Friday, January 23, 2015

New firearm created from Idaho-only parts, products

Thirteen Idaho recreation-technology companies joined to create a complete, functioning firearm made only from parts and products manufactured in Idaho. Nightforce Optics of Orofino is among the companies that participated.

The project was organized by tactical Export Strategies organized the project. The firearm will be on display at the 2015 Shooting Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show in Las Vegas, NV, this week, at the Sands Expo Center in the Idaho Commerce booth (booth 2943).

In addition to Nightforce Optics, who supplied the firearm’s scope and scope mounts, participating companies include: ATK Blackhawk in Lewiston, who supplied the stock, pistol grip, bi-pod, and sling; Seekins Precision of Lewiston, who supplied the lower receiver; Am-Tac Precision of Garden City, who supplied the upper receiver and bolt assembly; ‌Forward Moving Training Center of Boise, who supplied a training donation; and ‌Gem-Tech of Boise, who supplied the suppressor.

Also Hooker Tactical of Arco, who supplied the scope camera for training; Kryptek Outdoor Group of Eagle, who supplied the gun case; ‌Lone Wolf Distributors of Priest River, who supplied the trigger kit, custom engraving, and miscellaneous parts; ‌MCM Firearms of Nampa, who supplied the custom Kryptek camo skin; MGM Targets of Caldwell, who supplied the switchview scope lever; Primary Weapon Systems of Boise, who supplied the barrel and enhanced buffer tube; and Unique AR’s of McCall, who supplied the hand guard and custom cutting of IGC logo, and the paint design.

After being displayed at the SHOT Show, the firearm will be donated to the 2015 Governor’s Cup, a 501(c)(3) that provides scholarship money to Idaho students pursuing post-secondary education within Idaho.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Spam e-mail: Good for a laugh

By Andrea Dell

If you were to judge people solely on the contents of their spam e-mail, you’d find most human beings to be depraved perverts with extraordinary financial problems, despite them having a knack for receiving exorbitant monetary donations from random foreigners.

Do the people who send these out actually expect them to work?

Some are more convincing than others, I admit. For example, this week alone I’ve received almost $1,000 in Amazon eRewards. And my PayPal account has been restricted. Again.

At the Tribune, we even get fake classifieds. They all share a theme, and that theme changes every few months. Once, it was terriers. Another time it was motorcycles. Right now, these pseudo advertisers want to post ads seeking either a nanny, or a caregiver for an elderly relative.

On Friday, my RussianBrides login was updated. I was recently warned that my $100 in “Walgreens ePoints” is expiring soon. Several people have run background checks on me in the last few days. And Jasmine thinks my profile picture is cute, and she wants to chat.

I also have several irons in the fire that are 100 percent guaranteed to make me an instant zillionaire. This isn’t counting all cash flow I’ll enjoy from the zero percent interest loans I qualify for on a daily basis.

My excellent and special friend, “Mr Gomez Lan,” wrote to tell me he’s arrived in Atlanta with my ATM card worth $4.4 million, which he has been instructed by “ups DIPLOMATIC COURIER SERVICE” to deliver to me.

What? You doubt Gomez? Of course he’s for real! He assured me that “Airport authority demanded for all the legal back up to prove to them that the fund is in no way related with drug or fraudulent Activities.” The “Airport authority” wouldn’t let him contact me if he were lying! He just needs $150 from me, to get that crucial “yellow tag” placed on the ATM card. Those stiffs at “Airport authority” must have the “Yellow Tag of lading papers for airport delivery clearance,” before they’ll let him leave the airport.

I’m not sure how an ATM card is going to fit in an ATM with a “Yellow Tag of lading papers” on it, but I’ll worry about that when the time comes.

Did I mention that Sarah Smith from the United Kingdom wants to give me half of her 25 million Euro inheritance? We just have to get married, and then it’s all mine.

Also, every dying Christian who has ever lived, ever, is going to leave me a pretty nice chunk of change, provided I help them spend their vast millions on a worthy cause of my own choosing.

