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This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.


Army Corps studying weather network to help control flooding

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Army Corps of Engineers is studying the possible construction of an $11.1 million network of weather stations to improve flood control across the Upper Missouri River Basin. The Billings Gazette reports stations are being upgraded for proof of concept in Bozeman and in Sheridan, Wyoming, and Brookings, South Dakota. After the systems and equipment demonstrate their capability, Corps officials propose installing 360 similar stations at a cost of more than $31,000 each. The details of the study are contained in a draft environmental assessment of updates to the three soil moisture and plains snowpack monitoring stations.


Colorado dog sled guide preparing for Wyoming's Stage Stop

BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. (AP) — A Colorado dog-sled guide and his dogs are getting ready to participate in the 25th annual Pedigree Stage Stop Race in Wyoming. Tim Thiessen grew up in Denver but dreamed of living in the mountains. Now he lives in an off-the-grid home in Leadville and takes his pack of dogs out for training after days of taking others out on sled tours. The 250-mile race will start in Jackson, Wyoming on Jan. 31, head into Idaho and then return to Wyoming. Thiessen hopes his dogs' experience running hills over 10,000 feet will help them compete against teams from lower elevations, like the Yukon.


Man kills grizzly in self-defense, keeps claws as a memento

KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) — A Montana man told investigators that he cut off a grizzly bear's claws after shooting it in self-defense because he was mad that the bear was going to eat him. The Flathead Beacon reports 35-year-old Bryan Berg was fined $5,000 and sentenced to probation on Thursday after pleading guilty to illegal transport of grizzly bear claws. Prosecutors say Berg shot the bear in self-defense in Montana's Bob Marshall Wilderness in 2017. He cut off the claws and pushed the carcass over the side of a mountain. Berg told investigators he wanted to keep the claws as a memento.


Indigenous ‘Molly of Denali’ is more than a cartoon for some

(___ Information from: Indian Country Today,



Man rescued, cited after rappelling into Yellowstone canyon

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Yellowstone National Park officials say a 55-year-old Indiana man had to be rescued after he rappelled into the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River and then could not climb back up. A park ranger tells the Billings Gazette that the man, Dave Christensen, was uninjured in the Jan. 6 incident. He was cited for disorderly conduct and for going off-trail in a closed area. Officials say Christensen dropped his backpack and left his 360-foot rope to retrieve it in the canyon, which reaches depths of 1,200 feet in places. Officials say he could not climb back up again and the rescue took four hours.


Fires set stage for irreversible forest losses in Australia

Australia’s forests are burning at a rate unmatched in modern times and causing ecological changes that scientists say are likely irreversible. Amid heat waves and drought linked to climate change, some 40,000 square miles of the island continent has been charred this fire season. The blazes reached into jungles that don't normally burn and forested areas that already had burned at least once in recent years. Government officials plan a major reseeding effort. But scientists say the combination of high temperatures, drought and more frequent wildfires means even fire-adapted forests may not fully recover. New ecosystems would take their place.

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