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  1. #1
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    Mount Elden / Dry Lakes proposed action info

    So, here is a list of things we would like included for the MEDL proposed action. These were discussed and suggested by FBO during our meetings with Forest Service Personnel but not included in their proposed action that was just released to the public a week ago.

    Over the years that we have been working on this everyone always asks "How can I help?" Well here is your chance. Please write in a letter to the Flagstaff Ranger District expressing your interest's and support.

    Follow the linky. Thanks!

    Flagstaff Biking Organization» Blog Archive » Huge Flagstaff District Recreation and Trails Planning! Meeting attendance and comment letters needed!

  2. #2
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    I'm crafting my letter but I wasn't sure about this one:

    •Support FBO’s recommendation to add a trail connecting the lower section of Sunset Trail to the top of Lower Brookbank to add further connectivity and versatility to the trail system.

    I haven't seen that on the older maps and it doesn't make sense. Also, the FBO Ginger would cross the FBO proposed routing for Lower Brookbank. How's that going to work? Maybe a gap jump

    And I noticed that Climb#3 is slated to be limited FS administrative use only. That's a well-used alternative, especially with the singlespeed crowd, to climbing Upper Brookbank or Sunset. Maybe it won't matter as I suspect it will be turned back into improved road as part of the Flagstaff Watershed tree thinning project.
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  3. #3
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    Hey guys-first I want to let you know that I am so stoked that we as riders (as a group) are taking a stance on growth. And I really want to commend guys like you that are taking the front on stuff like this in Flagstaff. You effin rock for grabbing the bull by the horns and going forth.

    But I take a guy like me, who has rode many trails in the Flagstaff area, but doesn't have any clue as to where the hell I was when I was having a blast, and I have a hard time following what you are after. I want to write and to help. I want more awesome trail in Flagstaff (cuz I hate Sedoner yall-just kidding, but really Flagstaff has better opportunity for riding). Thing is-if you want and need more support, and many of us want to give it, you need to be more general in nature. Or even force feed us what needs to be said. How about a few versions of "form letters" that we can "write" to the local land managers that are working with you. I really hope I am not TD'ing or whatever his new name is you- I want to help. I want to participate, but as a desert dweller who only comes to ride and spend some cash in your community, I am having a hard time identifying what you need from me. I have a few accounts up there, tell me how to help in a simple minded kind of way! Thanks!
    Find a ride on FB> AZ MTB

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  4. #4
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    [QUOTE=rockman;10802639]I'm crafting my letter but I wasn't sure about this one:



    Also, the FBO Ginger would cross the FBO proposed routing for Lower Brookbank. How's that going to work? Maybe a gap jump

    Our proposed Brookbank does not cross Ginger, it go's up and around.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by cstem View Post
    Hey guys-first I want to let you know that I am so stoked that we as riders (as a group) are taking a stance on growth. And I really want to commend guys like you that are taking the front on stuff like this in Flagstaff. You effin rock for grabbing the bull by the horns and going forth.

    But I take a guy like me, who has rode many trails in the Flagstaff area, but doesn't have any clue as to where the hell I was when I was having a blast, and I have a hard time following what you are after. I want to write and to help. I want more awesome trail in Flagstaff (cuz I hate Sedoner yall-just kidding, but really Flagstaff has better opportunity for riding). Thing is-if you want and need more support, and many of us want to give it, you need to be more general in nature. Or even force feed us what needs to be said. How about a few versions of "form letters" that we can "write" to the local land managers that are working with you. I really hope I am not TD'ing or whatever his new name is you- I want to help. I want to participate, but as a desert dweller who only comes to ride and spend some cash in your community, I am having a hard time identifying what you need from me. I have a few accounts up there, tell me how to help in a simple minded kind of way! Thanks!
    I can see how it might be confusing if you aren't too familiar with the trails in Flagstaff. If so just keep your letter simple. State how you want more and better riding opportunities, challenging trails, and that you support the proposed action. I'm not sure how else we can explain a lot of it. Thanks!

  6. #6
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    Good points Cstem. As it is, if I touch on all the talking points in the FBO outline my letter will be 4 or 5 pages. Also, I think it's important that we support the ideas for other user-groups like the proposed equestrian trail.

    My thinking is that reroutes that changed can hopefully be changed later as boots are actually on the ground. Secondly, focus on trails that are missing from the proposal (ie., frontside Schultz trail (Buckrut), Jedi, Red Onion, and Ginger). Explain why they are important. A topic for more discussion in this thread.

