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  1. #1
    the new Gilbert Grape
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    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument

    I ran across a page on the Idaho Conservation League about a renewed effort to change the designation of the Boulder-White Clouds - this time to a National Monument.

    Idaho Conservation League

    I don't see a lot of information on how this would impact biking in the area. Anyone know the scoop?
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  2. #2
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    Seems they are dancing around their intentions of which trails they would want closed, but in general trail status would remain the same. What they say to get support and the true intentions in the final language of a monument designation are not being stated as far as I can tell. http://www.idahoconservation.org/iss...sked-questions

  3. #3
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    Here are some links to some recent articles about the ICL Monument Plan and CIEDRA info...


    IMBA CIEDRA PLI info.

    I know that members of the Wood River Bike Coalition are working w/ ICL to come up w/ a plan that allows MTB.

  4. #4
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    Divide and Conquer. First comes national monument and then next it will be national park. The ICL will work to ban bikes from the heart of the Whiteclouds and a National Monument gives them a chance to during the trail designation process after the monument is created. There is no threat to the Whiteclouds and it is protected by the Idaho Roadless Rule and the SNRA designation.
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  5. #5
    jalepenio jimenez
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    a feather in their cap and a fork in our arse. it's just as smilycook says:

    A new plan to protect high country
    ICL supports making Boulder-White Clouds a national monument
    By GREG MOORE
    Express Staff Writer - Idaho Montain Express May 1, 2013

    After waiting for more than seven years while a Boulder-White Clouds wilderness bill remained stagnated in Congress, the Idaho Conservation League has adopted a new tactic toward protecting the mountainous area north of Ketchum—designation as a national monument.
    Unlike national parks, which can only be created by Congress, national monuments are designated by the president under the Antiquities Act.
    In early April, ICL Executive Director Rick Johnson traveled to Washington, D.C., to discuss the idea with members of the Council on Environmental Quality, which advises the president on environmental issues, and the Department of Agriculture, which oversees the U.S. Forest Service.
    “There’s no [political] cost to the administration to do it,” Johnson said in an interview last week.
    Much of the area covered by the Boulder and White Cloud mountains—on the east side of state Highway 75 between Ketchum and Stanley—is included in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area. That designation protects it from development that would substantially impair its scenic and recreational values. However, many conservationists have feared an expansion of motorized recreational use in the area, and have advocated wilderness designation to prevent that.
    In 2005, Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, introduced his Central Idaho Economic Development and Recreation Act, which would protect part of the area as wilderness while allowing most existing motorized use and providing economic benefits to Custer County. However, the bill has never made it out of Congress, due partly to opposition from Sen. Jim Risch, R-Idaho, and Gov. Butch Otter.
    A Boulder-White Clouds National Monument is not a new idea. A proposed designation order was drafted by then-Secretary of the Interior and former Idaho Gov. Dirk Kempthorne in 2008, though it was never presented to President George W. Bush for approval.
    The idea was resurrected in July 2010 by former Idaho Gov. Cecil Andrus—also a former secretary of the Interior—in a letter to President Barack Obama.
    “Long-term protection of the Boulder-White Clouds area in central Idaho is best arrived at by the kind of process Rep. Simpson has championed for ten years,” Andrus wrote. “I support his approach, but reluctantly concede that some will never embrace real collaboration and will instead opt for delay and no decision. …
    “I would respectfully request that you instruct the appropriate federal agencies to place the Boulder-White Clouds area on the list for consideration for National Monument status.”
    Johnson said designation as a national monument would provide several benefits over the area’s current status as a national recreation area:
    Potential expansion of the protected area.
    The likelihood of more federal funding.
    A higher public profile, which would boost tourism.
    The opportunity to prohibit expansion of motorized use.
    Specific management directives for a national monument would be decided by the Interior Department.
    Though the Antiquities Act was passed in 1906 primarily to protect archeological sites, it was used almost immediately to protect much larger areas, including the Grand Canyon, designated as a national monument in 1908 by President Theodore Roosevelt. The act’s use has sometimes been controversial, most notably when President Bill Clinton designated the vast Escalante National Monument in 1996 with less than 24 hours notice to Utah politicians, most of whom opposed restrictions on use of the land there.
    Johnson said he wants to avoid that sort of controversy around a potential Boulder-White Clouds National Monument. He said he hopes all interested parties become involved in the process, and emphasized that the ICL will not pursue the most restrictive regulations possible.
    “I believe that this has to complement Idaho’s conservative values if it is to endure,” he said. “I want to protect something that generations of Idahoans will be fantastically proud to live beside—I don’t want them to resent it.”
    He said that would have to include continued hunting in the area.
    Several bills have recently been introduced in Congress to eliminate or restrict the authority of a president to designate new national monuments, including one by Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho. To be made law, any such bill would need to be signed by the president or obtain the support of two-thirds of Congress to override a presidential veto.
    An inquiry to the White House press office regarding the proposal’s status was not returned by press deadline Tuesday.
    White Clouds - Heart of Idaho

