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Old October 14th, 2009, 11:13 AM   #1
Icemanii
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Default Forest Service Decision is to close Tellico

SFWDA participated in a conference call today with the USFS and learned that they intend on permanently closing the Upper Tellico OHV System.

The decision will be posted on the North Carolina USFS website soon (http://www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/). When it is posted, there will be some detail from the agency about the decision, how it was reached, and what we can do to protest.

My understanding is that there will be a 45 day appeal period, followed by a 45 day period for USFS review. Once that review is complete, the decision will either be upheld or overturned. If upheld, we go into the courts.

SFWDA, BRC and United will have a news release out ASAP detailing our reactions to the decision and our next steps. We will also be asking for everyone to help us with the appeal and to step up the communications to the USFS about the decision (more letter writing, calling elected officials, peaceful protests, etc.).

Sorry this isn't a lot of information, but I haven't seen the documents yet. When I do, I'll post up more about what we need to do.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 11:36 AM   #2
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I suspect this will be a nearly insurmountable task to get the decision turned around. Their mind is made up and unless we have some intervening action the USFS can and will decide without logical data what's 'best' for all those involved.
I feel really sorry for those businesses in the area which depended on ORV activity for existance.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 11:39 AM   #3
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I suspect this will be a nearly insurmountable task to get the decision turned around. Their mind is made up and unless we have some intervening action the USFS can and will decide without logical data what's 'best' for all those involved.
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While I sadly am afraid you are correct, I will not give up just yet.

With the attacks coming from all sides, it is difficult at times to wonder where to look. We must continue to fight all closures before it is too late.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 12:04 PM   #4
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The shit I am reading in the "study" is making me sick.... it's complete bullshit and totally off base. Talk about skewing the public outlook in order to follow through with your agenda.....

"There is a need to have trail management be consistent with the Forest Plan.
1) Level of challenge is being exceeded.
• The Forest Plan direction for all OHV trails on the National Forests in North
Carolina calls for providing “easy to moderate levels of challenge.”
• Several trails on the Tellico OHV System provide a high degree of challenge and
do not meet the Forest Plan direction.
2) Trail density is being exceeded.
• The Forest Plan direction calls for providing approximately two miles per square
mile of OHV trails.
• The current system is over four miles per square mile.
• Either some trails should be closed to meet the existing trail density standard, or
the Forest Plan would need to be amended to allow higher density for the Tellico
OHV System."

if you can get more than 20 pages into this 225 page document without getting pissed at the biased bullshit and this ficticious "forest plan" then you're doing better than I am. I made it to page 5.

http://www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/nepa/tu...o_final_ea.pdf
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Old October 14th, 2009, 12:29 PM   #5
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Ugh. I agree with all. I don't look forward to writing more letters, as I wish we were in a better position, but I'll be dusting off the old home word processor and stocking up on some snail mail stamps.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 01:03 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Icemanii View Post
While I sadly am afraid you are correct, I will not give up just yet.

With the attacks coming from all sides, it is difficult at times to wonder where to look. We must continue to fight all closures before it is too late.
I'm not giving up either. It's just that any reversal of their decision will most likely be done with a legal fight in court. We'll need to debunk their data which say's the damage is 'extremely difficult to prevent sediment from reaching the streams even if we are successful in repairing existing problems.'
That being said, they are actually implying it will cost to much so with budget cuts nowadays and trying to reduce spending I find it highly unlikely we'll prevail.
I believe SFWDA has had grants and many volunteer activities over the years to maintain the site but USFS can not rely on these efforts and must develop a self sustaining program to deal with the maintenance.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 02:09 PM   #7
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Their Idea of self sustaining is clear cutting once OHV's are out...


Ugh.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 02:13 PM   #8
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keep us updated on what we can do please. i know i cant afford anything but i can let my voice be heard at least.
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Old October 15th, 2009, 10:56 AM   #9
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RIP Tellico.

http://www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/nepa/tusquitee/tellico.htm

http://www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/press/t...ws_release.pdf
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Old October 15th, 2009, 11:22 AM   #10
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What burns my ass is that they are "in violation of their own forest plan" by allowing OHV's but also allowing the spawning of brook trout.

if anyone thought that brook trout were NATURAL to the tellico river area, they are not. They are stocked and they are using the tellico river for their un natural reproduction so fishermen can kill them. Something just doesnt make sense that their forest plan allows stocking of an un natural occurring fish so that people can fish there. how is that any different from allowing the tellico OHV area to remain open as a recreation destination? Just because it "doesnt meet their forest plan's objective". Never mind teh fact that tellico has been open since before most of us were born and the "errosion" problems they speak of are completely natural. I find it dissappointing that they make specific note of a trail that is cut 8' into the side of the hill. it's been there for at least 50+ years and who knows how deep it was originally cut by the bulldozer when it was put in for logging many decades ago.

