MAZAMA — Numerous high elevation trees — some of them apparently hundreds of years old — were cut down or topped in the North Cascades last winter by a Mazama-based helicopter skiing company, officials say. The Methow Valley Ranger District says North Cascade Heli-Skiing cut the trees to create safer helicopter landing sites, but the company was not authorized to remove vegetation in its permit to bring skiers into high elevations on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest west of Mazama. Backcountry skiers reported two more areas where trees were cut after ...
WENATCHEE — A fire near Liberty in Kittitas County became so massive and powerful on Wednesday afternoon that it began to threaten homes several miles away, near Mission Ridge. Officials issued evacuation notices to about 200 homes in the Mission Ridge area Wednesday evening, after the 9,500-acre Table Mountain fire blew up, sending a column of smoke about 35,000 feet into the sky.
WINTHROP — Okanogan County Sheriff’s deputies were able to confirm that a Bellingham man accidentally injured himself with a high-powered rifle Sunday night, Sheriff Frank Rogers says. Anthony R. Christofferson, 22, had been drinking with friends at a campsite about 15 miles north of Winthrop when one of them fired a gun inside the campground before the group was told to put away their guns, Rogers said.
WINTHROP — A group hoping open a new ATV route from Conconully to the Methow Valley wants Winthrop to open all its streets to ATVs. The North Central ATV Club has official permission to ride on town streets in Conconully, Loomis and Okanogan, along with U.S. Forest Service roads on the Tonasket Ranger District and 85 miles of Okanogan County roads, said club president Spence King.
WINTHROP — A Bellingham man who was camping with a group north of Winthrop Sunday night was shot in the leg with a high-powered rifle and taken to a Seattle hospital. Anthony R. Christofferson, 22, told authorities that he was moving a 7 mm magnum rifle in his tent at about 9 p.m. when he was going to bed, and it went off, said Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers.
NCW — Sleeping bags, check. Bathing suits, check. Marshmallows, sunscreen, flashlight. Check, check, check. North Central Washington turned into a camping mecca on Saturday, as people from near and far filled the region’s campgrounds to enjoy what many consider the last weekend of summer.
OKANOGAN — The state Department of Natural Resources will auction five parcels of land totaling 180.4 acres in Okanogan County this month. The Aug. 22 auction includes parcels near Conconully, Okanogan, Twisp, Winthrop and Methow.
WINTHROP — Old rivalries die hard. So when the old Winthrop High School’s bell that’s been out of the public eye since the school burned down in 1961 was re-erected in the Winthrop Park on Friday, Donna Martin couldn’t help herself.
OKANOGAN — An Eatonville man lost his car, more than $12,000 and six days of freedom for baiting and killing black bears at his Winthrop cabin. James Erickson, 52, pleaded guilty in Okanogan County District Court Friday to 14 counts of bear baiting and three counts of unlawfully hunting big game and was sentenced to 180 days in jail, with 174 days suspended.
WINTHROP — Rhys Court calls it his unfinished work. An ongoing project. An evolving outdoor gallery. Bright reds, blues and yellows beckon you into a world of shapes and angles and texture. Of found and recycled objects. Arranged and reshaped. Some spin or sway in the wind. Others shine at night with solar lights.
CARLTON — The state has sped up plans to put radio collars on wolves in the Methow Valley after confirming last month that the pack likely killed a calf — the first in the state to qualify for compensation. Scott Becker, a biologist now stationed in Wenatchee and hired to work with wolves, will begin efforts to trap the two known members of the Lookout Pack next week, said Wildlife’s Eastern Region Director Steve Pozzanghera.
WENATCHEE — People who’ve had cancer say the diagnosis becomes a dividing line in their lives. There were the days before they knew they had cancer, and the days after. It’s not just the physical drain of the disease and its treatments that make this diagnosis so life-changing.
WINTHROP — If you ask the second-year Chinese students at Liberty Bell High School in Winthrop what the hardest thing about learning the language is, they all respond at once: “The characters.” Those picture-like symbols each represent a different word. And there are so many, that learning Chinese is rather daunting.
This week, lawmakers will go back to the cutting board in a rare pre-Christmas special session to trim more than $2 billion out of the state’s $32 billion biennial operating budget. And again, public education is on the block.