“The patrols are intended to educate the public, distribute maps, answer questions, deter violators and encourage the reporting of violations,” states Rusty Kaiser, PFO wildlife biologist. “We’re constantly working to ensure the closures are implemented and enforced successfully.” The Wyoming Game and Fish Department and Sublette County Sheriff’s Office also keep an eye out for closure violations.
The annual winter closures have been in effect since 2008 and help protect elk, moose, pronghorn, and mule deer from disruptive human activities which, during the difficult winter months, can increase the mortality rate for these animals.
The Ryegrass, Bench Corral, Deer Hills, Calpet and Miller Mountain closures include all BLM-administered lands north of Fontenelle Creek, east of the U.S. Forest Service Boundary, west of State Highway 189, and south of Horse Creek. The Mesa winter range closure includes all BLM-administered lands east of County Road 110 (East Green River Road), north of County Road 136 (Paradise Valley Road), west of the New Fork River, and south of State Highway 191.
Signs are posted at key locations around the closed areas restricting all types of motorized travel. Non-motorized means of travel are still allowed. Highways, county, and oil and gas roads are not affected unless posted otherwise. A map of the closed areas can be found at www.blm.gov/wy/st/en/field_offices/Pinedale/recreation/closures.html
As a reminder, motorized machines, excluding snow machines, are not allowed off-road on BLM-administered lands at any time.
For more information, please contact Kaiser at 307-367-5317.