Forests

Stanislaus 2021 Update

The Stanislaus National Forest signed their Final Environmental Impact Statement and signed Record of Decision on July 13, 2021. In what would seem to be a direct acquiescence to one single, local environmental group, the Forest has removed from their designation (IE closed to snowmobiles) essentially all lands between Highland Lakes Rd, and Pacific Valley, as well as the entire southern edge of the Eagle Meadows area and lands south of the Herring Creek Loop road. Lookout Peak, Marshall Canyon, Willow Flat, and the entire ridge between Long Valley Rd and Waterhouse Lake (everything from Three Chimneys, to Castle Rock to McCormick Pocket) are now closed in this plan. Reasons range from habitat for a frog that hibernates all winter, to potential habitat for a small fur bearer that is not in listed as endangered or threatened. The Forest is simply letting itself be run by someone who has sued… Read More »Stanislaus 2021 Update

Stanislaus

September, 2021 UPDATE: The Stanislaus National Forest signed their Final Environmental Impact Statement and signed Record of Decision on July 13, 2021. In what would seem to be a direct acquiescence to one single, local environmental group, the Forest has removed from their designation (IE closed to snowmobiles) essentially all lands between Highland Lakes Rd, and Pacific Valley, as well as the entire southern edge of the Eagle Meadows area and lands south of the Herring Creek Loop road. Lookout Peak, Marshall Canyon, Willow Flat, and the entire ridge between Long Valley Rd and Waterhouse Lake (everything from Three Chimneys, to Castle Rock to McCormick Pocket) are now closed in this plan. Reasons range from habitat for a frog that hibernates all winter, to potential habitat for a small fur bearer that is not in listed as endangered or threatened. The Forest is simply letting itself be run by someone… Read More »Stanislaus

Lake Tahoe Basin

It’s here. The Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBMU) has released their scoping proposal for what’s equal parts a winter recreation plan as it is a snowmobile management plan. This is part one of what will be a three part process, scoping with an opportunity to comment, draft plan with another opportunity to comment, and draft final plan with a chance to object. The project page is located here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=47342 Click Here for our tip sheet for making comments COMMENTS ARE DUE BEFORE DECEMBER 9 Links to maps of proposals http://www.fs.usda.gov/nfs/11558/www/nepa/102063_FSPLT3_4842628.pdf http://www.fs.usda.gov/nfs/11558/www/nepa/102063_FSPLT3_4842627.pdf http://www.fs.usda.gov/nfs/11558/www/nepa/102063_FSPLT3_4842630.pdf http://www.fs.usda.gov/nfs/11558/www/nepa/102063_FSPLT3_4842629.pdf There is language in the proposal to provide for increased parking around the lake for everyone, motorized or not. This is huge. Non-motorized parking takes some of the stress off the areas we can ride by giving skiers somewhere else to go without just closing more areas to us. More motorized parking at least in theory… Read More »Lake Tahoe Basin

Plumas August Update

The Plumas National Forest has released their Final Environmental Impact Statement and Draft Record of Decision. They decision was published on August 26, but they just recently released maps so you can see the effects better.  The good news is that they recognize that the Pacific Crest Trail receives so little use (none in some more remote locales) and have removed the non-motorized buffers in places far from winter trailheads. The bad news is that the PCT changes are about it. Mt Fillmore is still being treated as a Botanical Special Interest Area, the upper reaches of the Jamison Creek drainages are being treated as a potential Wild and Scenic River even though there’s not even a creek there some years, and areas with zero reported conflicts (or use that matter) are still being closed with non-motorized recreation cited as a cause.  You can view the Project Page here.  Click… Read More »Plumas August Update

El Dorado

UNDERSTAND THE OBJECTION PROCESS OBJECTIONS DUE DECEMBER 17 The Eldorado National Forest has released their Final Environmental Impact Statement. As we expected, no alternative from the Draft EIS was chosen directly, rather a new hybridized management option is being proposed. Significant Gains -Removal of the PCT non-motorized buffer (yay!) -Reasonable Crossing zones that don’t funnel users into avalanche terrain, and that respect traditional use far away from any potential hikers. -Largely a continuation of existing management. -An acknowledgement that the Eldorado NF is already heavily weighted towards non-motorized access around the highest and most snow-prone areas. Losses -The area between the Van Vleck Bunkhouse and Loon Lake off Icehouse Road. -The south side of Echo Summit by Adventure mountain, removing a travel corridor to the upper reaches of Sayles Canyon. -Most areas below 4k We are now in the objection phase. This is not another comment period, rather it’s a… Read More »El Dorado

Tahoe update

The Tahoe National Forest has released their revised documents on February 7. You can find them here under the ‘decision’ tab. https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=45914 We’re currently going through the final plan but the Tahoe has adopted their preferred alternative 2 with even more closures. Zero substantive osv areas have been added. We are now in an objection period. This means that if you’ve previously commented on the Tahoe Plan, now is the time to file an objection, not a comment. OBJECTIONS FROM THE SNOWMOBILE COMMUNITY ARE NEEDED Your objection must relate to the topics you brought up in your comments from the DEIS comment phase, UNLESS they address changes seen now in the FEIS. Were your concerns addressed? Were they ignored? Tell them specifically what you would like to see done in the final Record of Decision. You must follow the official format. How objections work: https://www.fs.fed.us/objections/objections_related.php A few noteworthy closures in the… Read More »Tahoe update