  6. #6
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    I asked the ICL "What is so horrible about mountain bikers responsibly enjoying the White Clouds?"

    They responded "A national monument is wonderful opportunity for balancing recreational interests. Many mountain bikers are very supportive."

    Not really easing my concern at all. It was a good opportunity to say flat out they won't be seeking to remove us from the area. I will fight the National Monument designation anyway I am able to.

  7. #7
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    The ICL is just flat out anti anything they don't do. Nor do they want you to do anything but hike or raft.

  8. #8
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    I wouldn't fight a national monument designnation.....I would work to make sure it allowed bikes. If a remember correctly, I read at least one that was written to allow MTB use.
    ...building wherever they'll let me...

  9. #9
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    Here is their FAQ:

    http://www.idahoconservation.org/iss...sked-questions

    Note that about 2/3 of the way down it says:

    Who Decides What Type of Recreation Is Allowed and Which Trails
    Remain Open?

    National monument designation usually allows those uses that already exist in an area—such as mountain biking or driving motorized vehicles on designated roads and trails—to continue except where specifically called out in the proclamation or required to protect key resources in the national monument.
    I call attention to the emphasis they use - I attempted to repeat it. I'm sure there are details buried in the proposals that can be interpreted as troubling by anybody with at least a 5th grade education.

    But at least they give you the benefit of the reach-around.

    They are nice guys so far as humans go and I like some of them in person.
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  10. #10
    jalepenio jimenez
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    ...to be named after the Republican party's patron saint - the "Ronald Reagan Boulder-Whitecloud National Monument" - in another step to name the world after him...
    The Ronald Wilson Reagan Economic Breathing Zone - The Colbert Report - 2013-08-08 - Video Clip | Comedy Central
    or not...
    White Clouds - Heart of Idaho

  11. #11
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    Without opening a can o political worms and to be clear. I pretty much always support what the ICL does. But since they aren't being clear, I won't take my chances jumping in on this. If it happens and nothing changes for mountain bikers, sweet. I don't personally feel it's worth the risk to lose such an awesome place. I've backpacked in there multiple times and climbed those peaks (which I feel has a greater impact on the area). But there is something special about being able to ride a bike in a place like that.

    That wording doesn't sound like un-changed trail designation to me.

  12. #12
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    From what I have heard, ICL has informally stated that they are basically willing to support a post-designation trail use plan that would allow mountain bikers access to the same trails in the BWC on which bikes would have been permitted if CIEDRA had passed, which means some of the more epic type rides would be out. If I remember correctly, CIEDRA would have closed the 4th of July to Ants Basin to Warm Springs meadow route, Warm Springs to Robinson Bar, Castle Peak and others.

    WRBC has been involved in this NM issue with ICL from the start, but it seems like ICL is wiggling on the whole biking issue. From what I can gather through the grapevine, I think the ICL is coming to the conclusion that on issues like this they will need the support and cooperation of the mountain biking community, but some of their long time wealthier donors and supporters aren't on board with that idea. Money talks.

  13. #13
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    You just can't trust the ICL. There one goal is to kick bikes out of the BWC.
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  14. #14
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    Oppose it...it can only mean more bureaucrats making rules at the behest of the hiker groups. Consider Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument as an example: No MTB except on roads, and no new trails or other development of any kind, ever. Cattle grazing in the desert, though? Oh, that's fine.

  15. #15
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    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer, trust no one, don't write like a 3rd grader, always be a throttle-twisters' btich, and always be a drama queen.

    Words to live by.

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  16. #16
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    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument

    Latest from the ICL:

    "...Part of the challenge for ICL is to recognize that protections as a monument will not be the same or as strong as our long-sought wilderness designation would be. In this rethinking of how we move forward, we are working with the mountain biking community on how we protect both world-class biking and the wilderness experience on foot...."

