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County Watch

Compiled by Patrick Parkinson

Two middle-aged men were stranded for several hours in the Uinta Mountains last week as Summit County Sheriff’s Office search-and-rescue volunteers rescued the pair from Elizabeth Mountain near the Mirror Lake Highway.

The men weren’t injured but reportedly lost their bearings while snowmobiling in Summit County’s Wasatch-Cache National Forest on Jan. 12. A 911 dispatcher was contacted on a cellular telephone at 5:24 p.m., Summit County sheriff’s Capt. Alan Siddoway said. "It’s a happy ending," the deputy said, adding, "they lost their way and couldn’t find their way out." From the man’s description of the area, searchers were able to instruct a Utah Department of Public Safety helicopter pilot how to reach the site, Siddoway said, adding that the men had built a fire and shelter in the snow. "They were well equipped," he said. The pilot spotted the men’s fire and led searchers to the site on their snowmobiles, Siddoway said. The rescue party reached the trailhead around 1 a.m. on Friday. Meanwhile, Utah’s third annual Backcountry Avalanche Awareness Week is scheduled to begin Jan. 30.

"Backcountry Awareness Week provides a unique opportunity for anyone who appreciates the great outdoors to exchange ideas and learn about Utah’s backcountry while raising funds and awareness," said Roger Kehr, the event’s organizer.

Donations will help the Utah Avalanche Center promote its educational video, "Know Before You Go." The weeklong seminar features on-snow demonstrations, avalanche beacon drills and wilderness medical courses.

Conrad Anker and other mountaineers are scheduled to speak at the event’s fund-raiser Feb. 3. On Jan. 26, Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. reportedly will declare Jan. 30-Feb. 5, 2006, Utah Backcountry Awareness Week.

Utah Avalanche Center personnel claim each year more than 5,000 students are exposed to the "Know Before You Go" slide safety program. Contact Snowbird ski resort employees at (801) 933-2147 for more information about Backcountry Awareness Week. No film festival parking at Richins Building

So parking spaces can be made available to patrons of a health clinic, library, motor vehicles department and planning department Summit County operates at Kimball Junction, Sundance Film Festival-goers are prohibited from parking at the Sheldon Richins Building until Jan. 29.

Parking must also be made available for citizens to attend meetings in the building’s auditorium, Summit County Commissioner Bob Richer said.

"I don’t know how [the county] is going to enforce it," County Commission administrator Anita Lewis said. Legislature parking is also troublesome According to Utah’s Capitol Preservation Board, one of the major obstacles citizens encounter when they visit the Capitol Hill Complex is finding a place to park. The board has introduced a transit program to make the public feel as welcome as possible during the Utah Legislature’s 2006 general session. A Capitol Hill transportation plan is slated for future development. "Please give yourself plenty of time for transit, be flexible and take advantage of the Capitol Hill Transit Program. We will provide all visitors free tokens redeemable on all [Utah Transit Authority] bus [and] TRAX lines and Salt Lake City Alliance Program parking lots," said David Hart, the board’s executive director. Summit County residents could benefit from parking elsewhere in Salt Lake City and riding a train or bus to Capitol Hill. The legislative session began Jan. 16. According to a Jan. 13 press release from state Capitol staffers, parking tokens are available for 60 lots throughout the city totaling more than 20,000 parking stalls. Tokens, downtown guides and maps are available at the Capitol Preservation Board office in room 110 of the Senate building, Senate and House offices, the governor’s office and at the Sergeant at Arms. Many of the lots are located along UTA bus route No. 23, which will drop you off at the steps of the Senate building, the press release states. The parking lot across from the Delta Center near 300 South Temple is convenient as UTA offers expanded and direct service during peak times, Capitol staffers say. Because parking on the Hill is limited, constituents are encouraged to carpool. The board’s Web site will have the latest transit information regarding Capitol Hill. Information and maps can be downloaded beginning Jan. 16 at http://www.utahstatecapitol.utah.gov. Wanship sidewalks off the table

For several years Summit County has discussed installing sidewalks along portions of S.R. 32 in Wanship. But last week the Summit County Commission instructed County Engineer Derrick Radke to give back grant money the Utah Department of Transportation had provided for the project.

"We’ve got partial funding enough to install the first phase," said Kevin Callahan, administrator for Summit County Public Works.

The county attempted to begin construction last year but received no bids from contractors, he added.

"Nobody was interested. It’s too small of a project," Callahan said.

Summit County Commissioner Bob Richer recalled discussing sidewalks in Wanship for the past three years.

"I think, basically, they forgot all about it," County Commissioner Ken Woolstenhulme said, adding that he hears no complaints from North Summit residents about walking in that part of unincorporated Summit County. County holiday tree disposal

Through Jan. 31, Public Works officials advise Summit County residents to dispose of Christmas trees at one of six locations in the area: the Jeremy Store near Jeremy Ranch, the Sinclair station at Silver Creek Junction, Kamas City Hall, Oakley Town Hall, the sewage plant in Coalville or Hoytsville stockyards.


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