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Trapping school set for Oct. 20-21

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Posted: Thursday, September 27, 2012 12:22 am | Updated: 11:31 am, Mon Jan 21, 2013.

FAIRBANKS — The Alaska Trappers Association is now accepting registrations for its annual general trapping school, scheduled for Oct. 20-21 at Lost Lake Scout Camp at 306 Mile Richardson Highway.

The two-day school teaches wannabe trappers everything they need to know about catching a wide range of furbearers in the Interior.

“Marten, beaver, fox, lynx, mink, wolf, wolverine, muskrat,” Randy Smith, who coordinates the school for the ATA, said, rattling off some of the Interior’s most commonly trapped furbearers.

Teachers for the school include some of the Interior’s most experienced trappers. This year’s lineup includes Wayne Crowson of Delta Junction, Jim Masek of Fairbanks and Mike Johnson of Bettles, among others.

“They’ll cover just about everything,” Smith said. “What types of traps to use for what type of animals, trap placement, looking for traplines and how to find one, fur handling.”

Johnson also will demonstrate how to set up a snowmachine and sled for trapping.

“He usually brings his snowmachine and freight sled to show people how he’s got it set up,” Smith said. “He’s one of those MacGyvers of the trapping world.”

Instructors from the Arctic Survival School at Eielson Air Force Base will teach a class in arctic survival and an Alaska Wildlife Trooper will talk about the legalities of trapping.

“The last couple of years, we’ve had Fish and Wildlife Troopers come out and do a spiel,” Smith said. “That’s been a big hit.”

Cost of the school is $135 for current ATA members and $165 for non-members, which includes a one-year membership. Tuition includes a floor and mattress to sleep on, meals on both Saturday and Sunday and an Alaska Trapping Manual.

Students may bring one family member for an additional $40. The family member can be a spouse or a child. Children 12 or younger must be accompanied by an adult.

Pre-registration is required by Oct. 15 and there is a limit of 40 students in the school.

For more information about the school, contact Smith at 488-7044 or 460-7045.

To register, call Tish Harr at 347-5965 or go online at

Contact outdoors editor Tim Mowry at 459-7587.

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