From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 7, Number 18 - July 26, 2007
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Suspected ‘leak’ reported on New Fork
BLM: Pipe, not reserve pit the source of overflow
by Joy Ufford

About two weeks ago, boaters floating the New Fork River saw what one called a “mud pit” at an Ultra Resources’ location at the end of Wagon Wheel Road, also known as Speedway Road, with liquids reportedly leaking from it into the river.

They reported the suspected leak to the Pinedale office of Wyoming Game and Fish (G&F), who said they would have someone look into the matter.

G&F fisheries biologist Pete Cavalli confirmed Monday that he handled a “public call” almost two weeks ago regarding the suspected leak at the New Fork location.

“The location is a place we call ‘the gas wells’ but some people call it ‘Speedway Road,’” he said Monday. “There was a place where water was going across the road next to an evaporation pond.”

The liquid in question was coming from a pipe, not from the pond, he said, after talking to Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Supervisory Natural Resources Specialist Merry Gamper.

Tuesday, Gamper said the questionable liquid is clean water and isn’t coming from what she called “the reserve pit.”

“It’s fresh water,” she said. “It’s (from) a freshwater artesian well that flows under its own gravity. ... It poses no risk whatsoever.”

Ultra Resources was made aware of the overflow and has taken steps to keep it from pooling on the road, Gamper said, adding that when Ultra isn’t pumping water from the “usable and active well” the water will continue to flow on its own.

Cavalli noted that although he didn’t “like the fact there’s water discharge there” it appeared to be a small amount of water and he doubted it would reach the river.

He collected a water sample “and it looks clear,” he said.

G&F has no regulatory authority on this issue, he added, so he would not be testing the water sample.

“We appreciate it completely” that concerned citizens report incidents about which they might have questions, Gamper said.

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