Below is an email I received today, it will behoove the public to try to stay involved and have their voices heard to help keep our trails open. These forest areas cover such trails as the Gulches, China Wall, Chinaman's Gulch, and many more.
Pike and San Isabel National Forests
MVUM Planning Update
The Pike and San Isabel National Forests (PSI) published motor vehicle use maps (MVUMs) in 2009. MVUMs display routes on National Forest System lands that are open to motorized travel. Following MVUM publication, the Wilderness Society, Quiet Use Coalition, Wildearth Guardians, Rocky Mountain Wild, and the Great Old Broads for Wilderness filed suit against the PSI. The suit alleged the PSI added motorized routes that were not analyzed under NEPA and that the forest authorized motorized access in Management Areas identified in the Forest Plan Management as non-motorized. The parties eventually reached a settlement agreement on November 14, 2015. The agreement described the analysis requirements and methods the PSI agreed to follow and set a decision date of November 14, 2020, 5 years following settlement. Over the last several months, the PSI reviewed internal and external scoping comments. The result of this review is a better refined proposed action that balances environmental protection, motorized access, and natural resource management.
Forest Service employees and contractors are working on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) updates resulting from the internal input described above.
The DEIS will be released for a 45-day public comment period via the publication of the Notice of Availability in the Federal Register in August 2019. During this comment period, all interested or affected parties will be notified of the availability of the DEIS.
Public Comment Period and Public Meeting Schedule
The public comment period for the DEIS is scheduled for August 2019. A series of public meetings will be held to gather public feedback and are scheduled as indicated below. A separate notification will be issued once the times and specific locations for these meetings are confirmed:
Visit our Motorized Travel Management page for the latest information. Questions regarding this planning effort should be directed to John Dow, Forest Planner, firstname.lastname@example.org, (719) 250-5311.