Help decide the future of off-road vehicle use in the Siuslaw National Forest
May 14, 2007
CORVALLIS — A two-year effort is under way to collect your knowledge, thoughts and comments about areas open to motor-vehicles — including off-road areas — in the Siuslaw National.
The large coastal forest has two sections.
One runs from Sand Lake south to just north of Lincoln City, while the southern half picks up just south of Toledo and hugs the coast to just north of Coos Bay.
This first phase in crafting the plan involves getting the public's perspective, views and opinions and will help U.S. Forest Service officials “round-out” the inventory of areas that have historical off-highway motorized use, including non-campground camping areas, officials said.
“Forest maps will be displayed at all Siuslaw National Forest offices,” said Mike Harvey, a recreation staff officer. “We want the public to come in and mark on the
maps the areas they know about and use.
"This will help us during the second phase, the planning process, when we analyze which forest lands and roads would be open for motorized use.”
Working maps are available through July 31 at Siuslaw National Forest offices in Waldport, Florence, Reedsport, Hebo and Corvallis.
And officials will be making the rounds of meetings of clubs and groups that use the forest to collect information for the maps.
And because forest service offices are closed after business hours and weekends, there also may be some evening or weekend open houses for additional public opportunities to add to the maps.
It's all part of a response to the July 2004 Travel Management Rule issued by the Forest Service officials.
All national forests in the country will be going through a travel-management planning process to designate roads, trails and areas that will be open for motorized use.
Each forest will publish a Motor Vehicle Use Map by 2009 to show designated routes and seasonal restrictions.
Under the Travel Management Rule only those routes, areas and dispersed camps displayed on the Motor Vehicle Use Map will remain open for motorized use.
This is being done largely to address one of the Forest Service's list of “four threats” to national forest lands – unmanaged recreation use, especially unmanaged off-highway vehicle use.
Contact: (541) 750-7000.