MONTE VISTA — Shooting and firearm-handling skills are critical for big game hunters. You can learn the basics of marksmanship from an expert Saturday and Sunday at a Colorado Parks and Wildlife class in the San Luis Valley. Beginners are encouraged to sign up.
The class will be led by Area Wildlife Manager Rick Basagoitia. The class is ideal for beginners and will cover shooting basics and safety; but those with intermediate and advanced skills also will benefit.
“If you’re just learning how to shoot a rifle this class will help you to learn basic skills and techniques that are invaluable in the field,” Basagoitia said in a statement. “It will also provide intermediate and advanced shooters actual training that will help them in perfecting their technique to become better shooters, especially in shooting from alternate positions that are frequently encountered while hunting.”
The class is limited to 12 people, and a $10 deposit is required.
Basagoitia plans to offer another class Aug. 23 and 24. If you are interested in an advanced marksmanship class and have ideas about what it could include, please send your ideas to Basagoitia.
His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ag, debris burns reminder from BLM
Landowners have begun ditch and debris burning to clear fields and other areas of dead vegetation, according to a press release from the Bureau of Land Management Little Snake Field office in Craig. Green-up is underway in grasses but brush and timber are not yet in green-up. The dead vegetation in grass and brush will carry fire through green plants and can pose fire control issues, especially on windy days. Observing the following proactive recommendations provides a safer environment for debris and ditch burning.
■ Know the predicted weather conditions for your burn day — erratic winds quickly can push a fire out of control in dry fuels.
■ Don’t burn on windy days.
■ Notify your neighbors of your plans to burn so they don’t panic and call in a false fire report.
■ Have a shovel and water with you to extinguish the fire.
■ Clear and remove debris down to bare soil around power poles and state right-of-way fences to keep fire from damaging these structures.
■ Dig a fire line where you want the fire to stop if vegetation is continuous and will carry the fire beyond your planned burn area.
■ Never leave a fire unattended.
■ Visit http://www.crh.noaa.gov/gjt for weather information
Should an agricultural or debris fire damage other private, state or federally managed lands you could receive a fine or be held responsible for the cost of those impacts, this includes power poles and state owned property. Call the Moffat County Sheriff’s Office before striking the match at 970-824-4495 or 970-824-6501.
AAA Colorado to offer bicycles roadside help
AAA Colorado is expanding roadside assistance to include bicycles for its members statewide, according to a press release. Effective Thursday, transportation service is provided for members when their bicycle is disabled or inoperable, with no increase in membership dues. A service vehicle will meet you at a trailhead or on a publicly traveled road and transport you and your bike to the location of your choice. Service vehicles are not equipped to repair a member’s bicycle or change a flat tire.
“Offering bicycle service is another great benefit for our AAA Colorado members and we’re proud to be one of the first AAA clubs in the United States to do so,” said Tony DeNovellis, CEO and president of AAA Colorado. “Riding bicycles is becoming more popular, as Coloradans are concerned about fitness, the economy and the environment. Whether our members are riding for fun or commuting to work, we’ll be there to offer assistance if their bicycle breaks down.”
Colorado is ranked as the second most bike friendly state by the League of American Bicyclists, with 19 bicycle-friendly communities. Bicycling is a $1 billion economic driver in the state-including manufacturing, retail and tourism.