put on a performance of Arsenic and Old Lace March 12th & 13th. Click on this link for more pictures: Arsenic and Old Lace Photo by Terry Allen.
Gas Prices
Mar. 18, 2018
Big Piney2.529
Regular unleaded average.
WY & US provided by AAA.
Diesel Prices
Mar. 18, 2018
Big Piney3.299
WY & US provided by AAA.

Pinedale Local:

Nordic ski trail grooming report – March 23, 2018
NRCS FY2019 Local Work Group to meet April 11
Pinedale Lions Club annual Easter Egg Hunt March 31
‘Your Great Conservation Idea’ Grant Assistance Program available
Paid internships available to Pinedale high school students
Nordic ski trail grooming report – March 17, 2018
MESA Therapeutic Horsemanship Volunteer Training available
36th Aniel Daniel Chili Cookoff March 24th
Annual Boy Scouts Fundraiser March 21
ASK FLORA – Vermiculture
Town seeks food & beverage bids for June WAM Convention

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March 22: Shakespeare's The Tempest - Pinedale Fine Arts Council Season Ticket event production.
March 31 - April 1, 2018: RMSHA Hillclimb at White Pine Resort - Saturday & Sunday, March 31 - April 1. Races start at 8AM. Entry fee is $30/carload which includes up to 4 lift tickets. Food and beverages will be available. More info
July 12-15, 2018: Green River Rendezvous in Pinedale - Celebrating the legacy of the Mountain Men! Join us in Pinedale for 4 days of fun and frolic of the Green River Rendezvous! Living history programs and demonstrations at the Museum of the Mountain Man, street fair, Trader's Row, rodeos, Green River Rendezvous Pageant, many events every day. More info

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Pinedale Online is Pinedale, Wyoming on the web. We give our viewers, locals and out-of-area visitors, a "slice of life" snapshot window into our world view of what is happening in Pinedale. Visit us for current local news on what is happening, photos of local events, links to area businesses and services and more. We are long-time area residents and are happy to answer questions if you are planning a visit to our area. Much of our information is by community contribution.


Wolf Watch, by Cat Urbigkit


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Pinedale, Wyoming is Polaris 'RangerCountry USA'
Country Music Star Jake Owen to perform at Polaris’® ‘RangerCountry™ USA’ celebration April 12 (posted 3/23/18)
An Official Naming Ceremony and three new RANGER® vehicles will be donated as part of the celebration
Polaris®, the industry leader in off-road vehicles, is awarding Pinedale, Wyoming, with the title of "RANGER Country™ USA" and an intimate performance by country music superstar Jake Owen. To commemorate the RANGER-lifestyle embodied by Pinedale, Polaris is hosting a RANGER Country USA celebration on April 12, 2018 which will include a Jake Owen performance, an official naming ceremony, and donation of three Polaris RANGER vehicles to deserving organizations.

"I am thrilled to be headed to Pinedale to help celebrate the town’s well-deserved RANGER Country USA Title," said Owen. "Pinedale represents thousands of small towns that make up our great country, and I’m honored to be a part of a campaign that recognizes hard-working Americans. I’m excited to help make this a celebration that Pinedale will never forget."

To celebrate building its one-millionth RANGER utility side-by-side vehicle, Polaris kicked off the search for "RANGER Country USA" with country music star Jake Owen. The two-month campaign featured video profiles devoted to five towns from across the United States, including Pinedale, and asked consumers to vote for the town they believed was most-deserving of the title. After three weeks of voting, Pinedale, Wyoming, was voted "RANGER Country USA". Corning, Arkansas; Darlington, Wisconsin; Spring Creek, Nevada; and Stephenville, Texas were among the four other towns vying for the title and were awarded for their participation in the campaign with three RANGER vehicle donations this past week.

Sublette County, Wyoming residents are invited to attend the RANGER Country USA celebration on April 12, 2018. Limited tickets are available and admission is free for residents of Sublette County. Visit to reserve tickets.

Since its introduction in 1998, Polaris RANGER has continuously set the standard for utility side-by-side vehicles with its industry-leading capabilities. With over one-hundred owner-inspired improvements, the all-new 2018 RANGER XP 1000 represents the culmination of nearly two decades of innovation.

For more information about Polaris and "RANGER Country USA", visit and Also visit us and join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

For tour dates and more information, visit, on Facebook at, and follow him on Instagram @jakeowenofficial & Twitter @jakeowen.

Sublette pushes for changes to Mitigation Policy (posted 3/22/18)
Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!
Sublette County Commissioners Joel Bousman and Mack Rawhouser successfully led the charge to get National Association of Counties (NACO) support of efforts to overturn federal mitigation policies adopted during the Obama Administration.

During a recent NACO Legislative Conference in the nation’s capital, the Sublette County Commissioners sponsored a resolution - backed by the Wyoming County Commissioners Association (WCCA) - requiring federal agencies to revert to the mitigation hierarchy of "avoid, minimize, and mitigate" rather than a more recent federal directive which seeks a "landscape-scale" approach including a standard for a "net-benefit goal or, at a minimum of no-net-loss goal" for natural resources.

Bousman and Rawhouser argued that the Obama-era policies and directives exceeded statutory authority. If NACO is successful in getting the Obama directive revoked, federal agencies will go back to the traditional policy of first avoiding impacts to sensitive resources where possible; minimizing impacts if avoidance cannot be achieved; and providing mitigation (either on-site or off-site) for remaining impacts.

