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Old 06-13-2011   #51
 
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by idahoriverguide View Post
Wow, its your road too you know. Why is it the outfitter's job to open it? The fs is keeping you out of YOUR road. They have been and continue to passively keep people out of the middle fork. Don't believe me? Then you're not paying attention.
This is pure BS. The Forest Service has no obligation to clear snow from a road to provide access.

Your statements show a fundamental misunderstanding of the FS purpose, especially in accord with NEPA, ESA, and other publicly approved statutes and regulations that have purposes that suit other peoples, interests, and species beyond the recreational gain of outfitters.

The bigger picture is more important here, in my opinion. I say this as someone who is not only professionally trained and educated in natural resources policy, but as an avid outdoorsman and recreationalist who at times is at odds with public lands policy. I deal with it, though, because I do respect and appreciate the larger context.
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Old 06-14-2011   #52
 
Dixon, Montana
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Boundary Creek Road June 14

Spoke with Donna this morning June 14th, no new information, furthest in anyone has reported getting up the road is about 3 miles, stopped by snow. No prediction on opening.
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Old 06-14-2011   #53
 
Ashland and Lake Almanor, state of jefferson
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I have 4 sleds, will tow gear in for anyone that has room for 1 guy 2 girls. 2 cat boats. Rafts would be towed on mat made for hauling crashed sleds. So no dragging on snow/rocks. Open for whatever.
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Old 06-14-2011   #54
 
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Boulder, Colorado
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There is talk on Idaho Whitewater that people in 4wd vehicles with chains have made it in to Boundary. Also there may be some people working to open the road today with shovels...might be a sign that the road is getting close.

While the Forest Service might not have an obligation to plow the road, plowing roads is a normal function of many local, state and federal organizations. My vote is that if the outfitters want to pay to plow the road - let them.
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Old 06-14-2011   #55
 
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raftus View Post
There is talk on Idaho Whitewater that people in 4wd vehicles with chains have made it in to Boundary. Also there may be some people working to open the road today with shovels...might be a sign that the road is getting close.

While the Forest Service might not have an obligation to plow the road, plowing roads is a normal function of many local, state and federal organizations. My vote is that if the outfitters want to pay to plow the road - let them.
The problem is that letting outfitters plow a forest service road probably involves a lengthy, expensive bureaucratic process that involves NEPA, possibly open bidding, and a whole slew of other crap that makes it not worthwhile.

I can't find ANYTHING that suggests that plowing snow is a normal USFS function.
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Old 06-15-2011   #56
 
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stanley, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anchorless View Post
This is pure BS. The Forest Service has no obligation to clear snow from a road to provide access.

Your statements show a fundamental misunderstanding of the FS purpose, especially in accord with NEPA, ESA, and other publicly approved statutes and regulations that have purposes that suit other peoples, interests, and species beyond the recreational gain of outfitters.

The bigger picture is more important here, in my opinion. I say this as someone who is not only professionally trained and educated in natural resources policy, but as an avid outdoorsman and recreationalist who at times is at odds with public lands policy. I deal with it, though, because I do respect and appreciate the larger context.
-You think I don't see the big picture? Unlike you I make my living off the back country, I didn't just study it in a class room. I am not saying the FS should plow the road, I'm just saying that it's a public road and thus up to the public to do as they wish, i.e. have the option to plow if they get the proper permitting.

Have you even taken into account the economic impact that this is causing? Do you even care? The fact is hundreds of people have canceled permits this season for the MFSR, that has impacted the already fragile economy in the Salmon River Valley. That's hundreds of people who didn't come through the towns in the area to spend money. I live in one of the towns effected and I'll tell you first hand it's made a large impact. Standing behind the ESA is not, in my opinion, what it's there for. I am all for preservation of the Frank Church. How much money is the FS losing right now due to the canceled permits? $4 a day per person, that's $576 per permit with 24 people on it. That's $2304 per launch day. Wouldn't you like to see that money help your "big picture"?

What needs to be on the radar of boaters on the MFSR is the new regulations about canceled permits August 15th- September 15th. I personally don't feel it's a huge deal at this point, but if boaters don't stand up and make a voice Chris Grove will have this policy extended throughout the whole permit season. It's just a foot in the door at this point and Chris himself has said he hasn't heard any feedback from 'private boaters'

Anchor, I agree with you it's not the FS job to remove snow, I never said it was. The fact that they make it such a mess just to pay to plow it says a lot. The fact that in the last 10 years well over 90% of the people who have lost their lives on the river has been those on Marsh Creek. And don't start me on that, I've personally gone in and got the bodies out of that creek, without the help of the FS I might add.

I'm done with this topic. The road is still closed and the slide on it is still huge. No one has made it through to boundary as of today. Have a great summer and if you get out on the MF enjoy the hell out of it, it's a magical place that will find a home in your hearts.
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Old 06-15-2011   #57
 
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Boise, Idaho
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 13
Posted on idaho whitewater forum:

Dear Middle Fork Boaters,

We were notified today that the road to Boundary Creek has been shoveled open
and 4WD and high clearance vehicles have made it in. Expect muddy, snowy
single-lane sections, changing conditions, and water over the road at Poker
Meadows; one lane is washed out. Water is not available yet at Boundary or
Dagger, and the bottom boat ramp boards have not been installed.

Today's water level is 6.66 feet, a level that is considered extremely
hazardous.


After emailing permit holders about the new Boat Check requirements (attached)
for the Middle Fork of the Salmon River, a boater asked if he could get his
Idaho Invasive Species Stickers at the launch sites after his boats were
checked.

Sorry, but no; these stickers are not available from our employees at the
launches.