I did find one of those a tiny bit suspicious, I must say. The woman who e-mailed me wrote, “With God, all things are possible.” She then warned me we couldn’t talk over the phone, because she didn’t want her in-laws, who are apparently always in the room with her, no matter what (must make for awkward bathroom breaks), to hear her going behind their backs.

So, with God, all things are possible, except scheming in front of your in-laws? I think not, dearie.

Best of all, a New Yorker named Mrs. Wendy Louis is going to entrust a “huge” sum of money to me. She didn’t want to say why in the e-mail, though (and who can blame her), but I’m sure it’s because I’m the most trustworthy acceptor of random millions presently living on planet Earth. I value your faith in me, Mrs. Wendy Louis of New York City.

Of course, before I can deposit these untold millions, I will have to spend 600 years verifying and re-verifying my account information with every bank, credit card account, and online service I’ve ever used—and, apparently, a few I haven’t. Better get cracking.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Local Boy Scouts earn Eagle Scout rank

Pictured here during the Eagle Scout Board of Review (l to r) are: Lito Ilagan, Kevin Zywina, Nikki McCarthy, Eagle Scout- Dalton Chatfield, District Eagle Scout Counselor-Paul Driver, Eagle Scout- Kenny Miller, John Vaage, and Hayden George.

By Bonnie Miller

Dalton Chatfield and Kenny Miller from Boy Scout Troop #536 on Dec. 27 had their Eagle Scout Board of Review and became Eagle Scouts.

Becoming an Eagle Scout is a tremendous accomplishment. The Eagle Scout rank may be earned by a Boy Scout who has been a Life Scout for at least six months and earns a minimum of 21 merit badges (12 merit badges being required).

This Scout must also fulfill certain requirements of leadership, service and outdoor skills. Earning the Eagle Scout rank is the highest advancement rank in Scouting.

Boy Scouts of America was established by Baden-Powell in Britain 1908. W.D. Boyce later founded the Boy Scout Association (BAS) on Feb. 8, 1910, in America. In 2013, 56,841 Scouts earned the Eagle Scout rank in America.

Dalton and Kenny would like to thank their fellow Scouts in Troop #536 for all of their help with the Eagle Scout projects; as well as their parents, grandparents, family members, friends, Scoutmaster- John Chatfield, Assistant Scoutmasters Travis Jensen and Dale Mclean, Eagle Scout Coach Brian Palmer, Will Crockett and Orofino Builders Supply, Superintendent Bob Vian, Justin Howard, Harold Kerley, Tama Naden, Corporal Mike Gladhart (Marine Deputy of the Orofino Sheriff’s Department), Don Beck and Wes Baker with Idaho Fish and Game, Juelie Traska with Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation, and the United States Coast Guard for their donations and funding of these Eagle Scout projects.

Dalton and Kenny would also like to thank the Orofino community and surrounding towns for supporting all activities and programs throughout this year with their Troop #536. Your generosity is very much appreciated.

Dalton and Kenny invite you to see and use their Eagle Scout Projects. Dalton completed the three new outdoor garbage can holders at the Orofino Elementary School and Kenny completed the Life Jacket Loaner Station at Deyo Reservoir.

Friday, January 2, 2015

County anxiously awaits to see if SRS will slip through Congress one more year

By Elizabeth Morgan

Several articles have appeared in the media lately regarding the chances of reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools Act (SRS) by Congress this next year. The issue was at a standstill when Congress broke for the holidays and will resume in January.

The Secure Rural Schools (SRS) program was created in 2000 to help counties fund the services they could no longer afford because of lost tax revenue. Thirty-five of 44 Idaho counties receive SRS payments, and Idaho ranks third in the country in total SRS dollars. But the program was always intended as a safety measure until Congress could find a more permanent solution.

The White House threatened a veto on the last bill from House Republicans calling for an increase in logging across all national forests. Opponents said it would jeopardize the habitat of endangered species, increase lawsuits and limit the president’s ability to create national monuments.

