IDAHO FALLS- Everyone knows that April 1 is "April Fools Day," but local resource management agencies want to make sure that no one gets fooled by new management guidelines regarding the Egin-Hamer Closure Area. In 1997, Fremont and Jefferson County Commissioners approached the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Idaho Department of Fish & Game (IDFG) about revisiting the Egin-Hamer Road winter road closure issue. An agreement was arranged that allowed for opening the road to winter travel in return for closing off important winter range adjacent to the road. In order to be responsive to both wildlife and human needs portions of the management area created had different opening dates. One of those dates is now upon us.
The Egin-Hamer Road divides the closures area into two uneven segments. The smaller southern segment will open to human traffic on April 1, 2000. The larger northern segment will remain closed to human traffic until May 1, 2000. The agreement also included access allowances for private landowners with business concerns requiring entry into the closure area. The segment that opens on April 1 is bordered by the Egin-Hamer Road on the north and Highway 33 on the south. The western boundary is Interstate 15 and the eastern boundary runs from where the Henrys Fork crosses Highway 33 and heads north through Plano and then toward Egin. Exact boundary descriptions and specific information regarding the agreement are available at the Idaho Falls BLM at 208-524-7445 and the Idaho Falls IDFG Office at 208-525-7290.
It is important to note that even though the southern segment is open to human traffic, the restriction regarding the collection of shed antlers remains in effect through the end of April. May 1 marks the date that antler gathering can resume in those portions of the region covered by the restriction.