    Bikes, Backpacks and the Boulder-White Clouds ? Idaho Conservation League

    What I fear will happen is that the ICL will work with all user groups to enact the NM. Then after designation, they will fight to get a management plan as close to Wilderness as possible. The best thing that could happen is that an agreed upon management plan gets created before designation takes place.
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
    bikepackingroots.org

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    If you believe what smilycook writes, then my suggestion to you is to call your Senator or Representative. You will likely find a sympathetic ear that won't do a thing for you. Just look at how far the Wilderness bill has gone after more than 10 years in Congress. If you want to get something done and have a say, now's the time to connect with the folks at ICL and/or the Wood River Mountain Bike Coalition and let them know what trails are important to you and why.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by boisematt View Post
    If you believe what smilycook writes, then my suggestion to you is to call your Senator or Representative. You will likely find a sympathetic ear that won't do a thing for you. Just look at how far the Wilderness bill has gone after more than 10 years in Congress. If you want to get something done and have a say, now's the time to connect with the folks at ICL and/or the Wood River Mountain Bike Coalition and let them know what trails are important to you and why.
    What are we protecting this area from? Timber harvest? Mining? There is no threat to the area. The only thing a National Monument will do is close trails to bikes.

    Since this area is already protected by the Idaho Roadless Rule and an SNRA designation the National Monument is a waste of time. Just leave it alone. A National Monument will give the ICL a chance to close trails plain and simple. There goal is to implement the same trail closures that they wanted to see in the Wilderness Bill.

    CIEDRA could not pass on its own and never will, but ICL will just not leave this area alone. Why not take all of the money they have spent over the years and buy out grazing allotments. Cows have more impact than 1000s of bikers.

    ICL has large donors that don't want bikes in the WhiteClouds. It has never been about saving Bambi or keeping the area pristine. If you are happy with just riding the Fischer/Williams Loop then by all means you can work with ICL.
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  19. #19
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    Thanks Smily. I am pretty sure you are right. I do know that IMBA is working with the Wood River Coalition and the ICL on this issue. I talked to our PNW IMBA rep, Anna Laxague, about this over the weekend. The in-house public policy/ attorney Jeremy is all over it, even with keeping ALL trails open to bikes. Be worth trying to connect with her or Jeremy to express your concerns.

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    Smilycook wants to continue to be able to ride his motorcycle wherever he wants, and that's his real issue with the potential for trail closures, and that is the real "threat" to this area, in my opinion.

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    Would really like to do the Big Boulder/Little Boulder loop sometime. Actually had camp set up at bottom of Big Boulder road 3 weeks ago on Friday afternoon the 9th; within a half hour of unpacking our stuff and getting settled in a wall of smoke and ash enveloped us and we retreated to the Salmon area where we found a nice ride on the CDT.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by boisematt View Post
    Smilycook wants to continue to be able to ride his motorcycle wherever he wants, and that's his real issue with the potential for trail closures, and that is the real "threat" to this area, in my opinion.
    Matt, I don't even own a motorcycle any more so it would be really hard for me to ride one.

    I do want to be able to ride my mountain bike on all of the trails in the Whiteclouds even if they involve some hike-a-biking. My biking is not harming the land in the Whiteclouds at all and the wildlife does not mind me being there either. There are countless miles of bike free trails in the Frank Church and Sawtooth Wilderness areas so I would suggest you go there instead.
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    Chris, nowhere did I say that I don't support mountain biking in the white clouds. I challenge your criticism and characterization of ICL, but I won't change your mind on that. Glad you ditched the moto. Agree the mtn biking has minimal impact, too. So we're closer on this that you might have assumed...

  24. #24
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    Good things are happening in Salmon thanks to a core group. Glad you had a good time!
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  25. #25
    jalepenio jimenez
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    Quote Originally Posted by boisematt View Post
    Smilycook wants to continue to be able to ride his motorcycle wherever he wants, and that's his real issue with the potential for trail closures, and that is the real "threat" to this area, in my opinion.
    since you bring up motos, I'll invoke the latest from the past president of the Idaho Blue Ribbon Coalition and off-road advocate, Bill Dart, who is opposed to the National Monument status for pretty much the same reason we are.

    to quote Bill...

    "I think it is total BULL$HIT...

    On the downside, if it were to come to be, it would actually be worse than the Wilderness proposal. At least, that bill left Germania, the Frog Lake Loop, Washington Lake, The Casino's, Williams, Marten, Railroad Ridge, open, through negotiated concessions from Simpson. A National Monument would not be bound to those concessions and everything could be closed. Normally, all trails are closed to motorized and mechanized use in a National Monument, as well as cross country snowmobile use.

