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Idaho Fish and Game announces options for hunters affected by Badger Fire

(KMVT)
Published: Sep. 24, 2020 at 2:59 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) -The Badger Fire on the Minidoka Ranger District has led to the closure of a large portion of Game Management Unit 54 south of Twin Falls, affecting big game hunts this fall.

Shortly after the fire started, the Sawtooth National Forest issued a Road, Trail and Area Closure of all Forest Service land east of Rock Creek Canyon and Deadline Ridge to the eastern-most forest boundary.

The closure forbids all public access to much of the Cassia District, which has a direct impact on hundreds of big game hunters in pursuit of deer, elk and pronghorn in Game Management Unit 54.

Hunters who hold controlled hunt tags for Unit 54 have several options to consider before their hunt starts.

Resident big game hunters in Unit 54 can:

  • Actively hunt their tag, outside of the Forest Closure.
  • Request a refund of the cost of the tag. No refunds will be made for license fees.
  • Exchange their 2020 controlled hunt tag for a 2020 general season tag of the same species.
  • Rain check their 2020 controlled hunt tag for a 2021 controlled hunt tag for the same species in Unit 54. Hunters who chose to rain check until 2021 will be allowed to purchase any available 2020 over-the-counter tag for the same species.

Non-resident big game hunters in Unit 54 can:

  • Actively hunt their tag, outside of the Forest Closure.
  • Request a refund of the cost of the tag. No refunds will be made for license fees.
  • Rain check their 2020 controlled hunt tag for a 2021 controlled hunt tag for the same species in Unit 54.
  • If a non-resident holds a 2020 unlimited archery deer tag, they can request a rain check for the same tag in 2021.

Hunters wishing to exchange or rain check their Unit 54 tag must turn in their 2020 controlled hunt tag to the nearest Fish and Game office prior to the start of the start date of their controlled hunt.

Questions should be directed to the Magic Valley Regional Office at 208-324-4359 or the nearest Fish and Game office.

Copyright 2020 KMVT/KSVT. All rights reserved.

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