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Town of Pinedale Unofficial Election results: 234 ballots counted. In 2-year race (one position), Isaac Best 131 votes, Melissa Ryckman 98 votes. Write-in votes were insignificant. 4-year race (2 positions open): Judi Boyce 184 votes, Tyler Swafford 170 votes. Write-in votes were insignificant. The election canvassing board will convene at 9AM on Wednesday, June 24 at 69 Pinedale South Road to canvass and certify the election. The Swearing-In Ceremony will be at 3:00PM today.  
Election results. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Town of Pinedale Unofficial Election results: 234 ballots counted. In 2-year race, Isaac Best 131 votes, Melissa Ryckman 98 votes. Write-in votes were insignificant. 4-year race: Judi Boyce 184 votes, Tyler Swafford 170 votes. Write-in votes were insignificant. The election canvassing board will convene at 9AM on Wednesday, June 24 at 69 Pinedale South Road to canvass and certify the election. Click on this link for more pictures. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Kendall Warm Springs. Photo by Tony Vitolo.
Kendall Warm Springs Tony Vitolo sent in this photo of Kendall Warm Springs falls taken on Saturday, June 20th. Water from the warm springs flows into the Green River north of Cora on the Bridger-Teton National Forest. Photo by Tony Vitolo.
New Pinedale RV Dump & Fill station opens.
New Pinedale RV Dump & Fill station opens The Town of Pinedale held the Grand Opening for their new RV dump and fill station on Friday, June 19th. The project has been about five years in the making. Pinedale Mayor, MattMurdock, got the honors of cutting the Grand Opening ribbon.The first RV through was a family from Meeker, Colorado visiting on their way to Yellowstone National Park, John and Lisa Mofit along with their daughter Cathleen and granddaughter Lucy. The first Pinedale resident to bring an RV through and use the dump station was Mike Denney. Click on this link for more pictures of the Grand Opening. Photo by Pinedale Online.
Gas Prices
June 23, 2020
Big Piney2.239
Regular unleaded average.
WY & US provided by AAA.
Diesel Prices
June 23, 2020
Big Piney2.439
WY & US provided by AAA.

Pinedale Local:

Town of Pinedale 4th of July celebration
LaBarge 4th of July parade June 27th
Kickin? Cancer in Sublette County fundraiser
Sublette BOCES Final Bill Pay Meeting June 25
Looking for Community Ambassadors for Continental Divide Trail
Movie Night at the Green River Valley Museum June 27
Fremont Lake gets new floating pier
Spring is here!
White Pine offers summer RV camping, campground, and cabin lodging
Please return your library items
Shingles vaccine available at Sublette County Public Health
Children are welcome back into the Sublette County Libraries
SCUF places new fire engine in service
Opening on Pinedale Planning & Zoning Commission
BLM to conduct prescribed fires in Sublette and Lincoln Counties
Seniors Medication Take Back Day June 24

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July 9-12: Pinedale All-School Class Reunion - All Pinedale HS graduates invited back to Pinedale for an all-school reunion. More details TBA. Watch Facebook for updates.
July 9-12: Green River Rendezvous - Four days of fun and frolic in Pinedale. Living history talks and demonstrations about the early 1800s fur trade and rendezvous in the Upper Green River Valley. Events at the Museum of the Mountain Man, elaborate Green River Rendezvous Pageant (cancelled for 2020), downtown vendor booths and Trader's Row, parade downtown, nightly rodeos, much more. Stay tuned for updates.
July 17-19: Wind River Mountain Festival in Pinedale - More info TBA as the event gets closer. See and

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Pinedale Online is Pinedale, Wyoming on theweb. We give our viewers, locals and out-of-area visitors, a "sliceof life" snapshotwindow into our world view of what is happening in Pinedale. Visit us forcurrent local news on what is happening, photos of local events, links toarea businesses and services and more. We are long-time area residents andare happy to answer questions if you are planning a visit to our area. Muchof our information is by community contribution.