    On the positive side, Obama has a lot more serious issues on his plate, and I am optimistic the proposal will go nowhere. There are lots of National Monument proposals out there, but Obama hasn't done much. Risch is hard core opposed and our best friend. Otter has no DC juice. Crapo is not as strong an ally, but, he has no enthusiasm for the concept either. The bill won't go anywhere, and I don't think Obama will do the Nat Mon end run"

    Happy Trails,
    Bill

    I agree with Bill that our governor and Risch are both opposed, and that means alot in the big picture. hadn't heard that Crapo was opposed, but that is more ammo for our side...the more big guns, the better chance the initiative won't succeed.

    still won't hurt to write your legislators and express your concerns to them.
    White Clouds - Heart of Idaho

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudflap View Post
    still won't hurt to write your legislators and express your concerns to them.
    And don't forget that handwritten letters send by US Mail get more respect than printed letters and get much, much more respect than email - which gets treated like Spam.

    It also helps when you fly first class on a Monday morning flight outta town cos sometimes you get to sit next to your elected officials. Then you get to have a chat.

    Just sayin.
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    What are we protecting this area from? Timber harvest? Mining? There is no threat to the area. The only thing a National Monument will do is close trails to bikes.
    ... and also increase visitation to the area. I have yet to read anywhere what further protection Nat Mon designation will actually provide. Do we really want visitor centers being built, outfitting increased, etc? That is what happened at Grand Staircase - Escalante. I am also concerned about how existing hunting opportunity could be impacted. I am generally pro-wilderness (even as a MTBer), but I don't see any reason why this area shouldn't just be left as is.

  28. #28
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    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument

    Got my thoughts wrapped up in this Trip Report:

    Wolves, Wilderness, and Bikepacking the White Clouds
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
    bikepackingroots.org

  29. #29
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    More propaganda from the NM-ilderness folks:
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
    bikepackingroots.org

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by flumphboy View Post
    More propaganda from the NM-ilderness folks:
    Jeez no kidding. They keep saying it's un-protected, but I can't figure out what the threat is and how it is un-protected under it's current designation.

    Nice of them to throw the little mountain biker bit in there.

  31. #31
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    I'd rather ride in a clear cut, strip mined forest than be prohibited access to a "protected" forest.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle509 View Post
    Jeez no kidding. They keep saying it's un-protected, but I can't figure out what the threat is and how it is un-protected under it's current designation.
    Notice they don't say "un-protected". They actually say "under-protected". So yes, they've turned to terminology that doesn't make any sense at all. I mean, who says that?
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
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  33. #33
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    White Cloud MTB Preservation page on FBook

    FaceBook types...like this page...

    mtbfortheboulderwhiteclouds

  34. #34
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    Thanks Chukt!


    Mikey

  35. #35
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    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-1385492_320489284759067_1807156156_n.jpg

    Learn About the Proposal for
    A Boulder-White Clouds
    National Monument
    There is considerable interest in declaring the Boulder-White Clouds area, including
    significant portions of the Sawtooth NRA, a National Monument. Attend this important
    forum sponsored by the Sawtooth Society and learn:
    • What can & can’t be accomplished by a National Monument declaration?
    • What will be the process? • What is driving the effort?
    • How could current recreational uses be impacted?
    • How can your voice be heard?
    Additionally, you will be invited to share your thoughts, ideas, and concerns.
    Thursday, November 7 • 5:00 - 7:30 pm Stanley Community Center
    MEETING OBJECTIVES
    1. Build broader awareness of the effort underway to create a National Monument in
    Central Idaho, which would include lands within the Sawtooth NRA.
    2. Build an understanding of the National Monument process and what it can and cannot
    do via a Presidential Proclamation.
    3. Seek stakeholder and community input on what “gaps” or “problems” currently exist for:
    • the Sawtooth NRA and • lands adjacent but outside the Sawtooth NRA.
    4. Seek initial reactions to the idea of a National Monument.
    5. Facilitate public comments by stakeholders seeking to express their views
    AGENDA
    Provide National Monument Background
    • Describe the work to-date to create a National Monument
    • Explain why it is being advanced
    • Describe what can and can’t be accomplished by a National Monument
    • Provide examples of what items are often included
    • Describe the process • Address questions
    Attendees
    • Build an inventory of current issues/problems/gaps both within the Sawtooth NRA
    and adjacent areas to the east.
    • Build a list of pros and cons to the concept.
    • Report findings
    • Attendees provide their initial reaction to the concept via survey
    • Wrap-up & discuss if there is a need for subsequent meetings/workshops on the topic

  36. #36
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    BWC on the Radio

    Here is a RadioBoise Elemental show from 9/9 discussing National Monument Status in BWC.

