redneck refuse leads to poaching bust

By Jim Stanford on November 4, 2013

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Game Warden Jordan Kraft shows the antlers taken by the poachers.

In a plot that could have been lifted from The Legend of Colton H. Bryant, two gas field workers are facing fines, jail time and loss of hunting privileges for poaching two mule deer bucks near Pinedale last fall.

The men were undone by their redneck lifestyle, leaving behind a tin of Copenhagen chew and can of Monster energy drink they apparently littered at the scene of the crime. Wyoming Game and Fish Department investigators were able to trace the men through surveillance video at the convenience store where they purchased the items.

The Game and Fish press release, after the jump, reads like a horror story of gas field culture. There’s no telling what acts of depravity humans may commit when amped up on Monster energy drink.

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Trust seals Hoback deal

By Jim Stanford on January 2, 2013

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The deal ensures that the Hoback headwaters will be saved.

The Trust for Public Land announced today it has raised the $8.75 million needed to buy drilling leases and protect 58,000 acres of the Wyoming Range south of Jackson from oil and gas development.

The deal ensures that fracking will not occur in some of the headwaters of the Hoback River, and up to 136 wells will not be drilled in a pristine area prized for hunting, fishing, hiking and horseback riding.

The trust had been racing a Dec. 31 deadline to raise the necessary funding, which will be paid to Plains Exploration and Production of Houston, the company that owned the drilling rights.

“I can’t think of a better way to start off the New Year. This solution honors the wishes of the people of Wyoming and protects a vital corner of Greater Yellowstone for generations to come,” said Will Rogers, TPL president and CEO.

The largest donation came from Hansjörg Wyss, a Wilson homeowner who contributed $4.25 million through his charitable foundation. Joe Ricketts, the TD Ameritrade founder and part owner of the Chicago Cubs who owns a home near Bondurant, gave $1.75 million, including an eleventh-hour gift of $750,000 that pushed the campaign across the finish line, the trust said in a release.

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time short as Wyo. Range buyout nears goal

By Jim Stanford on December 13, 2012

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The Deadlocks will play a benefit concert Dec. 21 at CFA, helping music fans do their part to protect the lands right outside our lazy summer home.

With little more than two weeks left to complete a deal, the Trust for Public Land has raised $7.6 million of the $8.75 million it needs to retire drilling leases and protect the Wyoming Range south of Jackson from oil and gas development.

The trust must raise the remaining $1.15 million by the end of the year. In the last week, donors have given $1.7 million, including $200,000 from the Pinedale Anticline Mitigation Fund.

All those small donations must be making an impact. In the last two months, advocates have made the case on social media that even a $150 contribution will protect an acre of land.

To help reach the goal, The Deadlocks and Jalan Crossland will perform a benefit concert Dec. 21 at Center for the Arts. Tickets are $20 or $100 for VIP with food and cocktails. The Jackson-based website Clean Snipe is helping put on the show, along with a host of other local businesses.

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Wyo. Range, Hoback saved from drilling threat

By Jim Stanford on October 5, 2012

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Members of the Jackson Hole Kayak Club display their opposition to the drilling proposal for the Hoback headwaters last year. American Rivers included the Hoback on its list of America’s most endangered waterways.

Hunters, hikers, kayakers and anglers are about to celebrate, as a conservation group has reached a deal to buy the last remaining oil and gas leases in the Wyoming Range south of Jackson.

A source last night said the drilling company finally agreed to sell the leases, ensuring that the pristine mountain range and headwaters of the Hoback River will be spared fracking and other development. The Associated Press confirmed the deal this morning. A full press release appears after the jump.

The Trust for Public Land will purchase the leases from Houston-based Plains Exploration and Production Co. for $8.75 million, AP reported. The group still must raise half the money by the end of the year.

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Wild and Scenic Film Fest

By Jim Stanford on April 12, 2012

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Tonight the Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance, American Rivers, Snake River Fund and a host of other nonprofits and businesses have teamed up to present the Wild and Scenic Film Festival at Center for the Arts. Admission is $5.

Eight of the nine films are shorts ranging from two to eight minutes. The longest is 45-minute “Kadoma,” about a wild and ultimately ill-fated river expedition in Central Africa. A synopsis follows after the jump.

Combining adventure with inspiration, the night is dedicated to the Don’t Frack the Hoback campaign. A coalition of conservation and sportsmen’s groups has been working together to protect the Hoback River headwaters from proposed natural gas drilling.

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