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Striking a careful balance between grazing, wildlife, history and fishing at Harriman State Park

Island Park, ID

A big group of cowboys came together at the break of dawn on a Saturday morning to trail cattle about three miles into Harriman State Park.

Ranchers had gathered about 800 cattle the night before along Mesa Falls Road, a designated open range area. Two men on horseback led the drive. They had lots of riders on the flanks and pulling up the rear to keep the cattle moving in the right direction.

As they left the road and rode through the forest, the cowboys kept the cattle moving. On the highway, rancher Ron Wilcox and his daughter rode alongside the sheriff to get in position to stop the traffic.

The cattle crossed the highway in the same spot where they have been driven into the park for decades. In a matter of minutes, the cattle moved into the park while the traffic was stopped on U.S. 20.

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