    A good discussion and a good listen. It filled in some blanks for me.

    "... I talked with various groups about the impact of National Monument status on the Boulder-White Cloud area.
    Our guests included Rick Johnson of the Idaho Conservation League,
    Robert Hayes, founder of the Sawtooth Society, and
    Brett Stevenson of the Wood River Bicycle Coalition."

  37. #37
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    This was a good listen. I am currently working on a letter outlining exactly which trails mountain bikers use and what we would want to remain open. Hopefully all the bike clubs in Idaho will sign onto the letter in addition to individuals to help ensure that if this monument does happen we have a strong base of support. Here is a rough draft of my trails list. Please comment if I have missed something.

    The following trails could be designated as Hiker/Horseback only in a trail management plan:
    1) Sullivan-Corral Creek Trail 2) Livingston Creek Trail 3) Martin Creek (#7603) Trail 4) Horton Trail
    5) Big Boulder Trail to Walker Lakes 6) Bluett Creek Trail 7) Mill Creek Trail 8) Holman Creek Trail 9) Phyllis Lake Trail 10) Washington Peak Trail 11) Upper North Fork Trail 12) West Fork – North Fork Trail 13) Amber Gulch Trail 14) Holeman Creek Trail 15) Mill Creek Trail

    In exchange for the closer of the trails listed above we would like these two trails opened to Mountain Bikers for the Months of June, July, and August:
    1) Champion Creek Trail 2) Twin Creek Trail

    These five trails should be authorized to have the following trail work performed:
    1) Galena Gulch Trail – Brushing and rerouting of steep sections
    2) Bowery Trail – major reroutes need to occur on the section of the trail descending into Germania Creek from the high point.
    3) Germania Creek Trail – Primitive log bridges should be added at all major stream crossings to reduce sedimentation from all users.
    4) Warm Springs Trail – Primitive log bridges should be added at all major stream crossings to reduce sedimentation from all users.
    5) Wickiup Trail – Reroute the bottom of the trail away from private property and brush the remaining portions of the trail while rerouting steep sections.

    The following trails should remain open to Mountain Bikes (this list can vary slightly depending on where final boundaries are drawn):
    1) Warm Springs Creek Trail 2) Germania Creek Trail 3) 4th of July Trail 4)Fischer Creek Trail 5) Williams Creek Trail 6) Little Casino Trail 7) Big Casino Trail 8) Rough Creek Trail 9)Garland Creek Trail 10) Born Lakes Trail 11) Grand Prize Trail 12) Galena Gulch Trail 13) Bowery Trail 14) Livingstone Mill-Castle Divide Trail 15) Little Boulder Creek Trail 16) Boulder Chain Lakes Trail 17) Chamberlin Creek Trail 18) Washington Lake Trail 19) Washington Lake Creek Trail 20)Skyline Trail 21) Slate Creek Trail 22)East Fork Salmon River Trail 23)North Fork of West Pass Trail 24) Boulder Trail 25) Bowery Creek 26) Lower Cedar Trail 27) Narrow Canyon Trail 28)Sheep Creek Trail 29)Pine Creek Trail 30) McDonald Creek Trail 31)Martin-Big Casino Trail 32) West Fork of Herd Creek Trail 33) Toolbox-Herd Creek Trail 34) Herd Creek Trail 35) McDonald Taylor Trail 36)Sage Brush Trail 37) Fox Creek Trail 38) French Creek Trail 39) Hunter Creek Trail
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  38. #38
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    It's official. ICL has finally admitted to wanting to close trails to mountain bikers. Go to this meeting if you are in the area! Tonight.

    Boulder-White Clouds Meeting Tonight - Wood River Bike Coalition
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
    bikepackingroots.org

  39. #39
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    I knew the ICL wanted to kick us out! Here is a quote from the ICL printed in the Mountain Express:

    "Johnson said the ICL would like to preserve a core wilderness area in the high peaks, which would mean no mountain biking, but said that area includes only one trail used by bikers—the Castle Divide Trail, to the east of Castle Peak."

