It is an important legal obligation for the Forest Service to ensure Nez Perce people can exercise treaty rights to hunt, fish, gather and practice traditional religious and cultural ceremonies. Occasionally this means exempting enrolled Nez Perce Tribe members from certain policies that may seem confusing to Forest visitors who are unfamiliar with Nez Perce Treaty rights.
Some of these exemptions include campground fee and stay limits and firewood gathering fees. The Nez Perce Tribe also regulates hunting and fishing seasons for its members. Therefore Nez Perce people may hunt and fish outside sports seasons typically dictated by State fish/game agencies.
Ultimately, it’s important to remember these are not special rights granted to Nez Perce people, these are rights they reserved on these lands when they ceded them to the US Government over 150 years ago.