The sticker requirement is a relatively new law (2009) enacted by the State of
Idaho. According to their website, "any non-motorized vessel (canoe, kayak,
raft, drift boat, etc.) will be required to purchase and display IISF stickers
in order to legally launch and operate in Idaho. Inflatable, non-motorized
vessels must be less than 10 feet in length to be exempted from this
requirement."

For purchase options, and to learn more about Idaho's invasive species program,
visit their website at:
Idaho Invasive Species Fund

While both the State of Idaho and the Forest Service are working to prevent the
introduction of Aquatic Invasive Species into our waters, these are two separate
government entities. The sticker requirement is administered by the State of
Idaho.

Before launching on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River, the permit holder must
sign their float permit, which states that they "have read and understood the
rules and regulations", one of which reads "Observe all local, State and Federal
laws and regulations pertaining to the area. This includes the State of Idaho
Invasive Species Sticker. All craft must be clean and dry and free of invasive
species."

Some boaters have not heard about Idaho's new state law, so we are emailing this
to all permit holders, and asking them to forward to boat owners going on their
float trip. I am attaching the boat check requirements for new reservation
holders who may not have seen this yet.


Donna Leuzinger, River Clerk, Middle Fork District
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Old 06-16-2011   #58
Everyone needs a vacation
 
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Fairfield, California
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 50
Idahoriverguide,

Are you sure no one has made it in using Boundary due to the slide? As a permit holder I received the same letter yesterday that was posted by Alectoris. We were planning on running Marsh Creek, but would prefer to drive in Boundary. Any confirmation would be appreciated.

Thanks!
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Old 06-16-2011   #59
 
pocatello, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 471
confirmed again on idaho whitewater this morning.

"The Boundary road opened yesterday, recommend 4x4 vehicles, one lane and slushy in places."
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Old 06-16-2011   #60
 
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
Quote:
Originally Posted by idahoriverguide View Post
-You think I don't see the big picture? Unlike you I make my living off the back country, I didn't just study it in a class room. I am not saying the FS should plow the road, I'm just saying that it's a public road and thus up to the public to do as they wish, i.e. have the option to plow if they get the proper permitting.

You clearly aren't seeing the big picture and are a bit mislead as to what public lands are and how they are managed. I'm glad that you're able to make a living off of the back country. Most of us envy you in being able to do so. At the same time, it is simply not feasible that everyone do so, and there are obviously regulations to that effect. But don't think you'll gain sympathy from me - or any one else - because you have been able to leverage a living from public lands. This alone is a rather contentious topic. However, more power to you.

The point is, at no point in public lands management has the public ever been allowed to "do what they wish," roads included. That's an extremely stupid position to take, even if you disagree with the current level of state/federal bureaucracy.

Have you even taken into account the economic impact that this is causing? Do you even care? The fact is hundreds of people have canceled permits this season for the MFSR, that has impacted the already fragile economy in the Salmon River Valley. That's hundreds of people who didn't come through the towns in the area to spend money. I live in one of the towns effected and I'll tell you first hand it's made a large impact. Standing behind the ESA is not, in my opinion, what it's there for. I am all for preservation of the Frank Church. How much money is the FS losing right now due to the canceled permits? $4 a day per person, that's $576 per permit with 24 people on it. That's $2304 per launch day. Wouldn't you like to see that money help your "big picture"?

I actually do care very much about this - more than you'd probably imagine. At the same time, these mountain towns that depend on recreation money are historically used to and situated for these kinds of ups and downs. Any tourism dependent economy is. And that's just the way it has to stay unless you want to continue seeing private development and getaways encroach in these towns (ie, become more like Western Montana, Jackson Hole, Sun Valley, etc.). The economic volatility is part of who they keep their character and charm, like it or not.

Despite what you think, these are all factors considered in the "broader picture" goals. The USFS is not out to get you or your small town. At the same time, there does need to be a little flexibility for these types of situations. On the other hand, it's an unusual snow year. What can you expect, really?



What needs to be on the radar of boaters on the MFSR is the new regulations about canceled permits August 15th- September 15th. I personally don't feel it's a huge deal at this point, but if boaters don't stand up and make a voice Chris Grove will have this policy extended throughout the whole permit season. It's just a foot in the door at this point and Chris himself has said he hasn't heard any feedback from 'private boaters'

Fair enough.

Anchor, I agree with you it's not the FS job to remove snow, I never said it was. The fact that they make it such a mess just to pay to plow it says a lot. The fact that in the last 10 years well over 90% of the people who have lost their lives on the river has been those on Marsh Creek. And don't start me on that, I've personally gone in and got the bodies out of that creek, without the help of the FS I might add.

All it says is that there are larger regulations in place with broader policy in mind... I'm sorry you don't think it should apply to plowing roads, but NEPA applies to any action on federal land... and there are larger reasons for this type of bureaucracy. In my opinion, I'll take the bs red tape if it means we can continue to preserve the integrity of the public lands and waters in our state without catering to industry, timber, mining, or private development. Gladly.

As far as your ridiculous Marsh Creek argument goes... that's same argument people will make for increasing regulations or stupid ideas like hand rails and warning signs in Wilderness. People who decide to cruise down Marsh know exactly what they're getting into, and if they don't... well, that's the risk they take. Do you want to close down rivers because people make stupid decisions on them?


I'm done with this topic. The road is still closed and the slide on it is still huge. No one has made it through to boundary as of today. Have a great summer and if you get out on the MF enjoy the hell out of it, it's a magical place that will find a home in your hearts.
I'll be on the MF (and Main) this year in July and August, respectively. I will certainly cherish it, as I do every time I am able to be on it.
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