Pinedale on the Web
Celebrating 20 Years!
Pinedale Online is Pinedale, Wyoming on the web. We give our viewers, locals and out-of-area visitors, a "slice of life" snapshot window into our world view of what is happening in Pinedale. Visit us for current local news on what is happening, photos of local events, links to area businesses and services and more. We are long-time area residents and are happy to answer questions if you are planning a visit to our area. Much of our information is by community contribution.
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Gerald 'Mike' Bullinger last seen in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming
Search efforts are being scaled back for a man suspected of being involved in the death of three women whose bodies were found on his property in Idaho in June.
The man, 60-year old Gerald "Mike" Bullinger, is considered a ‘person of interest’ in the execution-style shooting of his wife, his girlfriend, and his girlfriend’s teenage daughter and leaving their remains in a shed on his property in Caldwell, Idaho. Bullinger was confirmed seen in the car entering Grand Teton National Park through the Moran entrance in June, according to authorities.
The car, which was registered to his wife, was later found at a campground in Teton County.
Bullinger has not been seen since June 12th. The area in the Park has been extensively searched by local, state and federal law enforcement and the Pacific Creek campground and other area closures were lifted as of Tuesday (July 25). Bullinger is now believed to have left the area. He has another home in Ogden, Utah, and there have been later unconfirmed reported sightings of him in other locations.
Law enforcement officials are currently processing DNA evidence found at the murder scene.
At present, all Bullinger is wanted for is failing to report the three deaths.
Bullinger is 60 years old with gray hair, brown eyes, 6-feet, 1-inch tall, 240 pounds. He is considered armed and dangerous.
Anyone with information about him or his whereabouts is asked to report it to law enforcement authorities. The Teton County Sheriff’s Office can be reached at 307-733-2331.
Click on the links below for more information on this story.
Search efforts scaled back for suspected killer By Emily Mieure, jhnewsandguide.com, July 26, 2017
Suspect in Idaho Farmhouse Triple Murder Dated Two Victims Simultaneously By Kelly Weill, thedailybeast.com, July 26, 2017
Days after suspect tied to Caldwell killings was seen in E. Idaho, search scaled back idahostatesman.com, July 26, 2017
Notes for the solar eclipse
The Wyoming Highway Patrol reports that no oversize/overweight loads will be permitted in/through Wyoming from Sunday, August 20th through Tuesday, August 22nd. Oversized loads cannot travel during that time period even with a permit in hand.
The eclipse will take place on Monday, August 21st. It will start traveling through Wyoming at Grand Teton National Park around 11:35 a.m. MST and follow in a diagonal across the state. In the days ahead of the eclipse and just after, high volumes of visitor traffic are expected in Wyoming. Many lodging establishments along the viewing path have been booked well in advance for that weekend. Anyone still looking for lodging should contact the local Chamber of Commerce for updates on local availability.
Wyoming Highway Patrol encourages people to arrive early at their viewing destinations and stay late to avoid potential traffic congestion.
• Be prepared for distracted drivers
• Traffic volumes are expected to create travel congestion
• Note that cell phone reception may be limited or not available in some areas
• No parking is permitted along the highways.
Law enforcement authorities have commented they believe food and fuel may become limited during eclipse weekend along the viewing path. Residents are encouraged to fuel up the tanks of their vehicles ahead of time and stock up on the food they will want during that time as store shelves may become depleted. Ice may also become in short supply. Travelers are encouraged to have their supplies in advance before traveling through the eclipse route as some things may become out of stock at local stores in the eclipse viewing area.
Visitors who will be going into the Wyoming forests and undeveloped areas are reminded that the mountains of western Wyoming are bear county. Both grizzly and black bears inhabit many parts of the area. Campers should be bear aware, carry bear spray, and keep meticulously clean campsites. Teach kids to not leave out food, packaging wrappers, and to be aware of their surroundings. Keep pets under control at all times, and be aware they can attract bears to your campsite. Please "pack it in and pack it out" for your litter, and it is appreciated if thoughtful people would pick up the litter that may be left behind by others to keep our landscape clean. Please be very careful about fire. Keep some water by your campfire. Make sure campfires are completely doused and out before leaving them. Be careful with cigarettes. Also be aware that wildfires can be started from the exhaust of idling vehicles over dry grass. It’s a good idea to carry a shovel and a bucket in your vehicle if you’re planning on being in the back country. Have a good spare tire and working jack in your vehicle – our back roads can be rough and flat tires common if you go off the main roads. Carry a first aid kit. You may be the first responder with no cell phone coverage to reach outside help in case of emergency.
