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wood river land trust

Winter 2011

A view from Croy Creek Road overlooking Croy Creek, the wetlands, and the cottonwood-dominated riparian forest that thrives near the Big Wood River. The Boardwalk is near the end of the rainbow. Larry Barnes took this stunning photo.

Crossing the Big Wood River

he Wood River Land Trust is combining restoration and recreation improvements into one comprehensive project with construction of a pedestrian bridge over the Big Wood River on our Draper Wood River Preserve in Hailey. The project was approved by the County Commissioners on September 13, and will be completed in early fall of 2012. Construction of the bridge will be by Western Wood Structures of Oregon, and local engineering support is by Galena Engineers.
Continued on page 4

Restoration work has begun at the bridge site along the Big Wood River, and 600 cubic yards of old city dump fill were removed

Near the Croy Creek Wetlands Boardwalk, the welcome pavilion, and the Lions Park ballfield, the pedestrian bridge will create a destination spot for wood river residents and visitors alike.

Protecting the heart of the valley...now and for the future.

land trust

Photo by Larry Barnes

our land trust


A Note from Scott Boettger, Executive Director

his past October marked the 15th anniversary of my arrival in the Wood River Valley and my introduction to the newly formed Wood River Land Trust. My love for the valley has grown with the passing of each and every year. I am convinced that the Land Trust is a key component in ensuring the healthy future of our valley and the enhancement of our everyday lives. Over these 15 years we have been involved in a multitude of projects both grand and humble, but all crucial to the valleys well-being: Fishing and trail access points secured for free and unhampered public access for all to enjoy. Protection of working ranch and farm lands that help sustain family livelihoods and keep healthy foods produced close to home. Scenic views that define our very special heart of the valley. And most of all, protection of acres of wild country that provide healthy habitats for our abundant wildlife who share their backyards with us.

Daphne Muehle Joins Land Trust Staff

In the coming year we will expand our continuing efforts to bring the many glories of this valley to each and every person with projects such as: Enhancing the Croy Creek wetlands experience. Installing the Pedestrian Bridge to link both sides of the river in the Big Wood River Greenway and bring residents to the river for exploration and enjoyment. Cooperating on projects like the Below Magic Dam re-watering effort that will dramatically add to the valleys productive fishery and also be a benefit to our partners, the irrigators of the southern valley.

The Land Trust is uniquely qualified to bring projects like these to fruition. We have accomplished a lot in traditional open space conservation, but innovative projects like these will make a big difference in the future and be relevant to the next generation who will inherit our efforts. I could only dream about what good things were to come when I interviewed on that fateful day 15 years ago. From where I sit today I see a bright future for the valleys treasured wildlife and open spaces and the well-being of its population. The importance of the Land Trust to this future is undeniable. My gratitude for the Board, staff and members of the Land Trust who make my job the best in the world. m

fter an extensive nationwide search, the Wood River Land Trust hired Daphne Muehle as Director of Development. She began working with us in September, 2011, and is responsible for all fundraising and development activities. She has been involved in non-profit marketing and development for almost 20 years. Prior to coming to the Land Trust, Daphne served for 12 years at Peninsula Open Space Trust, located in Palo Alto, California, where she held a variety of positions, including Director of Major Gifts and Director of Development. She began her fundraising career at her alma mater, Long Beach State University, working in the Athletic Department. Daphne had a swimming scholarship and graduated with a B.A. in Political Science with a minor in History. She has an especially strong interest in development work in the field of land conservation. Connecting donors with extraordinary places that deserve protectionby hiking meandering trails, canoeing alpine lakes, or driving scenic bywaysis a rich and rewarding experience for me, she explains. The landscape of Kootenay Lake in British Columbia, where she grew up, instilled in her a love of the natural world. It was a family tradition to hike to the top of a mountain each year, she says, following my dads short cut. We laugh about those supposed short cuts to this day. The outdoors brought my family together and provided a place for us to escape and be happy. It still does. Daphne invites you to stop by the office and meet her -- if she is not out with her walking buddy, her dog Cooper, on their daily stroll. m

