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Newspaper Archive of
Pahrump Mirror
Pahrump, Nevada
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August 21, 1997     Pahrump Mirror
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August 21, 1997
 

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Pahrump Valley Gazette, Thursday, August 21, 1997 27 q00)utdoors / Operation Game Thief: 1-800-992.3030 Operation Cal- Tip: 1-800-952-5400 Lake Mead's Boulder by Ed Tomchin According to Karen Whitney, Lake Mead National Recreation Area spokeswoman, Boulder Campground at Lake Mead NRA has been reopened after being closed for ehabilitation work on the restrooms. Of the seven campground loops at Boulder Camp- ground, four are currently open and the remaining three are being cleared of hazardous tree limbs broken and down from windstorms. The campground was closed on January 27. 1997, while five of the restrooms which were built in the 1950s and 1960s were retrofitted and rehabilitated to meet modern standards and codes for outdoor utilities and handicapped accessibility. The remaining ing funding for rehabilitation. Most restrooms and utilities are in constant need of repair and rehabilitation due to vandalism, including malicious breaking of fixtures and grafitti. Visitor's are encouraged to report any vandalism they witness to park rangers. Funding for the work was made available through a cooperative effort with the National Park Service, Bureau of Reclamation and the State of Nevada. At the present time. approximately 120 camping sites are available for use. Each siteincludes a picnic table, fire pit and access to restrooms and water. The cost per site is $10 per night. A trailer dump station is also available at the Campground. For additional information, visitors may Fishing Report by Geoff Schneider Nevada Division of Wildlife LAKE MEAD - Boaters report finding good ac- tion for striped bass while shore anglers are still having difficulty locating fish, according to the Nevada Divi- sion of Wildlife. Stripers are beingseen in the Boulder Basin as they feed on threadfin shad. Some of the better action is being found from Pyramid Island to the Hemenway Wall. Boaters continue to catch stripers at night near the intake tower at Lake Mead Marina. Stripers are also being caught at Government Wash and Black Island. Largemouth bass fishing has generally been slow as the fish are being found in deep water. Catfish are being caught at night in shallow coves. LAKE MOItAVE - Small striped bass are being caught by trolling anchovies around Owl's Point. The narrows above Cottonwood Cove have also been producing a few small stripers for boaters. Trout fishing has been fair above Willow Beach. Drifting and casting spinners close to shore has been productive for fish up to 14 inches. WAYNE E, KIRCIt WILDLIFE MANAGE- MENT AREA - Anglers returning from the Nye County refuge report the fishing has been fair to good for largemouth bass and rainbow trout. The better bass fishing is now taking place at Adams-McGill Reservoir. A variety of lures are catch- ing the fish, including small spinners, artificial worms and crank baits. Trout fishing has been fair from the dam at Haymeadow Reservoir. EAGLE VALLEY RESERVOIR - The water continues to be murky because of recent flooding in the area. Trout fishing is poor due to the water condi- tions. ECHO CANYON RESERVOIR - Fishing is slow because of murky water conditions. SCHROEDER RESERVOIR - The lake is con- tinuing its pattern of slow summer fishing. Some trout are coming from pools in the stream above the lake. Hiking and camping your dog by Ed Tomchin Backpacking or merely day hiking with your faithful canine companion can be a great experience and an excellent opportunity to get away from the drudgery of daily life with a good friend who dearly loves the outdoors and likely seldom gets the opportunity to enjoy it to the fullest. Most dogs are ecstatic when given the opportunity to enjoy the scents and sights of the open trail, be it the mountains or the desert. Owners will find themselves enjoying the hike even more as they see the outdoors from their dog' s perspective. There are two important guidelines to making your hiking and camping experi- ence enjoyable for your dog, yourselL and others. First, you must be able to restrain your dog in the pres- ence of distractions such as a runnin deer or mustang, small ground animals or other desert denizens. This can be accomplished through train- ing, and discipline, or by use of a leash. Secondly, and perhaps most important, you must be sufficiently responsible to prevent the dog from being a nuisance to other people or animals. 'This includes pick- ing up after your pet. From a dog' s perspective, if it is a healthy, fit ammal and well-behaved around other people and animals, there is no problem in accompanying theowneronoutings. Agood place to start is with a visit to the vet to evaluate your dog' s general health, particularly if you choose to have your dog carry it's own weight, so to speak, by carrying a pack. If you are planning on saddling your animal with a pack, you should also consider having your dog's ps X-rayed to for hip dysplasia and other bone deformities before asking the animal to carry a full pack over long distances. It is also important to note that dogs, like people, need to build up strength and endurance gradually before taking on a full fledged hike with a pack. Equipment An absolute must is a collar with identification and a leash. It's a good idea to use a rolled leather buckle collar which can be fitted with information regarding vaccinations, license, identification tags and your own name, address and phone. Make certain that the animal's vaccinations and license are current. A good choice of leash is a six foot, round synthetic leash, with a handloop and a sturdy snap. Leashes often end up getting wet and synthetics dry more quickly than leather. Before setting out, make sure the leash, snap, collar and buckle are in good condition and will not break if your dog suddenly lunges after that rabbit that's been unmercifully teasing him on the trail ahead. Depending on the terrain, pack weight, and your dog's ten- dency to tear its footpads, you might consider buying booties to protect your dog's feet. Desert