Hopefully, the break will allow both sides to entertain proposals somewhere in the middle that will provide a viable solution.

Clearwater County Commissioner Don Ebert said, “The county wouldn’t feel the impact immediately. Primarily, county roads and the Sheriff’s Office would be affected if some compensation isn’t made. There are a lot of counties in Idaho that will be in a bad way if it doesn’t come through.”

Ebert hopes to have an answer within the next month, “However, I will not be surprised if it should take longer,” he said.

The county will receive Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) funds for this year.

The National Association of Counties (NACo) reported earlier this month that lawmakers appointed $372 million for PILT in its end-of-year spending package for 2015.

“Because National Forest counties are entitled to more PILT funding, the two programs are closely linked,” wrote Brian Namey with NACo. “Without securing full SRS funding before PILT payments are disbursed in mid-2015, there will be a significant impact on the funds available for all counties with federal lands.”

Friday, December 26, 2014

Idaho well represented at the helm of U.S. Navy counter- piracy exercise with China

DESRON ONE Commodore CAPT Doug Stuffle (right) speaking to PLA-N media reporters on the value of cooperation between the US and PRC for countering piracy.

The U.S. Navy counterpiracy exercise with the Chinese People's Liberation Army (Navy) PLA-N began as of Dec. 11, off the coastal states in the Gulf of Aden and the Horn of Africa. Two of the ships participating in the exercise are led by Idaho natives. U. S. Navy Capt. Doug Stuffle, born and raised in Orofino, and CDR Ted Nunamaker, from Meridian.

Earlier this year, the Clearwater Tribune featured Capt. Stuffle who took command of Destroyer Squadron One in February of 2014. Destroyer Squadron One (DESRON ONE) is part of Carrier Strike Group One, embarked on USS CARL VINSON (CVN 70) and is currently deployed to Fifth Fleet.

The Strike Group, along with four ships, guided missile destroyer USS Sterett (commanded by Cmdr. Nunamaker), USS Gridley, USS Dewey, and USS Bunker Hill have participated in several multinational exercises.

In a recent article, “U.S. and China conduct anti-piracy exercise”, U. S. Navy Mass Communication specialists 1st Class Travis Alston and 3rd Class Eric Coffer, further define the purpose and goals of U.S.-China Counter-Piracy Exercise 15.

The following information appears in their article.

The cooperative training aims to promote partnership, strength and presence. It includes combined visit, board, search, and seizure operations, communication exchanges, and various other aspects of naval operations. Additionally, the exercise represents a long-standing united front toward counter-piracy operations shared by these two world powers.

“The exercise allows us to address our common regional and global interest,” said Capt. Doug Stuffle, “It helps both nations pursue a healthy, stable, reliable and continuous bilateral relationship.” 

Approximately 700 personnel from the U.S. and China navies will participate in the exercise, and it gives Sterett sailors the opportunity to engage in a shared mission with other surface platforms. 

“Piracy is a long-standing problem, world-wide,” said Cmdr. Theodore Nunamaker. “It has long been recognized as a problem that requires an international-cooperative solution. Certainly the U.S. 5th Fleet AOR (area of responsibility) is one of the focused points for that effort. Modern-day piracy has a far-reaching economic impact. Although much of the world’s population will never encounter piracy, it has an impact on everyone, by increasing the cost of goods that are being shipped from place to place.”

Stuffle expressed that Sterett’s crew, like all deployed U.S. naval forces, have trained to meet a variety of mission sets that are important to the nation’s interest and stand ready to execute anti-piracy measures when directed.

Both Stuffle and Nunamaker agree the ultimate goal of this exercise is to strengthen military-to-military relationships between the U.S. and its Chinese counter-parts. The navies of the U.S. and China conducted similar training Aug. 20 - 25, 2013.

“These bi-lateral exercises help us establish clear paths for communication; they encourage transparency of trust, help us mitigate risk and allow us to demonstrate cooperative efforts in the international community to help us work together to deal with transnational threats. In the end, we look to create a peaceful, stable and secure maritime domain,” said Stuffle.

