CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

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CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby HummBebe » Tue Jan 08, 2008 1:51 pm

PLEASE - EVERYONE SEND THIS EMAIL ASAP!!!!!!


BRC IMPORTANT ACTION ALERT
PRIORITY LEVEL: CRITICAL
ACTION REQUESTED BY FRIDAY, JANUARY 11, 2008

U.S. FOREST SERVICE ATTEMPTS FIRST SITE SPECIFIC IMPLEMENTATION OF "DE-FACTO WILDERNESS" POLICY.

"If this is not successfully changed, such a policy has the very real potential to go far beyond just closing areas with 'wilderness character.' If federal land managers are allowed to apply this sort management, America's spectacular scenic backcountry will become the exclusive playground of the politically well-connected."
- Brian Hawthorne, Public Lands Policy Director, BlueRibbon Coalition

Dear BRC Action Alert Subscriber,

Idaho's Clearwater National Forest has released a "Proposed Action" for the summer and winter motorized and mountain bike Travel Plan. It is the first time a National Forest in Region 1 (in northern Idaho and Montana) has attempted site-specific implementation of their new (and unlawful) de-facto Wilderness policy. The "Proposed Action" proposes removing all motorized and mountain bike uses from "Recommended Wilderness Areas" (RWA).

In the "picture = 1000 words" department, take a look at this:

http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/PL/C ... ends_1.pdf

Congressionally designated Wilderness and "Recommended Wilderness Areas" all shown on the same map, in the same color. -- Same map. Same management.

Speaking specifically for the Clearwater NF, implementation of this lousy policy will result in closure of 44%, or 178 miles of single-track motorcycle trails and some of the best backcountry snowmobile trails left in these parts.

But that's just for the Clearwater. If allowed to continue across the Region, or worse, become a National policy, this de-facto wilderness management will be the single greatest threat to motorized and mountain bike recreation... ever.

Fortunately, at this early stage in the process, a "cut and paste" email effort can be effective. Please take just a second to send a quick email to the Forest Service. The simple instructions are below.

Please help us fight this policy.

Brian Hawthorne
Public Lands Policy Director
BlueRibbon Coalition
208-237-1008 ext 102

PS: I want to stress the importance of this issue. If you've never responded to a BRC Action Alert, please make this your first time. Please take action today!

Clearwater National Forest Action Alert:

SITUATION:
The deadline to comment on a draft winter and summer Travel Plan for the Clearwater National Forest is set for January 11, 2008. This is the first time a National Forest in Region 1 has attempted site specific implementation of their new (and unlawful) de-facto Wilderness policy. COMMENTS ARE URGENTLY NEEDED

WHY THIS IS SO IMPORTANT:
Obviously, any de-facto Wilderness policy is bad enough. But the situation here is even worse. I've been trying to find a clever way to explain exactly why this policy concerns BRC so much. Let me try to explain it this way:

The inventory criteria used by the FS to determine which of their lands they recommend for congressional Wilderness designation allows motorized and mountain bike uses to exist. But the management direction for lands recommended for congressional Wilderness designation mandates the elimination of motorized and mountain bike uses.

This, valued BRC member, is the very definition of arbitrary and capricious.

If this is not successfully changed, such a policy has the very real potential to go far beyond just closing areas with "wilderness character." If federal land managers are allowed to apply this sort management, America's spectacular scenic backcountry will become the exclusive playground of the politically well connected.

More info on the web: http://www.sharetrails.org/defacto_wilderness/

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO:
Send a simple email comment to the Clearwater.
Here is a link to Clearwater's Travel Plan webpage:
http://www.fs.fed.us/r1/clearwater/Proj ... Travel.htm

The email address is: comments-northern-clearwater@fs.fed.us

IMPORTANT: Put "Comments on Clearwater National Forest Travel Plan" in the subject line and be certain to include your name and address at the end of the comments. A return email address is NOT sufficient! (FS often discards "anonymous" email comments.) Copy the text below and paste into your email.



IMPORTANT: Put "Comments on Clearwater National Forest Travel Plan" in the subject line
comments-northern-clearwater@fs.fed.us

Lois Foster, Travel Plan Interdisciplinary Team Leader
Lochsa Ranger District, Kamiah Ranger Station
Rt. 2 Box 191
Kamiah, ID 83536

I would like to make the following comments on the Clearwater National Forest Travel Plan. The comment is made using the "issues in the form of questions" format. Please consider these questions in the Alternative development and please also include a full discussion of each question in the EIS. I also request the EIS include a discussion and brief analysis of previous Congressional Wilderness designations so the public may understand how the existence of motorized uses actually impacts Congress's ability to designate Wilderness.

Question 1) In Montana Wilderness Assoc. v. U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. District Court of Montana found that Congress required the Forest Service to strike-and maintain-a balance between wilderness character and motorized use in WSAs established by that Act. Given that Congress envisioned motorized uses in Wilderness Study Areas they established, what is the Forest Service's rationale for excluding motorized uses in Recommended Wilderness Areas (RWAs)?