    Lastly, we need to be aware of where the opposition is going to come from. I'm not so sure it's from the equestrians. They'll hopefully have a new trail and more dispersed encounters with other user groups. I'm more worried about the Sierra Club and the anti-biking crowd. So, where are they going to focus their attention? It seems biological concerns are being addressed (in the area these are primarily the Owl packs and some species of plants like the Bebb Willow). Increased traffic on Elden Lookout Rd is the primary target for those against. The DH trails will still need to be shuttled and the scenic loop on Elden, while a brilliant idea, will also bring more hikers. Maybe that's not a big deal as I also believe Elden Lookout Rd will get some major improvements to handle logging trucks, similar to Schultz. Not sure on that one.
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  7. #7
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    Well I will help where I can and maybe we can get together for a ride or at least dinner and a brew next time I am up there. Might be a couple weeks though. Thanks!
    Find a ride on FB> AZ MTB

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  8. #8
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    Bumping because this is really important! Please take 5 or 10 minutes, follow the link and write a short letter to the Flagstaff Ranger District. Thanks!

  9. #9
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    I'll gladly write a letter but don't have time this week. When is the deadline for comments?

  10. #10
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    Done...letter sent. Thx!
    Your limits are both physical and mental. Suffering will help you find and overcome both.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by evdog View Post
    I'll gladly write a letter but don't have time this week. When is the deadline for comments?
    The wording is a bit vague in the scoping letter from the FS but I believe it's 30 days from the initial announcement for written comments so November 30th. http://a123.g.akamai.net/7/123/11558...T3_1460483.pdf
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by evdog View Post
    I'll gladly write a letter but don't have time this week. When is the deadline for comments?
    Thanks, it really shouldn't take long. I think 5 or 10 minutes of your time should be enough.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raybum View Post
    Done...letter sent. Thx!
    Awesome! Thanks Raybum!

  14. #14
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    If you are in the trusting mood, the FBO guidelines to writing a good letter are plenty to get your letter going. Thanks!

    As far as what I'm witnessing today out in the field: I was out on a dogwalk up on Jedi. Seems there is a lot of pink flagging installed about half way up. My bet that this is going to be a new road project going from Schultz pass to the west, up the grade to the top of the DLH. Its for the logging operations about to start. Its sure been a nice piece of forest to play in. Take a drive up schultz creek road. Its super buff. You will see.
    There is a big difference between ripping and skidding.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chalkpaw View Post
    If you are in the trusting mood, the FBO guidelines to writing a good letter are plenty to get your letter going. Thanks!

    As far as what I'm witnessing today out in the field: I was out on a dogwalk up on Jedi. Seems there is a lot of pink flagging installed about half way up. My bet that this is going to be a new road project going from Schultz pass to the west, up the grade to the top of the DLH. Its for the logging operations about to start. Its sure been a nice piece of forest to play in. Take a drive up schultz creek road. Its super buff. You will see.
    The southwestern end of Shultz Creek Rd from the Y up is now closed to all entry Mon-Fri. Coconino National Forest - News & Events

    Surprising they would build a new road up to DLH when they could use L. Knarly but I guess the top part of that is private inholding. They were able to drive the FS fire truck all the way up a year or two ago. It probably won't be long now for Climb#3 either.
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  16. #16
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    bummer about climb#3... good climb for me on the SS.
    Your limits are both physical and mental. Suffering will help you find and overcome both.
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  17. #17
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    The public meeting is this Monday, 11/18 from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm at the Flagstaff Aquaplex. Come on out if you can make it!

  18. #18
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    Coconino National Forest - Home

    COCONINO NF PROPOSES MAJOR TRAIL CHANGES – PUBLIC MEETING NOV 18
    Steel Reserve TrailThe Coconino National Forest plans to revamp the Dry Lake Hills and Mount Elden trail systems, and needs the public to provide information about what they value most. The goal for this project is to accommodate the needs of all users – from bicyclists to climbers to equestrians and hikers – while establishing a sustainable system of trails.
    “This is one of the most popular and heavily used recreation areas near Flagstaff, and is considered Flagstaff’s ‘back yard’ by many,” says Mike Elson, District Ranger for the Flagstaff Ranger District. “The public’s input is a crucial piece of our planning process.”
    Members of the public are encouraged to provide written feedback as well as attend a public meeting Nov 18 to gain more information and provide comments. Details are below. Comments are due by November 30.
    trail sign


    Planning
    The Coconino NF is in one of the first phases of the Mount Elden/Dry Lake Hills Recreation Planning Project (MEDL). A Proposed Action, listing the various types of changes the Forest could make, is available to the public for consideration. “Nothing is set in stone. These are just proposals at this time,” says Elson. “The next phase will be utilizing the feedback to narrow down several alternatives.”
    The process began in 2012, identifying the current condition of the area and initial concerns. The planning team – comprised of multiple scientists from various fields – has already been working with several local user groups to begin identifying specific needs. Planners anticipate completing the entire process at the end of 2014, and hope to begin implementation as conditions allow thereafter. (There will likely be volunteer opportunities to help make these changes happen! Stay tuned to our volunteer calendars).

