Winter Travel Management

Plumas National Forest
Comments Due January 24, 2019

Plumas National Forest issued a Draft Environmental Impact Statement for their Over-Snow Vehicle Use Designation project on October 22, 2018. The DEIS analyzes five alternatives. Alternative 2, the Modified Proposed Action, would designate 72% of the forest open to snowmobiles, a significant reduction from the 97% currently open, although half of the decrease is land under 3500 feet in elevation that is currently open.

The Proposed Action will close portions of five areas that were identified as important to non-motorized recreation in the project's scoping phase. The alternative would also create a 500-foot buffer on either side of the Pacific Crest Trail. However, it would allow snowmobiling in some proposed wilderness areas and allow the grooming of snowmobile trails close to the boundary of Bucks Lake Wilderness.

Snowlands Network in general finds Alternative 2 acceptable with a few modifications. See below for some recommendations on what to write in comments and the modifications to Alternative 2 that would make it more acceptable to non-motorized recreationists.

You can learn about the Plumas plan from their OSV project page or from their Travel Management web page. You can see the recommendations from Winter Wildlands Alliance on their Plumas page and see the opinions of the local Friends of Plumas Wilderness on their Saving Snow Sanctuaries page.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

Please tell the Forest Service that you want more areas in the Plumas NF managed for clean and quiet winter recreation and for forest resource and wildlife protection. You may submit your comments in several ways:

PUBLIC MEETINGS

Plumas will schedule two open houses in early January to discuss the DEIS and explain the differences between the alternatives.

DEADLINE

The deadline for submitting comments on the Plumas proposal has been extended to January 24, 2019.

WHAT TO WRITE

Tell Plumas NF that you are submitting comments to the Over-Snow Vehicle Use Designation Draft Environmental Impact Statement.

Tell Plumas NF that you support that Alternative 2 protects:

  • Backcountry skiing east of Bucks Lake Wilderness and Spanish Peak
  • Cross-country skiing on the Bucks Creek Loop Trail
  • The historic Lost Sierra Ski Traverse Route
  • Backcountry skiing on Thompson Peak

Tell Plumas NF that you support the following actions included in Alternative 5 and that these measures should be included in the final plan:

  • Do not allow grooming on Forest Road 24N33 that would encourage snowmobiles to trespass into Bucks Lake Wilderness
  • Do not designate OSV use on or around Lakes Basin Snowshoe and Ski Trails
  • Do not allow snowmobiles in Little Jamison Basin
  • Do not allow snowmobile use in any proposed wilderness areas, including Middle Feather, Bucks Creek, Chips, Grizzly, & Adams Peak.

THANK YOU

This is the time for you to let the Plumas NF know what changes you want to see in order to improve backcountry skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing. Please send comments now and try to attend one of the open houses!

Thank you for participating in this community effort.