    ICL probably does not realize that bikes also use the boulder chain lakes trail to access Born Lakes!
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  40. #40
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    I hope Mountain Bikers will be present. It does look like ICL is pulling some funny stuff. WRBC's statement seems like a shift in tone concerning their relationship with the ICL on National Monument status.

  41. #41
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    I was at that meeting - mountain bikers were well represented.
    My takeaways; I've never heard "experts" talk around so many pointed questions. A statement like "mountain bikers mentally shrink an area to other user groups".( ?!) Present mining claims within the monuments boundaries will be unaffected but possibly harder to work. There will be no extra funding available. There will be an uptick of "3.5 and 12.5 million in economic benefit to the surrounding areas" but that infrastructure will not have to be improved or increased because expected use will not increase.(??!!) Castle Divide Trail is off the table for bike access as this area "is core to the values of what wilderness is". (???!!!) The ICL is still pursuing the Wilderness Bill but in the meantime could use mountain bikers support for this. (????!!!!)
    These were the highlights. My opinion is that there is not a mountain biker on the "panel" to fairly represent the interests of mountain bikers and to help the panel of staunch wilderness proponents understand that the BWC area is not Fisher Creek and never will be. You have to have your game on to travel in this area and those that do are there for the same reason that "they" are. "Their" idea of what is wilderness, does not precede others ideas. The 250,000 acres added to the present Wilderness Proposal have roughly 2500 mining claims of which 1000 are all ready claimed, do you think that the unclaimed are maybe being researched right about now? The ICL is a well organized and funded (by well to do, out of state clientele that ate ice cream flown into them on their "wilderness trip") group that is mostly unliked by the general Idaho population outside of the Wood River Valley. They know the system and how it functions and they are rapidly learning that mountain bikers are conservation minded and good stewards of the land but are independently minded and unorganized. They will take advantage of those traits and their motives are subject at best. I have lived in the Wood River Valley for 33 years and started riding (pushing) my bike in the BWC 25 years ago - I'm not planning on stopping anytime soon regardless of the designation and I will make as much noise as I can to whoever will listen.
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  42. #42
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    Wow thank you for being there and for your write up.

  43. #43
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    Thanks for going. I wish I could have gone. I am familiar with all you described...out of state backers, conservation coalition, etc.

    I am not paid though...and am busy with a forest plan revision in the Panhandle.
    ...building wherever they'll let me...

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    looks like I might have to make a trip down south and get some good rides in next summer while I still can.

  45. #45
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    Thanks for the report.
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  46. #46
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    Here is a link to enter comments and ideas. Fist pounding and pulpit ranting are encouraged! We can't let this one slip through - trails like those in the BWC are no longer being built, are irreplaceable and, once relinquished, they will forever be unattainable. Not just for us but for all of the future generations of mountain bikers. Boulder-White Cloud Update: Time to Comment - Wood River Bike Coalition
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  47. #47
    jalepenio jimenez
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    more important than national politics

    bikeguru1 - thanks for the link and thanks to everyone else for the updates.

    i had some time this a.m. so put together a letter to both recipients. it never hurts to try.

    i've been using the BWC area for close to 35 years now, both back-packing and riding, and would hate to see anybody locked out for the sake of protection. if everyone who rides there would respond to this issue, that could swing the balance to our favor, but that is what it will take and i'm not so sure that the riding community is capable of such a response.

    it would really be a travesty to lose this area to biking, only for the sake of lack of input and response from the riding community.

    for those of you not familiar with the area, the photo on the fore mentioned link and website is of Castle peak (11,800+ feet elevation) from the north-east, shot from a meadow in the little boulder creek drainage. Merriam peak (10,900+) is to its right. Castle lake is tucked away between the two at the bottom of the upper basin that separates them. a bike trail crosses the left shoulder of Castle peak in its traverse from Fourth of July/ Washington lakes to the east fork of the Salmon river. it's awesome, it's breathtaking, and it could be gone some day.

    check it out: BIKE MAGAZINE . IDAHO . COVER + FEATURE » Vancouver Commercial Photographer Sports Photography Outdoor Mountain Bike Whistler British Columbia
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  48. #48
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    where is the imba on this? I imagine they are supporting the ICL and national momumnet status or wilderness status for the boulder whiteclouds.

  49. #49
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    IMBA is working with WRBC on this.