Wolf Watch, by Cat Urbigkit


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Town of Pinedale Municipal Election results (posted 6/24/2020)
Isaac Best elected new town councilperson
The unofficial election results are as follows:

234 Ballots were counted:
1 Ballot was spoiled.
4 Ballots were disqualified as the absentee envelope oath was not signed.

In the two-year race (1 seat open):
98 votes were received for Melissa Ryckman.
131 votes were received for Isaac Best.
Write-in votes were insignificant.

In the four-year race (2 seats open):
184 votes were received for Judi Boyce.
170 votes were received for Tyler Swafford.
Write-in votes were insignificant.

The election canvassing board of Emily Paravacini (R) and Samantha Harnack (D) will convene at 9 a.m., Wednesday, June 24, 2020 at 69 Pinedale South Road in Pinedale to canvass and certify the election. The Swearing-In Ceremony will take place Wednesday, June 24th at 3:00PM.

Click on this link for
href="">more pictures.

Sublette County has 3rd COVID-19 case (posted 6/22/20)
Sublette County Public Health
Sublette County Public Health and the Wyoming Department of Health have been notified of the third lab-confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) among Sublette County residents.

The patient is a male adult in his mid-60?s from Sublette County. The individual is currently hospitalized for a non-COVID related illness.This case is not related to the COVID positive case reported last week.

Wyoming Department of Health and Sublette County Public Health are following up to monitor and learn more about the person?s exposure risk and identify and communicate with anyone who may have been in close contact with the patient. Known contacts will be asked to quarantine, and to be monitored for symptoms and tested if needed.

Symptoms reported with COVID-19 are cough, fever, shortness of breath, and sore throat, but research has shown the presence of other symptoms, including nasal congestion, loss of sense of smell and taste, and gastrointestinal symptoms, as well. If experiencing any of these symptoms, it is recommended that you call your healthcare provider and seek testing. A person can be asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic and still spread the virus, too.

The public is encouraged to continue to follow these guidelines outlined by the CDC and WDH:
? Wear a cloth face covering when in public (like at grocery store, etc.) to protect others from possibility of asymptomatic transmission.
? Avoid close contact (within 6 feet) of others, especially those who are sick or may have been exposed.
? Stay home if sick
? Avoid large gatherings
? Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
? Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

For any questions, please call Public Health at 307-367-2157.
For current information on COVID-19 in Sublette County, go to the Sublette COVID-19 webpage at

Ranchers win early round in fight to save historic cattle drive (posted 6/22/20)
Green River Drift being threatened
Mountain States Legal Foundation
DENVER, COLORADO ? June 15, 2020 ? Wyoming?s last great cattle drive, the Upper Green River drift, began as scheduled last weekend in mid-June, just as it has since the 1890s, after a federal judge rejected a preliminary injunction sought by anti-ranching groups that hoped to derail the annual event.

The injunction would have prohibited the lethal removal of documented nuisance bears on their summer grazing range, a regulated practice allowed under the Endangered Species Act since 1975. MSLF argued that the plaintiffs should be denied "standing" because they failed to show how such removals would directly harm them.

The no-kill rule would mark a sudden departure from longstanding bear management protocols on the forest, according to ranchers and their lawyers at Mountain States Legal Foundation, putting numerous ranchers and their livestock at risk. Removal of a problem bear is not done by the rancher, but by state wildlife officials, in consultation with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, after a pattern of repeat behavior has been documented and non-lethal means of deterrence have failed.

"The plaintiffs hope to deprive ranchers of the lawful use of their grazing rights by making the use of this summer range more dangerous than usual for cowboys and cattle," said Brian Gregg, MSLF?s lead attorney on the case. "Turning the livestock that have traditionally grazed these lands into a grizzly bear buffet threatens the economic survival of these ranches and will destroy this living connection to our history and heritage."

The Green River Drift is a vital link to the West?s ranching history. The route and manner of the cattle drive are largely unchanged since the 1800?s, and it is operated by the descendants of the families who homesteaded the area and began the cattle drive in the 19th century. Because it is so unique, the Upper Green River Drift is listed as a "Traditional Cultural Property" (TCP) on the National Register of Historic Places?the only ranching-related entity to be so recognized.

