BLM seeks campground vandals near Challis

CHALLIS, Idaho - The Idaho Falls District Bureau of Land Management is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to those responsible for vandalism at the Cottonwood Campground.  The campground is located about 14 miles north of Challis on Highway 93.

Challis Outdoor Recreation Planner Ben Roundtree said two fee collection stations were looted.  One of them was completely removed from the site.  Damages were estimated at $3,000.  The vandalism was believed to have occurred on the night of March 12.

"It is clear that the vandalism was intentional, and the cost of repairs will greatly exceed the value of what was taken," said Roundtree.

Rondtree also reports that many overnight campers are not paying for their use of four fee-sites in the Challis area including Cottonwood, Joe T. Fallini, East Fork, and Bayhorse campgrounds. Camping fees allow BLM to maintain and improve developed campgrounds.

"If this pattern of vandalism and nonpayment continues, we may be forced to install surveillance cameras, and I don't know anyone that truly wants to take those steps," Roundtree said. 

Anyone with information is urged to contact BLM Law Enforcement Officer Dave Spain at (208) 303-0501.

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