Steamboat briefs: DIY Organic Gardening Series set to begin Monday |

Steamboat briefs: DIY Organic Gardening Series set to begin Monday

Yampatika and Elkstone Farm are hosting a DIY Organic Gardening Series from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Mondays at Yampatika’s Environmental Learning Center at Legacy Ranch, a mile east of Walton Creek Road on U.S. Highway 40. The first session will be held Monday and will feature a presentation on seed selection and starting and garden mapping by Karen Vail. Individual courses are $20 each or the whole series of 11 courses costs $120. Participants can also buy four courses for $60 and six courses for $70. Space is limited. To sign up for the series or by the session, call 970-871-9151.

Genealogy Club to host workshop Monday at library

The Genealogy Club will host a workshop and webinar from 4:45 to 6:15 p.m. Monday in the Bud Werner Memorial Library conference room in Steamboat Springs. People will learn how to geographically document their ancestors’ lives, explore church record origins and see street-level views of European and American village and towns. Good guru Lisa Louise Cook will teach these tools in a series of video lessons. Genealogists of all proficiency and experience levels are welcome to attend the free event. Contact John Major at or Fran Caparrelli at or call 970-879-0240, ext. 331, for more information.

STARS Mountain Challenge registration is now open

Registration is open for the STARS Mountain Challenge, which will be held March 27 and 28 at Steamboat Ski Area. The two-day event includes a Partini Party Friday night and an on-mountain ski challenge Saturday. All the money raised from the Challenge stays in Routt County to support programming for individuals with disabilities. To register or for more information, visit

Fermentation 101 class is free Wednesday at library

Routt County CSU Extension and the Bud Werner Memorial Library will present “Fermentation 101,” an introduction to the art and science of home fermentation, at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in Library Hall. The free talk will be led by Ali Hamm, a PhD candidate in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at Colorado State University. She will be addressing questions about the science behind fermented foods; the value of adding sauerkraut, kombucha tea or yogurt to your diet; how to start fermenting in your home kitchen; and where you can you find reliable resources to learn more about home fermentation. After the talk, local members of the Extension office’s fermentation study group will provide a sampling of home fermented foods.

Disturbance of big game herds remains problematic

A long-standing request for public involvement in big game, winter range management is being made by the Routt National Forest again this year. The U.S. Forest Service is asking recreational users to stay out of designated elk and deer winter range areas until April 15.

Courtesy closure signage has been posted at multiple trailheads, including Red Dirt, Hot Springs and Spring Creek, among others. If respected, these closure areas provide pockets of habitat where deer and elk find security and food during the harsh winter months without being disturbed by human activities.

To do their part in protecting wintering deer and elk, recreationists are asked to use the following winter recreation areas in the Routt National Forest: Buffalo Pass, Rabbit Ears Pass, Gore Pass, Lynx Pass, Bear River Corridor (entrance to the Flat Tops Wilderness Area) and Dunckley Pass.

Other areas include the South Fork Trail (Trail 1100.5A) south of the Elk River with parking at the Hinman parking area (a non-motorized area) and Forest Road 430/Scott Run (Trail 1177). Another alternate area is located west of Routt County Road 129 at the Hahn’s Peak Lake Area on Forest Roads 486 and 488.

Current closure areas include:

■ Spring Creek Trail (Trail 1160) — mandatory closure

■ Swamp Park Trail (known as the Mad Creek Trail- NFST 1100)

■ Red Dirt trail (Trail 1171)

■ Hot Springs Trail (Trail 1169)

■ Lower Bear Trail (Trail 1206)

■ Area between Steamboat Ski Area and Alpine Mountain Ranch

■ Greenville Mine area (Road 440)

■ Coulton Creek area (Road 429)

■ Sarvis Creek Trailhead

■ Silver Creek Trailhead

■ South of Long Park on Forest Road 225

■ North of Toponas on Forest Road 285

■ Areas adjacent to the Radium and Indian Run State Wildlife Areas

Local wildlife officials think that threats to winter range for elk and other big game species are impacting the prized herds in north central Colorado negatively. As big game winter range on private land becomes developed, public lands become more important for wintering elk and deer herds.

“The National Forest provides valuable elk habitat, but this habitat is only preferred by elk if they are protected from human disturbance,” said Becky Jones, Hahns Peak/Bears Ears Ranger District wildlife biologist. “If disturbed, they leave these areas and may end up in hay stacks, people’s yards and crossing roads in the lower valley where they can cause problems.

“We are asking the public to please respect these closure areas this winter so that we can keep these animals on their native winter range.”

For more information about voluntary closure areas or other areas recommended to recreate outside of winter range, visit or call the Hahns Peak-Bears Ranger District office at 970-870-2299 and the Yampa Ranger District office at 970-638-4516. Information also may be found at and you can follow the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland on Twitter @MBRNFsTBNG.

Volunteer victim advocates needed by nonprofit group

Advocates Building Peaceful Communities is recruiting volunteers to become victim advocates to provide on-call services for the 24-hour crisis line. Twenty-five hours of training is provided and will take place in early October according to participant schedules. Advocates is a nonprofit agency providing free and confidential services to victims of domestic and sexual violence in Routt County.  Those who are interested can call Kasey or Diane at 970-879-2034 for more information.

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