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Old 08-13-2013   #21
Aspen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1994
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 377
I have only done the Main Salmon once, back in 2002. I do not recall any yellowjacket problems. Is this related to the fires last summer?

Relating to another poster, yellowjackets are not bees. They can both sting you, but bees are not in competition with you for your food and are not aggressive, unless they are africanized (which are not near Idaho). As far as I am concerned, bees good, yellowjackets not so much. I am sure they have a place in the grand scheme of things

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Old 08-13-2013   #22
Medford, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1984
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 204
We had to have someone air evacuated due to Yellow jacket sting last year, she was stung on the tongue. We flagged a jet boat then a helicopter picked her up. Luckily we were well supplied with epipens, they only last about 15-20 minutes so make sure the patient is loaded up with benadryl. We also had prednisone and we gave her a good dose of that. Emergency Dr said we did just right. They took a jet boat back up the next day to pick up their boat. It is good if several people have epipen, and if you are allergic have a wilderness protocol that you can share with your group. They sell epi-pen in 2 packs these days. It is great if several people carry them, Like river knives, if you need em, you need em. We also found out it is good to take a cell phone you might not be able to call on the river but it is very helpful at the hospital to make arrangements, for things like car rentals, take it with you in an air evac.

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Old 08-14-2013   #23
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Salida, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 516
Here's my tongue several minutes after 2 injections of epi and 75 mg of Benadryl

Here's the escape
No amount of money is worth your free time!
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Old 08-14-2013   #24
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Lyons, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,565
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Just got off the main

The yellow jackets were very bad in the top half

Kinda mellowed in the third quarter then picked back up

Someone on our group suggested bringing those yellow jacket traps that hang and are yellow.

I would suggest two of those per day.
No need for pest spray since there were no obvious nests.

We got to the point that we were at war with the yellow jackets.
We won
Go Dawgs!!!
Happiness is a way of travel not a destination
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Old 08-14-2013   #25
Hamilton, Montana
Paddling Since: 2013
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 47
July trip

We were on the Main July 17 - 23 and the yellowjackets were pretty aggressive. I got stung 3 times while cooking when I inadvertantly trapped the between either arm and body or (the worst) skirt and belly. They also tried to take chunks out of the sandal wounds on my ankles and took a chunk out of my nephew's nose so he bled. One member of out party had a little "sting stick', a suction device for removing the "venom" and that seemed to work well. We sometimes used a decoy plate, but they weren't really fooled, and I wonder if by feeding them we encourage larger populations. They didn't like the mole sauce and that was the one meal we got to eat in peace.

All in all, a minor irritation since none of us were seriously allergic. But that was a month ago.
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Old 08-14-2013   #26
Idaho Falls, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1975
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 12
We pulled off the Lower Salmon a week ago. Yellow jackets were bad during the first 20 miles or so, but lessened as you went downstream. Our first camp was a bit rough due to the YJ's trying to get on any meat you had exposed, and their tendency to get on your beer cans. The remaining nights on the river were not nearly as bad. We managed to get 5 kids downstream with only one getting stung. One other got stung at the takeout while sitting in the truck as we loaded.
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Old 08-14-2013   #27
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
The yellow jackets were horrid during our trip (June 29-July 4). My dog got bit several times almost every single day... and one morning he was bit at least 5 times. Stupid bastard wouldn't stop biting at the flying pests, no matter what how we tried to keep him away.

And it was a serious exercise in Zen to cook sausage in the morning with 15 yellow jackets swarming my table.
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Old 08-14-2013   #28
Canmore, People's Republic of Alberta
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 22
Good to know! We'll come equipped with traps and plans for a decoy if necessary. A good bit of Zen and a IV drip for my beer so I don't drink one by accident!
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Old 08-15-2013   #29
Steamboat Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 25
Launching on 8/23. Thinking about screen houses for kitchen and sitting area and spraying vinegar at the door openings. Has anyone tried this.
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Old 08-15-2013   #30
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Wheeler, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2008
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 59
We launched July 22 and the yellow jackets were fairly aggressive at all the camps. Someone brought a cheap screened kitchen tent which turned out to be a life saver for cooking and dishes.

Everyone who went by our camp was pointing to the screen tent looking envious.

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