Bullshit.
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Old October 15th, 2009, 11:28 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 95geo View Post
What burns my ass is that they are "in violation of their own forest plan" by allowing OHV's but also allowing the spawning of brook trout.

if anyone thought that brook trout were NATURAL to the tellico river area, they are not. They are stocked and they are using the tellico river for their un natural reproduction so fishermen can kill them. Something just doesnt make sense that their forest plan allows stocking of an un natural occurring fish so that people can fish there. how is that any different from allowing the tellico OHV area to remain open as a recreation destination? Just because it "doesnt meet their forest plan's objective". Never mind teh fact that tellico has been open since before most of us were born and the "errosion" problems they speak of are completely natural. I find it dissappointing that they make specific note of a trail that is cut 8' into the side of the hill. it's been there for at least 50+ years and who knows how deep it was originally cut by the bulldozer when it was put in for logging many decades ago.

Bullshit.
the green pigs babysit the salmon streams in Mi the same way. Its funny, when a non native invasive species provides revinue they want to protect it at all costs.
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Old October 15th, 2009, 12:22 PM   #12
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This blows. I got this emailed to me last night. I'll write more letters, but unfortunatly, I believe they will once again fall on deaf ears.
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Old October 15th, 2009, 12:58 PM   #13
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Old October 15th, 2009, 01:11 PM   #14
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Will be on the back of my rig. Agree will still write another letter to the blind people who won't read it or care. But have to try.
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Old October 15th, 2009, 05:19 PM   #15
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RECREATIONAL GROUPS DECRY TELLICO CLOSURE
October 15, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Greg Mumm, BlueRibbon Coalition
208-244-2112
Jay Bird, Southern Four Wheel Drive Association
757-546-7969

Conservation groups dedicated to active and sustainable management of
the Upper Tellico OHV Area expressed deep disappointment with the U.S.
Forest Service decision to permanently close the Tellico trails. The
decision, which follows an earlier "temporary" closure, was announced
in documents published by the USFS yesterday morning.

Gary Parsons, President of the Southern Four Wheel Drive Association,
reacted by saying, "The Forest Service is simply wrong in this
decision. This public agency has ignored an independent study by
Caliber Engineering and the recommendations of its own Trails
Unlimited Team, which demonstrated effective management is attainable
and offered specific suggestions to achieve that goal."

The agency announcement by Forest Supervisor Marisue Hilliard again
parroted the water quality issues long favored by preservationist
special interests as the excuse for closure. Jay Bird, Chairman of
the Rescue Tellico Committee, noted, "The Tellico River is in
excellent shape and complies with all legal requirements. Only
through blatant modification of proper methodology, such as measuring
turbidity levels during peak runoff, can the Forest Service claim
there is legal basis to take any action, let alone closure."

"Sadly, we are not surprised. It now appears the Forest Service knew
it would close the Area years ago, and undertook the intervening
'public process' to justify a decision already made," said Greg Mumm,
Executive Director of the BlueRibbon Coalition. "We are sorely
disappointed that the Forest Service has determined it cannot
effectively manage the Upper Tellico OHV Area that users have
supported with millions of dollars in fees and thousands of hours of
volunteer labor. With our recreational partners, we will evaluate all
options that may change that determination."

# # #
The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions
responsible use of public and private lands, and encourages individual
environmental stewardship. It represents over 10,000 individual
members and 1,200 organization and business members, for a combined
total of over 600,000 recreationists nationwide. 1-800-258-3742.
www.sharetrails..org

United Four Wheel Drive Associations is an international organization
comprised of four wheel drive enthusiasts, clubs, associations, and
businesses dedicated to providing community services around the world,
education in responsible land use and safe vehicle operation, and
protection of our natural resources through conservation practices.
1-800-448-3932. www.ufwda.org

Southern Four Wheel Drive Association (SFWDA) was founded in 1987 to
promote responsible land use and to keep public lands accessible for
motorized recreation. For more information on the activities and
accomplishments of Southern Four Wheel Drive Association, please visit
www.sfwda.org or contact us at 1483 N. Mt. Juliet Road, PMB # 222, Mt.
Juliet, TN 37122
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