Posts Tagged ‘wilderness proposal’

Angeles National Forest Land Management Plan Ammendment Comments

Friday, June 8th, 2012

We recently put out an alert  about court-ordered changes to the Land Management Plans for our four Southern California National Forests. We’ve now attended the public meetings, pored over maps and GIS data and have put together our official comments on the plan, available as a PDF, and copied below.

IMBA has recently put out an action alert and petition to preserve mountain bike access to all existing multi-use trails in our four National Forests. We encourage everyone to sign the petition.

In the Angeles National Forest the only area in which we see the potential for problems is the proposed change of the Salt Creek and Fish Canyon Inventoried Roadless Areas into the combined Fish Canyon Recommended Wilderness (RW).  The Golden Eagle trail is an extremely popular, well-documented trail used frequently by bicycles. It is not on any forest service maps and is not an offiicial forest service trail, though it has existed for at least 25 years. We would of course like to see this brought into the trail inventory, and excluded from any recommended wilderness. The trail lies outside the RW, except for one section where it is impossible to tell from the data supplied whether it touches the RW boundary, or crosses it.  We would like to see the boundary adjusted to provide a reasonable buffer between this trail and the RW.

Similar incursions into or across the RW boundaries appear to occur on the fire roads to Knapp Ranch and Atmore Meadows. They are probably just anomalies of the scale of maps used and data supplied, but must be clarified to be sure these fire roads are outside any RW.

The RW includes several miles of singletrack trails that have a history of bicycle access. These include the Burnt Peak Canyon trail and Fish Canyon trail. However, both of these trails are in a dilapidated state and have seen very little use by bicycles, or other users for that matter. In his 1990 guidebook to the area, Mike Troy describes the Fish Canyon trail (16W05) as a difficult hike a bike and the trail as unmarked and difficult to follow. The Burnt Peak Canyon trail, on the other hand, is described as a fun, non-technical double-track.  We will endeavor to gather more data about the existing conditions of these trails, but for the moment we are asking that they be left as Backcountry Non-Motorized (BCNM) rather than RW.

While we support the ongoing preservation of our remaining open space and prevention of future disruptive development or extractive use of the land, trails are a limited resource and losing trails reduces our future options for recreational access. A RW designation will make these trails more difficult to restore or maintain, and we risk losing them forever.

We encourage everyone to send comments via email to or snail mail to: Attn: LMP Amendment, Cleveland National Forest, 10845 Rancho Bernardo Road, Suite 200, San Diego, CA 92127-2107.

CORBA’s submitted comments follow the break.