Be bearwise, mind your trash

This is a reminder that bears in our neck of the woods are eating themselves silly in preparation for a six-month-long nap.

Area residents are asked to properly store household trash in a secure location like a garage, shed, enclosure, or in a bear-resistant trash container. Trash containers should never, and I repeat, never, be placed out the night before pickup.

A homeowner in my neighborhood left the poly cart outside his garage last Monday evening. By Tuesday morning, his trash was strewn all over his front yard. On my way home from work on Tuesday evening, I noticed he had picked everything up, secured the lid of the poly cart with a bungee, and for additional insurance, had placed a big hunk of rock on top of the lid. On Wednesday morning, the trash was again scattered … this time covering a larger radius than the day before. He picks it up again, goes through the additional steps to secure the poly cart lid, and on Thursday morning, the crows have joined in the pick-through-the-trash fest.

I don’t know this particular homeowner. He’s new to the neighborhood, but having had multiple opportunities to view his trash, I know he likes Lean Cuisine chicken carbonara and his toothpaste of choice is Crest regular paste.

This is a serious problem. You have to take full responsibility for keeping your garbage, pet food, greasy barbecue grill, bird feeder, etc., from the hungry bears. If a bear is causing property damage or is a human safety concern, call the Division of Wildlife (247-0855) or, for after-business-hours assistance, contact the Colorado State Patrol (249-4392).

If fences make good neighbors, then bear-proofing around our house also makes good neighbors. Be thoughtful to those that live around you (bears included). A bear that becomes too familiar with humans may develop problems that could ultimately end in bad consequences. Be smart and be responsible.

PLPOA board

The PLPOA monthly board meeting will be held at 7 p.m. today in the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse. Time is scheduled at the beginning of each regular monthly board meeting for owners to share their concerns with the board.

Board members will be looking through the county nuisance ordinance that was approved by the board of county commissioners Sept. 16. The ordinance will take effect in November and if you wish to educate yourself, check it out at

Board members will also review recreation center user fees for 2009.

Keeping it clean

Members of the Pagosa Lakes Porpoises picked up litter near the recreation center and next to surrounding streets last Friday. And on Saturday, members of Grace Evangelical Free Church worked hard on a stretch of U.S. 160 west of town.

I thank both groups and the many other organizations that routinely pitch in to keep Pagosa roadways clean.