Mountain States Legal Foundation (MSLF) filed a motion to intervene in the case in order to defend the rights of American ranchers to access federal land, as they have for generations, and to protect the legacy of the people who built the West. Western Watersheds Project et al. v. Bernhardt et al. is being heard before the Federal District Court of Washington, D.C.

Against all evidence, environmentalist groups involved in the suit falsely claim that these grazing practices, which have been practiced soundly for well over a century, will harm grizzly bear populations in violation of the Endangered Species Act. In reality, grizzly populations in the region have recovered to the extent that Fish & Wildlife Service officials have twice recommended that the Greater Yellowstone Grizzly be removed from the endangered species list, most recently in 2017. Notably, this remarkable recovery has not been hindered by this ongoing annual cattle drive.

MSLF represents the Upper Green River Cattle Association and the Wyoming Stock Growers Association as well as several family ranches: The Price Cattle Ranch, Murdock Land & Livestock Co., and Sommers Ranch, LLC.The "land ethic" is a part of this historic way of life. For instance, the Sommers Ranch won the Leopold Conservation Award in 2012 for their remarkable stewardship of Wyoming?s Upper Green River Valley.

"These families have cared for the land far longer and far better than any agency or activist has," said Gregg. "The Green River Drift provides 124 years of evidence that ranchers are the real conservationists."

Jackson Hole begins summer rodeos (posted 6/22/20)
Jackson, Wyoming began their summer season on Saturday, June 20th. With health concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, it was uncertain if the popular outdoor rodeos would happen this summer. The rodeo now has permission to go on. They have permission to have up to 600 fans with proper spacing and must take other measures for social distancing. The rodeos will start on Wednesday and Saturday evenings. Friday nights will start on July 3rd. They will take a break for the Teton County Fair July 19-28, then resume the Wednesday, Friday, Saturday schedule through mid-September. Click on this link for more information:

Wyoming State Historical Society updates (posted 6/22/20)
The Wyoming State Historical Society is a non-profit, membership driven organization that encourages the study of Wyoming History.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, a number of their summer events have had to be cancelled or postponed. Here are cancellations with updates on rescheduling:
-May 25th Grand Opening of the National Museum of Military Vehicles in Dubois
-The Family History Conference scheduled for late May in Salt Lake City, Utah
-The Society?s 20th Trek, hosted by the Crook County Historical Society, scheduled for June 13th will take place in 2020
-The Lincoln Highway Conference scheduled for June has been postponed to 2021
-67th Annual Meeting of the WSHS will take place September 11-13

The Society announced the 2020 recipients of its Lola Homsher Research grants. This year they awarded a total of $6,942 to people doing research projects on Wyoming history. One of the recipients was Jocelyn Moore of Pinedale, who received a grant for $1,413 for research relating to the Civil War Cavalry in pre-Territorial Wyoming.

The Wyoming State Archives and State Museum, the University of Wyoming American Heritage Center, and the Wyoming State Historical Society are working on a project to document the COVID-19 pandemic experience in Wyoming. Are you keeping a journal, diary, or doing a blog about your experiences during the pandemic? Are you making masks, doing craft projects, struggling with having kids at home and homeschooling? These organizations hope by documenting people?s experiences now they can give clues to future historians about how we coped, communicated, and got through the difficult times.

If you are writing down your thoughts, they ask if you would consider donating a copy to the State Archives or American Heritage Center. If you reflect on social media, use the hashtag #Covid19WY so they can pull together all the tweets and posts later. That includes Instagram photos of empty streets or teddy bears in windows.

Why is it important to preserve these memories? Because while things are happening we sometimes don?t realize we are making history now. Recording these things while they are fresh in our minds will help future generations learn how we dealt with the day-to-day struggles of the unfolding events. Just as many people today are learning about how the world struggled with the devastating influenza pandemic of 1918 through personal stories, photographs, official accounts and newspaper articles of the time, future generations will learn about COVID-19 through the breadcrumbs of historical documentation recorded now for people to read about in the future.

For more information or to offer items, please contact Kathy Marquis, State Archivist,, Jennifer Alexander, Wyoming State Museum Collections,, or Sara Davis, University Archivist at the AHC at Digital memories can be sent directly to the Wyoming State Archives via their website at and click on the COVID-19 donation link.

