06/04/12 – Warrior’s Society Access Alert!!!

In this Access Alert:

1. Sierra Club sues as they seek to designate Wilderness Areas (which bans mountain bikes) in four Southern California National Forests.

The Sierra Club is again pushing to designate the Holy Jim, West Horse Thief, Trabuco and Blue Jay area (San Juan Trail) as Wilderness areas, which would ban mountain bike recreation. Other popular riding areas in the other National Forests in SoCal are also at risk.

The story below explains the lawsuit they filed against the Forest Service:

Forest Service ordered to re-examine key wilderness areas in four Southern California forests
By Steve Scauzillo, SGVN

After losing a lawsuit brought by the state and several environmental groups, the U.S. Forest Service is under court order to re-evaluate how it manages about one million acres in four Southern California forests – including the local Angeles National Forest.

The result could be the re-zoning of hundreds of thousands of acres of forest land into “recommended wilderness” areas, one of the most restrictive designations on the forest, and “back country non-motorized” areas.

These designations could prohibit off-road recreation (editors note: and mountain biking), decommission unused trails and roads, and help restore habitat for such endangered or threatened species as steelhead trout, the California condor and the arroyo toad, according to the U.S. Forest Service and groups participating in the 2011 settlement agreement.

“These are also some of the best places for hiking and camping. Some outstanding beautiful spots in the forests, with waterfalls and streams … great places for Southern Californians to get away from it all,” said Paul Spitler, director of wilderness policy for The Wilderness Society, one of the groups involved in the court case.

http://www.sgvtribune.com/news/ci_20667450/forest-service-ordered-re-examine-key-wilderness-areas

Ready to Take Action?

Urge the Forest Service to protect our mountain bike access to Southern California’s wild places!

Visit the LMP Amendment website:

http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/fs-usda-pop.php/?project=35130

to see if you have visited any of the 39 roadless areas that are being considered in the document (for Orange County it’s Ladd, Coldwater and Trabuco Roadless areas). Think about why the areas you have visited are important to you and why they should NOT be designated as wilderness, then take the following actions.

(1) WRITE A LETTER: The USFS will be accepting public comments on the fate of the 39 roadless areas until 6/11/12. We have included a sample letter at the end of this alert. Please write the agency on or before 6/11/12 and:

•Request that the agency not recommend the remaining 25 roadless areas for wilderness designation; and

•If possible, explain why roadless areas are important to you and how the Wilderness Designation will affect your access, especially if you are familiar with one or more of the 39 roadless areas shown on the maps at the LMP Amendment website.

•Ask the USFS to not use this plan amendment to designate areas as Wild & Scenic Rivers as identified in the 2005 Forest Plans as this will also affect your access.

SAMPLE LETTER TO THE FOREST SERVICE

[DATE]

William Metz, Forest Supervisor
Cleveland National Forest
10845 Rancho Bernardo Road, Suite 200
San Diego, CA 92127–2107
ATTN: LMP Amendment

Dear Mr. Metz:

I have been mountain biking in the mountains of Southern California for many years. Roadless areas are where I go to get away from the “rat race.”

The [A PLACE THAT YOU’VE VISITED] Roadless Area is particularly important to me. [EXPLAIN WHY IT’S IMPORTANT, AND WHY IT SHOULD NOT BE DESIGNATED AS WILDERNESS]

For these reasons I hope that in the LMP Amendment you will NOT recommend that all of the 39 roadless areas under consideration be designated as wilderness. I am very grateful that you have NOT recommended these areas to be placed under the Wilderness Designation.

Thank you for considering my comments.

Sincerely,

[YOUR FULL NAME AND CONTACT INFORMATION]

You can submit comments by mail to:

William Metz, Forest Supervisor
Cleveland National Forest
10845 Rancho Bernardo Road, Suite 200
San Diego, CA 92127–2107
ATTN: LMP Amendment

You can also submit comments via email, or you can submit them at http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/fs-usdapop.php?project=35130

(2) SEND A COPY OF YOUR LETTER TO YOUR CONGRESSIONAL REPRESENTATIVES: You can go to:

http://www.house.gov/

to find your representative in the House. Follow the links on his or her website to send them an email or fax.

You can do the same for the Senate at:

http://www.senate.gov/

See below for a sample letter.

You can also submit comments via email or you can submit them at:

http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/fs-usdapop.php?project=35130

SAMPLE LETTER TO YOUR REPRESENTATIVES IN CONGRESS (please send via fax or email only—no regular mail)

[DATE]

The Honorable [YOUR SENATOR OR YOUR MEMBER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES]
The Capitol
Washington, DC

Subject: The Forest Service’s Southern California National Forests Land Management Plan Amendment (LMP Amendment)

Dear [SENATOR OR REPRESENTATIVE]:

I would like to share with you a letter I sent to the Forest Service recently expressing my hope that the agency will not designate the 39 roadless areas in Southern California’s national forests as Wilderness Areas as part of its Southern California National Forests Land Management Plan Amendment.

My reasons for not wanting these areas designated as wilderness areas are given in my letter. I hope that you will join me in encouraging the Forest Service to preserve access to these beautiful lands, and that you will also work with other members of Congress in an effort to prevent these and other roadless areas being designated as wilderness areas.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

[YOUR FULL NAME AND CONTACT INFORMATION]

(3) ATTEND A PUBLIC MEETING: You can also make the same points above at one of the following public meetings the USFS will hold on the LMP Amendment.

June 5, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.,
Trabuco Ranger District office (for Orange and Riverside Counties)
1147 E. 6th Street
Corona, CA 92879

May 29, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.,
Avenue Adult Center
550 N. Ventura Avenue
Ventura, CA 93001

May 30, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.,
Angeles National Forest Headquarters
701 North Santa Anita Avenue
Arcadia, CA 91006

May 31, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Santa Maria Red Cross
3030 Skyway Drive
Santa Maria, CA 93455

May 31, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Santa Clara Mojave Rivers Ranger District Office
33708 Crown Valley Road
Acton, CA 93510

May 31, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
San Bernardino National Forest Headquarters
602 S. Tippecanoe Ave.
San Bernardino, CA 92408

May 31, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Palomar Ranger District Office
1634 Black Canyon Road
Ramona, CA 92065

June 1, 2012, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Frazier Park Library
3732 Park Drive
Frazier Park, CA 93225

June 5, 2012, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Descanso Ranger District office
3348 Alpine Blvd.,
Alpine, CA 91901

——

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Switchback Cyclery is a Major Sponsor of the Warrior’s Society

The Silverado/Modjeska Recreation and Park District is a Major Sponsor of the Warrior’s Society

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The Warrior’s Society is a Tax Exempt Organization under 501 (c) 4 of the IRS Code

“Far better it is to dare mighty dreams, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take the ranks with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in that gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat!”

Theodore Roosevelt

www.warriorssociety.org

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