Monthly Archives: March 2010

alturas season ends

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

On Wednesday, the last day of March, 2010, the temperature at 8 a.m. was 14 degrees in the upper Sawtooth Valley and the sun was out, shining through a bright blue break in the storm that left over a foot of snow on the trails at Alturas Lake over the last two days. Sadly, we have reached the end of the grooming program for this season. Thanks to all for making it such a nice ski season at Alturas this year…. and see you again next year!

March 29, 2010 Snowmobile Report

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Good Morning Sled-Heads!  It seems that our 2010 Grooming Season is coming to a close.  The groomer is no longer maintaining the trails around the Stanley area and the snow poles and markers are being picked up almost as we speak.  We are are receiving a light rain in town right now, but snow may still be falling out towards Banner Summit and the Bear Valley area.  I have heard that the snow out near Bear Valley is still some great riding.  The forecast is calling for rain/snow mix today and tomorrow with snow likely tomorrow night through Thursday.  Please take precations while riding the area as rocks and other obstacles are starting to show themselves.  Thanks to all the volunteers, the groomer operators, and all the riders for making this a great season!  We’ll see you next year!

March 29, 2010 Highway Report

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Good Morning All!  The weather in Stanley is quite gloomy this morning.  What should have been snow instead fell as rain/sleet due to our warmer temps, although I’m sure Banner and Galena Summits received at least a little snow.  As of right now, 8:30 Monday morning, all highways leading to Stanley are open.  The roads will be wet and it appears that there has been some falling rocks on Highway 21, but no closures that I am aware of.  You can give the City Office a call or check the ITD website under “Traveler Services” for up to date info on highway closures.  Travel Safely!

Alturas Trails still good

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

On Sunday, the 28th of March the temperature was estimated to be 28 degrees at 9:20 a.m. at the Alturas Lake ski area. Despite a relentless attack by the sun, 17 kilometers of trails are still all intact and continuous with skating and trail touring rated very good. Classic tracks extend to the lake and Over the Hill but are still only rated o.k. at best. It is now apparent that if new snow does not arrive soon, the trails will be retaken by tree wells, sagebrush, stump tops, boulders, dirt patches and fallen trees, He who hesitates may lose a chance to ski these trails one last time, while swift and resolute action may lead to a successful ski adventure.


Friday, March 26th, 2010

March 25 , 2010 Fishing Report



Fishing is beginning to pick up in the Upper River and there are definitely fish throughout the entire Main Salmon. Reports of amazing numbers of fish are coming up from the Salmon area and every day we are seeing more fish in the upper river. Numbers of anglers are also on the increase and a friendly smile goes a long way!  The river is still quite low and wade fishing is definitely at its easiest at the moment.  Try a nymph dropped off a skunk or just a leechy pattern on the swing.

Steelhead passed through Lower Granite Dam in record numbers this past fall and at last count the number was over 314,000.  This dam is the upper most dam of the four Snake River dams that our fish must past through on their out migration and return trip to Idaho.  We enjoyed a few of these fish on the upper river below Stanley last fall and this spring should be one of the best ever with record numbers of fish in the system!

SALMON UPDATE: Salmon season opened June 20 and closed July 26 this past summer of 2009. If you didn’t know it, last year and this year were the first Salmon seasons in over 30 years. Each year, Fish and Game determines the number of available Chinook Salmon that may be harvested. Word so far from Fish and Game for this year is this -”if we have a season on the upper river near Stanley, it is likely to only be a few days long.”  Numbers are good for the river and a season near Salmon.  Stay tuned!

General Information

Many of the fish we catch in our area are Westslope Cutthroat, native Rainbow trout and Bull Trout. These fish are native, natural fish and must be released. If you do not practice catch and release and prefer to keep fish, there are rainbows with missing adipose fins which can be kept. If you are fishing the Main Salmon River, please be sure to check the adipose fin and if the fish has one and is not a Mountain Whitefish or Brook trout, it must be released. Please handle it carefully, practice good catch and release techniques and let it go to catch another day. Consider fishing only with a single barbless hook to increase survival rates of the native fish and don’t keep the fish out of the water for over 20 seconds or, better yet keep them in the waterl. Hatchery stocked, catch and keep rainbow trout will be missing the adipose fin. Middle Fork tributaries are CATCH & RELEASE only.

Check the regulation book for exceptions and remember that many fish are protected and cannot be kept. The regulation book tells what can be kept and how to tell the difference.

Fishing Report courtesy of Silver Creek Outfitters.
800-732-5687 or email us at for an update.

Alturas… nice and sunny

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

On Wednesday, March 24th, the temperature at 8 a.m. was around 8 degrees at the Alturas Lake Ski Area. After an inch of snow blew through on Monday, the trails were all rolled on Tuesday and looked really great for skating. Classic tracks were reset to the lake but looked a bit ill formed and shallow in many areas… not the crisp sharp edged channels, ever so parallel, that thrill the heart of the classic skier. However, the sun is out in a clear blue sky, the redwing blackbirds are singing, and it should be a great day for skiing Alturas. Reportedly, crusty, sunny meadows have been supporting skinny cruisers on their way to the lake, however,  large cruisers can expect occasional crust collapse and breakthrough.

Crust cruising Coyote

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

On Saturday morning, March 20th, the temperature at 9 a.m. was around 9 degrees at the Alturas Lake ski area and the sun shone brightly from a clear blue sky. Skating lanes are reportedly excellent on all trails, however, classic tracks look shallow, slumped, shaggy and a bit sad. Crust cruising appears to be great for coyotes and other light weight creatures, but skiers weighing over 14 stones are advised to exercise caution in venturing too far from road or trail when the sun reaches the zenith of its powers.

Green Snow at Alturas Lake Ski Area

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

On Wednesday, the 17th of March, the temperature at the Alturas Lake ski area was already about 25 degrees by 9 a.m. Trails will be scraped with ginzu knives and the resulting snow duff combed out into a corrugated surface beginning at about 9:30 a.m. Mountain Daylight time today. Conditions are expected to range from somewhat crunchy to pretty much perfect to somewhat mushy as the day progresses.

Alturas Sunday

Sunday, March 14th, 2010

On Sunday, the 14th of March, the temperature at 9:30 a.m. mountain daylight time was predicted to be 14 degrees above zero and rising nicely under a calm blue sky at the Alturas Lake ski area. Buffeted by wind and snow yesterday, at times the trails were lost entirely under the wind stroked ridges of sastrugi. Grooming today is expected to begin around 10 a.m. mountain daylight time and continue until everything looks groovy…

Alturas ski trails

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

On Thursday, March 11th, the temperature at the Alturas lake ski area had risen to 9 degrees by 9 a.m., after an overnight low of 9 below zero just before the dawn. And that 11th dawn illumined a brilliant blue sky dome with nary a cloud. Oh my gosh, this could be a fab day to ski the 17.6 kilometers of trails that were groomed just yesterday… that is 10.95 miles of joys as confirmed by global positioning satellite