For more information about the Wyoming State Historical Society, contact Linda Fabian, PO Box 247, Wheatland, WY 82201,,

Second positive COVID-19 patient in Sublette County (posted 6/18/2020)
Sublette COVID-19 Response Team
Sublette County Public Health and the Wyoming Department of Health have been notified of the second lab-confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) among Sublette County residents.

The patient is a male adult in his 70s from Sublette County. The individual is isolating and recovering at home.

Wyoming Department of Health and Sublette County Public Health are following up to monitor and learn more about the person?s exposure risk and identify and communicate with anyone who may have been in close contact with the patient. Known contacts will be asked to quarantine, and to be monitored for symptoms and tested if needed.

Symptoms reported with COVID-19 are cough, fever, shortness of breath, and sore throat, but research has shown the presence of other symptoms, including nasal congestion, loss of sense of smell and taste, and gastrointestinal symptoms, as well. If experiencing any of these symptoms, it is recommended that you call your healthcare provider and seek testing. A person can be asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic and still spread the virus, too.

The public is encouraged to continue to follow these guidelines outlined by the CDC and WDH:
? Wear a cloth face covering when in public (like at grocery store, etc.) to protect others from possibility of asymptomatic transmission.
? Avoid close contact (within 6 feet) of others, especially those who are sick or may have been exposed.
? Stay home if sick.
? Avoid large gatherings.
? Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
? Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

For current information on COVID-19 in Sublette County, go to the Sublette COVID-19 webpage at For other questions, contact Sublette County Public Health at 307-367-2157.

Fish sampling
Fish sampling
Fish sampled in Pinedale Area Lakes (posted 6/17/2020)
Wyoming Game & Fish
The Pinedale fish crew has begun their summer field season with the sampling of Green River Lake and other area lakes. The netting effort on Green River Lake is conducted every three years to monitor fish population trends. Nets are placed in the evening at a few different locations and then hauled in early the next morning. The catch is recorded by species, including fish weights and lengths.

The netting effort is conducted three times over the course of several weeks to account for variability in weather and changes in fish behavior. Once the busy field season is over, the resulting data will be analyzed and compared with previous years to determine population trends for the various species over time.

The primary game fish being monitored are lake trout, rainbow trout, brook trout, mountain whitefish and kokanee salmon. Fish managers noted the kokanee salmon catch was down this year, likely a result of no kokanees being stocked the past two years and little natural reproduction. The largest fish netted in Green River Lake was a 26 pound lake trout and several 20-inch rainbows as well.

The Pinedale fish crew will continue sampling area lakes until rivers and streams clear and they can begin sampling those waters.

WY COVID-19 guidance updated for visitation at long-term care facilities (posted 6/17/2020)
Governor Mark Gordon media release
The Wyoming Department of Health has issued updated guidance to allow long-term care facilities to permit in-person visitation outdoors under specific guidelines.

The new guidance requires visits to occur in a designated outdoor space, limits visitors to two persons at a time and requires screening of visitors for symptoms of respiratory illness. A facility staff member trained in patient safety and infection control measures must remain with the resident at all times during the visit. Staff and residents must wear surgical face masks and visitors are required to wear face coverings.

"We recognize how challenging this pandemic has been for Wyoming?s aging population and their families," Governor Gordon said. "Isolation can be debilitating for our seniors. I?m glad we are able to take this step to make in-person visits possible in a safe manner."

Routine testing of staff and residents at Wyoming long-term care facilities is continuing, with a goal of eventually testing 100% of all staff and residents for COVID-19. The decision to allow visitation rests with individual facilities, which are encouraged to consider local conditions when making visitation determinations.

Green River Rendezvous July 9-12 in Pinedale (posted 6/16/2020)
Museum programs, American Mountain Men living history, Traders Row, Parade, nightly rodeos, more!
The Museum of the Mountain Man and Main Street Pinedale are pleased to announce that many of the annual Green River Rendezvous Days activities will take place this year. There will be some slight modifications as we all monitor the COVID-19 health concerns, but the party is still on! Rendezvous is Thursday through Sunday, July 9-12, 2020 in Pinedale, Wyoming.

