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Articles written by Mark Davis

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  • Saving Pond 6: Agencies combine efforts to improve habitat

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune|Feb 22, 2024

    Via Wyoming News Exchange POWELL - Wildlife scattered Tuesday as massive flames formed fire devils and thick plumes of smoke rose thousands of feet from Pond 6 at the Yellowtail Wildlife Habitat Management Area. As black smoke began to rise around noon, Nick Inzer watched the controlled burn from a safe place on a nearby hill, looking for wildlife escaping the flames through a pair of pricey binoculars. "There goes another pheasant," he joyfully announced each time a ringneck was pushed up. He... Full story

  • Powell photographer wins grand prize in state contest

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune|Feb 1, 2024

    Via Wyoming News Exchange POWELL - Rob Koelling's love for wildlife photography is well known in the Cowboy State. Numerous publications and exhibits feature his awe-inspiring artwork, largely of Wyoming's avian species. He doesn't take it personally when called a bird nerd - it's a badge of honor for those who are helplessly captivated by feathered species. However, few know of his other talent - one which takes a great deal of discipline, dedication and self-control: Keeping secrets. Early in... Full story

  • Is a Yellowstone eruption closer than thought?

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Aug 3, 2023

    Scientists say not necessarily POWELL — In the same way digital photography has evolved from 3 megapixel state-of-the-art professional DSLR cameras in the late 90s to folks now carrying 15 megapixel cameras in their cellphones, scientists are enjoying the benefits from vastly improved imaging, a leading expert studying the Yellowstone Volcano reports. A team of researchers from the University of Utah, New Mexico University and the Institute of Earth Sciences in Taiwan in 2020 deployed 650 tempor... Full story

  • Pilgrimage honors those who refuse to forget

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Aug 3, 2023

    POWELL — Tears were flowing as former U.S. Sen. Alan Simpson for the first time walked through the shell that will soon house the Mineta-Simpson Institute at the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center Saturday morning during the annual pilgrimage to the location of the former WWII internment camp. “I had a lump in my throat like a hockey puck,” the 91-year-old said, still visibly moved by the experience. He said that seeing for the first time the Institute’s floor plans — in part a tribute to his life-long friendship with Norman Mineta, a former... Full story

  • Yellowstone Park east gates swing open

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|May 11, 2023

    Powell family first in line welcomed by new entrance supervisor POWELL - When Chris Baltz, East Entrance fee supervisor at Yellowstone National Park, saw a car parked in front of the closed entrance Thursday evening before dark, he thought the visitors were mistaken about the park's opening schedule. This is his first season in the park. He approached the vehicle to advise the occupants, only to find they were well aware of the Friday morning schedule and intended to wait until 8 a.m. to save... Full story

  • Hunter charged with killing grizzly found on North Fork

    Mark Davis and CJ Baker, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|May 11, 2023

    POWELL — The grizzly bear found dead along the North Fork Highway last week was killed by a Cody area hunter who said he mistook the animal for a black bear, according to court documents. The hunter, Patrick M. Gogerty, reportedly came forward on May 2 — the day after he reportedly shot the bear, and after the bear’s carcass drew widespread public attention. “Gogerty should have turned himself in immediately,” North Cody Game Warden Travis Crane wrote in an affidavit included in court records. Park County Prosecuting Attorney Bryan Skoric charg... Full story

  • Game and Fish works to protect private property from elk herd damage

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Mar 23, 2023

    POWELL — With a herd of 400 elk wandering through the vast fields and hobby farms near Heart Mountain, Wyoming Game and Fish Department game wardens and wildlife technicians have the important job of ensuring the herd doesn’t commingle with livestock or damage winter crops and fences. The community is a checkerboard of landowners who don’t want the elk on their land and others who are thrilled to have wildlife in the vicinity. Game and Fish is tasked with hazing the elk away from private land as efficiently as possible. Crews do soft pushe... Full story

  • Financial journalist disputes need for Wyoming stablecoin

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jan 26, 2023

    POWELL — Calling cryptocurrency “a solution in search of a problem,” Pulitzer Prizewinning financial journalist Jesse Eisinger is not a fan of Wyoming’s efforts to create the first state-sponsored stablecoin. The senior editor and reporter for ProPublica and former columnist for the Wall Street Journal said he fails to see a use for cryptocurrency and has little faith in its future. “Why bother?” Eisinger asked. He made the blunt comments at a gathering of Wyoming’s newspapers last week, in response to questions from Jeff Robertson, the communi... Full story

  • Wildlife task force tackles preference points

    MARK DAVIS, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Dec 15, 2022

    POWELL — As the Wyoming Wildlife task force prepares for its final meeting Wednesday, Dec. 14, members of the group brought one of the toughest issues they’re attempting to tackle to Park County constituents knowing no matter what is done — including nothing — is going to end up in disappointment. Decades ago, the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission elected to offer preference points to hunters for two iconic Wyoming species, moose and bighorn sheep. The system has worked to date, giving hunters an opportunity to score one of the tags by saving...