  50. #50
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    IMBA is working on it. As Wayndar said, WRBC is working on it, and IMBA works with them and others on it.

    To answer Tim's question, IMBA supports work that preserves current access.
    ...building wherever they'll let me...

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    Save the White clouds for mountain biking please. Spread the Word Join the Face book page listed above. some of the best rides on Earth are there!
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  53. #53
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    Comment on plan for Boulder-White Clouds monument:

    " Blaine County commissioners will accept public testimony next week on a proposal to designate a more than half-million-acre Boulder-White Clouds National Monument in remote portions of northern Blaine County and southern Custer County. A coalition of Idaho conservationists, business owners and recreational and sportsmen groups are advocating for the federal designation.
    The County Commission is scheduled to discuss the issue at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22. The meeting will be held in the upstairs meeting room of the Old Blaine County Courthouse in Hailey. Public comment is encouraged.
    Proponents are encouraging U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewel and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to work with President Obama to establish a Boulder-White Clouds National Monument via the Antiquities Act. Under the national monument proposal, the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management would continue to manage their respective portions of the Boulder-White Clouds.
    For more information, visit Boulder White Clouds Monument. "
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
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  54. #54
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    Please help! This is still in limbo!!!!!
    Public Meeting Tuesday re: Boulder-White Clouds

    February 17, 2014 by wrbikecoalition Leave a Comment

    Last week the Blaine County Commissioners released their draft resolution supporting a National Monument designation for the Boulder-White Clouds. The resolution is very supportive of environmental protection. Check it out here.

    It did however, fall flat in regarding continued low-impact, human powered recreation. Recreation is mentioned once only to say that it is secondary to the primary purpose of scientific and ecological protection.

    We have spent many months working with the conservation community, specifically The Wilderness Society and Idaho Conservation League, towards a national monument that preserves mountain biking. Collectively, we are committed to this because mountain biking is indeed compatible with the conservation and land management goals of the Boulder-White Cloud Mountains.

    Recreation is an integral part of our community. It is our hope that recreation, and the opportunity to balance it with scientific and ecological protection, be included in any forthcoming county resolution.

    The Blaine County Commissioners are taking public comment on their first draft. A public meeting to discuss the resolution is scheduled for Tuesday, FEB 18th at 10:00 a.m. in the Old County Courthouse. Another meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb 25th; time unknown. Comments can also be sent to jlovell@co.blaine.id.us
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  55. #55
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    If you think the wilderness society is on the side of mountain bikers you are VERY wrong! Yeah they sucker one in to to preach to the other bikers how they will help us keep our trails open but in the end they want us shut out! We lost a lot of riding up here in Montana to wilderness "study" areas. Pretty F'd up!! I hope It stays the same. You want wilderness cross the road and hit the sawtooths.

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  57. #57
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    Thanks Crayfish. I believe I like the sounds of this latest MOU - it's been a long time coming. Sounds like they're finally seeing the light between motos and bikes - human powered recreation is a class all it's own.

    Still, towards the bottom, they recommend motorized trail maintenance tools be permitted on all trails open to mechanized travel, thus lumping motos and bikes back into the same class again and opening trails that are currently closed to motos. They should leave that recommendation out.
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    I do not know a lot about the politics surrounding the subject but what do you all think the cons are of this? I read the article and have seen the trails that are suppose to remain open. It's relatively extensive and inclusive to bikers from my POV.
    Is there a hidden agenda on the anti-biker side of things? It sounds good in the newspapers.
    If you do something often enough it tends to define you.

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudflap View Post
    Still, towards the bottom, they recommend motorized trail maintenance tools be permitted on all trails open to mechanized travel, thus lumping motos and bikes back into the same class again and opening trails that are currently closed to motos. They should leave that recommendation out.
    Doesn't this recommendation just allow for the use of chainsaws to clear trail on an MTB/mechanized trail?
    Last edited by Wayndar; 03-17-2014 at 01:25 PM.

  60. #60
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    Wayne - I also read it that way. I hope it includes brushcutters!
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    Is a trail bike carrying a chain saw a "motorized trail maintenance tool" or am I being overly cynical :-) If so, is that not carte blanche for any dirt bike to access any trail as long as they perform some minimal trail maintenance?

    Sent from my XT885 using Tapatalk

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    will it be business as usual this year in the boulder whiteclouds? I know there is all kinds of talk on change, but hoping none happens for the summer season.