www.travelwyoming.com Wyoming Travel & Tourism
Pinedale Eclipse Fest August 18-21, 2017, Pinedale, Wyoming
www.visitpinedale.org Pinedale Travel & Tourism
www.sublettechamber.com Sublette County Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center, 307-367-2242
Diesel and gas vehicles to be banned in Britain by 2040 (posted 7/26/17)
and Surly Pika Adventure Race
Last year's first Wind River Fest celebrated Pinedale's designation as the first Continental Divide Trail Gateway Community in Wyoming. Long known as the Gateway to the Winds, Pinedale sits at the base of the tallest mountain peaks in Wyoming in which are found most of the 1300 lakes in Sublette County.
Expanding on the same theme this year, Fest organizers Josh and Laura Hattan of The Great Outdoor Shop, and dozens of volunteers worked together to both educate people about the Wind River Range, its seven decade exploration by explorer Finis (pronounced: fine us) Mitchell, and to encourage people to go deep into The Winds to experience much of what they have to offer, by way of a sanctioned adventure race.
By chance, Dawn Ballou of Pinedale Online found herself in possession of a treasure trove of Finis Mitchell slides and audio recordings. She got together with well-known local trekker Ric Samulski who dressed up as Finis last year, and they decided there was great benefit to the community in giving a presentation on Finis at The Fest.
Those in attendance at the Pinedale Auditorium were treated to a big screen slide show and the passionate voice of the great trekker. Like the mountain men a hundred years before, Finis ventured into the unknown. We heard about his 74 pound backpacks and the other expedition quality gear he carried. He also carried still and movie cameras, 66 rolls of film and all the food and other gear he needed on his weeks long expeditions away from his family. He climbed all but 20 of the 300 peaks in the range. We saw the pictures of the fish he ate when he ran out of all the food he had packed. We learned about the fall which broke a leg. He lost his camera and crawled out of the mountains for almost two days. The camera has never been found.
A surprise added benefit at the slide show was a presentation by Finis's great grand daughter, Savannah who had put together a presentation for the Western Social Science convention in Reno. We learned of his service as a Wyoming legislator, his life as a railroad employee, as a fishing guide which kept food on the table during the depression, how he had stocked 314 lakes with fish, that he set up a scholarship fund for like-minded young people, and how he left his photographs for all to use. In attendance were also Alvin and Jacob Mitchell and they all agreed to a group photo with Ric who played Finis.
I went back to the park and watched young people navigate the agility course. Young Dace Rhea was there and explained to me why Tip Top Search & Rescue wasn't putting on a water rescue clinic like they did last year. "You could drown," he said. "The water is too high and fast and your feet could get knocked out from under you. Then you might get swept over a waterfall and get stuck up against a log jamb. There might be bears downstream catching salmon...that's probably the most dangerous part, but only if you're still alive."
I spoke with Josh and Laura briefly about what to expect if one ventured into The Winds. "The Winds are not a beginner range," said Laura. "Most people who come here know what they are doing. The two most important things to have on you are rain gear and bear spray."
"Our store is heavily tailored to the back country we have here," Josh said. "We have stocked our store with carefully selected gear for Wind River Range trekking. We strongly recommend that visitors from lower elevations dedicate a couple days to get established logistically and allow their bodies to get used to the high altitude. We recommend bear spray. You probably won't run into a bear, but just having it gives you peace of mind. You'll sleep better and a well rested and confident person will make better decisions and have a better wilderness experience."
I bumped into Julie Belton and she mentioned that her Mom, Melba age 87, had just ridden in the Special Olympics bike competition at the park with four generations of her family.
It was beer time so I headed over to the Wind River Brewing trailer and Shawn gave me a Blond Ale on the house. It was poured in what I thought was a plastic cup. "No, it's made out of corn," he said. "Drink your beer, throw it on the ground and in a week it is totally gone. Bad part is, they leak a lot." I guess I better drink fast...and go listen to some music at the bandstand.
Sunday morning 5:30 wake up call for Surly Pika Adventure Race which starts as high in the Winds as you can drive...and then you go higher on your pedal bike, then run up and down paths, and game trails...if you are lucky, then an hour long paddle across Fremont Lake to the finish at Lakeside Lodge. It is scheduled as an eight hour race.