The Museum has a full schedule with more than 35 free programs for all ages on the Rocky Mountain fur trade and Plains Indian history of the early 1800s. Members of the American Mountain Men Association will be at the Museum to give living history talks and demonstrations. On Thursday evening at 6:30PM, the Museum will host the 4th annual Western Art & Wine Auction in the outdoor Pavilion. Proceeds benefit educational programs at the Museum. Click on this link to view this year?s catalog of the art and wine to be auctioned. The Museum is open daily from 9AM to 5PM during the summer season. Call 307-367-4101 with questions. Presentations by Bad Hand, children?s programs with Lapita and Dan Frewin, and presentations by the Journal authors will be modified due to social distancing seating requirements and meeting health safety measures.

Main Street Pinedale is organizing the Rendezvous Parade on Saturday, the street fair vendors, and a free street concert. For details about the street fair and parade entries, contact Main Street Pinedale at, email or call 307-231-0302.

There will be nightly rodeos Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the Pinedale Rodeo grounds.

The merchants of Traders? Row will be located at the southeast end of town as in previous years. They have activities and events every day. Vendors carry supplies that would have been found at the rendezvous of the early 1800s.

While we are saddened that the Green River Rendezvous Pageant won?t be happening this year, we understand their decision, and look forward to enjoying the fabulous historical show again in

We strongly recommend visitors make their lodging reservations ASAP because local motels fill up for the week of Rendezvous. Since coronavirus is still among us, please observe appropriate social distancing and health recommendations as you enjoy the festivities and hospitality of the community.

Please visit for the Museum?s schedule of programs.

See for updates on the schedule and additional activities around the area.

See Pinedale?s visitor information website for links to local lodging and dining information,

Big game license draw results to be posted June 18 (posted 6/16/2020)
Everyone who entered the draw will be able to check their results online
Wyoming Game & Fish
For hunters, one of the most exciting days of the year is approaching. The Wyoming Game and Fish Department will tentatively make draw results available for resident elk, deer and antelope as well as nonresident deer and antelope on June 18 at 10 a.m. Mountain Time. Everyone who entered the draw will be able to check their results online ( Licenses will be mailed to successful applicants by July 31.

Hunters who were successful in the draw can start planning their hunt with some help from the Wyoming Hunt Planner. Maps of hunt areas have been updated and include land status, the ability to plot scouting locations, harvest odds from past years and more.

Along with reviewing maps, hunters who are successful drawing a license also might need to purchase additional licenses and stamps:

?Each hunter needs a valid Conservation Stamp.
?Hunters who plan to hunt in the special archery season need a special archery license.
?Elk hunters who are planning to hunt on the National Elk Refuge will need to apply for a National Elk Refuge Permit.

Hunters born after Jan. 1, 1966 will need proof of hunter safety.

Applicants who are unsuccessful will have the license fee credit applied back to the credit card they used to apply. Refunded fees should be applied seven to 10 days business days after June 18. If applicants used a pre-paid card a refund check will be mailed in the name of the applicant.

Nonresidents who are unsuccessful or those who drew their second or third choice are not awarded a preference point automatically. Hunters eligible for preference points may apply between July 1 and Oct. 31. Preference points must be purchased at least every two years to retain points.

For questions about the draw, license information or how to use the online tools, contact Game and Fish at (307) 777-4600 weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. MT.

Applications for leftover licenses will open on June 22-26; the leftover list will be posted on June 18. Hunters also can still apply for the Wyoming Super Tag and Super Tag Trifecta until July 1.

Image of a wolf seen in Grand County, Colorado on June 6. Photo for Wolf Watch courtesy of Jessica Freeman.
Image of a wolf seen in Grand County, Colorado on June 6. Photo for Wolf Watch courtesy of Jessica Freeman.
More wolves reported in Colorado (posted 6/13/2020)
Wolf Watch by Cat Urbigkit
Colorado Parks & Wildlife
With warmer weather and decreasing restrictions, more people are recreating in the outdoors, and Colorado Parks and Wildlife is seeing an increase in the number of sightings of potential wolves in the state.

