Wood Alert - Middle Fork Salmon, Marsh Creek - Mountain Buzz
 

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Old 04-19-2013   #1
 
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Boulder, Colorado
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Wood Alert - Middle Fork Salmon, Marsh Creek

April 18, 2013
Forest Service Personnel Conduct Reconnaissance Flight of Marsh Creek
Challis, Idaho: On April 17, Forest Service personnel conducted a reconnaissance flight of Marsh Creek from Dagger Falls to Highway 21.

They observed the following:
One tree approximately ½ mile below the confluence of Bear Valley Creek and Marsh Creek lying from bank to bank.
Five trees lying from bank to bank above the confluence of Bear Valley Creek and Marsh creek, with one being about a ¼ mile below the launch site on Highway 21.
An additional six trees span at least half way across Marsh Creek.
The Idaho Fish and Game fish trap was in place about ½ mile below the Highway 21 put in site.

This should not be regarded as a complete list of the obstacles or hazards. The observers may not have seen all down trees. Also, this is a very dynamic system; additional trees will fall and those in the stream will be moved by high water.

Full release at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_...rdb5417051.pdf

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Old 04-19-2013   #2
 
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Yikes....that's a LOT of trees.....and we haven't had the spring rains yet.
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Old 04-19-2013   #3
 
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What normally happens in cases like this? Does the Forrest Service clear them?
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Old 04-19-2013   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueTurf View Post
What normally happens in cases like this? Does the Forrest Service clear them?
Ha,ha ha, ha ha ha, ha, ha, ha........good one.

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Old 04-19-2013   #5
 
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I'll take that as a no. Question still stands.
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Old 04-19-2013   #6
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Originally Posted by BlueTurf View Post
I'll take that as a no. Question still stands.
Sorry I couldn't help it.

The FS takes a very hands off approach to any hazard on the river. It is up to the boaters to remedy any hazards. They strongly caution boaters to not float Marsh Creek because of the wood.

Someone who works in recreational law of sorts said it is likely that if they set any kind of precedent such as the wood is clear now, then they would open themself up to liability through implying the river was safe. If they don't do any 'control' work of sorts and issue a blanket 'river is dangerous' all the time they are in a better legal stance.

I would be surprised if even a couple hundred boaters use Marsh on a busy year. So not a huge demand.

Are you going or just curious? I have pinpointed the locations of several logs from the photos and google earth comparisons but nothing that I would stake your life on.
Mine? I will take my chances if necessary.
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Old 04-19-2013   #7
 
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Albany, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueTurf View Post
What normally happens in cases like this? Does the Forrest Service clear them?
From the linked pdf:
The Forest Service does not remove trees from Marsh Creek or the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. Boaters are not prohibited from removing trees; however, within Wilderness this must be done using non-motorized tools. The boundary for the Frank Church –River of No Return Wilderness is approximately 1 mile downstream from the Highway 21 launch site. When you enter the Wilderness, it is illegal to use a chainsaw or have it in your possession. Traditional tools such as crosscut saws, axes, come-alongs and/or block and tackle are allowed.
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Old 04-19-2013   #8
 
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Boise, Idaho
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Thanks for the info. The liability thing makes sense I guess. I obviously didn't take the trouble to read the PDF. Interesting about motorized tools.

I have my first MF trip coming up in late June. I am still fairly new to rafting. I don't have my own boat (yet) and am going with some good friends from Boise.
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Old 04-19-2013   #9
 
Redmond, Oregon
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This is pretty dangerous stuff.

The binds on a log in the water are going to be far more powerful than just gravity. Having to cut with a crosscut is more difficult/dangerous than with a chain saw.
I used to sharpen and use misery whips.

All the best.
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Old 04-19-2013   #10
 
Redmond, Oregon
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These SILKY saws are expensive and really good.

Hand Saws



Sharp. Top Quality Japanese cutting implements.

Can't cut a big log but I do carry one for firewood and 'emergencies'.
Hatchets are so brutal.
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