Darren and Keri Hull used to compete and later organize adventure races in Alaska. When Josh Hattan heard this he asked the Hull's if they thought they could do one here for The Fest and they thought they could. It required months of planning and paperwork to satisfy all the government agencies and lease holders; and then a lot of hill climbing to plan a route thru the rugged terrain. Darren covered the course four times to get it right and sometimes Josh and Keri went along.
Race morning at White Pine I found Erika Tokarz and Katie Rutherford had spread out their vintage 1964 topographical map on the bed of someone's flatbed trailer in the parking lot at White Pine Resort. "We've been riding these trails all summer just for fun," said Erika. "This is our playground."
In the lodge, Pinedale native Sara Percy Taranto and Ann Marie Hunt were intent on their map as Darren and Keri talked rules and safety before the race.
I'd heard there was a highly ranked team entered, so at the Elkhart Park overlook, I stood on a rock and looked thru the crowd and immediately settled on the most likely suspects. They stood out from the crowd. Look, posture, attention, simply how they stood with each other. They were like two fish who moved and thought in unison. They were lean and compact. I introduced myself and confirmed the guess. They are from Idaho and have been competing together since 2011. They are entered in The Adventure Racing World Championships called Cowboy Tough...a 500 mile race to be held in Wyoming this year.
The first leg of the race was riding a bike from Elkhart Park down to the Half Moon Lake overlook. They navigated with only a compass and a map. All along the way they had to register themselves at checkpoints. They ditched their bikes at Half Moon and continued on foot thru convoluted boulder strewn and Aspen and brush-covered valleys and ridges until they arrived near Fremont Lake. A very welcome aid station stocked with watermelon and high sugar foods awaited them. Lance and Sean had been fighting severe leg cramps and took a few moments to stretch as they ate the high energy foods. 100 yards away they donned life vests and portaged their water craft downhill thru the Aspen forest to the lake and then paddled their canoe's or kayaks toward the finish line at Lakeside Lodge.
Sure to put a smile on any person’s face is the story of Charlsey who was competing with the youngest competitor in the race...her own 5 month old baby in the womb. She had come directly from spending 2 weeks backpacking in the wilderness and didn't make any fuss about it, but I thought you'd all be as impressed as I was.
As expected, Jason and Abby won the race...about 2-1/2 hours ahead of the number 2 finishers Erika and Katie and number 3 finishers Dean Clause and his 13-year old daughter Darby. I had spoken with Dean and Darby at the top and they had figured out they needed to deduct 11 degrees from the compass headings to allow for magnetic north distortion. Having that information and being able to apply it during the race was key to their racing success. I'm sure The Great Outdoor Shop will post full results soon.
Jason and Abby were a thing of beauty to watch. So poised, never seeming to break a sweat. However, they did confess the convoluted Aspen forest in the running section was pretty tricky and they lost time there. I had followed them into the forest for a bit and had heard them discussing how to find their way out of the woods and up to a ridge line.
Erika and Katie said they lost focus in the beginning by thinking they could listen to others on map and compass readings. A couple wrong turns and they decided they could do better thinking on their own and did.
David Rule who we know as an exceptional local runner, said he also didn't focus enough on the map and compass part and lost a lot of time because of it.
Ryan Tollison, like Sean and Lance also suffered leg cramps on the biking leg. He plans on getting that problem fixed by next year’s competition.
As we waited on Lakeside Lodge's lawn for the other racers to finish, I asked Jason and Abby about their most important advice for adventure racing. "We eat what sounds good," said Jason. "After years of doing this, we realize savory and sweet is always a good bet. Some people get all sciencey, but Kale chips are hard to stomach during a race. We also train loading our backpacks in the most efficient manner. We train so much we know exactly where every item is so we don't have to waste time going thru pockets. We also select our packs and stock our packs in such a way we rarely have to take them off during a race. That saves a lot of time.
Finally all the other competitors arrived. Many wore shoes that had fallen apart to some degree. They didn't look like gear designed for the event. Some wore calf high socks that were full of thorns, dirt and had threads hanging. There may have been calves that were not cut up and bleeding, but Jason and Abby were the only clean legs I saw. I'm sure these competitors learned a lot and I hope you all don't mind me sharing what I observed and heard.
After the awards ceremony I was sitting on the deck over the lake enjoying a beer with Dave Hohl. Little groups of racers were sitting on the lawn, some leaning against trees. Others were sprawled on big easy chairs enjoying quiet conversations. Some were chowing down on specialty burgers and drinks. It struck me then...I have been in many different kinds of races in my life and it is always a rush to pack your gear and go home...but almost no one was leaving. They didn't want to leave, didn't want the day to end. Special times are like that. Good ideas meeting good people who work hard together to create something meaningful.