"Public reporting vastly increases our ability to know what?s happening across the state," says Dan Prenzlow, Director of Colorado Parks and Wildlife. "While not all reports end up being verified as wolves, we make every effort to investigate credible sightings through on-the-ground investigations, biological sampling, and deploying a variety of survey techniques."

There are several known and some additional credible reports of potential wolves in the state at this time.

Wolf "1084M" North Park Update
The lone wolf that was first confirmed in North Park one year ago continues to persist in that area. The male wolf, designated by Wyoming Game and Fish as 1084-M, was collared in the Wyoming Snake River pack and dispersed into Colorado where he was first photographed in July, 2019. CPW pilots regularly fly the area and assist in keeping track of 1084?s movements. On the ground, wildlife managers conduct ground surveillance and communicate regularly with private landowners in Jackson County.

New report in Laramie River Valley
Wildlife managers are attempting to confirm a credible wolf sighting in the Laramie River Valley in Larimer County. An animal sighted in the area was wearing a wildlife tracking collar, which indicates it is likely a dispersal wolf from monitored packs in Montana or Wyoming, however flights and ground crews have been unable to detect a signal or visually confirm the wolf. It has been determined that the animal in Larimer County is not wolf 1084-M from neighboring Jackson County. If a wolf or wolves are confirmed in Larimer County, they would be the furthest east in Colorado in nearly a century.

New report in Grand County
Two groups of campers in Grand County over the weekend of June 6-7 were surprised to see a large wolf-like animal in the area in very close proximity to their camps. The incidents were reported to CPW. Wildlife officers and biologists responded to the area to gather biological evidence that could be used to confirm the presence of a wolf versus a coyote, lost or escaped domestic dog or domestic wolf-hybrid. Additional searches and monitoring of the area are continuing. Contacts with local animal control officials confirm no missing hybrids in the area. Biological samples were limited. The animal approaching humans so blatantly is atypical wolf behavior so additional work will be needed to fully confirm the animal?s identity. More information will be provided when available.

NW Pack Update
In the very northwest corner of Colorado, Colorado Parks and Wildlife staff continue to monitor the state?s first known pack of wolves since the 1930s. As many as six wolves have been confirmed in several previous sightings by staff, hunters, and landowners. The pack, originally reported to CPW late last year, has been relatively quiet of late.

Wildlife managers were able to recently capture an image of a lone wolf feeding on an elk carcass in the area. Only one wolf was seen over several different nights so it is unknown if the wolf is a member of the known pack or the animal is a new lone disperser into the area.

Disease tracking
CPW biologists and veterinarians have analyzed scat (feces) samples and determined that several members of the pack in northwest Colorado are positive for eggs of the tapeworm Echinococcus canadensis. This parasite can lead to hydatid disease in wild and domestic ungulates. These tapeworms have been found in wolves in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho. Hydatid disease has not been widely seen in Colorado but testing has been limited. CPW is increasing monitoring for hydatid disease including collecting and analyzing coyote scat to establish baseline data.

While Colorado Parks and Wildlife is working to monitor wolves, follow up on wolf sighting reports, and track disease, it is important to note that wolves in Colorado remain under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Wolves are a federally endangered species in Colorado and until that designation changes, all wolf management is under direction of the federal government. Killing a wolf in Colorado is a federal crime and can be punishable with up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

Related Links:
Colorado wolves - Colorado Parks & Wildlife
Wolf Watch - by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!

179 Yellowstone employees test negative for COVID-19 (posted 6/12/2020)
Second round of tests, all come back negative
Yellowstone National Park
For the second week in a row after conducting COVID-19 surveillance testing on Yellowstone employees, all tests came back negative. On June 4-5, health officials from Park County, Montana, tested 179 employees from the National Park Service and concession companies operating in the park. This brings the total number of employees tested in the past 10 days to 222. Moving forward the park will continue to test employees in partnership with both Montana and Wyoming.