Sterett is deployed as part of the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group and is supporting Operation Inherent Resolve conducting maritime security operations, strike operations in Iraq and Syria as directed and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility.

Friday, December 19, 2014

A Christmas story from yesteryear

By Charlie Pottenger

Recently I was invited to Dining on the Edge for a Christmas luncheon celebration with the Clearwater Tribune staff. While enjoying the festive, happy mood I realized that the beautifully decorated Christmas tree with its fantastic red beaded garlands reminded me of days long ago and my mom.

Back in the 1940’s, Christmas was, as it is now, a very special season when we rejoiced in the truth of the Savior and celebrated as a family. In our family there were four kids, a devoted mom, a hard working dad, and not too much money. We were just like everyone else I knew, and although each family had different traditions, all celebrated and shared their love with each other and all that they contacted.

At our house Mom ran the show. Beginning about now, say a week before Christmas, she would organize her little tribe of “elves” into squads working under close supervision. She had us mix ingredients to make fantastic gingerbread cookies. The dough was then refrigerated (or if it was cold, set outside on the open porch to stiffen before rolling).

Then, each of us in turn were allowed to roll out huge dough sheets, and then we all gathered around with cookie cutters to punch out gingerbread men, stars, Christmas trees, bells, circles and half-moons. The circles and half moons were cut using a drinking glass. We also made shaped sugar cookies. Naturally she insisted that we make four batches of each type.

Of course we had to add colored sugar sprinkles to some and place dried currants on the gingerbread men to represent buttons. When each kid’s dough was processed into cookies and the leftover dough had been consumed by some of the sneaky elves, that batch was baked to perfection. We were each allowed to sample one warm cookie. Then we were put to work with needles and red thread to attach little loops to each cookie so it could later be used for tree decorations. Then she carefully packed the finished edible-decorations in wrapped containers for later use.

The next job was to follow the same procedures to work as a team to produce delicious cookies called thumbprints. Each cookie was topped with a bunch of chocolate chips set into a thumb made depression and topped with a half of an almond. When cooked the melted chocolate surrounded the nut. She had a hard time hiding these well enough to have them still around by Christmas.

She also made a delicious, round, powdered sugar, rum-soaked cookie. We were able to shake the hot cookies in the powdered sugar to create the finished look. Like the thumbprints, these were hard to resist.

As we moved closer to Christmas day, she would “force us” into the duty of popping huge bowls of super-big fluffy corn kernels. When each of us had a bowl of popcorn, which we made ourselves, she would place a bowl of fresh cranberries, our bowl of popcorn, and a big, empty bowl on the table in front of each kid.

We were provided with a needle and ten feet of red thread, which we used to make popcorn-cranberry garlands. The process was simple. You doubled the thread, tied a knot, and then started alternating cranberries and popcorn kernels until you had your own five foot garland carefully placed in the empty bowl. When done she had 20 feet of edible garland ready for the tree.

In addition, it seemed that each kid had decorations made at school. Some were paper art works, some were colored construction paper chains, and some were plaster shapes similar to the cookie cutter shapes, but bearing dates and love messages, mostly directed to Mom and Dad. Some of the plaster decorations had actual black and white photos of the maker for long term memory.

When all was done Mom would get Dad to put the tree up on the night before Christmas, actually on the morning of Dec. 24. After she had put on our two strings of the big, hot lights of the time (the little lights we now have weren’t yet invented), she would add the garlands of cranberries and popcorn, plus any paper garlands that showed up from school art.

The few beautiful glass ornaments she had were then placed high on the tree, and finally we were turned loose to hang up gingerbread decorations to finish it off on the lower branches. When done we felt, each year, that we had the greatest tree ever!

On Christmas Eve we would all gather around the tree with its gleaming lights and sing carols until Dad decided it was time. Then he would get us all together on the couch—Mom, Dad, and the four of us—and he would read us the Christmas story from the Bible. We would recite the Lord’s Prayer, followed by him reading us The Night Before Christmas!

