The following is a press release from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM):
STINKING SPRINGS, EGIN AREA TEMPORARILY CLOSED OVER WINTER TO PROTECT WILDLIFE
IDAHO FALLS, Idaho – In collaboration with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG), the Bureau of Land Management Upper Snake Field Office will temporarily close the Stinking Springs area near the South Fork of the Snake River to all motorized vehicles and human entry in order to support wildlife survival rates. The annual closure will begin Dec. 15, 2021, and is scheduled to remain in effect through sunrise May 1, 2022, although the opening date may be adjusted depending on weather conditions.
“Increasing human activity in the Stinking Springs area creates additional stress on the fragile mule deer that winter there, requiring them to deplete their supply of stored winter fat more quickly,” said Jeremy Casterson, BLM Upper Snake Field Manager. “We appreciate the public’s help every year in avoiding this area to help protect these sensitive animals.”
For similar reasons, the annual Egin-Hamer Area Closure will also go into effect soon. This closure temporarily closes BLM-managed public land to human entry to protect wintering deer, elk and moose. Restrictions begin on Jan. 1 and last until sunrise on April 1 south of the Egin-Hamer Road and until sunrise on May 1 north of it. Detailed map can be viewed here: Egin-Hamer_Winter_Closure_Map.pdf (blm.gov).
The seasonal closures apply to other BLM-managed public lands in the vicinity of Stinking Springs, and the U.S. Forest Service also temporarily closes National Forest lands in the area during winter. It is advisable to check with agency offices before planning travel in these areas. For more information, contact the Upper Snake Field Office at 208-524-7500.