The Trump Administration has already revoked or rescinded most of the Obama federal mitigation policies, but some still linger in the Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, and Fish & Wildlife Service.

The Commissioners noted that the Obama-era federal requirements for compensatory mitigation and the goal of "net conservation gain," could delay federal planning processes and permit approvals for actions on federal lands. They argued that the policy inhibits economic progress and job growth, and that county governments "are concerned that using compensatory mitigation to purchase private property and transfer it to the federal government would remove such property from the local tax base and decrease revenue for local government."

The Sublette-backed effort successfully advanced through both the Public Lands Steering Committee and the NACO board of directors at their respective meetings.

In other news from the NACO trip, the two Sublette County Commissioners:

• Heard updates from top Interior and Agriculture Department officials about better ways to interact with local governments as cooperating agencies. Commissioner Bousman is the NACO lead on a USDA Forest Service project to develop a Forest Service Guidebook for working with county governments during federal planning processes undertaken pursuant to the National Environmental Quality Act.

• Presented a WCCA white paper explaining the barriers to wildfire suppression and fuel management under the Forest Service’s roadless management rules. According to Bousman: "Addressing this situation in the Wyoming Range is crucial to our ability to reduce the cost of fire suppression. In 2017, the cost of fire suppression consumed nearly 60% of the Forest Service’s operating budget, thus reducing the ability of the agency to manage the land."

• Commissioner Bousman presented a report on the Sublette County Forest Collaborative to U.S. Forest Service Chief Tony Tooke, and Commissioner Mack Rawhouser had an opportunity to speak directly with Chief Tooke about collaborative efforts to promote stewardship of natural resources, but the next day Chief Tooke resigned in wake of sexual misconduct allegations.

White Pine Snowmobile Hill Climb March 31 and April 1, 2018
White Pine Snowmobile Hill Climb March 31 and April 1, 2018
Snowmobilers take on White Pine March 31 and April 1 (posted 3/22/18)
White Pine Ski Area
Following the closing of White Pine Resort for the winter ski season of 2017/18, at the end of Sunday March 25, the mountain will roar back to life during the following weekend (March 31, April 1) for the White Pine Snowmobile Hill Climb.

Rocky Mountain States Hillclimb Assn, RMSHA, organizers of the event, attract a large following of snowmobilers for the six or more races staged during March and April throughout the Rocky Mountain region. Racers, classified as either Professional (Pro) or Semi Pro, will ride up the mountain on machines rated in classes from 600cc to 1000cc. The wide field of entries also includes Snowbikes, Women, amateurs, junior and senior competitors.

RMSHA president Bart Butcher recently visited White Pine to plan out the race courses. There will be two racing lanes – Red (Pro) and Blue (Semi-Pro). To increase spectator interest, the Pro snowmobilers will have a course with jumps, berms and table tops created on the lower parts of the mountain. White Pine will be also running Little Spirit Lift and have a large spectator viewing area at the top of this lift.

The $30 access fee/carload/day includes the cost of up to 4 lift tickets which can be used continually on the chairlift throughout the day (note no downloading – but a signed walking route down). Food, beverages and port-a-potties will be provided for mid-mountain comfort. Local snowmobile club, Pinedale Snow Explorers will provide onsite hill help to assist with route monitoring and assistance if any racers lose control of their sled.

A full day of racing on Saturday starting at 8am will reduce the initial field of 20-30 riders in each category down to 12 finalists/category for the Sunday events. Crowns will be assigned to the fastest rides in Stock King/Queen, Improved King/Queen and Mod King/Queen classes.

Some fun racing is also included on both Saturday and Sunday with the Kiddie Kat 120cc race on the lower slopes of the mountain on Saturday. Perhaps one of the most coveted titles is the "Run WhatCha Brung" race where locals are invited to take on the hill using their own snowmobile. The locals’ event starts at the completion of the RMSHA race calendar expected to be early afternoon on Sunday. Most racers agree it is not about the money however the $100 entry fee covers insurance plus a payout to the top three riders in both the Stock and Mod categories.

For further information
Robyn Blackburn
Cell 307-360-6272

Jaycee Taylor
RMSHA secretary
Cell 307-749-2999

Clint Andersen
President Snow Explorers
Cell 434-632-0510

Related Links: Rocky Mountain States HillClimb Association
Snow Explorers/Altitude Off-Road White Pine Ski Area

Town of Jackson votes on moratorium for new development (posted 3/22/18)
Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce
Town Council met today (Wednesday, March 21, 2018) in an emergency meeting to vote on a complete moratorium of new development applications for projects affected by proposed stricter employee housing rules in the Town of Jackson for 180 days. It would apply to "applications under the land development regulations to which current affordable housing standards or current employee housing requirements apply, or to which the proposed affordable workforce housing standards would apply".

The Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce made public comment asking for more time to look at what the moratorium could possibly do to the business growth potential. Amongst the other opposing public comment, the Town Council voted 4-0 (Don Frank was absent) for the moratorium to take place.

The development freeze will be in place through the summer building season until the middle of September.

BLM's Boulder Travel Management Plan (posted 3/19/18)
Open House in Pinedale April 12, 2018
Bureau of Land Management
The BLM Pinedale Field Office has drafted three preliminary alternatives for the Boulder Travel Management Plan. The BLM is now seeking public input on specific activities, access needs, potential uses and resource concerns regarding the routes. Public participation in travel management planning is essential in establishing a manageable network of routes to support recreation, ranching and other permitted uses on public lands in the Boulder, Wyoming area.

