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Thread: Tellico to close... possibly for ever

  1. #1
    Land Squid Jeffb_79's Avatar
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    Default Tellico to close... possibly for ever

    Re-post from another board:

    Today the SFWDA met with the USFS and heard a presentation on what will be in their Environmental Assessment. While they have 7 alternatives that they are considering, their preferred alternative is to CLOSE TELLICO. While we know that this is completely unacceptable and will cause immediate and intense emotional reaction, we are asking that everyone maintain a level head and concentrate on what our task is now.

    STEP 1: The FS Supervisor issued a TEMPORARY CLOSURE ORDER that will keep Tellico closed until they decide what the fate of the area will be. This means that TELLICO WILL NOT REOPEN ON APRIL 1ST! Please read the order here: http://www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/nepa/tu...ry_closure.pdf. and provide comments to the temporary closure. Be sure to talk about all the plans you have to use the area and all the events that are already scheduled and that you have paid to attend. We MUST NOT LET THIS HAPPEN!

    STEP 2: We must, at all costs, provide as many SUBSTANTIVE comments about the EA as humanly possible. And we are ready. SFWDA requests that you download the study that we commissioned (Recommended Trail System Repair and Maintenance Plan Upper Tellico OHV System) and that you download the FS’ EA which is posted here (Upper Tellico OHV Area ) and that you compare the two side by side and start making comments. Our study will give you the data that you need to make comments about the surveys that have been done, the lack of maintenance they FS has completed, the science, the engineering, the economics, EVERYTHING.

    We will work to have a letter generator up, but honestly, we need for you to take pencil to paper and think this through. Copy this announcement and send it to your friends, family, and everyone you know.

    STEP 3: The other thing we need, and you know what it coming, is money. In this tough economic time, it’s hard to find a few dollars to support a cause, but if you enjoy the Tellico area, or even the dying sport of OHV and 4X4 recreation, please consider a donation to Rescue Tellico so that we may continue to fight for Tellico. Rescue Tellico Fund

    STEP 4: In an effort to show that we will not accept these actions, Crawford’s Campground is committing to continue on with the plans for Spring Fling on April 4th. Please consider attending and showing your support and helping to raise money for Rescue Tellico.

    So you know, SFWDA is working very closely with U4WDA and BlueRibbon Coalition to review these documents. BE ASSURED that the lawyers will be reviewing all of these documents in detail and that we are all ready to take whatever action is warranted to further the fight to KEEP TELLICO OPEN!

    Thank you for your help!!!

    SFWDA, UFWDA, and BRC



    Follow the link, we have 30 days to submit letters.

    Here is the link to the original posting:
    http://pirate4x4.com/forum/showthrea...41#post9488141
    Last edited by Jeffb_79; 02-28-2009 at 23:51.

  2. #2
    No Mas Jeepalonie
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    Well at least I can say I have wheeled there at least once. I really need to hit MOAB before my short life is over
    Jeepless Again

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    Administrator korisu56's Avatar
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    Need to hit a lot of places before they get closed down. Pretty soon everything will be a mall crawler.

  4. #4
    Rock crawling Infidel BucketOKarma's Avatar
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    First Paragon, and now this? Next will be Moab, then RC, soon there will be nothing! WTF!!!?!!!?!!

    It's bad enough that "There are NO LEGAL places to wheel in CT", as I have been told by EVERY D.E.P. person I have talked to in the past year. There used to be a lot of little unmaintained roads you could wheel on, but in the last 2 years they have really cracked down, and "Green-gated" EVERYTHING! I hate living in such a liberal state! Fargen Hippies!
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  5. #5
    No Mas Jeepalonie
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    Moab will never close fully.
    Jeepless Again

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  6. #6
    ParaJeeper JeepinSoldier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fred View Post
    Moab will never close fully.
    Many others had the same attitude about Tellico. SFWDA has been working hard for years to keep Tellico open and its members have actually done reclamation work on some of the trails as well as the usual cleanups and awareness.

    Now that the Dems are running the country, the USFS has no problem throwing SFWDA and all thier hard work under the bus.