"I want to thank the states of Wyoming and Montana and our county health officials for partnering with us to increase surveillance testing capacity," said Superintendent Cam Sholly. "This proactive testing is the only way for us to detect cases early and respond quickly to any employees who have the virus."

As introduced in the park?s reopening plan, this surveillance testing will continue throughout the summer and target employees who are first responders and/or work directly with the public. More information about the surveillance testing effort is available in the park?s news release from June 4.

Additionally, the park sampled wastewater systems in Gardiner, Mammoth Hot Springs, and Old Faithful between May 18-26. Lab results indicated 0% prevalence of COVID-19 in those systems during those time frames. Additional samples will be taken on June 13 and 15, which will give the park a better idea of COVID-19 increases due to reopening.

Visitation Statistics for June 1-10, 2020:
Park-wide Vehicle counts:
June 1-10, 2020: 42,075
June 1-10, 2019: 78,190
54% of 2019 visitation
Wyoming Entrances (east & south):
June 1-10, 2020: 14,728
June 1-10, 2019: 22, 139
67% of 2019 visitation
Montana Entrances (north, west & northeast):
June 1-10, 2020: 27,347
June 1-10, 2019: 56,051
49% of 2019 visitation
Backcountry camping begins June 15

The park will begin issuing backcountry permits on June 15, 2020. All backcountry permits will be issued via email or phone through the Central Backcountry Office. The park maintains a Backcountry Situation Report for information about trail conditions, openings, and closings.

If you haven't received your Donald check yet, watch your mail for a debit card.
If you haven't received your Donald check yet, watch your mail for a debit card. Photo courtesy U.S. Treasury.
Some stimulus checks arriving as debit cards (posted 6/12/2020)
Don?t throw out thinking it is junk mail
Pinedale Online!
Nearly four million people are being sent their coronavirus relief Economic Impact Payment (EIP) to their mailboxes as a prepaid debit card instead of paper check. The government is sending people Economic Impact Payment Cards if they qualified for a stimulus payment and the IRS couldn't direct deposit the payment. The return address is listed as 'Money Network Cardholder Services,' without indication it's from the government/U.S. Treasury.

Sadly, some folks have thought the cards were junk mail or a scam and have discarded them by mistake. To help taxpayers identify the cards, the IRS says the cards will bear the Visa logo and are issued by MetaBank. A letter included with the cards explains that they are the Economic Impact Payment (EIP) Card.

Those who receive their Economic Impact Payment by prepaid debit card can do the following without any fees.
?Make purchases online and at any retail location where Visa is accepted
?Get cash from in-network ATMs
?Transfer funds to their personal bank account
?Check their card balance online, by mobile app or by phone
This free, prepaid card also provides consumer protections available to traditional bank account owners, including protection against fraud, loss and other errors.

Related Links:
Economic Impact Payment (EIP) card

UW Trustees approve fall semester return plan (posted 6/11/2020)
A mixture of in-person and online courses
The University of Wyoming intends to restart on-campus educational experiences this fall, with a mix of in-person and online courses and measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

The UW Board of Trustees approved a plan for students to return to campus for the fall semester, contingent upon securing funding for implementation from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act through the state of Wyoming. Governor Gordon is currently reviewing the University's funding request.

Under the plan, classes will begin August 24 and end December 4, as scheduled. However, students will not return to campus after Thanksgiving; all courses will move to fully online instruction beginning November 23, and final exams will take place through distance technologies.

Related Links:
UW COVID-19 webpage
UW Trustees Approve Fall Semester Return Plan
UW Plan to restart campus and restore normal operations (PDF)

Indoor gathering limits increased, parades permitted under updated health orders (posted 6/11/2020)
Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon media release
Updated public health orders that take effect June 15 will continue to ease restrictions on public gatherings in Wyoming, Governor Mark Gordon announced today. The updated orders allow indoor gatherings of up to 250 people with restrictions, permit parades to occur (with appropriate social distancing), and allow K-12 schools, community colleges, the University, and other educational institutions to reopen facilities and resume in-person instruction for all students.