The BLM has now evaluated existing routes in the Boulder planning area, and has proposed designations for each route: open, limited, or closed. The plan's alternatives include:
Alternative A No action
Alternative B Most restrictive to motorized access
Alternative C A "blended alternative" that provides necessary motorized access and protections to resources
Alternative D Least restrictive to motorized access.

Why are we doing travel management planning?
There are several reasons why we are completing travel management plans in the BLM Pinedale Field Office. The first reason is to comply with the 2008 BLM Pinedale Field Office Resource Management Plan and the Wyoming Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment for Greater Sage-Grouse of September 2015. A second reason is the public need and desire to have a manageable and sustainable transportation system. The BLM has also been directed in Instruction Memorandums and management decisions.

How does the Boulder TMP affect me?
Non-motorized public:
There are no restrictions to the non-motorized public being proposed in the Boulder TMP.

Motorized public:
Use of motorized vehicles by the public within the Boulder Travel Management Area (TMA) will be limited to designated roads and trails. All routes designated as closed will be decommissioned and unavailable for use by the public. Routes designated as limited seasonally will be open to all motorized modes of travel, except during the seasonal limitation date.

Authorized/Permitted users (grazing permittees, ROW holders, landowners):
Use of motorized vehicles by Authorized and Permitted users within the Boulder TMA will be limited to designated roads and trails. All routes designated as closed will be decommissioned and unavailable for use by Authorized and Permitted users. Routes designated as limited seasonally will be open to all motorized modes of travel, except during the dates of seasonal limitations. Authorized and Permitted users are granted exceptions to seasonal closures when necessary to perform duties associated with the Authorized or Permitted use.

Administrative/Official users (Federal, State, local agencies):
Use of motorized vehicles by Administrative/Official users within the Boulder TMA will be limited to designated roads and trails. All routes designated as closed will be decommissioned and unavailable for use by Administrative/Official users. Routes designated as limited seasonally will be open to all motorized modes of travel, except during the seasonal limitations date. Administrative/Official users are granted exceptions to seasonal closures when necessary to perform official duties.

Over-the-snow vehicle use:
Over-the-snow vehicles will be permitted on designated routes only and are subject to seasonal limitations for motorized use. Several routes in the Irish Canyon area have ROW authorizations associated with the Continental Divide Snowmobile Trail. These routes are open to over-the-snow vehicles year-round in all alternatives. These routes are identified on all alternative maps.

Implementation of the Boulder TMP will begin after the Decision Record for the Environmental Assessment (EA) and Travel Management Plan is signed. Any decisions in the TMP such as route closures, seasonal closures, route maintenance, mitigation actions, and monitoring will be completed as soon as practical.

Public Comment
The BLM will accept public comments on the preliminary alternatives through June 1, 2018. There are several ways that the public can obtain information and maps about the three preliminary alternatives developed for the Boulder Travel Management Plan.

• You may visit the project website at and view and print detailed maps. This website also has Google Earth files of the three alternatives available to download.

• You may visit the BLM Pinedale Field Office in person and get further information. The office is located at 1625 West Pine Street, Pinedale, Wyoming 82941.

• You may email with
additional questions, or call our office at 307-367-5300.

Please send your comments via mail to: BLM Pinedale Field Office, P.O. Box 768, Pinedale Wyoming 82941, or deliver to the BLM Pinedale Field Office. Comments are welcome throughout the planning process; however, it is most helpful if your comments are received by June 1, 2018.

The BLM will host an open house to collect the public’s input on the alternatives on April 12, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the BLM Pinedale Field Office located at 1625 West Pine Street, Pinedale, Wyoming 82941. During the open house, BLM staff will conduct a 20-minute presentation about travel management planning and the Boulder Travel Management Plan at 6:00 p.m.

The comments received from the public on the three alternatives will help the BLM in developing the proposed action for an Environmental Assessment and Travel Management Plan. The three preliminary alternatives are versions of a potential proposed action.

Adding wolves to Isle Royale (posted 3/19/18)
Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!
The National Park Service has proposed to introduce 20-30 wolves to Isle Royale National Park. The Final Environmental Impact Statement to Address the Presence of Wolves (plan/FEIS) evaluates whether and how to bring wolves to Isle Royale to function as the apex predator within a changing and dynamic island ecosystem. The NPS preferred alternative is Alternative B, which calls for the introduction of 20 to 30 wolves over a three-year period. The goal of this alternative is to provide an introduction of wolves that has the potential to become a self-sustaining population.

According to the NPS, "A decision is needed because the potential absence of wolves raises concerns about possible effects to the current Isle Royale ecosystem, including effects to both the moose population and forest/vegetation communities. Over the past five years the wolf population has declined steeply and at this time, natural recovery of the population is unlikely. Although wolves have not always been part of the Isle Royale ecosystem, they have been present for more than 65 years, and have played a key role in the ecosystem, affecting the moose population and other species during that time."

There appears to be two severely inbred wolves remaining on the island, and the proposal to augment the population has generated substantial controversy regarding human intervention in a wilderness environment.

After a waiting period of at least 30 days, the NPS will issue a Record of Decision that documents the final decision and sets out a course of action for the project.

Related Links :
Isle Royale Wolf Project - National Park Service
Wolf Watch - by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!

