Yellowstone National Park West Yellowstone Montana Bozeman Montana Wind River Valley, Dubois, Riverton, Lander, Wyoming Sublett County, Wyoming, Pinedale, big Piney, boulder Island Park Idaho Star Valley Wyoming, Afton, Alpine, Thayne Swan Valley Idaho
Grand Teton National Park Jackson Hole Wyoming Cody Wyoming Idaho Falls Idaho Big Sky Montana Paradise Valley Montana, Livingston, emigrant, Gardiner Teton Valley Idaho, Driggs, Victor, Tetonia, alta Red Lodge Montana
Swan Valley Idaho Real Estate
Yellowstone Wildlife, grizzly bear, wolves, elk, deer, moose
Calendar of events

Fall Creek Falls @ Daryl L. Hunter
Fly-fishing the South Fork of the Snake River below Fall Creek Falls in Swan Valley Idaho

Swan Valley, Irwin and Palisades are the communities that comprise the scenic valley that nestle along the banks of the South Fork of the Snake River below Palisades Dam, collectively known as Swan Valley, one of the premier tail water dry-fly fisheries in North America but trophy trout fishing isn’t the only game in town. With the Big Hole Range to the north, the Caribou Mountains to the south and the Palisades Range to the east provide splendid panoramas and year-round outdoor activities are a magnet for sportsmen and adventurers.

On the south side of Swan Valley is the twenty-mile long Palisades Reservoir which provides great fishing, water sports, ice fishing and stunning scenery as it is hemmed in by the peaks of the Snake River Range and The Caribou Mountain Range. Many marvel at the paucity of boats on such a beautiful lake. There is a popular hotspring up Bear Creek that is a popular 8-mile round trip hike.

The Caribou Mountains are laced with backcountry roads and so access is quite easy. The Fall Creek Drainage has become a magnet for mountain bikers and always was for off highway vehicle enthusiasts and has been their popular camping/riding destination because of its vast network of trails.

The Snake River Range has become, a possibly too popular, spot as a hiking and horseback trail riding as the scenery there is stunning. However, if you go deep enough into the Palisades Wilderness Study Area you will find solitude.

Full Moon over the South Fork of the Snake River, Swan Valley, Idaho

The northwestern end of the Big Hole Mountains are laced with a network of dirt roads but the south end by Swan Valley as all access by trail only. The Big Holes are an awesome getaway for the hiker, horseback rider, and the ATV rider.

Many ranches of the valley have been subdivided, but there are still several ranches around to keep Swan Valley’s cowboy heritage alive. I do venture to say that a culture of fly-fisherman has largely supplanted the cowboy though.

The surrounding mountains are home to elk, deer, mountain goats, black and grizzly bears. Swan Valley is on the south side of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and so shares many wild assets as Yellowstone itself. The mountains and valleys have tremendous hunting, and the many mountain streams are all full of wild cutthroat trout.

This valley of about 700 residents is an outdoorsman’s paradise but not much else. It has a few restaurants, bars, fly shops, motels and fishing lodges but then that is about all an outdoorsman needs.


Cover Idaho Magazine - Fall Creek Falls, Swan Valley Idaho
Daryl L. Hunter the publisher of this web site wrote this article about Swan Valley For Idaho Magazine


Podunk Perfect
A Tourist Town Escapee FindsNirvana in Eastern Idaho
By Daryl L. Hunter

Carved by the South Fork of the Snake River between the Caribou Range to the west and the Snake River Range and Big Hole Range to the east, it is crowned by twenty-mile-long Palisades Reservoir to the south. It seemed to me a suitable place to land. I had driven through the valley often from my home in Jackson Hole, because Idaho Falls was where the affordable shopping was. I liked the valley because podunk places have always attracted me. Even so, Swan Valley’s abundant charm hadn’t jumped out at me, because everywhere in the Greater Yellowstone region is like this, and as much as you try to fish and hike every location, it just isn’t possible.

After I finally took a closer took, I made an offer on my future home, cast a fly upon the waters of the South Fork of the Snake, and in no time at all had a writhing, two-pound rainbow tail danc­ing across an eddy as the fish tried for the fast water a short distance away. Ah, ha! I had heard the South Fork was a better fishery than the Upper Snake, but had never bothered to try it. Now I was hooked..................Rest Of Story


South Fork Lodge, rest in peace

Old South Fork Lodge; RIP

Once upon a time there was an awesome fishing lodge on the South Fork of the Snake River, started dozens of years ago by Buell Warner, a cantankerous and colorful western character who spawned stories of trophy hunting, fishing and poaching.

