ASHLEY TRAVEL MANAGEMENT NEEDS YOUR WILD VOICE!
The Ashley National Forest (ANF) has initiated the initial scoping process for the new travel management plan (see HUPC LYNX 12/07). COMMENTS ARE DUE JANUARY 8.
Send them to: Kris Rutledge, Project Coord., Ashley N. F., 355 N. Vernal Ave, Vernal, UT 84078 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The subject line must contain “Roosevelt/ Duchesne and Flaming Gorge Ranger District Travel Management Plan.” Comments should be submitted in MS Word (.doc) or rich text format (.rtf).
YOUR WILD VOICE IS CRUCIAL TO SET THE TONE! This will be followed by two Draft Environmental Impact Statements (DEIS) late in 2008.
THE ISSUE AT HAND:
Presently the three ANF districts (Roosevelt/ Duchesne, Vernal and Flaming Gorge) harbor 1,403 miles of roads and 151 miles of motorized trails along with “numerous unauthorized motorized routes” and allows dispersed camping up to 300 feet from a designated route (new regs require this to be reduced to 150’). The Ashley's PROPOSED ACTION (you can see this at http://www.fs.fed.us/r4/ashley) importantly closes all of the forest to cross country use and closes some roads and illegal routes (many of these around the Ashley Gorge roadless area), yet still proposes a total of 1,472 mi. of open roads, 169 miles of motorized trails and has created essentially a new road classification, “potential dispersed camping routes,” violating the 150’ rule, by allowing some 39 miles, forest-wide, of these routes 150’-300’ long!
Make your wild voice heard loudly by urging the Ashley National Forest to:
1-Protect all ANF roadless areas, over 670,000 acres (about half of the forest), by not allowing any motorized routes within roadless areas.
2-Restrict dispersed camping to what he regulations call for--150’ from a designated route and not allow the new road classification of “dispersed camping routes.”
3-All motorized routes, existing and proposed, should be throughly analyzed in the DEIS so as to prevent erosion, impacts to water quality and riparian areas, wildlife habitat/corridors
and be properly maintained and monitored with shrinking management and law enforcement budgets.
4-Close all unauthorized routes and, of course, support the ANF cross country closure and proposed route closures.
Let them be vital, vigorous and wild, but please comment. Don’t put it off--it is important!