Fly fishing group honored for District 2 highway cleanups
It’s not like dragging an old boot from their favorite fishing hole, but members of the Kelly Creek Flycasters find their share of interesting items when they clean the shoulders of U.S. 12.
The Lewiston-based fishing group adopted a two-mile section of the highway (between mileposts 158 and 160) because they camp and fish on the nearby Lochsa River and want to maintain the area’s pristine beauty – dry land and water.
Because of its commitment, the Kelly Creek Flycasters was chosen Idaho’s District 2 Adopt-A-Highway group of the year. Representatives were present at a recent Idaho Transportation Board meeting in Lewiston to accept a plaque on behalf of the group. They also received a clock fashioned from an Idaho sample license plate.
The fly fishing group usually structures a club “fish-out” around the semi-annual Adopt-A-Highway cleanup. About 20-30 club members generally meet at the Wendover Campground for the weekend. The cleanup often begins with a Dutch oven breakfast.
During one outing club members encountered a large moose emerging from a nearby pond, said group spokesperson Zachary Funkhouser.
ITD’s statewide Adopt-A-Highway program organizes the cleaning of Idaho roadsides by volunteer groups. Those groups “adopt” a specific stretch of highway – usually two miles long – and take responsibility for keeping it clean through regular litter patrols.
Approximately 1,100 groups spent nearly 57,000-person hours statewide removing an estimated 1.9 million pounds of litter from Idaho’s roadsides in 2008.
About half of Idaho’s highways have been adopted, leaving ample opportunities for other groups and individuals to become involved.
The volume of material collected from roadsides makes a tremendous difference in the appearance of Idaho’s highways, said statewide AAH coordinator, Sherie Sweaney.
The value of the cleanup labor is equivalent to more than $730,000, savings that can be applied to other highway projects, improving safety and driving conditions.
For more information about adopting a stretch of highway, contact Sherie Sweaney at (800) 443-2878.