The new orders are in effect through June 30 and allow gatherings up to 50 persons in a confined space to occur without restrictions, and permit indoor events of up to 250 persons with social distancing and increased sanitization measures in place. Faith-based gatherings such as church services and funeral homes are exempted from the new orders and allowed to operate without restrictions, with appropriate social distancing encouraged.

"Wyoming has made outstanding progress to date," Governor Gordon said. "Folks need to remember that it is important to remain vigilant, but because we have been so successful, I am confident we can continue lifting the very few remaining public health restrictions."

Wyoming?s COVID-19 dashboard has been updated to reflect the improvement in the statewide metrics used to ease restrictions. The number of new cases has changed from "concerning" to "stabilizing" and the percent of all tests that are positive is now rated as "improving".

Updates to Public Health Order No. 1 allow childcare facilities to resume normal operations without restrictions on class sizes, and expands the permitted size of group fitness classes to 50 participants. Public Health Order No. 3 no longer requires personal care services to operate by appointment only.

K-12 schools, colleges, the University, and trade schools may resume in-person instruction for all students in groups of up to 50 persons with spacing guidelines. Governor Gordon has continued to urge educational institutions to prepare fully developed reopening plans for the fall that incorporate public safety precautions and ensure smooth transitions to remote learning should new outbreaks occur.

As of June 10, Wyoming has recorded 768 lab-confirmed positive cases of COVID-19, 212 probable cases and 18 deaths.

The COVID-19 dashboard and updated Public Health Orders are attached and can be found on Wyoming?s COVID-19 website.

BTNF releases Record of Decision for Invasive Plant Management (posted 6/11/2020)
Tricia O?Connor, Forest Supervisor of the Bridger-Teton National Forest, has signed the Record of Decision (ROD) and released the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Invasive Plant Management Project.

The ROD and FEIS address treating noxious weeds across the 3.4 million acre forest in western Wyoming. The decision is a modified Alternative 2 where the Forest can treat invasive plant species on up to 20,000 acres annually on the Bridger-Teton using a condition based and integrated invasive plant treatment strategy, and excludes aerial application of herbicides in designated Wilderness and wilderness study areas.

Condition-based management is a tool that offers a way to evaluate constantly changing or new weed infestations and new treatment options while still addressing other resource concerns.

Some weeds produce large numbers of seeds that remain viable in the soil for up to ten years, and even longer for others. Several species have extensive root systems that sprout if the main stem is cut or broken off.

"The degree of difficulty to control the growing infestations of weeds necessitates utilization of multiple treatment methods and continuous monitoring to ensure that new infestations don?t become established," O?Connor said.

The Final EIS was released on Sept. 27, 2019. The environmental analysis as well as the Record of Decision are available online at:

High school juniors are encouraged to apply to be a U.S. Senate Page for fall 2020 (posted 6/10/2020)
Last opportunity for pages to be sponsored by U.S. Senator Mike Enzi
Senator Enzi media release
Washington, D.C. ? U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., is encouraging Wyoming high school juniors to apply to be a Senate page for the fall session in Washington, D.C.

Enzi said he is fortunate to have the opportunity to sponsor a young adult from Wyoming to serve during the fall session. This will be the last chance for students to be sponsored by Enzi because he is not running for re-election in the U.S. Senate. The application deadline for the fall session is July 8.

"The Senate Page Program is a great opportunity for young people and provides experiences participants will carry with them for the rest of their lives," Enzi said. "Not many people can say they?ve worked on the Senate floor ? the page program gives students a front row seat to see history in the making while gaining real work experience."

The Senate page session during the fall runs from September 8, 2020, to January 22, 2021. Enzi noted that the page program has not issued guidance on how COVID-19 could impact the program at this time.

Page duties consist primarily of delivering correspondence and legislative material at the Capitol. Other duties include preparing the Senate chamber for sessions and carrying bills and amendments to the appropriate people on the Senate floor.

Fall page eligibility is limited to high school juniors. Applicants must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0.

Pages live in Webster Hall located near the Capitol and receive a stipend to cover the cost of the residence. Breakfast and dinner are provided each day.

The application and additional information can be found by going to Further questions can be directed to Dianne Kirkbride in Senator Enzi?s Cheyenne office at 307-772-2477 or

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