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Land Use Zeus
2,829 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dear BRC Action Alert Subscriber,
Continental Divide National Scenic Trail EA Comments Deadline June 28!
The Salmon-Challis (SCNF) and the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forests (BDNF), which are working together on the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDNST) from Miner Creek to Goldstone Pass, have released their Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Miner to Goldstone portion of the CDNST for review and comment. This segment of trail is located southwest of Wisdom, Montana, and east of Salmon, Idaho, in the Beaverhead Mountains of the Bitterroot Range.

Comments are invited on this proposal. The Responsible Officials for this project will consider all public comments before making a decision. In order to retain your administrative appeal rights, you must provide timely, substantive written, oral, or electronic comments during this 30-day comment period, and each individual or representative from each organization must either sign the comments, or verify their identity upon request. Comments must be postmarked or received by June 28, 2008.

Dennis Hilliard, Ranger on the Leadore District of the Salmon-Challis National Forest, and his staff would be glad to help you with the Idaho segment of the trail. On the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest, please direct your questions to Noelle Meier, Forest Recreation Specialist, at the BDNF Supervisor's Office in Dillon, Montana at (406) 683-3932.

The 30 day public comment period runs through close of business on June 28, 2008.

Send written comments to: Noelle Meier, BDNF, 420 Barrett, Dillon, MT 59725, Subject: CDNST: Miner-Berry-Goldstone. Those wishing to comment by telephone should contact Noelle at (406) 6833932, or by fax at (406) 683-3855.

Hand-delivered comments must be time and date imprinted at the BDNF Supervisor's Office by the close of business on the 30th calendar day following publication of the legal notice in the newspaper of record. Office hours for submitting hand-delivered comments are 8:00 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday. Oral comments may be provided at the BDNF Supervisor's Office during normal business hours via telephone or in person by the last day of the comment period. Written comments must be postmarked by the Postal Service, e-mailed, faxed, or otherwise submitted by 11:59 p.m. by the last day of the comment period.

Electronic comments may be submitted to [email protected]. The subject line must contain the name "CDNST: Miner-Berry-Goldstone." Acceptable formats are MS Word, Word Perfect or RTF. For electronically mailed comments, the sender should receive an electronic acknowledgement from the agency as confirmation of receipt. If the sender does not receive this acknowledgement of their comments, it is the sender's responsibility to ensure timely receipt by other means.

Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names and addresses of those who comment, will be considered part of the public record and will be available for public inspection. Comments may be submitted in writing, orally, or through electronic means.

A copy of the EA is available online at http://www.fs.fed.us/r1/b-d/projects/index-cdnst-mbg.shtml. To request a copy, contact the BDNF Supervisor's Office, 420 Barrett, Dillon, MT 59725, telephone (406) 683-3900, or email: [email protected].

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact BRC.
Thanks in advance for your support,
Brian Hawthorne
BlueRibbon Coalition
208-237-1008 ext 102

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Not a Wenzelite
34,703 Posts
The Preferred Alternative, Alternative 4, closes no existing motorized routes!!!!

Write in and tell the USFS you support Alternative 4!!!

Alternative 4 said:
This alternative was developed in response to concerns regarding elk security, scenery, and fragile high mountain lakes. The new trail construction from Berry Creek to Pioneer Creek is moved east and down slope to avoid high quality elk security cover and a number of wet areas. The trail bypasses all the high lakes and routes users onto the Continental Divide at the head of Darkhorse and Wimpey Creeks, allowing users to enjoy the sweeping views of Montana and Idaho. The trail location avoids visible headwalls in
Pioneer and Jahnke Creeks and is located on an existing trail in Darkhorse, thus reducing construction costs and new visual impacts. This Alternative does not change or close motorized travel routes.

Alternative 4 includes a total of 21.8 miles of CDNST trail. Alternative 4 proposes new trail construction for approximately 8.3 miles of trail on the BDNF and approximately 2.8 miles of trail on the SCNF. In addition, approximately 10.5 miles of existing trails and low standard roads would be reconstructed, and 0.2 miles of the Goldstone Road would be used. This alternative provides access to the Continental Divide through the Jahnke drainage and accesses the divide at Darkhorse. It then follows along the west side of the
divide to Goldstone Pass. This alternative directs the trail construction along the west side of the Continental Divide from Darkhorse south, where the topography is much gentler. The proposed route would cross motorized roads that access the divide from Wimpey Creek. This route is more scenic, with more construction proposed on the divide itself. This alternative minimizes the amount of construction in CDNST Miner-Berry-Goldstone – Environmental Assessment highly visible scenic areas at the head of Pioneer Creek and directs use away from sensitive high mountain lakes in the Pioneer drainage. This alternative routes the trail out of sensitive elk habitat and moves the trail off of the Darkhorse-Cowbone road. Existing motorized and non-motorized uses in the project area on the BDNF and the SCNF would remain unchanged. Please refer to the Alternative 4 map.

Not a Wenzelite
34,703 Posts
MT4Runner said:
Noelle Meier
420 Barrett
Dillon, MT 59725

Re: CDNST: Miner-Berry-Goldstone

Dear Noelle, Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the changes in the Miner Creek to Goldstone Pass section of the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail.
I fully support Preferred Alternative 4. It is important to note that this Alternative retains mechanized and motorized access at the current level. These historic uses are responsible uses of the area, and should continue. Safe access by motorized/mechanized means is also an asset to the Trail system for safety or fire response.
I appreciate the BDNF's acknowledgement that the National Trail System Act and the the Comprehensive Plan allow for motorized use on portions of the trail where such use was allowed at the time of CDNST designtaion.
Best regards,
Shawn W. Baker
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