Heber City - Join park staff Friday, January 5 for a moonlit snowshoe hike along the lake. Meet at the Jordanelle State Park Visitor Center at 7 p.m. for the hike, and enjoy hot drinks and food afterwards. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated. Limited quantities of snowshoes are available. For more information or to reserve snowshoes, please call (435) 649-9540.


Midway * Wasatch Mountain State Park offers great activities for the entire family this winter, from cross-country skiing to free safety clinics.

Six miles of groomed cross-country ski trails are now open. Skiers will find flat, easy terrain on the Lake Course, and a more advanced route on the Mountain Course. Trail passes are $5 per day, with rental equipment available for an additional $5.

January is Winter Recreation and Safety Month at Wasatch Mountain State Park. Every Saturday throughout January, park staff host free events designed to get visitors out and experiencing winter in new, safe ways.

Saturday, January 5 and 13: This snowshoe clinic is held two consecutive Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Explore snowshoeing, health benefits, and techniques. Each day begins with indoor discussion followed by practical experience on snowshoes. Bring your own snowshoes or rent a pair from the park.

Saturday, January 20: Join park staff for an avalanche safety class from 9 a.m. to noon and learn how to recognize and avoid potential slide areas, and how to use basic safety equipment.

Saturday, January 27: Build a basic snow cave at 10 a.m. This fun winter activity is also a life saving skill.

Each event begins at the Educational Yurt at Wasatch Mountain State Park. Registration for each event is required by calling (435) 654-1791.


Midway * Season golf passes are now available for Wasatch Mountain and Soldier Hollow golf courses. The pass is $1,000 and covers green fees, but cart rental is not included. Passes are currently available for purchase at the Wasatch Mountain State Park Visitor Center seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. In spring, passes will be available at both Wasatch Mountain and Soldier Hollow golf courses.

The pass is valid at Wasatch Mountain Golf Course Monday through Friday, and at Soldier Hollow Golf Course seven days a week. The pass expires one year from the month issued.

Green fees for the 2006-2007 season are $12.50 weekdays for nine holes and $13.50 weekends; $11 weekdays for juniors and seniors; and $6 cart fee for nine holes. For more information, please call (435) 654-1791.


Ivins * Though its name indicates otherwise, there is no snow right now at Snow Canyon State Park. Venture to this southern Utah park Saturday, January 13 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and learn about volcanoes and the volcanic activity responsible for the lava flows in the park. Hike to the top of the Snow Canyon cinder cone during this 1.5-mile round-trip hike. Space is limited and registration is required.


Please find below, Utah State Parks current conditions as of December 26:

Bear Lake State Park Marina - OPEN 39 degrees
Deer Creek State Park - OPEN 40 degrees
East Canyon State Park - OPEN 33 degrees
Wide Hollow at Escalante State Park - OPEN 40 degrees
Great Salt Lake State Park Marina - OPEN 46 degrees
Gunlock State Park - OPEN 48 degrees
Huntington State Park - CLOSED 30 degrees
Hyrum Lake State Park - OPEN 48 degrees
Jordanelle State Park - OPEN 35 degrees
Millsite State Park - OPEN 30 degrees
Otter Creek State Park - OPEN 32 degrees
Palisade State Park - CLOSED 35 degrees
Piute State Park - OPEN 32 degrees
Quail Creek State Park - OPEN 45 degrees
Red Fleet State Park - OPEN 40 degrees
Rockport State Park - OPEN 40 degrees
Sand Hollow State Park - OPEN 52 degrees
Scofield State Park - CLOSED 32 degrees
Starvation State Park - OPEN 35 degrees
Steinaker State Park - OPEN 40 degrees
Utah Lake State Park - OPEN 40 degrees
Willard Bay State Park - CLOSED 45 degrees
Yuba State Park - OPEN 38 degrees

Strawberry - OPEN 32 degrees
Flaming Gorge - OPEN 32 degrees


As of December 26, 2006 there is 25" of snow at Dry Bread Pond and 38" at Monte Cristo. Snow is very slim at the parking lot, on Ant Flat Road, and on Highway 39.
Grooming was completed on the following dates and locations:
Sunday, December 17 - Wasatch Ridge and Arb's Basin
Saturday, December 16 - Wasatch Ridge and Arb's Basin
Thursday, December 14 - Red Spur
Wednesday, December 13 - Highway 39 to Woodruff Gate, Wasatch Ridge
Tuesday, December 12 - Arb's Basin