Board Profile
Robin Garwood

Robin has been Board Secretary since 2005

obin is a Wildlife Biologist and has been working for the Sawtooth National Forest for 20 years. She has a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Science from the University of Tennessee and an M.S. in Raptor Biology from Boise State University. Besides her association with the Forest Service, she has also worked for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game and the Bureau of Land Management. She particularly enjoys the climate and varied habitats of the Wood River Valley and central Idaho. Robin finds that working in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area is challenging. The issues are so diverse, and managing lands for multiple uses requires a wide range of knowledge about wildlife, land and water, and conservation priorities. She was elected to the Board of Directors in 2001 and has been Secretary since 2005. Knowledge of species habitat needs and experience with public natural resources management have made her realize that conservation of habitats requires more than just protecting public lands. The Board counts on her to provide solid scientific comment on projects that are presented. As important as public land is to conservation, Robin notes, protecting the ecological integrity of private lands is equally vital in ensuring the sustainability of species, their habitats, and the ecological processes that all life depends on. The Wood River Land Trust is the ideal organization to help with this part of the equation. And we are grateful for Robins years of support, expertise, and her passion for protecting our wildlife. m

The Ridgeline Trail is a 10-mile trail running along the ridge between Fox Peak and the Baker Lake trailhead

An Update: Gloria Moore Osberg Ridgeline Trail #147

loria Moore Osberg was honored July 2, 2011, at a trail dedication by the Wood River Land Trust, Idaho Conservation League, and Ketchum Ranger District. It was a beautiful day and a memorable occasion at the Osbergs Newman Creek Cabin. Glorias contributions to conservation and a shared appreciation of our surrounding landscapes have been a lifelong commitment. Her invaluable book, Day Hiking Near Sun Valley, is a staple in homes around the Wood River Valley. To commemorate her contributions, Forest Service Trail #147, the Ridgeline Trail, has been dedicated to Gloria. The Ridgeline Trail is a 10-mile trail running along the ridge between Fox Peak and the Baker Lake trailhead. Unfortunately, the trail is in poor condition in places and will require significant work to repair erosion damage. At the time of the dedication we needed to raise $36,320 as the rest of the $150,000 needed is being covered by Forest Service grant awards. As of November 18, 2011, we need $20,990 in order to reach our goal. Please help us in celebrating Glorias contributions to the valley by giving a gift in her honor. m

what we do

Conceptual rendering of the pedestrian bridge by Lars Guy, Pro Visualization, Inc.

Crossing the Big Wood River

Continued from cover

The bridge will provide a link to the many recreation opportunities on the east and west sides of the river. It will be much more than a recreational amenity. Its location offers an educational component as an outdoor classroom as well. For five years, Larry Barnes, biology teacher at the high school, has conducted an ornithology class at the Croy Creek Wetlands on both sides of the river. The bridge will enable the students to spend more time in the field and less time traveling, and engage them in a closer appreciation of the river habitat. In combination with other amenities nearby such as the Croy Creek Wetlands Boardwalk, the welcome pavilion, and the Lions Park ballfield the bridge will create a destination spot for residents and visitors alike. Restoration Continues The Land Trusts Croy Creek Wetlands Restoration Project first phase was started in 2008 and completed in 2009. Tons of harmful debris (car parts, appliances, cement) from an old city dump were removed, and the area was restored

with native plants. When we were plotting the location of the bridge, we realized the unfinished second phase of the cleanup could be completed in coordination with installation of the bridge. Six hundred cubic yards of dump fill were removed, and the amazing array of junk and trash was sifted out, with the result that just 1/10th of the excavated debris went to the landfill. What remains is topsoil to be used at another time and cobble, which was used at the bridge abutment sites. Non-native trees were removed as well, to allow native riparian trees like cottonwoods to recover territory lost to species like box elders that arent deterred by life in a field of junk. Weeds such as burdock and thistle, too, came out when the ground was excavated. For your safety, access to the area is temporarily limited. We apologize for the disruption. But in a couple years the area will be restored and a healthy riparian ecosystem established. Thank you for your patience. Please call us if you have questions or comments, 788-3947. m