Washington wolf population increases (posted 3/19/18)
Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife
Washington's wolf population continued to grow in 2017 for the ninth straight year, according to the results of an annual survey conducted by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

The state was home to at least 122 wolves, 22 packs, and 14 successful breeding pairs, based on field surveys conducted over the winter by state, tribal, and federal wildlife managers.

Survey findings reflect information from aerial surveys, remote cameras, wolf tracks, and signals from radio-collared wolves.

Ben Maletzke, WDFW statewide wolf specialist, said today that all of those totals were the highest recorded since the department began conducting the surveys in 2008. Last year's survey documented 115 wolves, 20 packs, and 10 breeding pairs. Maletzke emphasized the surveys represent "minimum counts" of wolves in Washington state, due to the difficulty of accounting for every animal – especially lone wolves without a pack.

"Here and in other states, wolf demographics are highly dynamic from year to year," Maletzke said. "The real value of these surveys is the information they provide about long-term trends, which show that our state's wolf population has grown by an annual average of 31 percent over the past decade."

Maletzke said the study documented four new packs – the Frosty, Grouse Flats, Leadpoint, and Togo packs – all located east of the Cascade Mountains. Two previously identified packs – the Skookum and Sherman packs – were not included in the pack totals for last year because the first could not be located and the second now appears to have only one member.

Wildlife managers have also been tracking the movements of a wolf in the North Cascades in Skagit County that was captured and fitted with a radio-collar last June, but so far no other wolves have been confirmed in the area, Maletzke said. All but eliminated from western states in the last century, Washington's wolf population has rebounded since 2008, when wildlife managers documented a resident pack in Okanogan County. According the 2017 survey, 15 of the 22 known packs are located in Ferry, Stevens, and Pend Oreille counties in the northeast corner of the state.

Since 1980, gray wolves have been listed under state law as endangered throughout Washington. In the western two-thirds of the state, they are also listed as endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act.

As the state's wolf population has continued to grow, WDFW has expanded its efforts to collaborate with livestock producers, conservation groups, and local residents to prevent conflict between wolves and domestic animals, Maletzke said. WDFW employed an array of non-lethal strategies last year to reduce conflicts, protect their livestock. State assistance included range riders to check on livestock, guard dogs, lighting, flagging for fences, and data on certain packs' movements.

Maletzke said five of the 22 known packs that existed in Washington at some point during 2017 were involved in at least one livestock mortality. After conducting investigations, WDFW confirmed that wolves killed at least eight cattle and injured five others last year. WDFW processed two claims totaling $3,700 to compensate livestock producers for their losses in 2017.

"We know that some level of conflict is inevitable between wolves and livestock sharing the landscape," Maletzke said. "Our goal is to minimize that conflict as the gray wolf population continues to recover."

State management of wolves is guided by the Wolf Conservation and Management Plan of 2011, along with a protocol approved by WDFW to reduce those conflicts. Consistent with the management plan and protocol, the department used lethal action to address repeated predation on livestock by two wolf packs after non-lethal measures failed. WDFW euthanized one member of the Sherman pack, which killed four cattle and injured another during last year's summer grazing season. The department also removed two wolves from the Smackout pack, which had a history of preying on livestock in 2016 and killed two cattle and injured another during the 2017 grazing season.

The survey also documented 11 wolf mortalities in 2017 attributed to legal tribal harvest (3), legal "caught-in-the-act" shootings (2), vehicle collisions (2), and four (4) other incidents involving humans that are still under investigation. Contributors to WDFW's annual survey include the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services program, the Confederated Colville Tribes and the Spokane Tribe of Indians.

Related Links:
Washington Wolf Page - Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife
Wolf Watch - by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!

Mite/Mini-Mite Hockey Jamboree Tournament in Pinedale. Photo by Terry Allen.
Mite/Mini-Mite Hockey Jamboree Tournament in Pinedale. Photo by Terry Allen.
Hockey Jamboree 2018 (posted 3/18/18)
A Sport for the Ages
Terry Allen
I walked into the Sublette County Ice Arena Saturday (March 17) just in time to witness a cluster of frenetic Green jerseys from Pinedale and Red Jerseys from Jackson trying to get a stick on a puck. Someone did connect and the puck scooted free across a big empty space of ice. The little knot of Mini-Mites broke apart into individual skaters and chased after it, leaving behind one skater who had decided to stop and practice a circle or a figure 8.

I heard a laugh and saw a big smile on the face of the tallest guy in the arena. Ty Huffman has been coaching the younger players for three years. "I like coaching the younger ages," he said, "because they are all about having fun. It is a complex sport, but at this age, we just want them to focus 100% on fun. We also try to get them to keep their heads up when they skate so they don’t run into each other. Hockey can teach kids some real good life skills."

The history of hockey-like games seems to go back to 4000 year old rock carvings in Egypt which show games being played with sticks and projectiles. There is a carving from 600 B.C. in Athens which shows players using curved sticks. It is easy to imagine parents in ancient times spending their evenings and weekends getting their kids to practice and to games just like we do now.

I spotted a man with a look of gleeful enthusiasm on his face watching the play and recognized Craig Sheppard. "Our hockey association was started in around 1971 by some guys from the BLM and Forestry," he said. "In those days it was an outdoor rink over by the library. In fact, this is our first indoor arena." When you talk with Craig, you might notice an accent. I told him he sounded a little bit like a Canadian. "Yeah, well, that might be because I grew up about 100 miles from the Canadian border in Minnesota," he said.

