Results 1 to 20 of 20
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ridn29s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    659

    Courthouse Creek Project decision coming week of 09/22

    As some of you may recall from this thread - Submit a Comment on Courthouse Creek Project

    The forest service plans for some very significant logging and vegetation management activities in the Devil's Courthouse watershed. The proposed actions will significantly impact the forest and are likely to result in closures to trails for a period of 1-3 years while the project is ongoing. Most notably, 140A, 5003, and 5031 are going to see closures, some may be extended as there is a lot of planned activities along these roads.

    Next week the forest service will release their final plan and there will be a 45 day appeals period. My understanding is that appeals will be handled individually and within 15 days of being submitted - so there is limited time to make your voice heard and you will be required to back up your appeal with some strong argument.

    When I receive notice that the decision is available I'll post it here.

    If you like to ride the west edge of Pisgah this will impact you. If you value the unique wild nature of the west edge of Pisgah this will certainly impact that.

    Thanks in advance for any contributions to the review and appeals process.
    many gears, some pies

  2. #2
    drunken pirate
    Reputation: driftwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    1,414
    Thanks for being on top of this, ridn29s.

    I'm eagerly awaiting the decision.
    More Trails, Not Less

    Adventures in Pisgah

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ridn29s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    659
    The decision has been made and it is long... On first reding it seems that Summey Cove trail will be decommissioned from Courthouse Falls to 215.

    Decommission Summey Cove Trail (#129) between
    NC 215 and Courthouse Falls Trail (#130), and re- designate the remainder of Summey Cove Trail as part of Courthouse Falls Trail.

    There's alot more to read so anyone interested should go to the link in the first post and download the materials. So far the only good news in the decision is that it seems they will leave Chestnut falls alone and not put a bridge across the creek there - that's a very good thing, but it's one of only a few good things in the decision.
    many gears, some pies

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: extrmtao's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2,272
    Quote Originally Posted by ridn29s View Post
    The decision has been made and it is long... On first reding it seems that Summey Cove trail will be decommissioned from Courthouse Falls to 215. Decommission Summey Cove Trail (#129) betweenNC 215 and Courthouse Falls Trail (#130), and re- designate the remainder of Summey Cove Trail as part of Courthouse Falls Trail.There's alot more to read so anyone interested should go to the link in the first post and download the materials. So far the only good news in the decision is that it seems they will leave Chestnut falls alone and not put a bridge across the creek there - that's a very good thing, but it's one of only a few good things in the decision.
    I too just received the package in my email and read the same. Good bye Sumney... At least we tried.
    BS'ing less, riding more.

    Supporting PAS
    Upstate SORBA
    SORBA

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    180
    Quote Originally Posted by ridn29s View Post
    On first reding it seems that Summey Cove trail will be decommissioned from Courthouse Falls to 215.
    Yep. Dang it. For some reason, I thought the only part of the trail being closed was from FS 5029 to NC 215 (looks like that was Alternative C). I've only hiked this part and wasn't too concerned with its loss, but the area within Summey Cove itself (past Courthouse Falls) is really nice and I'm sad to see the trail go - regardless of what use it was designated for.

    Quote Originally Posted by US Forest Service - Derek Ibarguen
    I decided to decommission the Summey Cove Trail as proposed in Alternative B because this meets the need of protecting water quality and preventing soil loss by reducing the erosion and sedimentation created by the current state of the trail whereas Alternative C does not. My decision is also consistent with the Forest Trail Strategy to create a sustainable trail system by identifying and decommissioning trails which are little-used, unsustainable for their designed use, serve no function within a complex, or are incompatible with other resource objectives. For this reason, I also did not pursue the creation of a new loop trail from the existing Summey Cove Trail. My decision will reduce 1.8 miles of low use single track trail (1.1 miles more than Alternative C). However, users wishing to connect from State Road (SR) 215 to Farlow Gap and other trail systems may still do so utilizing system roads in the area, (Courthouse Creek, NFSR 140, Kiessee Creek, NFSR 5031, and Panther Branch NFSR 140A).
    Ouch. So the "Trail Strategy" is already being cited as a reason to close trails. And so it begins.