Croy Creek Wetlands Boardwalk and Pavilion

Photo credit: Dev Khalsa

he Boardwalk was completed this summer, and we are eagerly anticipating a viewing telescope that will be placed near the benches. We look forward to adding more amenities that will make the Boardwalk experience even more fun and educational. By December 1st, a log pavilion to welcome visitors should be up, constructed by Sawtooth Wood Products at the entrance to the Boardwalk. Pavers supplied by Building Material Thrift Store were installed this summer for the floor of the pavilion by Evergreen Landscaping. This winter, interpretive signage will be mounted inside, as well as a picnic table or two in the coming spring. m

Eddy Svidgal, AIA, donated his time to provide us with an architectural rendering of the pavilion, with a moose for scale


Students Explore Water Quality at Howard Preserve

Caddisflies, planaria, stoneflies, mayflies, damselflies, and scuds all are found at the Howard Preserve in Bellevue. For the past four weeks the Environmental Resource Centers (ERC) Science After School (SAS!) Program has been conducting macroinvertebrate samples and learning how these small creatures are indicators of a healthy watershed. We will be excited to see what these young scholars discovered about the health of the Big Wood River at the Howard Preserve. The greatest lesson though is the fun of being outdoors exploring nature and science. mayfly
Kids from SAS! Program explore the river at Howard Preserve


Above, house after restoration; Below, house photo from 1906

Were On the List!

he Land Trust office on Bullion Street in Hailey was recently listed in the National Register of Historic Places, a program administered by the National Park Service. Nominated under the name of the Fox-Worswick House, the dates of historic significance for our office are identified as 1880-1910, and many names linked to old Hailey are associated with the structure. The lot was purchased by C.B. Fox from John Hailey for $25 and the original log cabin, intact within the building, was constructed in 1881. The house was purchased by the Land Trust in 2000 from the Hunter Nelson estate, and the exterior and interior were painstakingly restored to a turn of the century appearance. Land Trust staff moved into the offices in 2001. Weve had many from the houses past, from grandchildren to nieces and nephews of one-time owners, stop by to visit and see the renovation of the home they remember from years ago. The decision to save this old house was well worth the effort, and we are proud to have saved part of Haileys history. We urge you, too, to look around and take note of the history that surrounds you. Now that the Land Trust building is listed in the National Register, the intersection of Bullion Street and Second Avenue has become Haileys historic crossroads. Each building on the four corners of the intersection (Episcopal Church, Masonic Lodge, Burke residence, and the Land Trust building) is listed in the Register. A pamphlet called Hailey Historic Crossroads has been produced and is available at the Land Trust office and the Hailey Chamber. m

Howard Preserve Community Picnic

On Saturday, September 17, the Wood River Land Trust, Friends of Howard Preserve, and the City of Bellevue welcomed neighbors and friends to the Howard Preserve Community Picnic in Bellevue. The first community picnic was held in 2005 to celebrate the creation of the 12.5-acre Howard Preserve in Bellevue. In 2004, Wood River Land Trust facilitated a bargain sale between the City of Bellevue and the Howard family. Thanks to this partnership, the Howard Preserve is a permanently protected natural resource along the river and within walking distance of Bellevues Main Street.

Picnickers at the best seat in the house. From left, Stan Barrett; Bellevue Public Works Admin. George Tanner; Sue Southward; Don Boecker; Gay Boecker; Bellevue Mayor Chris Koch; picnic sous chef Steve Carlisle; and Kim Mazik

Building Material Thrift Store: Browse Our Inventory Online

urchasing from the Building Material Thrift Store (BMTS) is economically and environmentally responsible. It reduces waste going to the landfill and promotes the reuse and recycling of reclaimed materials to minimize the impact on our regions natural resources. And proceeds from sales help fund the work of the Wood River Land Trust. From framing lumber, doors, windows, furniture, kitchen and bathroom cabinet sets, to flooring, sinks, toilets, tubs, hardware, electrical supplies, appliances, and more, you can find almost everything you need at BMTS. Our large inventory is constantly changing. Visit our showroom or give us a call to see if we have what you need. m