    There are literally millions of four wheel drive enthuisasts in America. Unless we get together, and inform our elected officials that we will not stand for trail closures ANYWHERE, or we will vote them out in the next elections. The rich, powerful enviornmental lobbies will not stop until ALL the trails are closed. We all have to protest trail closures in any area - not just the ones that affect us.
    05 LJ Unlimited Rubicon. RE 3.5" short arm lift. 1" body and motor mount lift. 35" BFG M/T KMII's. 5.13 gears. Skid row and Jeep Medic belly up skid plates. Rokmen and Jeeperman bumpers. PSC rockers and full corners. Line X'd interior. Warn 9.5ti. Dual batteries. Dual tops. Snorkel. Full and half doors.

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    Jeep & Steeler Fan GP4Play's Avatar
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    Do everything you can and then do some more.We have been having the same fights here in the So Cal High Desert,what with rats,weeds,and lizards needing more land to live on.
    Feed it some Green and watch it grow



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  8. #8
    ParaJeeper JeepinSoldier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GP4Play View Post
    Do everything you can and then do some more.We have been having the same fights here in the So Cal High Desert,what with rats,weeds,and lizards needing more land to live on.
    Roger,

    I have signed the online petition that was posted on JF and written 4 letters to elected officials in support of saving the Hammer trails. Please encourage your folks out there to help us!

    Each trail closed affects us all.
    05 LJ Unlimited Rubicon. RE 3.5" short arm lift. 1" body and motor mount lift. 35" BFG M/T KMII's. 5.13 gears. Skid row and Jeep Medic belly up skid plates. Rokmen and Jeeperman bumpers. PSC rockers and full corners. Line X'd interior. Warn 9.5ti. Dual batteries. Dual tops. Snorkel. Full and half doors.

  9. #9
    Junior Member bigrubbers4x4's Avatar
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    i received an email about this from the USDA last week or so. after receiving this email i made a few myself. here are the emails i received about this closing.

    File Code:
    1950-1/2350-5
    Date:
    February 27,2009

    Dear Interested Party:
    The USDA Forest Service is seeking comments on two proposals regarding management of the Upper Tellico Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) System:

    1.An Environmental Assessment (EA) for the long-term management of the Upper Tellico OHV System. You may download a copy of the EA and related graphics at http://www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/tellico. If you would like to receive a paper copy of the EA, please e-mail your request to: [email protected]or call (828) 257-4817, and one will be mailed to you. For questions concerning the project or the EA contact Candace Wyman, Project Coordinator, at 828-257-4816.

    2.A temporary closure of the Upper Tellico OHV System for resource protection, effective April 1, 2009. This closure would prohibit possession or use of a motorized vehicle on a road or trail within the Upper Tellico OHV System, with the exception of highway-legal vehicles on 420-1 and certain other exceptions described in the closure order until a final project decision is implemented.
    The Upper Tellico OHV System is located on Tusquitee Ranger District, Nantahala National Forest, Cherokee County, NC. In June 2008, we publicized a proposal for long-term management of the System, designed to greatly reduce the amount of soil leaving the System and entering the Tellico River and its tributaries, while still providing an OHV trail system. This proposal is referred to as the “proposed action” or Alternative B and is described in detail in Chapter 1 of the EA. We received around 1,500 public comments on the proposed action. Alternatives to the proposed action were developed in response to the comments and environmental issues identified by the Agency. A wide range of comments was received, so six alternatives are analyzed in the EA, identified as Alternatives A through F. We would now like your review and comment on the alternatives and analysis before making a final decision on long-term management of the System.

    The following is a brief description of the alternatives analyzed in detail in the EA. Please refer to the EA, Chapters 2 and 3, for more information about each alternative.


    • Alternative A is the “no action” alternative that reflects the existing trail system with 2007 management and funding levels.
    • Alternative B is the “proposed action” that was released in June 2008 for public comment. It was developed to address the problems initially identified in trail condition surveys conducted in 2007-2008.
    • Alternative C closes the OHV System, but maintains over 10 miles of existing Forest system roads in the area, open year-round or seasonally, to provide for public highway-legal vehicle access for hunting, fishing and other recreation uses. It was developed in response to public concerns that the proposed action (Alternative B) did not go far enough in eliminating trails on sensitive soils and trails near water.
    • Alternative D was developed in response to public concerns that the OHV Trail System should meet current trail density and challenge level standards, and not require a Forest Plan amendment.
    • Alternative E was developed in response to public concerns that the proposed action (Alternative B) would eliminate too many high challenge OHV experiences.
    • Alternative F was developed in response to public concerns that the proposed action (Alternative B) would eliminate too many OHV trail miles.


