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Thread: GWNF Wilderness

  1. #1
    CrgCrkRyder
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    GWNF Wilderness

    Talking with Sharon, the Recreation officer for the James River District of the GW National Forest. She sent me a link showing a map of potential wilderness areas. I am really surprised at the huge land masses that are shown as potential wilderness areas. Just in my area alone, I see potential lost trails in Rich Hole addition, Beards Mountain, Little Mare Mountain, Dolly Ann, and Rich Patch on the Jefferson National Forest. I believe the map here shows more potential wilderness than earlier maps that were posted (Little Mare Mountain north of Douthat was one I noticed was not on an earlier map). Lots of areas near Harrisonburg that are probably full of trails.

    Does anyone have a good feel for what areas the wilderness advocates are really pushing for and which ones the Forest Service just threw in the mix? Surely all of these areas are not going to have the characteristics required to be considered for wilderness. I believe the Whetstone Ridge trail area was mentioned by Fat-Tire as a battleground area. Other specific areas the wilderness advocates are pushing for?



    Map of potential wilderness areas:

    http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/gwj/forestpl...ness-areas.pdf



    Inventory of potential Wilderness areas
    http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/gwj/forestpl...nventory-1.pdf


    Comments on the Forest Service plan:

    http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/gwj/forestpl.../contact.shtml

  2. #2
    I am the owl
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    Good info to be found in this thread.

    And some good thoughts from a friend of mine about this whole issue here
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  3. #3
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Thanks for the thread RiderX. I thought Dan-Hudson Sept. 9th post quoting Rich Edwards was a good explaination of the governments process.
    http://www.more-mtb.org/forum/showth...845#post127845

  4. #4
    dirt rider
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    Is that Sharon Mohney?

  5. #5
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    I did not look at your maps, but I can tell you most likely what is going on. The large areas of land up for wilderness are most likely being pushed by the Wilderness Coalition (a well organized coalition). KNOW THIS NOW. AT LEAST IN WV, MOUNTAIN BIKERS WERE THROWN UNDER THE BUS BY THE COALITION TO EXPAND WILDERNESS IN THE COALITION'S CRUSADE AGAINST THE LOGGING INDUSTRY. I dealt with this group in WV regarding the recent Monogahelia National Forest wilderness expansion.

    My experience with the Wilderness Coalition was very very negative. In general, the Wilderness Coalition wants the mountain bikers to sit down and shut up regarding wilderness proposals, When I and others did stand up, we were accosted by Coalition members claiming we were against the environment; and that the Coalition "saved" some mtb land for the bikers. The Coalition inferred that it would ask for more land to be Wilderness if we can't agree.

    Moreover, the Coalition was, in my opinion, deceptive about mtb support. Coalition members would get some bike shops to agree with the expansions without informing these shops that mtb'ing would be prohibited in these areas. Moreover, the Coalition would get hack Coalition member, want to be, mountain bikers to say "I mountain bike and I am ok with it (one hack said that he raced 24 hours of Canaan, so he represents mtb interests),.

    Finally, the Coalition got the support of the Elk River Touring Center which sent one of its owners to Washington to testify supporting Wilderness. The Coalition then made the inference that all mountain bikers were ok with Wilderness (which, for the most part was untrue).

    In sum, be careful. Hopefully your experience will be better than in WV. But be proactive, engage, and don't take any crap from the Coalition. Start fighting now or mtb land will be lost. Start calling Representatives now.

    Just my thoughts.

  6. #6
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Quote Originally Posted by sciron4x4
    Is that Sharon Mohney?
    Yep. From what I can tell, she is pro-MTB. She also wants us to help with maintenance and/or building of the Alleghany Highlands Trail system. A wilderness designation for Dolly Ann would shut off 10 or 12 miles of new singletrack being built on Peters Ridge. That would be Oh So Wrong. That section of trail will have somewhere between 2000 and 2500 feet of vertical.

    Side Note - any clubs want a project? There are numerous partially finished sections of singletrack around Douthat that the Boy Scouts didn't get finished last summer. I'm sure Sharon would love to have some mountain bike volunteers building trails.

  7. #7
    dirt rider
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    Definitely. Especially if there is anything off of our adopted trail. I need to get up there sometime soon to do some trail maintenance, so if there are any singletrack trails nearby that need some work done, I'd love to know.

  8. #8
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Quote Originally Posted by sciron4x4
    Definitely. Especially if there is anything off of our adopted trail. I need to get up there sometime soon to do some trail maintenance, so if there are any singletrack trails nearby that need some work done, I'd love to know.
    Which is your adopted trail?

  9. #9
    Because I am !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pisgah
    I did not look at your maps, but I can tell you most likely what is going on. The large areas of land up for wilderness are most likely being pushed by the Wilderness Coalition (a well organized coalition). KNOW THIS NOW. AT LEAST IN WV, MOUNTAIN BIKERS WERE THROWN UNDER THE BUS BY THE COALITION TO EXPAND WILDERNESS IN THE COALITION'S CRUSADE AGAINST THE LOGGING INDUSTRY. I dealt with this group in WV regarding the recent Monogahelia National Forest wilderness expansion.

    My experience with the Wilderness Coalition was very very negative. In general, the Wilderness Coalition wants the mountain bikers to sit down and shut up regarding wilderness proposals, When I and others did stand up, we were accosted by Coalition members claiming we were against the environment; and that the Coalition "saved" some mtb land for the bikers. The Coalition inferred that it would ask for more land to be Wilderness if we can't agree.

    Moreover, the Coalition was, in my opinion, deceptive about mtb support. Coalition members would get some bike shops to agree with the expansions without informing these shops that mtb'ing would be prohibited in these areas. Moreover, the Coalition would get hack Coalition member, want to be, mountain bikers to say "I mountain bike and I am ok with it (one hack said that he raced 24 hours of Canaan, so he represents mtb interests),.

    Finally, the Coalition got the support of the Elk River Touring Center which sent one of its owners to Washington to testify supporting Wilderness. The Coalition then made the inference that all mountain bikers were ok with Wilderness (which, for the most part was untrue).

    In sum, be careful. Hopefully your experience will be better than in WV. But be proactive, engage, and don't take any crap from the Coalition. Start fighting now or mtb land will be lost. Start calling Representatives now.

    Just my thoughts.
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  10. #10
    dirt rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by CraigCreekRider
    Which is your adopted trail?
    125D, aka "Skyline Drive", off of Dolly Ann (125).

  11. #11
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Quote Originally Posted by sciron4x4
    125D, aka "Skyline Drive", off of Dolly Ann (125).

    One of the 3 loops of the Alleghany Highlands Trail System starts at the top of Fore Mountain and crosses Dolly Ann Road and follows Skyline Drive / Dry Run Trail to the top of Peters Ridge (Big Knob / Bald Knob area). Dry Run trail diverges off to Covington, but the new trail follows Peters Ridge for several miles and then bombs down to Dolly Ann road again, crosses and then climbs back up to the top of Fore Mountain. Parts of this trail are finished. but most isn't. I tried to upload a map I have of this here, but it was too big. PM me with an e-mail address and I will send it to you. This is part of the potential wilderness area named "Dolly Ann".

  12. #12
    CrgCrkRyder
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    Sciron - I forgot, Sharon had given me this link. Was posted in the Roanoke/Blacksburg/Lynchburg maps post.

    http://www.fs.fed.us/recreation/prog...roject_map.pdf

    It has poor resolution, but gives you a pretty good idea of where the trails are.

  13. #13
    dirt rider
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    Thanks. PM sent.

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