  63. #63
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    Knowing the ICL and WS, I'm sure there's language that says a "mechanized trail" is not a motorized trail and that a tool is not a vehicle... but I could be gullible.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by tim208 View Post
    will it be business as usual this year in the boulder whiteclouds? I know there is all kinds of talk on change, but hoping none happens for the summer season.
    All this talk won't turn into any action for a while. First it has to be declared a NM, then a mgmt plan created. This MOU is just an agreement between the 4 parties that says "we can agree to do something like this"

  65. #65
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    wayne

    thanks for the info. might have to make a trip down south.

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wayndar View Post
    Doesn't this recommendation just allow for the use of chainsaws to clear trail on an MTB/mechanized trail?
    It certainly sounds like that on it's face value, but between the lines, I have to agree with 6061 that "motorized tools" includes tools used for access as well as hand tools.
    If nothing less, they should clarify or amend this recommendation by making it less ambiguous.
    White Clouds - Heart of Idaho

  67. #67
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    Here is the map of the agreement between various organizations on trail usage in the White Cloud Mountains:

    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-bwcnm.jpg

    There is also another joint meeting between the Blaine County Commissioners and the Custer County Commissioners in Challis at the Community Center on May 29th at 6:00 pm.
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
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  68. #68
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    not the BWC, but this represents what the Sawtooth Society is all about...



    Formed in 1997, their website has lots of good info into the proposals for the BWC. While they support continued protection for the area through the existing SNRA, they have some good points concerning redundancy and overlap of managing agencies in the proposed National Monument.

    Sawtooth Society

    a little history...Sun Valley Guide
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    The Sawtooth Society seems pretty level headed and measured, unlike the frantic push for the National Monument. They have a cautious and smart message.
    I don't know what trail we're on, but at least it's getting dark

  70. #70
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    A well written piece by Mr. Outdoor Idaho himself: Behind the Stories: Outdoor Idaho (IdahoPTV) (sorry no direct link to the post. so you may have to scroll down a bit in the future to locate this)

    "So, back to the question posed at the beginning of this post... why include the White Clouds in a program on ‘50 Years of Wilderness’?

    I guess because the White Clouds have been in the thick of the wilderness debate for at least 30 years.

    Because my generation hikes; this younger generation bikes.

    Because what happens in the White Clouds may tell us something about the future of wilderness in America."
    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
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    Re: Boulder-White Clouds National Monument

    I had an interesting conversation with a rancher who owns a big chunk of land on the edge of the SNRA whilst I was visiting Stanley recently. He knows the Governor and, during a discussion on potential changes in land status, the Governor (allegedly) said whatever happens he will ensure that no laws will be enforced which will detract from current recreational access levels.

    As an ex-pat Brit living in Vancouver, BC, I don't know US politics well enough to judge whether the Governor even has jurisdiction to mandate this....

  72. #72
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    Nope.

  73. #73
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    Casey Greene - President, Board of Directors - Bikepacking Roots
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  74. #74
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    Thanks for the update. I like what they have to say, with exception to this "At the same time, the Society reiterated it has been a long-time supporter, and continues to support, Wilderness designation for the Boulder-White Cloud peaks in the eastern part of Central Idaho’s Sawtooth National Recreation Area (NRA) as outlined in the pending Central Idaho Economic Development and Recreation Act [CIEDRA]."

    Not a fan of that, but they make good points about why the monument is bad. They are the same concerns I feel about it.

  75. #75
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    An update from the field: rode up to Chamberlain Basin on Friday from Three Cabins Creek, then 4th of July to Antz Basin down Warm Springs to Robinson Bar, on the Salmon. The SNRA trail crew was in Warm Springs in mid-August Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-castle-peak.small.jpgBoulder-White Clouds National Monument-warm-springs-creek.-zip.small.jpgand did a knock-up job. We saw two downed trees the whole way to the river. Go ride NOW- the White Clouds dirt is PERFECT.

  76. #76
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    Damn Salsa! Didn't take long for you to post the field report! That dude in green sure has a nice-looking bike.

    If the wonks who want a NM went outside and actually looked at the BWC from on the ground up, they'd quickly realize that a BWCNM is an idea that has ceased to have much relevance.

    Edit: some snaps from the rides w/ HMS and Zip:

    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-p9050078a.jpg

    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-p9070187a.jpg

    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-p9070195a.jpg

    Boulder-White Clouds National Monument-p9070204a.jpg
    Last edited by TwistedCrank; 09-09-2014 at 09:07 AM. Reason: added graphic content
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