    The environmental concerns that initiated the proposed management changes are described in the EA, as are the projected direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental effects of each of these Alternatives.

    The EA shows that the Upper Tellico OHV System has extensive damage and contributes unacceptable levels of sediment into the Tellico River and its tributaries. Sediment is leaving the OHV System from more than 2,000 locations along the trails. The Agency is in violation of North Carolina state water quality standards because of the conditions on Upper Tellico OHV System. Since the Upper Tellico River watershed is located in an area of steep terrain, highly erosive soils, and high rainfall, maintaining an OHV trail system without causing significant environmental damage is extremely difficult.

    While I understand how important the Upper Tellico OHV System is to OHV users, the impacts to water quality are so significant that I cannot recommend keeping the System open at this time. After careful consideration of the environmental effects of the alternatives as presented in the EA, my preferred alternative is Alternative C, which closes the OHV System. Alternative C would maintain over 10 miles of existing Forest system roads (currently also OHV trails), open year-round or seasonally, to provide public access for hunting, fishing and other recreation uses. Trail 1 (FS Road 420-1) would be paved and kept open as a through route for highway-legal vehicles.

    I want to emphasize that a final decision has not yet been made. This public review period is an opportunity for you to give us constructive feedback. I encourage you to review the environmental assessment and provide us with any information that you think we have not considered adequately. Your comments need to be as specific as possible and you must provide the following information: 1) Your name and address; 2) Title of the project; 3) Specific substantive comments on the proposed action, along with supporting reasons that I should consider in reaching a decision; and 4) Your signature or other means of identification verification. For organizations, a signature or other means of identification verification must be provided for the individual authorized to represent your organization.

    Comments must be postmarked or received within 30 days beginning the day after publication of this notice in The Asheville Citizen-Times. Comments may be mailed electronically, in a common digital format, to: [email protected]; or by regular mail to: National Forests in North Carolina, Attn: Candace Wyman, 160 A Zillicoa Street, Asheville, NC 28801, or faxed to 828-257-4263. Hand delivered comments must be received within our normal business hours of 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

    Thank you for your continued interest in management of the National Forests in North Carolina and the Tusquitee Ranger District.

    Sincerely,




    MARISUE HILLIARD

    Forest Supervisor




    ok here is the next one.

    Hi Samuel.

    Regrettably I don’t think there is any TL! can do to try and help with the Tellico situation other than notifying our members about the public comment period.

    We did check with our Forest Service contacts to see if money was an issue and, if funding could be raised, could we conduct rehabilitation throughout the area in hopes of saving the trail system or at least some it.

    I was told, unfortunately cost is a reality, but not a key deciding factor. The problems are the environmental sustainability of the trail. Combine together 1) steep terrain (part of the trail system should have never been located where it), 2) highly erosive soil and 3) high precipitation in the area and it makes for a very difficult situation.

    There was a conference call yesterday with national OHV organizations and representative from Blue Ribbon and United 4WDA are working with the regional 4WDAssociation in that area to investigate options.

    I’ve copied Greg Mumm and Carla Boucher, the Executive Directors of Blue Ribbon and United respectively. They can probably better advise you on letter writing campaigns than I can.

    Sorry I don’t have a better response for you.

    Best of luck,
    ~Lori
    Lori McCullough
    Executive Director
    Tread Lightly!, Inc.


    and the next one.




    Hello Samuel,

    I would like to chime in that the BlueRibbon Coalition, United Four Wheel Drive Associations, and the Southern Four Wheel Drive Association are currently doing a thorough “scrubbing” through the draft EA and working on comprehensive comments that should help you and your club with developing comments on the Tellico draft EA. This is a very important issue and we appreciate your interest in being involved in the process. We should have that information available in the next few days. Please stay tuned to one or all of the following websites for more information.
    http://www.sharetrails.org – BlueRibbon Coalition

    http://www.ufwda.org – United Four Wheel Drive Associations

    http://www.sfwda.org/ - Southern Four Wheel Drive Association

    Again, please stay tuned and thanks for your involvement.

    Sincerely,

    Greg Mumm
    Executive Director, BlueRibbon Coalition
    909 Farlow Avenue
    Rapid City, SD 57701



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