Our Reliable Volunteer

The Building Material Thrift Store 3930 S. Woodside Blvd. in Hailey (208) 788-0014


Bows and Arrows on Church Farm

The Land Trusts Church Farm was the site of an archery camp out October 8 and 9 for approximately 24 Boy Scouts and their troop leaders from Carey, Sun Valley, and Richfield. The focus of the fun overnight event was making bows and arrows out of the willows that are plentiful at Church Farm.
Sun Valley troop leader Travis Smart helps Nathan Bingham, Hailey Troop 91, construct his willow bow

lizabeth Breen always emails us when she and her husband Frank are in town and asks if we need help with anything. And we always have something for her to do. She has helped with many newsletters and donor party preparations. We appreciate that Elizabeth pays us a visit and volunteers year after year. After retiring as a community college English teacher in Tacoma, Washington, she has been able to spend more time at their condo in Sun Valley. And once here, she doesnt just sit around in retirement. Elizabeth enjoys recreational activities and doesnt miss such events as the Writers Conference and Sun Valley Summer Symphony. Most of the local conservation organizations have also benefited from her volunteer hours. She remembers that when she began to help at the Land Trust, the small office was on West Bullion Street in Hailey next to a tattoo parlor. Scott Boettger and Dan Gilmore were the only employees. It is wonderful to see the growth of the Land Trust since then, the historic buildings theyve restored, and the number of people involved in the organization, she says. It has been instrumental in preserving so many beautiful areas throughout the Wood River Valley and Lost River area. She adds, The other conservation organizations all do good work, but the Wood River Land Trust gives me so much satisfaction because I can physically see its accomplishments. m

generous donor has once again stepped forward and offered a Challenge Grant for Wood River Land Trust and our Board of Directors followed suit. If the Land Trust can raise $300,000 by December 31, 2011, our anonymous donor and our Board of Directors will each contribute $75,000 for a total of $150,000. This means every .50 cents of your donation, if given by December 31st, will be matched! As of November 4, 2011, we have raised $101,140. We need your help to raise the final $198,860 in order to qualify for the additional $150,000. Please give as generously as you can by December 31, 2011. The money you donate today will help the Land Trust protect and preserve our natural resources for people here now and future generations. By providing us with the capacity to take on exciting projects like restoring the Croy Creek Wetlands, we are able to make a difference in our community. Land conservation projects often take years to come to fruition. We need your annual support to help us save the places we love in the Wood River Valley and beyond. m

Teamwork at the Boardwalk

The Peak Adventure Camp for Kids (P .A.C.K.) experienced an afternoon at our Croy Creek Wetlands Boardwalk this summer. P .A.C.K. is a day camp for Blaine County kids, teens, and adults with disabilities and is a program of Sun Valley Adaptive Sports (SVAS). The camp focuses on improving life skills through fun activities, projects, and challenges as they enjoy the outdoors. We were happy to welcome them to the Boardwalk.
To work on communication, teamwork, and trust, P .A.C.K. kids were blindfolded and practiced leading each other around the Boardwalk. SVAS staff member, Sally Breeden, leads

You Can Make a Difference

he Land Trust owes its success to the generosity of our donors. Thanks to our community of support, we are able to achieve visionary land protection goals. Knowing that we have your support, we can enter confidently into long-term negotiations for acquiring strategic properties for conservation. Annual donations are the foundation our work is built upon, making our day-to-day operations possible. By becoming an annual donor to the Land Trust, you help provide essential, ongoing support.