  • Plowing the Plug: New petition on keeping road open shows shift in attitudes

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Nov 24, 2022

    POWELL — A new petition signed by the majority of Cooke City/Silver Gate residents and business owners in support of plowing U.S. Highway 212 east of the gateway communities shows a significant shift in sentiment, according to a committee of residents hoping to open up the nearly 9-mile section of highway, allowing access to services in Park County, Wyoming. This comes despite Yellowstone National Park’s seemingly miraculous opening of the Northeast Entrance Road after portions of the communities’ only winter route to emergency medical servi... Full story

  • Two Northwest College wrestlers mauled by grizzly

    Mark Davis and Zac Taylor, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Oct 20, 2022

    POWELL —Two Northwest College wrestlers were mauled by a grizzly bear while hiking Saturday on the South Fork. Kendell Cummings, a sophomore from Evanston, and Brady Lowry, a redshirt sophomore from Cedar City, Utah, were shed hunting west of the Bobcat Houlihan trailhead on the Shoshone National Forest in heavy cover when the attack happened. Fellow wrestlers August Harrison and Orin Jackson were shed hunting along with their two teammates. After the attack, they rushed to the scene and helped Cummings and Lowry to a vehicle and to find a... Full story

  • Stopping the stigma: After losing a loved one to suicide, Powell resident aims to help those suffering from mental illness

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Sep 1, 2022

    POWELL- The family of Thomas "TG" Howard wanted to make sure they didn't hide his mental illness and depression, listing it as his cause of death in his obituaries. It was important to find a positive in the unthinkably hard reality of how he died. Howard took his own life Christmas day, 2015. The popular athlete at Cody High School who joined the Navy after graduation had first turned to alcohol and then opiates in an effort to deal with his mental illness. "A lot of people that struggle with m... Full story

  • Plane crash kills couple

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jul 21, 2022

    POWELL — A plane went down in the Bighorn Mountains Thursday afternoon, reportedly killing a Georgia couple traveling through the West and igniting a fire in a hard-to-access area of the Bighorn National Forest. The small plane left Powell around noon on July 14, scheduled to land in Buffalo. The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office received a call from air traffic control in Salt Lake City, Utah, reporting the missing aircraft. Upon receiving the call, sheriff’s office dispatch called the local airport and verified that the plane did not reach... Full story

  • Cody domes generate mixed reaction

    Mark Davis and CJ Baker, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Apr 14, 2022

    POWELL - Snowflakes caught in a chilly wind whizzed by as Chrystal and Calvin Alpers ate lunch in Cody. They could have seen birds flitting between branches in nearby pines and squirrels scampering from tree to tree, but they were too busy catching up on the morning news while enjoying some fast food together. Nearby picnic tables were understandably vacant on the wintry spring day, but the couple was comfortable inside one of the new geodesic domes installed next to the Cody Country Chamber of... Full story

  • WYDOT message board draws complaints

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jan 13, 2022

    POWELL — WYDOT announced seemingly uncontroversial plans in late December to use message signs to remind motorists of posted speed limits and the presence of wildlife along the North Fork Highway. But when a message on a sign at the entrance to the Shoshone National Forest proclaimed “Sheep Lives Matter,” it drew concerns from some who say it mocks the Black Lives Matter movement. “I feel WYDOT’s use of ‘Sheep Lives Matter’ is in poor taste,” said Melissa Maier, an activist for racial justice from Cody. “There are so many other ways to get... Full story

  • Woman killed, multiple buildings lost in Clark nighttime blaze

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Nov 18, 2021

    POWELL — A fire erupted on Monday night in Clark, claiming the life of one resident — along with two homes — as it rapidly burned across 300 acres near Line Creek. Dozens of residents on Crossfire Trail were forced to evacuate in the middle of the night as the flames were fueled by dry conditions and wind gusts reported to have reached more than 100 mph. Clark resident Cindy Ruth died from smoke inhalation in the blaze, according to her death notice. She was the mother of three adult children and wife of Jerry Ruth, a former police offic... Full story

  • Montana man arrested, accused of starting Robertson Draw Fire

    Mark Davis and CJ Baker, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jun 24, 2021