hiking requires protecting your dog's footpads from sharp shale, rough sandstone, cactus and other hazards which may tear or wear your animal' s footpads raw and bleeding. Many types of booties are available, each suited to a different terrain and different size animal. Some dogs only need booties on their front feet, but covering all four feet is recommended. Carry extra booties in case one gets lost on the trail. Dogs packs generally have two parts: a pad that is attached to the dog by means of three straps, and the pack which is usually attached to the pad by various means. Pay careful attention to mounting the pack. Do not over-tighten the straps. They can interfere with your dogs ability to breathe and move. It is vitally important to make sure all the weight of the pack is placed on your dog's shoulders, NOT its back. The two part pack is best because it allows you to remove and replace the pack during rest stops, and also to leave the underlying pad on until your animal rests at night. You also might consider choosing a pack that is bright orange in color. It makes your animal easier to spot at a distance. If yon have difficulty locating any of these items at your local pet store, call New England Serum Co. at (800) 637-3786 and ask for their free catalog, which is chock full of paraphernalia for your dog. Aecustomizing your dog to the pack Some dogs adjust to carrying a pack easier than others. To get your animal accustomed to the pack, start out with something light, such as a towel, to get the animal used to feeling something riding on his back. This is a particularly useful technique to use with puppies which are too young to carry a pack of any weight. Do not put anything other than an empty pack stuffed with newspaper on a dog under a year old. There is risk of doing structural damage by putting a weighty load on developing bones. In larger breeds you might need to wait until 18 months or older. After the animal.becomes accustomed to carrying something on its back, take him for short walks with a paper-stuffed pack. He should associate going out with putting on the pack, and will quickly start to look forward to wearing it. Once he's comfortable with the pack, fill it with odd things that will feel and sound like the pack will when it's actually used for an outing. Crumpled newspaper, half filled water-bottles (sloshing), tin cups or pots that bump one an- other, etc. As you start filling the pack more (volume, not weight), you may notice that your dog misjudges walking through doors, around trees, and even your legs, bumping them with the pack. Another problem is misjudging jumps, falling short because of the additional weight. These prob- lems will disappear with experi- ence, although if you hike infre- quently, there may be a brief re- adjustment period at the start of each hike. Most working breeds and ath- letic mid-sized dogs can cany about 33 percent of their body weight. Start the dog off with 25 percent of their weight for a short hike and see how they do. Gradu- ally work up to 33 percent and progressively longer hikes. Keep the maximum weight and vol- ume within what your dog, re- gardless of its size, seems com- fortable carrying. Do not put anything in the pack which you cannot afford to lose, as the dog will often scramble though tight spots with less grace than his human counterparts, banging the pack against rocks or trees in the process. Recommended items to put in the dog's pack include extra water, rain gear, 314 length sleelfing pad, dog food (sealed in plastic bags), dog comb, dog frisbee, extra bags for cleanup, the camp stove inside of cooking pots (so it was protected from banging), camp soap and sponge, and other like items. Weather Hot desert temperatures call for additional precautions to guard your dog against heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Always make sure you carry enough water for your hike and give your dog frequent drinks. A plastic cup hooked to the outside of Lhe pack makes it easier to get to. Some people teach their dogs to drink directly from a war bottle but the use of a cup will prevent water loss spilled onto the ground. Watch your dog for signs of heat exhaustion or stroke. Signs include unusually rapid panting, and/or a bright red tongue and mucous membranes. A dog's primary mechanism forcooling offis through panting. Since this cooling process usesevaporation the dog will require more water when he is panting heavily. If your dog is beginning to overheat, sto immediately and get into the shade. Put cool water on your animal's belly and groin area were there is a large blood supply. s will allow evaporation to provide heat exchange. If you' re near running water you might put the dog into it. The main idea is that heat stroke is a life threatening condition and your should be able to recognize the warning signs and know how to prevent it. Even on a cooler day, if it is very sunny, and your dog is working hard and is a dark coated breed, it can get overheated. Obstacles on the trail Generally your animal will be far more sure-footed than you are, so there will be little to worry about. However, with all obstacles, the key to assisting yourdog over them is to make sure it is very confident and trusting of your commands in such situations. Crossing narrow bridges such as logs or arches, is be.st accom- plished by having a companion go first and stand at the other side to call the dog. Then send your dog across, and then yourself. If there is a risk of falling, remove the animal' s pack, then attach the leash and tighten the collar one notch so that it won't slip off. Remove the dog's booties to give its feet a better purchase, Where to hike Hiking with your dog on BLM land is usually no problem. Unfortunately, however, uncontrolled dogs and irresponsible pet owners have caused the closing of trails in many places. The only way to not be surprised is to call in advance and check to be certaia that dogs are allowed. Generally, dogs are not allowed on National Park or National Monument trails. However, National Forests gey allow dogs on their trails with responsible handling, but check first. Start including your dog on your camping trips and overnight hikes and you'll gain a faithful companion who can do more than carry its own weight on the trip.