    Why change is needed
    The MEDL trail system was dedicated in 1987. Within the project area, there are six trailheads providing access to 14 designated FS trails, including portions of the Arizona National Scenic Trail, Flagstaff Loop Trail, and the historic Beale Wagon Trail. The Little Elden Spring Horse Camp is located adjacent to FR 556 and provides access to the trail system for equestrians staying at the campground. There are also several special events and races in the area throughout the summer.
    Elysian Buttes Climbing AreaIn recent years there has been a steady increase in recreational use in this area, which is taxing the current trail system and associated facilities. Issues include deteriorating condition of system and non-system trails, as well as increased concerns for impacts to forest resources such as wildlife, archaeology sites, watershed and soil conditions, recreational experience and vegetation. User conflicts and user satisfaction are also important considerations.

    What the Coconino NF is proposing
    Up to 23 miles of new official trails, some of which specifically support equestrians, downhill mountain bikers and climbers
    Relocation or alteration to more than 10 miles of existing trails to improve trail sustainability and safety
    Modification of 6 trailheads to improve capacity, access and efficient management
    Guidelines for consistent management of recreation trail events
    Improvements to signs and trails in the Mt. Elden Environmental Study Area
    Improvements to the hang glider site at the top of Mt. Elden, managed by permit holder.
    Decommisioning unauthorized roads and trails for resource protection.

    If these proposals go forward, the end result will include a more sustainable trails system and better recreation experiences, better signage, more tailored approach to specific needs of various user types (climbing, equestrian, downhill mountain biking, etc), more parking at Forest Service trailheads, better trail access to scenic vistas on Mt. Elden and in the Dry Lake Hills, better educational experience in the Mt. Elden Study area, designated routes for recreation trail events as well as limitations on when events occur to reduce impacts for day-to-day visitors, reduced noise disturbance from recreation in sensitive wildlife habitat, and reduced impacts to archeological sites.

    How to be involved
    View the Proposed Action and maps on the website at go.usa.gov/WYbA. Comments that are most helpful will include feedback about your own needs and answer the following questions:
    Will the changes proposed meet your needs?
    If yes, what benefits do you foresee?
    If something is missing, what is it, and why is it important to you?

  19. #19
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    Mount Elden / Dry Lakes proposed action info

    Quote Originally Posted by raisingarizona View Post
    The public meeting is this Monday, 11/18 from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm at the Flagstaff Aquaplex. Come on out if you can make it!
    Thanks RA, I'll be there.

  20. #20
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    Daily Sun article in today's paper.

    New trails fit for a mountain town

  21. #21
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    Thanks for the info, email sent.

  22. #22
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    My understanding of the process is the letters get lumped into different categories. So the more that mention the need for the missing trails the better. Red Onion is a hugely needed connector for those that don't want to ride all the way to the top of Elden and Buckrut is needed to disperse traffic off of Schultz and provide an alternative downhill experience. Just about all the negative hiker-biker or biker-biker interactions I've heard about or experienced myself have been on Schultz Creek.

    So, besides the need for more DH trails emphasize the need for a trail that connects from the top of DLH to the Schultz Creek trailhead.
    "Fart in a paper bag, after eating the #17 plate from filibertos. STRAVA!" M77Ranger.

  23. #23
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    survey completed, copy\pasted the FBO recs. One thing that might be worth mentioning, if relevant, is that bikers should walk the flagging and have input. This is a point we are pushing with regard to the Scottsdale trails, but they are largely being machine built so maybe a different situation.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by chollaball View Post
    survey completed, copy\pasted the FBO recs. One thing that might be worth mentioning, if relevant, is that bikers should walk the flagging and have input. This is a point we are pushing with regard to the Scottsdale trails, but they are largely being machine built so maybe a different situation.
    I invite people out all the time to come help with alignments and possible proposed trails. Hardly anyone actually ever comes and if they do it only lasts for about half a day and then after that they don't want to come out again. It's hard work with difficult travel or maybe I smell bad? I dunno.

  25. #25
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    Yeahhh, I was gonna say something about that aroma you have
    Quote Originally Posted by raisingarizona View Post
    I invite people out all the time to come help with alignments and possible proposed trails. Hardly anyone actually ever comes and if they do it only lasts for about half a day and then after that they don't want to come out again. It's hard work with difficult travel or maybe I smell bad? I dunno.
    Desert Sunset Calls/Upward, Pain, Perseverance/Welcome Solitude

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