I was hoping to get a chance to talk to the kids when their game was over and it turned out I recognized some of them from other stories I’ve done. They all eagerly sat down and bunched up close on the bench and smiled with big toothless grins just like real hockey players. Don’t worry folks; they are at the age where teeth just fall out naturally.
"I like scoring goals and practicing my backwards skating," said Tempie Huffman, "and by the way, I like your cursive." (I hadn’t noticed she’d been watching me write down her words). "I like winning, scoring goals and skating backwards," said Evelyn Sare.

If you are interested in hockey for yourself or your kids, there is room for everyone. There is no boys’ team or girls' team; there is just the hockey team. Apparently, there is a geezer team, though…because I heard there was a 70-year old guy in uniform. Gee, maybe I should look into it.

Ty told me, just about everything you need is supplied by the association. "The only thing you need to supply is your own skates," he said. "We are trying to grow our association in this age group because we have about 20 kids and Jackson has over 120." The Sublette County Glaciers seem to be doing pretty good with what they’ve got though, because last year they qualified for and went to a big tournament in Ontario, Canada.

One last thing: They tell me the breakfast burritos at the concession stand are fantastic… and cheap!

A big thank you to Ty for inviting me out and thank you to everyone who let me get in the way so I could try for a good picture and a few entertaining words. Thank you to Dawn Ballou who sponsored this story without knowing what I was going to do. "Just go do something you want to do," she said.

Terry Allen:
You may all share these low resolution photos among yourselves personally.

Ice Arena: (307) 367-6313

Click on this link for more pictures

Related Links: Pinedale Glaciers Hockey Association
Pinedale Glaciers Facebook page

Light pillars over Pinedale, Wyoming on Friday, March 16th. Photo by Dave Bell.
Light pillars over Pinedale, Wyoming on Friday, March 16th. Photo by Dave Bell.
Light Pillars (posted 3/17/18)
Dave Bell was surprised to see light pillars over Pinedale Friday morning (March 16th). "The weather conditions were not what historically has created these beautiful lights. It was about 19F, light wind and dry. We have had no measurable snow in the past several hours. But, nonetheless, we had a decent display of light pillars to the south of Pinedale. I think the further lights are rigs and production facilities on the south end of the mesa. The big one, right of center, is the rig and fracing operations on the north end of the mesa above Pinedale. Taken about 6:00AM. Canon 1DC, 24-70 at 24mm, 15 seconds at f2.8, ISO 320."

Click on the links below to see more pictures by Dave of an earlier light pillar show over Pinedale in 2017.

Related Links:
Light Pillars By Dave Bell, January 24, 2017
Light Pillars explanation Wikipedia
The rare phenomenon that lit up Wyoming’s sky By Jennifer Earl, CBS News, February 3, 2017
The Science Behind Light Pillars By Jon Erdman,, January 27, 2017
Rare, Amazing Light Pillars Spotted In Wyoming's Sky By Elaine Hanna, Science World Report, February 6, 2017
Dave Bell Photo Gallery

Auditions on Monday, April 2nd in Pinedale
Auditions on Monday, April 2nd in Pinedale
Missoula Children’s Theater to begin auditions for performance of ‘Robin Hood’ in Pinedale (posted 3/17/18)
Parts for 50-60 students in the production
Pinedale Fine Arts Council
The Missoula Children’s Theatre of Missoula, Montana, will arrive in Pinedale on Monday, April 2, to audition students in grades K-12 for the production, "Robin Hood". The Missoula Children’s Theatre directors will select 50-60 students to rehearse during the week of April 2 – 6. The actors and students chosen will present a full production of "Robin Hood" – an evening performance at 7:00 pm on Friday, April 6 in the Sheppard Auditorium.

Any student in the Pinedale or Bondurant school system, K-12, is eligible to audition including home-school students. There is no preparation required for the auditions, and no previous experience is needed. Missoula Children’s Theatre will provide all scenery and costumes for this production.

Auditions will be held Monday, April 2, in the Sheppard Auditorium from 3:30 to 5:30PM. Students should arrive immediately when school is dismissed on Monday (if need be, elementary students may take the PAC bus to get to the audition – a PFAC representative will walk students from the bus to the auditorium).

Students must also have a signed parental consent form to audition. Consent forms are available at all Pinedale school offices and can also be downloaded at

The selections for roles in the play are made entirely by the Missoula Children’s Theatre actors. There is no guarantee that everyone who auditions will be cast in the play.

Missoula Children’s Theatre is presented locally by The Pinedale Fine Arts Council. For more information please call the Pinedale Fine Arts Council at 307-367-7322 or visit

The Pinedale High School Drama Department put on a performance of Arsenic and Old Lace March 12th & 13th. Photo by Terry Allen.
The Pinedale High School Drama Department put on a performance of Arsenic and Old Lace March 12th & 13th. Photo by Terry Allen.
Arsenic and Old Lace (posted 3/15/18)
A Pinedale High School Play
Terry Allen
On Monday March 12, 2018 at 1:30 in the afternoon, The Pinedale High School Drama Department put on a matinee performance of Arsenic and Old Lace (also evening performances on the 12th & 13th… remember those numbers).

Mr. Smith, Mr. Allen and all the student actors, makeup artists, and stage managers kindly agreed to let me stage a lot of my photos before the play began. Because of this, they may not be in their actual costumes or full makeup in all the photographs. In fact, for all three performances, the actors played different roles.