    POWELL — A Bridger, Montana, man was arrested Wednesday on allegations that he started the 28,600-acre Robertson Draw Fire while off-trail on his motorcycle. John Lightburn, 55, faces felony and misdemeanor counts of negligent arson which allege he put people’s lives and property in danger by “purposely or knowingly” starting the wildfire. A misdemeanor count of criminal mischief alleges that Lightburn operated his motorcycle in an area of the Custer Gallatin National Forest that’s closed to motorized vehicles and damaged public lands. Ac... Full story

  • BLM Leader not backing down

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Oct 8, 2020

    POWELL - Two weeks after a federal judge in Montana ruled the Trump administration's choice to direct the Bureau of Land Management rose to his position illegally, William Perry Pendley told an audience in Cody that the decision has changed nothing. Pendley paraphrased Mark Twain in saying, "News of my political demise has been greatly exaggerated," while speaking to the Free Roaming Equids and Ecosystem Sustainability Network conference on Tuesday at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. U.S.... Full story

  • Yellowstone to reopen access Monday in limited capacity

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|May 14, 2020

    POWELL — Starting at noon on Monday, Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks will begin reopening through a gradual, three-phase plan. In Yellowstone, only the park’s two Wyoming entrances — the East Gate outside of Cody and the South Gate outside of Jackson — will open, allowing access to the lower loop for day use with limited facilities. The West, North and Northeast entrances in Montana will remain closed until state officials, including Gov. Steve Bullock, agree to opening them. On a Wednesday teleconference with business and civic l... Full story

  • NWC students join the fight against CWD

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Oct 3, 2019

    POWELL — As chronic wasting disease marches its way across Wyoming, Northwest College students are pitching in to help battle the disease. NWC’s biology department and the Wyoming Game and Fish Department are collaborating to test a higher percentage of hunter’s harvests of mule deer from the Lower Shoshone and Clarks Fork herds. The Game and Fish needs as many samples as possible from the area, but lacks the manpower to get it done alone. After training, NWC students will get practical experience and help track the disease, which is fatal... Full story

  • Gold prospectors still panning in Wyoming

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Sep 5, 2019

    POWELL - Jan Earle can still remember the first time she saw color - flakes of gold - in the bottom of her pan. "It was like finding a lost ring or a diamond. Or seeing a spectacular butterfly for the first time," she said. Forty-something years ago, Earle was a geologist helping to survey the South Pass for new state of Wyoming geological maps. After long hours of summer field work, she'd spend some time panning area streams. Earle was lucky enough to know boundaries of claims and recognize... Full story

  • Earthquakes, not volcano, biggest Yellowstone threat, says expert

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jul 18, 2019

    POWELL — The world’s foremost expert on the Yellowstone caldera and the national park’s geophysical characteristics has a sense of humor. “I want you to visit Yellowstone before it visits you,” Robert V. Smith quipped at a recent presentation in Cody. Smith admits a volcanic eruption would be catastrophic, but he says it is far from the biggest natural danger in the park. “I’m going to tell you right now, Yellowstone ain’t about to blow,” Smith said during his July 11 talk at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. About once or twice a week, Smi... Full story

  • UW students handle Cody mammoth research

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune-WNE|Nov 9, 2018

    POWELL — Like a huge puzzle, young scientists at the University of Wyoming are attempting to piece together how a mammoth died outside of Cody centuries ago. They’re recording as much information as they can about the animal’s life in Park County — and hoping the bones are evidence of a Pleistocene-man barbecue. There are only 16 sites in North America where archaeologists have found early man took down a mammoth for sustenance. Finding one in Cody with proof of human intervention would be the fourth such site in the Cowboy State. Even if the...

  • New Yellowstone head promises job won't be political

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Aug 1, 2018

    POWELL - It's a tough way to get a job. As Cameron "Cam" Sholly prepares to move to his new offices as director at Yellowstone National Park, some have suggested the move is being made under a dark cloud. Sholly is replacing popular superintendent Dan Wenk, who's been Yellowstone's chief for seven years. Wenk has said he was punitively forced out after disagreements with the Trump administration. Wenk opted to retire in August rather than accept a move to Washington, D.C., for a new position...

  • Meeteetse camp teaches rodeo, faith

    Mark Davis, Powell Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jul 4, 2018

    MEETEETSE - As cows and their calves neared branding pens, their pressed bays echoed through the valleys of the 91 Ranch in the foothills of the Absaroka Range. A group of riders appeared at the top of a rise on the rolling pastures of the ranch. Behind them stretched the snowcapped peaks and above them nothing but big sky and cotton-puff clouds. Though young, these wranglers are saddle-proven and tough. But they're a different kind of cowboy - they're cowboys with a mission. Celebrating its...

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