The lodge was on the north bank of the Snake River and like many lodges of the day it was a rough and rowdy place to drink and stay while fishing or hunting in Swan Valley. Catching trophy trout or hunting by day and reveling about tales maybe not so tall of the exploits of Buell at night was a fine way to spend time in the mountains of eastern Idaho.

Buell's son Spence bought the lodge in 1976. Spence was another colorful character, not quite as outrageous as his father, but quite the jolly host and entrepreneur with his own repertoire of stories to be told to the eager listener who dropped by to wet a line.---------> rest of story


Swan Valley News
Greater Swan Valley Comprehensive Plan
  Community planning in America began during colonial times when it became necessary to provide public services such as streets, public buildings, and plans for cities and towns as the nation grew. Over time, legal standards were adopted for fair and equitable development and use of the land in public and private sectors of our society. By the early 1800ês, planning standards had been developed for large cities including the new national capital of Washington, D.C. The capital plan set general standards for development which are still used today. During the early 1900ês, concepts of planning and zoning for areas beyond the cities were established through the adoption of a body of land use laws at the national, state, and local levels of government.
Clarification of Rainbow Trout Stocking in the South Fork
By Idaho Game and Fish

With the focus in recent months on encouraging rainbow trout harvest in the South Fork of the Snake River there has been some confusion about IDFGês rainbow trout stocking practices that warrant clarification. True, until the early 1980ês IDFG was guilty of stocking rainbow trout into the South Fork and some of the tributaries. Although it was clearly a mistake in retrospect, it was done to meet a demand for harvest and provide a diverse fishery. Unfortunately, thirty years ago biologists did not recognize the threat rainbow trout pose to native cutthroat trout.

Since the early 1980ês IDFG has not stocked rainbow trout in the South Fork, the tributaries, or in Palisades Reservoir. This would clearly be in conflict with our goal of managing the South Fork for native cutthroat trout. Some of the confusion is likely related to the stocking database on the IDFG website. The website lists that South Fork as having been stocked with rainbow trout as recently as 2000. These fish were all stocked in the Dry Bed, below the Great Feeder diversion. Because these fish did not have access to the South Fork and were sterile triploids incapable of interbreeding with cutthroat trout, they pose no threat to the South Fork cutthroat population. Regardless, this program has also been recently terminated because of poor return-to-creel.

IDFG is sincerely committed to cutthroat trout conservation in the South Fork. The efforts depend on anglers playing an active role in suppressing rainbow trout. It is therefore vital that anglers know their efforts are not being undermined by counterproductive stocking practices by IDFG.

The Resort Town Curse
Daryl L. Hunter
  I have lived in many resort towns and I have noticed a trend. I am attracted to them when they are still little, quaint and undiscovered but it usually isn't long before word spreads about the next great place.
Yellowstone News

Tribal Nations sign historic treaty for sacred Grizzly Bear

On Sunday (10/2/16), Native American Tribes from the U.S. and Canada convened at Jackson Lake Lodge in Grand Teton National Park to sign a historic treaty to pledge their dedication to protecting the Grizzly bear. Tribes across both countries are angry after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in March proposed removing the Grizzly bear from the federal endangered species list, which would allow the three states to manage the bears and allow hunting.

The treaty entitled, “The Grizzly: A Treaty of Cooperation, Cultural Revitalization and Restoration,” offers innovative and sweeping reforms to hostile management of the states that are poised to wrest control of the fate of Yellowstone’s Grizzly bears if, as expected, the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) removes Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections from the Great Bear (“delisting”) later this year. The long battle pits tribes and environmental groups against ranchers and state officials who argue that there are too many bears in the Yellowstone region and they constitute a threat to public safety. ..........................   Rest Of  Article


Montana, Wyoming and Idaho Game ad Fish's plan to screw the grizzlies

Wyoming, Montana and Idaho officials contend that federal wildlife managers are overstepping their authority by requiring that grizzly bear hunting regulations be put in place before final “delisting” of the species. The directors of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Idaho Department of Fish and Game and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks jointly urged the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to do away with a focus on hunting in a proposed grizzly delisting rule that’s now on the table. ....... Jackson Hole News and Gude article here.

Montana, Wyoming and Idaho Game ad Fish's protest to get rid of federal oversight so they can kill grizzlies as they see fit...........  Read PDF Here

Momma grizzly, baby grizzly, swimming, grizzly sow, and cub
Grizzly 399 and her cub swimming in roadside pond
Wyoming's Grizzly Harvest

Wyoming's Grizzly Harvest
A preview of the book authored by R. Bear Stands Last.

Discover why Wyoming should not be entrusted with the future survival of the Great Bear in Wyoming's Grizzly Harvest - The Story the State Wants to Bury With the Bears

Wyoming's Grizzly Harvest is excerpted from the forthcoming book Adrift on Yellowstone Island. GOAL has arranged for this excerpt to be provided to you FREE as the grizzly's fate outweighs commercial concerns.

