posted on January 18, 2012 10:12
Board Meeting Minutes
Bighorn Federal Mtg Room
Jan 10, 2012 at 6:30 pm
Call to order and Welcome – Bob C
Approval of Nov email updates: Motion by Jerry Second by Joe
Welcome guests Mark Smith and James Hobbs from WGF along with Travis Sylvester from Greybull.
Mark Smith presented some fall fish population sampling data from Bighorn Lake and a report on the Sauger spawning/hatchery project with Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks. He also spoke on the proposed Cutthroat Trout reintroduction project for upper Porcupine Creek on the Bighorn Mountains. He is trying to get public input on this proposed change from a Brook Trout fishery back to Cutthroats.
James Hobbs is the new WGF warden stationed in Lovell. We took this opportunity to get to know him and to help him become familiar with FOBHL. He has a new jet boat so we will see him on the lake and the river this year.
Travis Sylvester came to present data on his science project to determine pesticides and herbicides in the deposited sediments of Bighorn Lake. He took six sediment samples from Horseshoe Bend to south of the causeway. All samples came back from the lab with no detected commonly used farm chemicals present. For more details contact FOBHL.
The web cam project at Horseshoe Bend is still stalled at the Shoshone River on Highway 37. Two horizontal drilling companies have failed to get under the river the past several months. Now TCT has submitted applications for permits to attach the fiber optic conduit to the bridge and one to allow traffic control during the installation process. We are in hopes to have service to Horseshoe Bend next month.
A meeting was held between WGF and BICA to finalize the intended uses for the Wyo boat gas tax money grant. A list was developed according to most need items.
We list only the first four items: New log boom at HSBend, Replace the gravel area above the Kane ramp with cement or asphalt, a restroom and dock at Jim Creek Bay, relocate and rebuild the ML ramp at the south end of the YT unit.
There will be a BICA/FOBHL management drive around tour of the park and YT unit Jan 26. This gives us all a look at how things are going on the ground and what needs attention for this year.
BICA will likely issue a combined concession contract for the tour boats and marina this year. This gives the operator more opportunity to make a profit.
BICA will be advertizing for a new Interpretive Chief and a Lovell VC Interpretive ranger. Both of these positions came open when current rangers transferred to other parks.
The flood damaged roads at BICA and in the YT unit are nearly repaired from the damage caused by the flood waters this summer.
Lynn reported on the USBR monthly conference call held today. All three reservoirs are above average for storage this winter and have had above average inflows as well. The YT reservoir elevation is closely following the winter plan to date however mountain snow pack is less than average so some adjustment maybe needed next month. The maintenance at the Afterbay Dam gates is progressing slowly but should be done by the completion date this spring. Lenny's group has not completed the second draft of the YT water operations plan yet, so public review will occur at a later date. The next conference call will be February 7.
Snow pack is much lower than last year: Wind River 78/116 %, Bighorn Basin 95/102%, and Shoshone 90/104% (present/2011%)
The January YT water operations plan should be on the web this week. It will continue to follow the ongoing winter plan.
Tom Sawatzke of the MT USBR is now in Casper as acting Wyoming Area Manager. John Lawson retired in December after a lifetime with the USBR.
We thank John for all his advise and help from the Wyoming Area Office to the Bighorn River System Issues Group. Tom is well versed in the Issues Group's activities as well, from his time in the Group with the Montana Area Office.
FOBHL is suggesting the need for a new ramp south of the causeway for high water access to the south end of Bighorn Lake. One possible location is along County Road 20 on the west side of the lake about ¾ mile off hwy 14AE to the south. This is the old railroad pond site. Consider the following data: At 3640' there is 11ft of space under the bridge. Allow 2' for wave action loss that leaves 9 ft to clear a boat. Pontoon boat needs 7' to 8 ', large recreation boat needs 5' to 7', fishing boat without cabin needs 5 '. NPS patrol boat needs 6' to 9'. The past 3 years the lake elevation has been above 3640' for several weeks which prevented access under the bridge. If the lake's full pool elevation is increased to 3643 - 3645' we will have less space to clear a boat at the new full pool elevation. We are in favor of a new location for the ML ramp as well to give lake/river access at the far south end and beyond. Access is essential for BICA/YT unit to meet the visitor needs.
Jerry L present the year end financial report and lead a discussion as to when to send out the 2012 membership renewals. We felt mid February would be a good time. A letter will accompany the renewal statement explaining FOBHL.
We need to keep the 2012 Bighorn Lake Celebration, on July 7, on our minds!
FYI - our web site received over 100 hits per day in December!
FOBHL is in need of two new board members. The board will send out an email invitation to it's membership seeking possible candidates.
Next FOBHL Board Mtg on February 14 at 6:30pm in Powell at PVCC mtg room