Upcoming grooming schedule:
Sunday - Cleanup and drift cutting on Highway 39 and Ant Flat
Monday - Curtis Creek Loop
Tuesday - No grooming / Machine maintenance
Wednesday - Arb's Basin, Millies Spring, and Ant Flat
Thursday - Curtis Creek Loop
Friday - Arb's Basin and Ant Flat
Saturday - Arb's Basin, Wasatch Ridge, and Ant Flat
(Schedule is subject to change based on needs, snow conditions and equipment condition.)

Fees at Monte Cristo Trailhead remain at $5 per vehicle. Season passes are $50 with a $10 discount offered until December 31. Passes available at trailhead or via phone at (435) 734-9494, leave message for a return call.

Grooming has begun though conditions are fairly poor. Warmer temperatures make it difficult to leave a nice trail. Mirror Lake Highway and Soapstone have been groomed and should be in good shape for the weekend. There is not enough snow on Highway 35 to allow grooming at Mill Hollow or Lakecreek areas.

The trail was groomed Wednesday, December 13. There is great snow at the highest levels of the loop road, but very little down at the bottom on the Payson and the Nephi side. Snow on the south facing spots has melted a bit. Grooming is planned for Thursday, December 21 if more snow falls.

No other areas have been groomed at this time.

Fox Television Joins Movement to Ban Trapping

(Columbus) - Fox Sports Net, which provides regional sports programming to 85 million households, has refused to cancel a gratis anti-trapping advertisement produced by the nation s largest animal rights group.

News Corporation, the parent company of Fox Sports Net and other Fox Cable Networks, approved a 15-second anti-trapping commercial, produced by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), as a public service announcement. Fox Sports rejected a request by the U.S. Sportsmen s Alliance, the nation s leading sportsmen s advocacy organization, to immediately pull the spot. The company will run the ad through the end of December at no cost to the anti's.

The advertisement features HSUS leader Wayne Pacelle and a second animal activist urging viewers to support trapping bans. To add to the sensationalism, the spot opens with a loud clank as a foot hold trap with teeth - a trap that has been banned throughout the country for decades - snaps shut.

A senior official for Fox told the U.S. Sportsmen s Alliance that he and other associates had reviewed the ad and believe the content meets their criteria for public service announcements.

This is not a public service announcement; it is a free political advertisement for a movement that wants to eliminate trapping, hunting and all other forms of animal use, said U.S. Sportsmen s Alliance President Bud Pidgeon. Hunters and anglers must understand that the Humane Society has repeatedly stated that a ban on trapping is merely a means of softening public sentiment to clear the way for a ban on all hunting and fishing. Hunters, trappers and anglers should generate a flood of complaints from friends, family and everyone they can reach out to.

Trapping is recognized by every wildlife agency at the state and federal level as a viable and important conservation tool. It helps keep furbearer populations at healthy levels and is important in stemming the spread of wildlife diseases that threaten animals and humans.

The Humane Society of the United States opposes all animal use, including trapping, hunting and fishing. It has a multi-million dollar budget that it invests in legislative and ballot campaigns to ban trapping and hunting. It also has a legal arm to challenge sportsmen s rights in court.

Sportsmen can make a difference in this fight. In 2002, Jeep raised the ire of sportsmen when it aired a blatantly, anti-hunting commercial called the Deer Hunter. After a flood of sportsmen contacts, Jeep pulled the commercial in three days.

Sportsmen nationwide should contact News Corporation and demand that the spot be cancelled. Let the company know that outdoorsmen object to the network acting as a mouthpiece for the animal rights movement. Explain that state wildlife professionals support trapping and see it as a necessary tool for managing furbearers. Inform News Corporation that trapping has proven to be a critical element in the comeback of waterfowl populations, and that managers see it as extremely important in protecting the public from outbreaks of diseases such as rabies.

Contact Rupert Murdoch, Chairman/CEO, News Corporation, 1211 Avenue of the Americas, 8th Floor, New York, NY, 10036. Phone (212) 852-7000. Fax (212) 852-7147.