It was a beautiful thing to be a part of. Thank you all for being sports and letting me try to make good photographs of your day.
Adventure Racing World Championship in Wyoming this fall: http://www.cowboytoughwy.com/
Wind River Mountain Fest home: http://www.greatoutdoorshop.com/windriverfest/
Your photographer: Terry Allen - email@example.com
You may share the copyrighted low rez images on this site among yourselves for personal use only, and IF you photo credit my name.
For full rez images, and for commercial use, please contact me.
A huge thanks to Dawn Ballou of Pinedale Online for sponsoring this story. If you have a story idea and would like to sponsor me to write and photograph it, please contact Dawn.
Click on this link for more pictures: Wind River Mountain Fest 2017 (46 pictures)
Pinedale Fine Arts Council
The Pinedale Fine Arts Council (PFAC) and Boondocks Pizza will team up again Friday night, July 28, to present up-and-coming Nashville Americana trio Scriptkiddie who will perform on the Boondocks outdoor stage at 7 pm (free).
Touring en route to Kemmerer’s annual Oyster Ridge Music Festival, Scriptkiddie is self-described as "a little west of country" and recently released a 3-song EP which features strong songwriting and 3-part harmonies with a Western flare.
Fans of First Aid Kit and Bon Iver will appreciate Scriptkiddie’s progressive approach to tradition folk and indie-rock fans will note the band just played Delaware’s Firefly Music Festival alongside the likes of Weezer and the Shins.
Boondocks will again be offering drink and food specials all night.
www.pinedalefinearts.com Pinedale Fine Arts Council
Auditions in August, Performances in October
Pinedale Community Theatre
Pinedale Community Theatre’s (PCT) Managing Director, Valerie Lee is encouraging everyone to get ready for auditions for PCT’s upcoming production of "Oliver" by Lionel Bart based on the novel "Oliver Twist" written by Charles Dickens.
The production has a cast of 28 with roles for 12 children.
PCT board members will conduct workshops for aspiring actors, singers and dancers to prepare for auditions. Workshops are scheduled on August 8 from 6 to 8PM at the Pinedale High School (PHS) auditorium for children 6 to 13 and again on August 9, from 6 to 9PM at the PHS auditorium for high school students and adults of all ages. Sessions will cover singing, dancing and acting and all participants are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunity to learn what happens at auditions and how to get ready to participate.
Auditions for Oliver are scheduled August 24, 25 and 26 at the PHS auditorium. Show dates for the production of Oliver are October 26, 27 and 28 in the auditorium.
Scripts and vocal scores are available at the Pinedale Fine Arts Council office in Pinedale.
Call Kari DeWitt at 307-231-3210 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for appointments or more information. Additional information is also on PCTs website pinedaletheatre.com.
Grizzly moved from Upper Green (posted 7/25/17)
2006 Ben Bradley unsolved murder
Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office
(ROCK SPRINGS, WYOMING - July 19, 2017) Sweetwater County detectives are processing a residence on Bridger Avenue in Rock Springs for evidence in the 2006 Ben Bradley murder case.
A Tabernash, Colorado, resident, Bradley, 28 at the time, was hitchhiking from his home to Jackson, Wyoming, on a snowboarding outing when he disappeared in the Rock Springs area on the night of Friday, June 2, 2006. Pictured here are Bradley and his unique, custom-made Never Summer "split-board" snowboard, which has never been recovered.
Bradley's badly decomposed body was found near the base of Boar's Tusk, about 25 miles north of Rock Springs, by sightseers on October 1, 2006. It was determined at autopsy that the cause of death was multiple stab wounds to the chest area.
Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Detective Dick Blust said that processing the Bridger Avenue home is the result of fresh lead information.
"The Bradley case is ongoing," Blust explained. "As an unsolved homicide, it’s under constant review, plus we follow up new leads as they come in and take appropriate action."
Authorities ask that anyone with information concerning Bradley or his snowboard contact the Sweetwater County Sheriff's Office at (307) 875-1400.
Click on this link for more pictures: Rock Springs home processed for evidence in 11-year-old murder case
Washington wolf conflicts (posted 7/23/17)
Sublette County Fair offers action-packed fun July 26-29, 2017 (posted 7/17/17)