Until April 14, you have the opportunity to comment on Wyoming's draft 2016 Grizzly Bear Management Plan. Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WFGD) representatives are currently traveling statewide to sell the plan and WGFD's ability to "manage" grizzlies post-delisting to you.

Read exerpt

Partisan Scientists in Public Service I: The Strange Case of the Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team

(Pull Qoute) Interestingly enough, Chris Servheen has a doctorate in wildlife ecology. Moreover, the IGBST scientists at the time, led by Dr. Charles Schwartz, were deeply involved with and fully complicit in, not only putting together the 2007 delisting Rule, but also in crafting court briefs. In other words, ignorance or lack of education can't be plausibly invoked as an explanation for why the government scientists involved in authoring the 2007 Rule so egregiously misrepresented the relevant science................. rest of article!Partisan-Scientists-in-Public-Service-I-The-Strange-Case-of-the-Interagency-Grizzly-Bear-Study-Team/c1ou2/56fd9f780cf2b279cdbaa208
Yellowstone Grizzly Bear

A Protective Firewall For Grizzlies

The delisting of the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear is imminent and this we should celebrate (''''dancing''''). Now that our happy dance is complete, we must ensure the grizzlies' recovery is permanent. To ensure "continuity of achievement," the grizzlies need a firewall to protect the success of this achievement from human foible.

The Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee was formed in 1983 to help ensure recovery of viable grizzly bear populations and their habitat in the lower 48 states through interagency coordination of policy, planning, management, and research. Many people have been working on this recovery for decades, for some; it has been most of their career. I can understand why the delisting of the grizzly before their retirement is their goal. A metaphorical gold watch if you will.

Many will argue differently,............................. Rest of Article

Blondie the Grizzly Bear and her three cubs
Blondie the Grizzly Sow and her three cubs, where these four bears roam in the Teton Wilderness is likely to open to hunting someday soon, this must not happen.

Yellowstone roadside grizzlies worth rangers' hassle???

Yellowstone visitors would pay an additional $41 to ensure seeing roadside grizzlies, a study shows, and the attraction creates 155 jobs and more than $10 million a year for the regional economy. The $41 visitors would pay is on top of the $25-per-vehicle entrance fee. If Yellowstone no longer allowed grizzly bears to use roadside habitat — and instead chased, moved or killed them — the regional economy would lose more than $10 million a year and 155 jobs according to the paper "The economics of roadside bear viewing."............................Rest of story

Helpful ebook for photographers

The Grand Teton Photo and Field Guide is an encapsulation of the flora, fauna, and photography of Jackson Hole Wyoming and Grand Teton National Park. Also included are thumbnails of the history and geology of the valley. This book is for all visitors with a desire to seek out wildlife, photograph the landscape, or merely learn about the history, geology, and lay of the land of Grand Teton National Park. The author provides general overviews including hot links with more in-depth descriptions of subjects of individual interest.

In the “Lay of the Land” section, includes the obvious highlights along the loop through Grand Teton Park. Hot links to side roads will give you more in-depth description of side roads and feeder roads and their highlights. Also included are descriptions of all two-rut roads that are legal to travel on in Grand Teton Park. GPS links to Google Maps are provided throughout.

As a field guide, profiles of most of animals and birds in the area are described. Jackson Hole is full of wildlife but there are places where animals are, and there are places where they are not. It is a waste of time to scrutinize a landscape devoid of what you are looking for, so this guide narrows options down to the hot spots. I provide maps of the likeliest places to find the popular critters of Grand Teton National Park. I also touch on trees, shrubs, and wildflowers with minimal explanations.  

The grandeur of Grand Teton Park has made it one of the most photographed places in the world. The opportunity to harness multiple juxtapositional elements has drawn photographers for over a century since William Henry Jackson took the first photos here in 1878. Grand Teton Park’s plethora of famous vistas are profiled as well as many which are less clichéd that can bring new perspectives of a well-documented landscape. Grand Tetons’ iconic landscape photo opportunities are described in detail; however, they barely scratch the surface of opportunities as it takes a photographer with an artist’s eye to unveil as they follow their own intuition and vision.  The author who shies away from clichéd landscapes provides a chapter of his favorite places that aren’t landscape clichés.

In the photography section the author includes chapters on composition, exposure basics, when to shoot and why. Daryl has summarized what he teaches in his, half day, Grand Teton workshops in a simple concise way.

If you are only in Grand Teton Park for a day there is a chapter called the “Portfolio Packer Morning Trip,” that does just that, all the icons and several favorite places in a five our blitz.  But it is better to spend more time and dig deep into the embarrassment of riches of Grand Teton National Park................. More Info

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