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Old 10-05-2010, 02:47 PM
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Peppermint Patti Peppermint Patti is offline
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Default Three Trails Draft EIS

The following has been released by the Deschutes National Forest. The Oregon Executive Director's office, Deschutes County 4-Wheelers and the Klamath Four Runners have been involved with this plan since it's inception. We will review the document and post comments here. If you want to join us with your comments, please email Randy Drake.

Dear Reader:

The Crescent Ranger District on the Deschutes National Forest has analyzed a designated Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) trail system. It is called the Three Trails OHV project and it spans 93,016 acres with a focus on areas that are currently being most heavily visited by riders. The goal is to direct the use to the most suitable and sustainable places on the landscape while maintaining a trail system and overall recreation experience that riders want. This proposal would provide a system of 100+ miles of interlinking trails that would vary in skill level and density to match the terrain, links to all staging areas, and opportunities for beginner through advanced riding experiences. In addition, the proposal would close roads, rehabilitate unneeded trails, and generally locate trails away from water. The Draft Environmental Impact Statement is now available. John Allen, Forest Supervisor of the Deschutes National Forest is the responsible official.

In summary, Alternative B was the original Proposed Action. Three other action alternatives were developed.

All action alternatives are designed to provide access to local businesses at Crescent Lake Junction. They accomplish this by sharing the Metolius-Windigo horse trail and snowmobile underpass. This potential incompatibility between motorized and non-motorized users led to a design in Alternatives C through E that would separate users as much as possible.

Alternative C was designed to enhance the rider’s experience by creating a trail system with more loops, scenic vistas and play areas, in addition to a new crossing over the Little Deschutes River designed specifically for OHV use. Consideration for rider experience were carried forward in Alternatives D and E. Alternatives C, D, and E were also designed to dampen noise by locating trails away from residences; however Alternative D closes the Muttonchop pit and moves the play area farther away from the Two Rivers subdivision. Alternatives D and E are designed to address more effective big game habitat. Alternative E was identified as the Preferred Alternative and it provides a blend of all the factors that drove alternative development.

Alternatives A through E in the DEIS have 8.5 x 11 roads and trails maps (p 32-51) that are small in print. Included with the DEIS in a separate packet are 11 x 17 versions of these maps for clarity. Please note that these locations are approximate and actual on the ground tread may vary slightly from the map.

If you have requested a copy of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement, or a compact disc we will be automatically sending you one. Otherwise, all documents are also available on the Internet in PDF format at:
http://www.fs.fed.us/r6/centralorego...nt/index.shtml

Public Comment: This comment period is intended to provide those interested in or affected by this activity an opportunity to make their concerns known. Those who participate and provide timely comments will be eligible to appeal the decision pursuant to 36 CFR part 215 regulations.

How to Comment and Timeframe: Written, facsimile, hand-delivered, oral, and electronic comments concerning this action will be accepted for 45 calendar days following publication of a notice in The Bulletin. The publication date in the newspaper of record is the exclusive means for calculating the comment period for this proposal. Those wishing to comment should not rely upon dates or timeframe information provided by any other source. The Regulations prohibit extending the length of the comment period.

Written comments must be submitted to: Holly Jewkes, Crescent Ranger District, P.O. Box 208, Crescent, OR 97733. The office business hours for those submitting hand-delivered comments are 7:45 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. Oral comments must be provided at the Responsible Official’s office during normal business hours via telephone (541) 433-3200 or in person. Electronic comments must be submitted in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), or Word (.doc). If no identifiable name is attached to a comment, a verification of identity will be required for appeal eligibility. Send comments to: comments-pacificnorthwest-deschutes-crescent@fs.fed.us. In cases using an electronic message, a scanned signature is one way to provide verification. E-mails submitted to e-mail addresses other than the one listed above, in other formats than those listed, or containing viruses will be rejected.

It is the responsibility of persons providing comments to submit them by the close of the comment period and ensure that their comments have been received.

Thank you for your interest in the Crescent Ranger District.
Sincerely,
/s/ Holly Jewkes
HOLLY JEWKES
District Ranger
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Patti Pyland
Deschutes County 4-Wheelers
Oregon Executive Director Staff
PNW Forum Leader Team Member
Region 6 Delegate
Bend, Oregon
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:44 PM
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Written comments must be submitted to: Holly Jewkes, Crescent Ranger District, P.O. Box 208, Crescent, OR 97733. The office business hours for those submitting hand-delivered comments are 7:45 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. Oral comments must be provided at the Responsible Official’s office during normal business hours via telephone (541) 433-3200 or in person. Electronic comments must be submitted in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), or Word (.doc). If no identifiable name is attached to a comment, a verification of identity will be required for appeal eligibility. Send comments to: comments-pacificnorthwest-deschutes-crescent@fs.fed.us. In cases using an electronic message, a scanned signature is one way to provide verification. E-mails submitted to e-mail addresses other than the one listed above, in other formats than those listed, or containing viruses will be rejected.


Three Trails OHV Project Talking Points
• Alternative C is our preferred alternative with the modifications discussed in these comments.
• In order for any designated OHV system to be successful, the system must meet the desires of its users. In order to meet the desires of Class II users, roads must be obliterated and reconstructed with the following trail elements: native trail surface; slopes over 30 percent; obstacles such as rocks, logs, ledges, mud and/or snow; trail filters; narrow trail corridors; sharp turns and curves; loops and destinations; play areas; cattle guards; and water bars.
• The design parameters for an OHV Class II trail are presented in the Forest Service Handbook 2309.18, Chapter 20, 23.23. Based upon OHV Class II user preferences, a Class 2 trail is the most desirable and would be considered a “More Difficult” trail.
• NEPA requires accurate and expert site-specific and cumulative impacts analysis.
• In order to be a factually based document, Class II trail mileage must be broken out each and every time that OHV trail mileage is given, as the miles are not equal.
• If these proposed trails will be open to both motorized and non-motorized users, then ALL of the impacts must be analyzed in the DEIS, not just those associated with the motorized users.
• Unrestricted cross county travel is currently legal in most areas of the forest. Although Maintenance Level 1 roads are not considered “open”, they are legal for use under the current status of “unrestricted cross country travel”. OHV enthusiasts often use these ML1 roads because they provide a desirable experience without causing resource damage, and their use does not increase the mileage of user-created trails. The phrase “non-authorized use from motorized travel (primarily OHVs)” inaccurately infers unlawful behavior.
• This DEIS proposes a season of use from May 1 to October 31. Throughout the Deschutes National Forest, winter OHV closures are from December 1 to March 31. Adopting a different closure season than the rest of the forest will create confusion for the OHV community.
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Patti Pyland
Deschutes County 4-Wheelers
Oregon Executive Director Staff
PNW Forum Leader Team Member
Region 6 Delegate
Bend, Oregon
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