After the tree was decorated we could pick the cookies from the tree and she would replace them until the stock was depleted.

We followed this routine for years, until life’s callings began to take aging kids to new places like college, careers, and marriages.

After Christmas Mom would leave the garlands of cranberries and popcorn on the tree and place it in the yard for the birds and squirrels.

I know that those memories were largely practiced as I raised my family; however, I failed to pass on the carefully thought out program my mom used to slowly approach the Christmas celebration with the cooking traditions and the garland crafts.

I think back now and wish I’d had the discipline to engulf my kids into the old tradition, which really enhanced the family togetherness, which I still crave.

We did continue the celebration with the Bible reading, carols, and The Night Before Christmas. Also at our house we always made the kids wait until Christmas morning to open presents. Boy did they have trouble getting to sleep and did I have trouble staying awake long enough to make it really believable!

I love Christmas and wish anyone that has read this far the merriest Christmas ever!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Campground and cabin rental fees to increase on the Nez Perce-Clearwater Forests

Regional Forester Faye Krueger recently approved the recommendation from the Coeur d’Alene Bureau of Land Management Resource Advisory Committee (BLM RAC) to increase recreation fees for several sites on the Nez Perce-Clearwater Forests.

The decision to increase fees was based on recommendations by a Recreation Fee Analysis (RFA) in 2011. This was in response to the combination of the two forests’ recreation program and to severely declining budgets.

Public involvement related to the RFA process yielded significant concerns about the proposal to consider concessionaire management but yielded very little concern about raising fees. The proposed sites have recently received significant investment to improve visitor services.

Effective Dec. 1, amenity fees increased at 24 campgrounds, one visitor center, and four lookout/cabin rentals on the forests. Reservations made prior to Dec. 1, 2014 will be honored at the previous, lower rate. Most of these sites are currently closed for the winter season.

Forest recreation opportunities are found in three large geographical zones: the North Zone, including the Palouse and North Fork Ranger Districts; the Central Zone, containing the Lochsa, Moose Creek (Selway River), and Powell Ranger Districts; and the South Zone which covers the Red River, Elk City, South Fork of the Clearwater and Salmon River Districts. Approved fee increases are as follows:

North Zone

Aquarius, Hidden Creek, Kelly Forks, Noe Creek and Washington Creek Campgrounds fees increased from $7 to $10 per night.

Laird Park and Little Boulder Campgrounds fees increased from $8 to $12 per night.

Elk Creek Campground (which has electrical hook-ups) fee increased from $15 to $20 per night.

Bald Mountain Lookout rental fee increased from $35 to $45 per night.

Kelly Forks Cabin rental fee increased from $55 to $65 per night.

Liz Butte Cabin rental fee increased from $20 to $40 per night.

Central Zone

Apgar, Wild Goose, Wilderness Gateway, Wendover, White Sand, Whitehouse and O’Hara Bar Campgrounds fees increased from $8 to $14.00 per night.

Jerry Johnson Campground fee increased from $10 to $14 per night.

Powell Campground sites without hookups increased from $8 to $14 and sites with hookups from $14 to $20.

Glade Creek Group Campground fee increased from $35 to $50 (for five camping spots) per night.

Lolo Pass Visitor Center new fees are $5.00 per day, $35.00 per season, $20.00 for 5 day bundle; eliminate $5.00 second car pass.

Castle Butte Lookout rental fee increased from $35 to $45 per night.

South Zone

Castle Creek and South Fork Campgrounds fee increased from $8 to $12 per night.

Fish Creek Campground fee increased from $6 to $12 per night.

Spring Bar Campground on the Salmon River fee increased from $10 to $12 per night.

Red River Campground fee increased from $6 to $12 per night.

Jerry Walker Cabin located near the Elk City rental fee increased from $20 to $40 per night.

Reserve lookouts and cabin rentals at:

For more information, please contact your local Forest Service office or visit our website at: