Susanville CA … The Lassen National Forest is one step closer to having a system of designated travel routes for wheeled motorized vehicles. On June 5, the Forest will release a Travel Management Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for a 45 day public review period which will end on July 20.
The Travel Management DEIS examines a no action alternative and four action alternatives that manage a designated system of existing routes running throughout the Lassen National Forest. The DEIS describes these alternatives, the public input used to develop them, the analysis of the alternatives, and the effects of implementing each one. The Lassen National Forest Supervisor’s preferred alternative is also identified.
“This is an important step in our on-going public involvement process,” said Kathleen Morse, Lassen National Forest Supervisor, who will make the final decision. “It’s my desire to balance the need to provide a diversity of road and trail riding opportunities, with the need to protect other resources.”
Following the analysis of public comments, the Forest Service will create a final environmental impact statement and make a final decision. The decision is schedule to be made before the end of this year. A public open house is scheduled for June 25 from 3-7 p.m. at Jensen Hall at the Lassen County Fairgrounds.
Morse says that the travel management project is part of a Forest Service initiative designed to address the impacts of unmanaged recreation on the health of national forests. The DEIS proposes to regulate and manage wheeled motor vehicle use in the Lassen National Forest and to identify roads and trails where this use will be allowed. It also addresses seasonal closures of wheeled motor vehicle routes. All California national forests are developing similar management direction based on the 2005 National Travel Management Rule www.fs.fed.us/recreation/program/ohv/final.pdf