Question 2) If the existence of motorized uses does not preclude an area from being designated as an RWA, then what is the Forest Service's rationale for eliminating motorized uses in RWAs?

Question 3) What level of motorized or mountain bike use would disqualify an area from being a RWA?

Question 4) In the Eastern Wilderness Act, Congress designated areas Wilderness that contained motorized uses, structures, maintained roads and even sections of paved roads. Has the Forest Service studied the level of motorized uses that actually precludes Congress from designating an area Wilderness?

YOUR NAME
YOUR ADDRESS


PLEASE - EVERYONE SEND THIS EMAIL ASAP!!!!!!

Thank you...

Bebe
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Alec W » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:18 pm

Sent
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Bellvis » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:37 pm

Sent from all 5 of my email addresses.
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby sfox » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:46 pm

I'm happy to support, but I guess I have some questions. I read the info you posted and then I read the info posted on the U.S. Forestry service's site.....something doesn't add up. What are they trying to do? It reads to me that they are trying to step in and regulate usage....is that necessarily a bad thing? :duh:

This is a serious question as I truly believe that Treading Lightly needs the helping hand of some sort of oversight and unfortunatley, OHV users have never self-regulated enough to avoid having someone else provide the needed oversight.

The Clearwater National Forest provides a variety of recreation opportunities – camping, driving, fishing, hunting, and more. Each year more and more people are involved in Off Highway Vehicle or OHV recreation whether driving all terrain vehicles (ATV’s), trail motorcycles, or four wheel drive vehicles. Motor vehicles can be a fun way to access and enjoy National Forest lands – in the right places and under appropriate management.

Unfortunately, the growth in use of OHV’s and their increasing ability to travel in rougher terrain has outraced the development of management strategies for them. While most riders use their OHV’s responsibly, the damage from growing cross-country travel is obvious. Proliferation of trails, vegetation loss, unsightly scars, soil erosion, and stream damage are a few of the issues with irresponsible use of OHV’s.


Isn't the loss of vegetation, creation of new trails , etc what we want to avoid ad expect the USFS to help fix when it does occur?

S
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Sewie » Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:48 pm

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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Sewie » Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:51 pm

sfox wrote:I'm happy to support, but I guess I have some questions. I read the info you posted and then I read the info posted on the U.S. Forestry service's site.....something doesn't add up. What are they trying to do? It reads to me that they are trying to step in and regulate usage....is that necessarily a bad thing? :duh:

This is a serious question as I truly believe that Treading Lightly needs the helping hand of some sort of oversight and unfortunatley, OHV users have never self-regulated enough to avoid having someone else provide the needed oversight.

Isn't the loss of vegetation, creation of new trails , etc what we want to avoid ad expect the USFS to help fix when it does occur?

S



I'm sure Bebe can/will comment in more detail, as she is way more in tune with this stuff than I am.

The scary thing about this from what I see is the use of the "Wilderness" tag to close forest lands to motorized use. Temporary closures to rehabilitate affected areas are one thing. But once you slap that Wilderness tag on, the chances of that land EVER being opened to motorized use again are about nil. Now factor in that this designation can be bestowed by a Forest Manager, rather than an act of Congress. It would set a dangerous precedent for every greenie holding that position to ban us from our forests - possibly forever!

Here's some more info on De Facto Wilderness >> http://www.sharetrails.org/defacto_wilderness/
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby HummBebe » Wed Jan 09, 2008 6:20 pm

Sewie wrote:
sfox wrote:I'm happy to support, but I guess I have some questions. I read the info you posted and then I read the info posted on the U.S. Forestry service's site.....something doesn't add up. What are they trying to do? It reads to me that they are trying to step in and regulate usage....is that necessarily a bad thing? :duh:

This is a serious question as I truly believe that Treading Lightly needs the helping hand of some sort of oversight and unfortunatley, OHV users have never self-regulated enough to avoid having someone else provide the needed oversight.

Isn't the loss of vegetation, creation of new trails , etc what we want to avoid ad expect the USFS to help fix when it does occur?

S



Now factor in that this designation can be bestowed by a Forest Manager, rather than an act of Congress. It would set a dangerous precedent for every greenie holding that position to ban us from our forests - possibly forever!

Here's some more info on De Facto Wilderness >> http://www.sharetrails.org/defacto_wilderness/


Wow !!! Sewie , great job!!

That is exactly it. The Anti Access crowd is not playing by the rules, nor are they working within the current system.

Technically, ONLY AN ACT OF CONGRESS can designate a Wilderness area. Period, end of story. But the BLM has gotten away with it, so now the anti access bent employess in the Forest Service think they can get away with it too.

And, if we don't step up, it will guarantee the spread of this behaviour across the country.

Just like Tellico, (which was a lesson to OHV Access Leaders and to Blue Ribbon Coalition, who incorrectly assumed that massive letter writing campaigns do not work,) a few hundred letters can make things happen, FOR EITHER SIDE. No matter how bent they are (FS?BLM Employees), pro access or anti access, they have to listen to the public, because they are our lands.