On Monday noon, a young woman might be the starring love interest and in the evening she might be in the role of a policewoman…and so on. I also wanted to illustrate the part our imaginations play, by showing what is behind various stage doors, etc., like the door to the cellar where the bodies are buried.

Speaking of bodies…
Two sweet old Aunties live well in a stately Victorian home next door to a graveyard. On Sundays they place flowers on some of the graves. On the other side of the graveyard is a grand old church administered by a respected man of the cloth. Life appears to have gone well for them.

The Aunties adopted and raised their nephew Mortimer, who became a successful bachelor and a big time New York drama critic. In the afternoon or evenings, the Aunties might entertain friends…or lonely old widowers…with tea, or their own very special elderberry wine.

Mortimer has an adorable girlfriend who he has no intention of marrying. The part is cast and played so well I’m sure everyone in the audience wonders what’s wrong with Mortimer. From that point on, we are introduced to oddity after family oddity. Mortimer’s uncle Teddy also lives in the home and he is either rambunctiously pulling out his saber and charging up San Juan Hill (stairs) or descending into the cellar to dig the Panama Canal. Yes, Teddy thinks he is Roosevelt before he became The Prez.

Mortimer takes a breather on the window seat to contemplate life and for some reason opens it…and finds a body inside. This sends him into a frantic state that lasts throughout the play…but it just gets worse. He confronts the Aunties and they are matter of fact about it, rationalize it; and Teddy comes and drags the body off to the Panama Canal.

Mortimer takes stock and realizes there are 3 crazies to his 1 in his family. That is when his long lost brother appears. Jonathan had disappeared into a bad life years earlier and Mortimer had been happy he’d gone away. Unfortunately, Jonathan came back with his own "personal" doctor who was also a plastic surgeon who kept changing Jonathan’s appearance…using the faces of people he killed to stay one step ahead of the law. Now, it was 4 crazies to 1, and Mortimer appears to think he has the same insane murder gene and his own crime spree is just around the corner…so he suddenly insists on immediately getting married to the innocent Elaine… presumably before she finds out he is crazy and won’t.

He also recognizes the medicinal value of alcohol and decides it’s time he starts drinking… the very special elderberry wine. When the Aunties won’t let him drink and he learns the reason why is the 12 bodies buried in the cellar (who’s wealth presumably supports his family), he decides to invest in a cover up, a compassionate framing of his Uncle Teddy… and maybe a murder of his own… before going off on his honeymoon.

I won’t be a spoiler and tell you all the ending. Our library has the Movie starring Cary Grant.

I don’t know why no one has done a musical version of this play before. I have found myself making up and singing the most delightful little murder ballad. Next time you see me, ask me to sing you the tune… and you can try my delicious elderberry wine, too.

Directors: Greg Allen and Justin Smith

Jaxon Buchanan, Jake Harber
Martha: Kodie Egle, Jenna Roadifer
Jonathan: Anthony Goulette
Abby: Aaliyah Harford-Stevens, Katie Wycoff
Teddy: Shyla Orders
Elaine: Ivy Porter, Baylee White
Mr. Gibbs: Ashleigh Hultquist
Lieutenant Rooney: Senddey Gutierrez
Officer Brophy: Riley Dauwen, Olivia Young
Officer Klein: Emma McCulloch
Officer O’Hara: Preslie Simkins, Bryce Van Etten
Dr. Einstein: Hunter Westercamp
Dr. Harper, Mr. Witherspoon, Corpse: Corbin Woolstenhulme

Tech Director: Patrick Rookus
Set Design & Construction: Greg Allen
Props & Set Painting: Madeleine Murdock, Elaine Crumpley, Sharron Ziegler
Stage Manager: Mackenzie Miller
Costuming: Ashleigh Hultquist, Megan Anspach
Makeup/Hair: Preslie Simkins
Lights: Liam Fallon
Sound/Tech Manager: Nate Miller
Ticket Sales: Bethany Essington
Set Construction: JJ Lopez-Bandin

Special Thanks:
Jay Harnack and SCSD#1 School Board
Principal Brian Brisko and administrative staff
Cydnee Alfrey and Emery Kemp for publicity
Patrick Rookus and auditorium staff
Pam McCulloch
Mrs. Robertson and the Leadership class
Office Outlet and NAPA Auto Parts for selling tickets

Click on this link for more pictures: Arsenic and Old Lace

For corrections and photo reprints please contact Terry Allen:

Related Links:
Arsenic and Old Lace program (PDF) Sublette County School District #1

The Utah Shakespeare Festival Company will perform The Tempest on Thursday, March 22 in the Sheppard Auditorium in Pinedale. Pinedale Fine Arts Council presentation.
The Utah Shakespeare Festival Company will perform The Tempest on Thursday, March 22 in the Sheppard Auditorium in Pinedale. Pinedale Fine Arts Council presentation.
PFAC presents Shakespeare’s The Tempest March 22 (posted 3/15/18)
Pinedale Fine Arts Council
The Pinedale Fine Arts Council (PFAC) is proud to present William Shakespeare’s The Tempest on Thursday, March 22, 2018 at 7:00 p.m. in the Sheppard (Pinedale) Auditorium. The play will be performed in its entirety by The Utah Shakespeare Festival Company.