    (btw, thanks FS for making the PDF text a raster image you can't copy and paste from.)

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: extrmtao's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2,272
    The only positive theme I ecountered was that they did indeed at least acknowledge that there was a concern that mountain biking specifically was being impacted. This tells me that the letters got across a point even if it didn't make a difference this time.
    BS'ing less, riding more.

    Supporting PAS
    Upstate SORBA
    SORBA

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ridn29s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    659

    it gets worse...

    Reading the details I find that they also plan to reclassify 140A as D1 which is the dreaded Linear Wildlife Opening. Opps a small correction - non-motorized use will be "Discouraged but not prohibited" whatever the hell that means. I know I won't be discouraged from riding it. I think it is just a matter of time before they do prohibit.

    many gears, some pies

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: extrmtao's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2,272
    Quote Originally Posted by ridn29s View Post
    Reading the details I find that they also plan to reclassify 140A as D1 which is the dreaded Linear Wildlife Opening. No more loops around the backside of Pilot on the bike... This is one of the best 'road' rides in Pisgah. It severely limits bike access to the entire Courthouse area, sealing it off from the Davidson River side of the forest completely.
    I saw this too but it said non-motorized travel would be "discouraged" not "prohibited." So maybe if enough people ride it, we can keep the road.
    BS'ing less, riding more.

    Supporting PAS
    Upstate SORBA
    SORBA

  9. #9
    Big Mac
    Reputation: mbmb65's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    3,142

    Courthouse Creek Project decision coming week of 09/22

    Massive suck. Thanks for the update.

  10. #10
    drunken pirate
    Reputation: driftwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    1,414


    I'll go right out and say the whole thing is a sham (and a shame). Just another dog and pony show. The decisions were made before it was even announced.

    Time to start drafting our appeals.
    More Trails, Not Less

    Adventures in Pisgah

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: litespeedchick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,089
    Quote Originally Posted by ridn29s View Post
    Reading the details I find that they also plan to reclassify 140A as D1 which is the dreaded Linear Wildlife Opening. Opps a small correction - non-motorized use will be "Discouraged but not prohibited" whatever the hell that means. I know I won't be discouraged from riding it. I think it is just a matter of time before they do prohibit.

    Hmmm...does that mean they just won't remove the blow-downs when they happen and eventually it will be come unrideable (and unhikeable)?

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mike Brown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    2,977
    I know how to remove blow-downs.

    I say it that way because the best way to encourage users to do unauthorized trail work, including the continued development and use of non-system trails, is to close or limit use on "legal" routes.

    Of course, the land manager would likely cite the non-system trails and unauthorized trail work as reason to not work with a user group and to potentially have closures (i.e. Coleman Boundary).

    See how that circle wraps around itself?

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    644
    I loved that trail too. I live in Asheville, so it was a haul to start it from the 215 side, but always worth it. It was a great trail for the dogs too. I wish they had closed the road side, so the only way to get to court house falls would have been from 215 up summey. Make people work for it.

  14. #14
    Big Mac
    Reputation: mbmb65's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    3,142

    Courthouse Creek Project decision coming week of 09/22

    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusSommers View Post
    I wish they had closed the road side, so the only way to get to court house falls would have been from 215 up summey. Make people work for it.
    That would've been real nice.

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    47
    Shutting down 140A will be a HUGE loss!! It is a wonderful alternate ride up to Farlow. Remote and beautiful. That is a long length of trail to be subtracted! And that will also cause 5003 to be a dead end out and back that not many will ever use. This is a huge loss to Pisgah, and 140 has no sustainability or erosion issues. All of western Pisgah is screwed.

  16. #16
    drunken pirate
    Reputation: driftwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    1,414
    Headline on the Citizen Times yesterday. People are paying attention.

    Who wants to go ride Summey Cove? We'll start at the Ranger Station on a day and time when they are open.

    The whole thing is a huge loss.