Please know that your letter will be read and heard. It will count, especially if it is recieved in linke with a couple thousand others.

PLEASE WRITE AND SEND THIS EMAIL TODAY!!!

sfox wrote:OHV users have never self-regulated enough to avoid having someone else provide the needed oversight.


I can't believe you actually said that. :duh: Does that mean we agree now that we should oversee our own?
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby sfox » Wed Jan 09, 2008 8:24 pm

HummBebe wrote:I can't believe you actually said that. :duh: Does that mean we agree now that we should oversee our own?


I can't believe that you actually believe that I didn't think oversight of our own is needed.........I just believe that the oversight has to be done in an appropriate fashion. Anyone can buy a truck, drive to a trailhead and have a go, there's no oversight for the majority of OHV users and unfortunately even less education. We all go on organized club runs, while things still can happen, there is oversight to some degree. A large portion of OHV users lack this organization in their activities and no oversight exists. Drinking, off-trail vehicles, dangerous driving is not abnormal and this is unfortunate.....and uncontrollable given the current way public trails are managed.

S
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Alec W » Wed Jan 09, 2008 9:07 pm

sfox wrote:
HummBebe wrote:I can't believe you actually said that. :duh: Does that mean we agree now that we should oversee our own?


I can't believe that you actually believe that I didn't think oversight of our own is needed.........I just believe that the oversight has to be done in an appropriate fashion. Anyone can buy a truck, drive to a trailhead and have a go, there's no oversight for the majority of OHV users and unfortunately even less education. We all go on organized club runs, while things still can happen, there is oversight to some degree. A large portion of OHV users lack this organization in their activities and no oversight exists. Drinking, off-trail vehicles, dangerous driving is not abnormal and this is unfortunate.....and uncontrollable given the current way public trails are managed.

S

Seth, stop this! Send an email or shut up. Please delete this and the other posts arguing with Jac. This is important and not a thread to argue about the past.

Thanks
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby sfox » Wed Jan 09, 2008 11:13 pm

Wow.....wasn't trying to argue, as stated in my first post I'm just trying to understand. I wasn't trying to dredge up the past, trying to understand the issues here to help with the future. I posted no attacks or really anything argumentative, seriously just asking questions so I can understand better.

I actually found both Sewie's and Humbebe's posts to be very informative and helpful......honestly I didn't see this as anything but a discussion :duh:
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Alan00HMCO » Wed Jan 09, 2008 11:31 pm

[quote="HummBebe
Just like Tellico, (which was a lesson to OHV Access Leaders and to Blue Ribbon Coalition, who incorrectly assumed that massive letter writing campaigns do not work,) a few hundred letters can make things happen, FOR EITHER SIDE. No matter how bent they are (FS?BLM Employees), pro access or anti access, they have to listen to the public, because they are our lands.

[/quote]

I guess you are saying that the Tree Hugger's letters matter since Tellico is closing? We all wrote letters and they didn't seem to count ours. They "listen" to the side that fits thier pollitical agenda. And the elceted officials in Murphy, NC (the nearest town) can't to a damn thing because its a federal jurisdiction. So smoozing the local polliticians dosent seem beneficial either. They are supposed to do a protest caravan through Murphy as many of the business, etc. will be affected greatly by the closing if the trails. This sucks.
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby HummBebe » Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:16 am

Alan06SUT wrote:I guess you are saying that the Tree Hugger's letters matter since Tellico is closing? We all wrote letters and they didn't seem to count ours. They "listen" to the side that fits thier pollitical agenda. And the elceted officials in Murphy, NC (the nearest town) can't to a damn thing because its a federal jurisdiction. So smoozing the local polliticians dosent seem beneficial either. They are supposed to do a protest caravan through Murphy as many of the business, etc. will be affected greatly by the closing if the trails. This sucks.


Actually, as I posted in the Tellico thread, 700 letters came from the Trout Unlimited supporters, and only 400 from the OHV community.

It simply was not enough.

As much as we'd like to play the political victims in this we're not. We need to get more active and be a huge force to reckon with.

Write the email today!!! Comments are open until the 11th of January.

Agree or disagree, what we need is what we need. Letters, comments and involvement. There is no other way.

Be a part of the success, get involved.
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby sfox » Thu Jan 10, 2008 9:45 am

Alec W wrote:Seth, stop this! Send an email or shut up.

Thanks


BTW Alec, you are ASSUMING that I didn't send an email.......you know what they say about assuming right? :D

Sent two so far

S
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby Alec W » Thu Jan 10, 2008 9:54 am

sfox wrote:BTW Alec, you are ASSUMING that I didn't send an email.......you know what they say about assuming right? :D

Sent two so far

S

Thanks :)
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Re: CRITICAL ALERT - ACTION NEEDED NOW!!!!!

Postby HummBebe » Thu Jan 10, 2008 9:58 am

Not sure if you are talking about me, but I have received none.

JacquelyneT@KeyHousing.com
or
theisen@starstream.net
or
bebehumr@gmail.com
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