Teeming with fairies, monsters, shipwrecks, and magic, The Tempest is Shakespeare's last and most mature romance. The deposed Duke Prospero and his lovely daughter, Miranda, are shipwrecked on a small island where nothing is quite as it seems. But as they separate fantasy from authenticity, they eventually discover a "brave new world" of love, harmony, and redemption.

Considered one of the premiere Shakespeare companies in the world, The Utah Shakespeare Festival Company presents life-affirming classic and contemporary plays in repertory, with Shakespeare as their cornerstone.

The Tempest performance is part of Utah Shakespeare’s Education Company which, in addition to the evening performance, will perform an abridged version of The Tempest in both the Pinedale and Big Piney Schools.

Tickets for The Tempest are available online at and at Pine Coffee Supply, The Cowboy Shop, Office Outlets, The Big Piney Library and at the door the night of the performance. Ticket prices are $20 adults / $7 students / $2 extra at the door.

The Tempest live in Pinedale is presented by the Pinedale Fine Arts Council with support in part from the Wyoming Arts Council through funding from the Wyoming Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts which believes a great nation deserves great art, Sublette BOCES #1, Western Sublette BOCES #9, the Sublette County Recreation Board, the Wyoming Community Foundation - Sublette, Tegeler & Associates, Ultra, Andeavor, and Rocky Mountain Power Foundation.

For more information please visit or call 307-367-7322. And be sure to find us on Facebook!

Greys River corridor closed for public safety (posted 3/14/18)
Landslide slumping into the Greys River
Bridger-Teton National Forest
The Bridger-Teton National Forest has closed the Greys River Road (FS Road 10138) to all activity until further notice, from the parking lot in Alpine, Wyoming through the Porcupine Road as a result of the Porcupine Landslide which began in February, 2018.

"We have finished analyzing the modeling that has been completed on a potential flooding scenario," said Greys River District Ranger Justin Laycock. "While the model shows that the flooding risk to homes or property in Alpine, Wyoming is considered 'low' and limited to two structures, the risks in the corridor itself are much different," he explained. "The model looked at a 40-foot high natural dam completely occluding the Greys River. In the model, if the dam was to back up water to the point it breeched the natural dam or the natural dam gave way, the low lying areas of the Greys River corridor could experience up to a 10-foot wall of water," he said. "Given the uncertainty of when or if the scenario could take place, and the fact that the ability to notify and clear the acres of affected area in the modeled scenario would take longer than the 4 hours we would have to act, we must close the area to human presence until the situation stabilizes," he said.

The landslide is a quarter of a mile wide and is still slumping towards the Greys River. The Forest worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) on modeling the flood scenario should the landslide create a natural dam in the Greys River. "The predicted rain and warm up that is characteristic of the beginning of spring runoff has reached one of our established trigger points and is the reason for my decision to close the corridor immediately" Laycock said.

With the closure order, two of the Forest's Guard Stations which are usually available to rent, the McCain and Deer Creek Guard Stations, will be unavailable for reservations until further notice.

Although the Alpine access and the Greys River Corridor is closed through Porcupine Road, visitors still may access the Forest beyond the closure by three other routes.
(1) either by the Smith’s Fork, Forest Service Road 10072, road located South of Afton or
(2) through forest service access from Big Piney, WY (proceed to Ryegrass Junction to Forest Service Road 10125, also known as N. Cottonwood, then over McDougal Gap to Greys River Road) and
(3) The La Barge Road accessed from the town of La Barge, Wyoming.

"There is quite a bit of country still open and accessible upstream of the landslide but the area downstream is going to remain closed until further notice," he said.

For more information, visit the Forest Website at For additional information, contact the Bridger-Teton National Forest at (307) 739-5500.

The Bridger-Teton National Forest will hold a public meeting to answer questions on the Porcupine landslide which is affecting the Greys River Road, (FS Road 10138). The meeting will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at the Alpine Civic Center located at 121 US-89, in Alpine, Wyoming.

1st Annual Winter Golf Tournament. Photo by Terry Allen.
1st Annual Winter Golf Tournament. Photo by Terry Allen.
1st Annual Winter Golf Tournament (posted 3/13/18)
Lions Club and Children's Discovery Center
Terry Allen
I’d heard of orange golf balls being used on snowy courses in the winter, but didn’t know the players were going to use bright yellow tennis balls for The Lions Club, and Children’s Discovery Center 1st Annual Winter Golf Tournament Fundraiser held Saturday, March 10, 2018.

The first thing I did when I walked into the clubhouse of Rendezvous Meadows Golf Course was go over to the bar to talk to some of the competitors getting fueled up. Lisa the bartender said Bloody Marys were the official drink of the tournament and she also wondered if I knew they were named after Mary, Queen of Scots? Okay, golf and Scotland go together well. Amy was sipping and listening and told me Mary was really English and the reason for the Bloody Mary name was because she didn’t give the King a male child so she was beheaded…which does sound pretty bloody. But, before she was beheaded, she was imprisoned in a Scottish castle for 19 years for plotting against the throne. During those 19 years, she invented espionage and was responsible for spilling the blood of a few others.

Mindi and Allison got everyone’s attention and recited some rules, and Mike Harker said, "Baby, let’s do it" and everyone grabbed their sleds full of balls, clubs and beers and pulled them out the doors and to four different starting T’s. There was a stiff crosswind of about 20 mph and pretty much everyone sliced dramatically right, except when the wind stopped abruptly during someone’s wind compensated swing and they hooked it into the next county. It was sort of like surprising a club carrying covey of Quail…they just scattered everywhere. Allison seemed to find a solid technique for the day. "I’m feeling pretty solid with my 5 iron," she said. "I’m hitting a pretty consistent Ice Worm Burner."
Monte used his Snow Wedge and dropped his ball right onto the Tan #4 Green.

