Betreff: WILDALERT: Protect Wilderness in Bighorn National Forest
Von: "The Wilderness Society"
Datum: Fri, 24 Sep 2004 20:17:30 GMT
An: ""

WILDALERT: Protect Wilderness in Bighorn National Forest
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Wild Alert
September 24, 2004
In this issue:
TAKE ACTION:
Protect the Bighorn's Wilderness.
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Forest Service puts potential wilderness at risk
Photo: Bighorn
National Forest, WY Photo courtesy of US Forest Service. Sacred to the Cheyenne and Sioux, the Big Horn National Forest is a place of lush grasslands, alpine meadows, and high rugged peaks. Located in northeastern Wyoming, the Big Horn is crowned by the Cloud Peak Wilderness, but another 433,000 acres of wild lands are awaiting wilderness protection.

Those wilderness lands may be lost forever if the Forest Service approves a draft plan for the Big Horn National Forest. You can be a part of conserving Wyoming's wilderness by taking action at
http://ga1.org/campaign/bighorn/wd8ks5xro88n83

Photo above: Bighorn National Forest, WY Photo courtesy of US Forest Service.
Photo below: Rock Creek Roadless Area, Bighorn National Forest, WY. Photo courtesy of Wyoming Wilderness Association.


The Bighorn National Forest
Photo: Rock Creek
Roadless Area, Bighorn National Forest, WY. Photo courtesy of
Wyoming Wilderness Association. This special forest is a mountain paradise surrounded by a sea of prairies. At 13,175 feet, Cloud Peak rises in the center of the 189,000-acre designated wilderness that bears its name.

But as the U.S. Forest Service attempts to determine how this forest will be managed over the next 15 years, the threats are great. The timber industry is pulling out all stops to pressure the Forest Service for bigger logging quotas, more roads and weakening of the rules that protect wilderness, wildlife and water. The industry is promoting a management alternative (E) that makes ALL suitable lands open to logging, including pristine roadless areas, stream buffer zones, and elk security cover areas. Alternative E will put all roadless areas into the "suitable timber base", and allow for NO protections for future wilderness, wild and scenic rivers or research natural areas.

Only one Management Alternative, Alternative C, has any wilderness recommendations but they fall far short of what this spectacular resource needs and deserves.

As the first national forest in the country to implement new planning rules designed to undermine wilderness and roadless protection, the planners at the Bighorn remapped roadless areas on the forest and deleted nearly 40 percent of known roadless areas. This, despite the fact that the public overwhelmingly supports recommending all 433,400 roadless acres for wilderness designation.

We must urge the agency to protect all roadless areas on the Big Horn, and to recommend the full complement of wilderness on the forest for permanent designation.


How You Can Help: Contact the Forest Service today
Send a letter to the Forest Service today! Tell the agency its final management plan must prohibit additional road construction and must recommend additional wilderness protection on the Big Horn. You can take action here:
http://ga1.org/campaign/bighorn/wd8ks5xro88n83

Or you can use our sample letter below to draft your own comments. Please send to:

William Bass, Supervisor
Big Horn National Forest
2013 Eastside 2nd Street
Sheridan, WY 82801
Email: r2_bighorn_planning@fs.fed.us

This action alert was brought to you in part by the Wyoming Wilderness Association.


Sample Letter

Dear Supervisor Bass:

I urge you to take a pro-wilderness approach to the forest's management, by including Lodge Grass Creek, Pete's Hole and Cedar Creek roadless areas, as well as Little Bighorn, Rock Creek, Walker Prairie, Devil's Canyon, and Medicine Lodge among your wilderness recommendations. Devil's Canyon boundaries should be extended to the original 12,476 acres included in the Preliminary Alternatives.

Moreover, it is essential that the agency has a clear analysis of recreational and other demands for forest use. Planners should conduct a comprehensive recreation and transportation analysis and plan with an aim toward closing unnecessary or damaging roads and motorized trails, and protecting the maximum number of roadless areas.

Finally, I urge you to conduct a reinventory of roadless areas on the forest, with the Roadless Area Conservation Rule's boundaries fully restored to all roadless areas.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the draft forest plan for the Big Horn.

Sincerely,
(Your name and address)


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