SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska

Ketchikan-Misty Fiords Roads-Trails Decision Announced
Public Comments shape Forest Service roads decision
High-clearance, OHVers maintain access to preferred roads in KMFRD


August 21, 2008

Ketchikan, Alaska - Outdoor recreationists and subsistence users who drive high-clearance and off-highway vehicles in the Ketchikan-Misty Fiords Ranger District will maintain access to their preferred Forest Service roads. That's according to District Ranger Lynn Kolund, who says he based his decision on input from the public.

The 2005 Travel Management Rule requires the Forest Service to designate which roads, trails, and areas are open to motor vehicles. It prohibits motor vehicle use off the designated system.

Kolund selected Alternative 3 from the District's Access and Travel Management Environmental Assessment. It maintains 109 miles of road for high-clearance vehicles and OHVs, and 36.7 miles of OHV trail. The decision reduces maintenance costs by closing an additional 95 miles of road.

The selected alternative was developed based on roads identified as most used for recreation, sport hunting and fishing, and subsistence through a series of public meetings and 30-day comment period.

Once a Motorized Vehicle Use Map is developed and published, it will be available at the ranger district and the Southeast Alaska Discovery Center. It will be updated annually.

Individuals or non-federal organizations who submitted written comments during the comment period may appeal the decision. Appeals must be filed within 45 days from publication of the legal notice of this decision in the Ketchikan Daily News, the newspaper of record.

The notice of appeal must be in writing. It may be hand delivered, faxed or sent by mail to:

Appeal Deciding Officer:
Forrest Cole, Forest Supervisor
USDA Forest Service, Tongass National Forest, Federal Building
648 Mission Street
Ketchikan, AK 99901
Fax: 907-228-6125

Electronic appeals must be submitted to Subject: ATM EA.

The decision will be implemented five business days after the 45-day appeal period closes if no appeals are filed. If appeals are received, the decision will take effect 15 business days following the date of the last appeal disposition.

Copies of the Access and Travel Management EA and DN/FONSI are available for review at the Ketchikan-Misty Fiords District Office and online.


On the Web:

Ketchikan-Misty Fiords Ranger District Access and Travel Management


Source of News:

U.S. Forest Service - Tongass National Forest


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Ketchikan, Alaska