Black Hills National Forest Announces Travel Plan DecisionForest Supervisor Craig Bobzien announced his decision today for motorized travel on the Black Hills National Forest.
Mar 26, 2010
BKNF Announces Travel Plan Decision
Date: Mar 24, 2010
Custer, SD – Forest Supervisor Craig Bobzien announced his decision today for motorized travel on the Black Hills National Forest.
The final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) resulted from over four years of extensive public involvement, Bobzien said. “The system provides a wide variety of motorized recreation opportunities. The public involvement was tremendous, greater than any project in recent history. The comments reflected viewpoints from motorized and non-motorized users,” he said. “We simply could not have designed this system without the public’s help.”
The Decision contains a designated motorized system of 3157 miles of roads and 707 miles of motorized trails, totaling 3864 miles.
The 707 mile designated motorized trail system features multiple-scale loops and family oriented riding opportunities, he said. “My decision provides a diversity of recreational experiences and will better disperse users,” Bobzien said. The designated trail system avoids several sensitive areas and reduces conflicts with other users. Smaller scale trail systems were considered but would lead to more congestion and unnecessarily limit the variety of experiences for the motorized trail recreationists, he said.
Bobzien said the decision includes a number of benefits to wildlife and cultural resources. “We worked closely with South Dakota, Wyoming and the Tribes to get here,” Bobzien said.
The Travel Plan was prepared in response to the Travel Management Rule of 2005 which applies to all 155 National Forests and Grasslands in the United States. The Forest will be closed to motorized cross-country travel unless designated open, Bobzien said. Cross country travel for dispersed camping and to retrieve downed elk will be allowed certain distances from designated roads.
“We were very mindful of non-motorized recreation across the Forest and lowered the number of trails near private land and near hiking trails,” he said.
Bobzien invites the public to view the Environmental Impact Statement and Record of Decision, along with maps and other helpful information, by visiting the Black Hills National Forest website at http://www.fs.usda.gov/blackhills.