I followed some Quail into the Warming Hut or as Jeff call’s it…The Dog House. There folks could get warm and replenish their refreshment stocks and listen to a few of Jeff’s 18,000 jokes. Jeff’s phone buzzed and he said it was from Mindi and she said I was missing a shot out on the course. I stuck my head out the flap and sure enough, Troy, Ray, Fred and Jeff were all stuck in a Snow Trap smoking Eastwood’s and dancing to Reggae.

I watched Julie swing away on her new Titanium and Porcelain hip and she said she was feeling no pain. Seemingly out of nowhere, her son Aaron ran up to a tennis ball and did what I learned later is called a Happy Gilmore. It’s like a game of golf where the rules say you can’t stop…you just have to keep moving. It’s a fast version of the game. While my mouth was still hanging open, someone said we were 100 yards away from BBQ beef sandwiches.

During the eating, prizes were awarded. The Eastwood’s won, but someone won a bottle of Cowboy Country Vodka, someone else won 3 bottles of wine, and someone won Arnie Brokling’s amazing Pine Creek photograph with the special $100 frame, and there were more donated prizes awarded.

Lined up outside were Limousines and Chauffeur’s…or as we say around here: pickup’s and designated drivers.

On the serious side of things, here are a few words from my sponsors: Mindi Crabb and Allison Long:

I asked Mindi Crabb where the idea for the tournament came from. "So the golf tournament was actually my idea as a fundraiser for the Lions Club, but we needed Allison’s golf and tournament planning expertise so decided to make it a partnership. I had seen an article in our national Lions magazine about a club in Minnesota that did an ice golf tourney and thought it might work for us. I have since heard of a Lions Club in Walden, CO that does an ice golf tourney that fills all the motels in the area and that is my goal for our future! Our local Pinedale Lions Club has been donating to all four of the major childcare facilities for a number of years; early childhood education is one of our focus areas and we know that it is impossible for them to make it on tuition alone. We also do what we can to encourage business in our community, so this event could develop into a huge win-win for everyone!"

I might be the only person in the county that didn't know The Children's Discovery Center also puts on a golf tournament fundraiser every summer, but Allsion straightened me out. "This was our first year putting on this Winter Golf Tournament. We were thankful to partner with the Lion's Club of Pinedale for this fun event. We were all a little unsure of how it would turn out, but with the help of the Lion's members, we were able to set the course and host a great tournament! We were thankful to also have Mike Looney groom our course; he really takes pride in his grooming. Next year we hope to have more teams, and make this a fun community event (even for non-golfers) by doing a costume contest. We look forward to doing it next year!"

"The Children's Discovery Center serves 41 families, 26 kids on average daily, along with 5 amazing teachers, and myself. We strive to host events that are community related, and to spread the word on how important it is to support early childhood education. Our school believes that nature is an integral, joyful part of learning and with these funds, we will be able to improve and sustain our school and its mission."

Terry Allen:
If you'd like to buy some photos, I give half the money to the Lions and Children's Discovery Center.

Click on this link for more pictures: 1st Annual Winter Golf Tournament

Related Links: Children’s Discovery Center, Pinedale, Wyoming
Pinedale Lions Club

First bear sightings of the year in Yellowstone National Park (posted 3/13/18)
National Park Service
MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS, WYOMING - The first grizzly bear sightings of 2018 occurred in Yellowstone National Park last week. On Tuesday, March 6, staff observed an 11-year-old male grizzly bear wearing a radio collar in the west-central part of the park. On Wednesday, March 7, employees reported seeing a grizzly bear in the east-central part of the park.

Male grizzlies come out of hibernation in mid-to-late March. Females with cubs emerge later, in April to early May. When bears emerge from hibernation, they look for food and often feed on elk and bison that died over the winter. Sometimes, bears will react aggressively while feeding on carcasses.

All of Yellowstone National Park is bear country: from the deepest backcountry to the boardwalks around Old Faithful. Your safety cannot be guaranteed, but you can play an active role in protecting yourself and the bears people come here to enjoy by following these guidelines:
• Prepare for a bear encounter.
• Carry bear spray, know how to use it, and make sure it’s accessible.
• Stay alert.
• Hike or ski in groups of three or more, stay on maintained trails, and make noise. Avoid hiking at dusk, dawn, or at night.
• Do not run if you encounter a bear.
• Stay 100 yards away from black and grizzly bears. Use binoculars, a telescope, or telephoto lens to get a closer look.
• Store food, garbage, barbecue grills, and other attractants in hard-sided vehicles or bear-proof food storage boxes.
• Report bear sightings and encounters to a park ranger immediately.
• Learn more about bear safety (

"Many Yellowstone visitors are deeply passionate about the conservation of park bears," says Kerry Gunther, the park’s bear management specialist. "Reducing human-bear conflicts by preventing bears from obtaining food and garbage, hiking in groups of three or more people, carrying bear spray, and making noise in blind spots on the trail are the best way for visitors to protect bears while recreating in the park."

While firearms are allowed in the park, the discharge of a firearm by visitors is a violation of park regulations. Bear spray has proven effective in deterring bears defending cubs and food sources. It can also reduce the number of bears killed by people in self-defense.

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