Sample letters to News Corporation are available using the Legislative Action Center at .

The U.S. Sportsmen s Alliance protects the rights of hunters, anglers and trappers in the courts, legislatures, at the ballot, in Congress and through public education programs. For more information about the U.S. Sportsmen s Alliance and its work, call (614) 888-4868 or visit its website, .

Record Podium Streak for U.S. Ski Team

PARK CITY, Utah (Dec. 22) - The string of nine World Cup alpine podiums by five U.S. skiers in six days, including the first victory of their career for Olympic champion Julia Mancuso (Olympic Valley, CA) and Steven Nyman (Provo, UT), is unprecedented for the U.S. Ski Team.

U.S. Alpine Director Jesse Hunt pointed to the fact the podiums came across-the-board in all disciplines - slalom, GS, super G and downhill. "I think the momentum is definitely in our favor now, and it's showing. The athletes are feeding off each other now; when you're going 80 miles an hour [during stretches of a downhill], you need to have confidence and you need to believe. Our athletes have that little edge and confidence when their teammates are breaking through and doing well," Hunt said.

"The team is confident. We had a super summer of training - great opportunities at our training camps," he said. "The athletes really had a great preparation."

The streak includes a couple of other records or items of note, including:
- The best previous streak (see below) was a top-3 on four straight days by U.S. men or women in 1983

- U.S. men's podiums for four races on four consecutive days (i.e., 72 hours, from Friday to Monday) whereas the previous best was men and women over four days

- Five different U.S. skiers, not one or two having a great series of results

- First World Cup wins for Steven Nyman (Provo, UT) and Olympic giant slalom gold medalist Julia Mancuso (Olympic Valley, CA), each of whom won in downhill

- Lindsey Kildow (Vail, CO) earned her fourth and fifth podiums of the season, winning the second Val d'Isere downhill Wednesday after finishing third Tuesday in the first Val d'Isere downhill, as she moved past childhood idol Picabo Street with 18 World Cup podiums

- This is the first time that two U.S. women have stood on the podium together since Kildow and Mancuso went 2-3 in super G at Cortina, Italy, on Jan. 27, 2006. Kildow also doubled up with Caroline Lalive (Steamboat Springs, CO) with a 1-2 finish in downhill at Val d'Isere, France, on Dec. 17, 2005.

- Two-time Olympian Marco Sullivan (Squaw Valley, CA), who was sidelined two years after tearing ligaments in his left knee, missed his first podium by one-hundredth of a second, finishing fourth in the downhill Saturday, Dec. 16 in Val Gardena, Italy

- Miller's victory Wednesday in super G in Hinterstoder, Austria, was the 24th of his career, moving him closer to Phil Mahre and his U.S. mark of 27 World Cup wins

- After being stymied in Val Gardena for decades (two third-place finishes since the World Cup first came there in the 1969 season - Mike Lafferty in 1972, AJ Kitt in '92), U.S. men broke through for two wins in 24 hours

- As of Dec. 21, the U.S. men have three skiers ranked in the World Cup top 10 overall - Miller second, Ted Ligety sixth and Nyman 10th. The U.S. women have two - Kildow (fourth) and Mancuso (seventh)

Current U.S. podiums streak
1/SG - Val Gardena, ITA - Bode Miller

1/DH - Val Gardena, ITA - Steven Nyman

2/GS - Alta Badia, ITA - Bode Miller

2/SL - Alta Badia, ITA - Ted Ligety

1/DH1 - Val d'Isere, FRA - Julia Mancuso
3/DH1 - Val d'Isere, FRA - Lindsey Kildow

1/SG - Hinterstoder, AUT - Bode Miller
1/DH2 - Val d'Isere, FRA - Lindsey Kildow
2/DH2 - Val d'Isere, FRA - Julia Mancuso

Best previous U.S. podiums streak
1/GS - Aspen - Phil Mahre

2/SL - Waterville Valley - Tamara McKinney
1/GS - Vail - Phil Mahre

1/GS - Waterville Valley - Tamara McKinney

1/GS - Waterville Valley - Tamara McKinney
3/GS - Waterville Valley - Cindy Nelson

1/GS - Vail - Tamara McKinney