    And not just because Summey Cove is being closed and 140A re-classified but because the FS continues to fail to listen to the forest users. They ask for our input but never have any intent in listening to what we say. This was never agreed on at the Trail Strategy:

    the Forest Trail Strategy to create a sustainable trail system by identifying and decommissioning trails which are little-used, unsustainable for their designed use, serve no function within a complex, or are incompatible with other resource objectives.
    That is what the FS pushed for from the start - a lower quantity of trails but higher quality ones* - and nobody ever mentioned Summey Cove as a choice for closure. That whole process was an absolute joke and now they are using it against us.

    They put up trail registries on Summey Cove to track use, then they said they took them down to evaluate the data but when I went for a ride weeks later the 215 one was still there .

    Courthouse Creek is an important recreation area. Logging will have very detrimental effects to recreation and the environment (opening those roads that close to water is not good and using herbicides is absurd).

    Derek Ibarguen has made some big miscalculations. It will be interesting to see how the public responds when the logging trucks start rolling into North Mills River in the near future.

    This isn't limited to the PRD either. I believe Newberry Creek in the Grandfather District will be the next casualty. An amazing trail that is little used but absolutely pristine will be turned into a logging road. But hey, we will still be able to use Sugar Cove they say .

    I will still ride Summey Cove and 140A. No reason not to poach when such absurd decisions are made.

    Did we ever get the trails that were promised as part of Baldwin Gap logging project?







    * very similar to the phrase "less trails but more excellent ones"
    More Trails, Not Less

    Adventures in Pisgah

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ridn29s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    659

    The stupid hurts....

    Lets take one small example of a single impact on Kiesse Creek.

    The large crossing at the main branch on 5031 is at a very steep and deep cove. Both sides of the cove below the crossing are supposed to receive Shelterwood treatment. What is shelterwood treatment?

    The shelterwood method involves the removal of most of the mature stand at the end of the rotation, but a portion of the mature stand is left standing.

    WTF! Removing "most of the mature stand" along a steep cove just doesn't seem to be a very good idea to me, but I am not a forester so what do I know... This is the headwaters of Kiesse Creek - but the FS assures us there will be no impact on the riparian resource and no sediments will damage the creek. I've bush pushed up the creek through that section and there's no f'n way this isn't going to be very bad for the creek and it's inhabitants.
    many gears, some pies

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: 2bfluid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    536

    Re: Courthouse Creek Project decision coming week of 09/22

    Maybe some good photo documentation of before, during, and after could help swing the balance for the next round.

    Anyone thought of trying to do some fund raising or gather some nonprofs to out bid the loggers. The USFS seems to want the cash more than the forest logged. A tremendous amount of USFS work goes into each sale. Maybe the upfront cost savings could offset the final price?

    Just a thought.
    He/she who works the trails does so in their own image.

    Speed just slows me down...

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ridn29s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    659
    Quote Originally Posted by driftwood View Post

    Who wants to go ride Summey Cove? We'll start at the Ranger Station on a day and time when they are open.
    Sunday the 29th? the scenic tour with stops at major impact points
    many gears, some pies

  20. #20
    H8 H8 H8
    Reputation: Broussard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    847
    Quote Originally Posted by ridn29s View Post
    Sunday the 29th? the scenic tour with stops at major impact points
    It was beautiful out there today, not excessively overgrown anywhere.
    Yeah, it's strange. But oh well.

Similar Threads

  1. Submit a Comment on Courthouse Creek Project
    By driftwood in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-18-2013, 06:01 AM
  2. PAS - Response to Courthouse Creek Scoping Letter
    By Logover in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 12-19-2011, 05:15 PM
  3. Coming to Las Cruces for a week!
    By Shark in forum New Mexico
    Replies: 41
    Last Post: 06-05-2011, 08:47 PM
  4. Coming to ABQ this week--need recommendations.
    By Fischman in forum New Mexico
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 01-22-2011, 05:15 PM
  5. Coming to LA, first week of March
    By far raider in forum California - Socal
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 01-10-2011, 12:36 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •