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Old 05-16-2010   #1
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 121
Ruby-Horsethief Recreation Management Plan Now Available

The draft Ruby-Horsethief Recreation Area Management Plan is now available on the BLM-McInnis Canyons NCA website at Ruby Horsethief .

At this site you will find an introductory letter from the McInnis Canyons NCA Manager, the draft plan, a chart comparing the four alternatives we have identified to this point, and a comment form that you can use to help us develop a preferred alternative.

We'll be holding an open house on Tuesday, June 1st at the BLM-Grand Junction Field Office at 2815 H Road, just across from the airport. We'll be here from 3pm to 7pm to answer any questions you have (I don't have a formal presentation to give so come by when it is most convenient for you, you won't miss anything if you're not here at 2:59pm.) Members of the Northwest Colorado Resource Advisory Council subgroup for McInnis Canyons NCA (formerly known as the McInnis Canyons NCA Advisory Council) will be here from 5pm to 7pm that day as well. After that, we'll be accepting comments until July 1st. At that point, we'll develop a proposed action for NEPA analysis later this summer.

While written comments work best because we have a permanent record of them (especially email), feel free to give me a call with any questions you have - 970-244-3029. Also, please forward this email to anyone you think would be interested or post to any web forums you think might find this of interest. I'll send out an email anytime we have news about this plan, so please let me know if you don't want any more emails from me and I'll take you off the list.

Thanks for your interest in our public lands, and have a great weekend.


- -

Matt McGrath
Recreation Planner, McInnis Canyons NCA
BLM, Grand Junction, CO
Phone: 970-244-3029

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Old 05-17-2010   #2
Andy H.'s Avatar
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,909
News Release: BLM to Hold Open House on Ruby-Horsethief Permit Proposals

BLM to Hold Open House on Ruby-Horsethief Permit Proposals

Grand Junction, CO -- The Bureau of Land Management’s McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area will hold an open house June 1 to discuss new approaches to managing visitor use in the Ruby-Horsethief section of the Colorado River. Four alternatives are being considered, including different scenarios for fees and permits.

The Ruby-Horsethief section of the Colorado runs through McInnis Canyons NCA, and the NCA staff is seeking the public’s feedback on four possible alternatives for potential permit systems. This public input will be used to prepare an Environmental Assessment to analyze options for managing public use, minimizing impacts to boaters’ experiences and protecting natural resources.

The BLM has spent the last year exploring options for future management direction for the river stretch to keep up with increased boating and camping use. Alternatives range from continuing to manage the river as is to instituting a registration system that would limit the number of campers each night on the river, and potentially including a $7 per person, per night overnight camping fee to help support the delivery of enhanced visitor services on the river.

“With more people visiting the area and floating the river, we’ve seen an increase in confusion and ineffectiveness of the voluntary campsite registration system,” said Katie A. Stevens, NCA Manager. “Impacts to the quality of the visitor experience and damage to resources have also increased, including unauthorized campsites and trash and waste build-up. We are looking for a way to eliminate confusion and limit resource damage while still allowing for a casual and enjoyable float and camping experience for boaters.”

The open house will be held June 1 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the BLM Grand Junction Field office at 2815 H Road in Grand Junction. Members of the McInnis Canyons NCA Subgroup of the Northwest Resource Advisory Council will be present from 5 to 7 p.m..

The alternatives have also been posted to the BLM website, and members of the public have an opportunity to submit comments online, as well. To review the alternatives, go to Ruby Horsethief. A comment form will be posted at this same address; comments may be submitted in hard copy or by emailing to rubyhorsethief@blm.gov. For more information, contact Katie Stevens, NCA manager, at (970) 244-3049.

## BLM ##

Nothing in the world is more yielding and gentle than water. Yet it has no equal for conquering the resistant and tough. The flexible can overcome the unbending; the soft can overcome the hard. - Lao Tse
Andy H. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2010   #3
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,302
Most of the plan looks good.

Only part that doesn't seem correct/fair is requiring day-use groups to carry both a groover and a fire pan. A wag-bag makes sense, but a washable groover system generally doesn't fit in a kayak that well. Likewise, most firepan regulations are set at standard raft-carrying sizes, and again would hinder private day-use groups from paddling the canyon in their river craft of choice. Since day-use paddling on Ruby is much more efficient in a kayak (a vessel that can't carry much), it seems the regs should match the type of craft most likely to complete Ruby in a day.
Kyle McCutchen
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