Make a Big Impact with a Stock Gift

A gift of securities is fully tax-deductible at its market value at the time of your contribution. To make a gift of stock to the Wood River Land Trust, please follow these procedures: 1. Contact your stockbroker. Your stockbroker can make a direct electronic transfer of your stock certificates to the account of the Land Trust with the following information: ClearRock Capital / Charles Schwab: DTC #0164, Code 40 Account Registration: Wood River Land Trust Account Number: 7811-0294 Charles Schwab Contact for Contra/DTC Hotline: 602-355-9003. Clear Rock Capital Contact: 877-726-8858 2. Give your stockbroker Wood River Land Trusts taxpayer identification number: 82-0474191 3. Notify the Land Trust of the transfer so that we can properly credit you. Contact Daphne Muehle, Director of Development at 208-788-3947 or dmuehle@woodriverlandtrust.org. Please provide the Land Trust with the name of the security, the number of shares to be donated, and the name and phone number of your stockbroker. m

We Need Your Help Make your gift now and help create a lasting legacy of open space. Here are a few ways you can make a difference:
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Donate cash either by mail or online: www.woodriverlandtrust.org; Donate appreciated securities; Have your company match your gift to the Land Trust; Join our monthly giving club; Make an IRA Rollover Gift; or Include the Land Trust in your estate plans.

If youd like more information about how to make a gift, please call Daphne Muehle, Director of Development, at 208-788-3947 or dmuehle@woodriverlandtrust.org. m

Good News about IRA Gifts to the Land Trust!

ongress has renewed special incentives for people 70-1/2 years of age and older to make tax-free charitable gifts from their Individual Retirement Accounts. The new legislation allows for gifts to be made through December 31, 2011.

Gifts of up to $100,000from either traditional IRAs or Roth IRAsare excluded from your taxable income and can be used to satisfy your minimum distribution requirement for 2011. The transfer must be made directly from the IRA account to the Land Trust, and must be for an outright gift. There is no income tax deduction for the transferthe amount is simply not included in your income. We have two sample letters you are welcome to use for your gift. The first is a letter you can send to the company managing your IRA, giving instructions on how to make the distribution directly to the Land Trust. The second is a letter you can use to let us know your gift is on its way so we can properly acknowledge it. For more information, please contact Daphne Muehle, Director of Development, at (208) 788-3947 or dmuehle@woodriverlandtrust.org. m

Below Magic Update
uilt in 1909, Magic Reservoir was designed to capture snow melt from the mountains of the Wood River Valley and store the water for farmland irrigation near Shoshone and Richfield. Magic Reservoir was instrumental in transforming the desert landscape of Southern Idaho and made agriculture possible. It truly was magic. Historically the purpose of the dam was solely for agricultural use but ultimately its existence led to a legacy of great fishing. The Big Wood River below the dam became a productive trophy tailwater fishery because of the clear, cold water spilling from Magic Reservoir. Unfortunately, when irrigation season is over, the water from the dam is shut off and annual survival of fish in that stretch of river is uncertain. The Land Trust and the Big Wood Canal Company (BWCC) have a vision that will benefit both agriculture and fishing interests and create a plan for water conservation. The project would save water for irrigation uses and provide year-round water in the old river channel to sustain healthy trout populations. This collaboration resulted in water flowing through this section of the Big Wood River below Magic Reservoir after irrigation season for the first time in 102 years. At the end of the 2011 irrigation season, the Land Trust and the Canal Company came to an agreement in which we would purchase 3,000 acre feet of stored water to conduct test flows in this off season. These test flows will be monitored by the Land Trust, BWCC, and Ecosystem Sciences Foundation (ESF) out of Boise. We hope to learn from these test flows in both the biological and mechanical aspects of the project. We also hope to see results of a more sustainable trout population and gain insight into the mechanics of operating a 100 year-old dam with relatively low flows. We are proud to continue our collaboration with BWCC and are eagerly anticipating the knowledge to be gained in the coming months. We would like to express our gratitude to the BWCC for their willingness to work together to find a solution that benefits all involved with this tailwater fishery enhancement project. We hope someday to see the Big Wood River below the dam flow year round, enhancing the fishery and providing critical riparian habitat in our southern desert. m


Above: The Big Wood River below Magic Reservoir in Fall, 2011 Left: Steve Strandberg and his big brown caught in the river below Magic Reservoir

Why Collect Sagebrush Seed?

Top: Sage School senior Raleigh Grossbaum, left, and teacher Nathan Kolar with their harvest; Bottom: Sage School students, left to right: Colby Marsh, Bryce Gillespie, Alagna Ashurst, and Sarah Rau

wood river land trust

Protecting the Heart of the Valley
Board of Directors
Jack Kueneman, President Trent Jones, Vice President John French, Treasurer Robin Garwood, Secretary David Anderson Ed Cutter John Flattery Heather King Jane Mason Liz Mitchell Rebecca Patton Wolf Riehle John Fell Stevenson Megan Stevenson Steve Strandberg Barbara Thrasher

Now and for the Future

This newsletter is published by:

Annual Donor Appreciation Party

On August 9th, Wood River Land Trust Board member Wolf Riehle and his wife Feli Funke-Riehle hosted this years donor party at their beautiful Pioneer Moon Ranch way out East Fork Road. A storm briefly rolled through but the light-hearted comment heard most often was, Well, this is Idaho! The Donor Party is one way for us to thank the major supporters who do so much for the Land Trust.

Scott Boettger, Executive Director Melanie Dahl, Community Lands Coordinator Trey Spaulding, Director of Operations Daphne Muehle, Director of Development Ashley Wells, Development and Conservation Assistant Keri York, Senior Conservation Coordinator

Wood River Land Trust

119 East Bullion Street Hailey, Idaho 83333 208.788.3947 (telephone) 208.788.5991 (fax) info@woodriverlandtrust.org www.woodriverlandtrust.org Tax ID# 82-0474191

Advisory Committee
Fred Brossy Ranney Draper Larry Schoen John Seiller Tom Swift Bruce Tidwell Liz Warrick

Bruce Tidwell, owner/manager of the Building Material Thrift Store, attended with his lovely daughter Madison, home for a visit from Goucher College


Credit for photos: Nils Ribi

n a beautiful October afternoon a whopping 50 pounds of Wyoming Big Sagebrush seed were collected by students from Community School, Sage School, and SUWS (School of Urban and Wilderness Survival), assisted by Wood River Land Trust and Idaho Fish and Game staff. Just over 50 volunteers collected seed at our Sheep Bridge Preserve on Highway 20. Ed Papenberg from Idaho Fish and Game instructed volunteers in the proper seeding techniques and stressed the importance of such projects for the future of our sagebrush steppe ecosystem. These grasses and shrubs provide food and cover for deer, elk, sage grouse and other wildlife, and stabilize the soil. These seeds will eventually be used to reseed and restore burned areas. Seeds are weighed and tagged with species of sagebrush, date, and harvesting location, and are then sent to the USDA Forest Service Lucky Peak Nursery in Boise. The seeds collected this October wont be planted until autumn of 2013. They must first be dried out, and put through a machine called a scalper to separate the seed from flowers, leaves, and sticks. Once the seeds are clean, they are sealed in plastic bags and placed in cold storage. The seeds are then ready to be sown and are grown with limited water and fertilizer. The newly sprouted sagebrush plants are then harvested, cold stored one more time, and are planted in the fall. Thanks to our volunteers for a successful afternoon. Theyll probably never look at sagebrush in the same way again. m

wood river land trust

Acres permanently protected with your support: 13,549

winter 2011
Crossing the Big Wood River, cover, 4 A Note from Scott Boettger, Executive Director, page 2 An Update: Gloria Moore Osberg Ridgeline Trail #147, page 3 Croy Creek Wetlands Boardwalk and Pavilion, page 5 Were On the List!, page 6 Help Us Qualify for a Challenge Grant and Leverage Your Gift Today, page 8 You Can Make a Difference, page 9 Below Magic Update, page 10 Why Collect Sagebrush Seed?, page 11

The Wood River Land Trust accepted the Old Chilly easement in December, 2008, which protects 355 acres of land on the Big Lost River 15 miles north of Mackay. Its name references the nearby ghost town of Chilly. Elk were bugling as the photo was taken in mid-October.

wood river land trust

Protecting the Heart of the Valley Now and for the Future

119 East Bullion Street Hailey, Idaho 83333 208 788-3947 www.woodriverlandtrust.org


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