View Full Version : Gene King COA4WDCI on Hayman

October 5th, 2004, 02:06 PM
Gene W. King
CoA4WDCI Land Use Chairman

On 16 September 2004 the Forest Service released their decision on the Hayman Roads Environmental Assessment.

The District Rangers of Pikes Peak, South Platte, and South Park Ranger Districts were the decision makers and their decisions were to accept Alternative C, but modified it! When four wheelers read the modifications, they were flabbergasted!!!

The motorized community favored Alternative B because it kept open the entire 130 miles of roads in the Hayman burn area. Alternative C originally would retain 72 of the 130 miles of roads open and decommission 49 miles with 6 miles closed and 3 miles of seasonal closures. (Alternative D was the anti-access people?s alternative).
All 130 miles of roads listed in the Hayman Roads EA are level 2 roads (i.e., 4wheel drive roads).

The modifications consisted of closing ALL 23.2 miles of roads in the ever-popular Wildcat Canyon area; Longwater Gulch, Hackett Gulch, Crossover, Widow Maker, Metberry Road and Corral Creek. However, ?The decision will allow for the opening of these roads if and only if a written easement, agreement or special use permit is entered into with a public road management agency with respect to each (emphasis added) road, and such easement, agreement, or permit contains an agreed maintenance standard for each road.?
Other ?modifications? from the original Alternative C include reducing ?maintain as is? roads by an additional 23.39 miles, adding another 6 miles to the Admin list and decommissioning another 13.66 miles.

Longwater, Hackett, and Corral Creek roads were adopt-a-roads by CoA4WDCI 4wd clubs. We, the OHV community, have spent over $100,000 in grant money and many thousands of hours of volunteer time in the past several years on these roads.

I believe the reasons for the ?decisions? defy logic and common sense. The two years these roads have been closed have seen increased recreational pressure and resource damage on other OHV areas surrounding the Hayman Burn area. These decisions will continue to allow additional resource damages to happen in these areas.

In July, twelve 4wheelers transported 11 NFS and Teller county officials for over 9 hours into the Wildcat Canyon burn area to investigate the road conditions. The overwhelming comments, including three District Rangers, were that the road conditions were not as bad as everyone had thought. ?This won?t be too hard to fix? was a comment heard several times from the NFS road engineer.
The 4wheel community was encouraged by these comments and these popular roads would be reopened in the near future. Many 4wheelers and OHV recreationists provided comments in the EA that we would do whatever we had to to keep these roads open. This included writing OHV grants, manning work parties, donating some heavy equipment time, providing tools and other materials and donating many, many volunteer hours.

Should we, the motorized community, take these decisions as a slap in the face? Does this mean that the over 8000 man-hours in 2003 by the CoA4WDCI clubs are a waste of our time? Should we find other things to do with our time and efforts? I think not.

We have to consider the long-term effects of such negative actions and thoughts. We have to remain proactive. We have to keep in mind that one day WE can get these roads re-opened.
When I say we I mean YOU. I expect YOU to be concerned; I expect YOU to continue to do the things that are positive for the sport of 4wheeling and OHV recreation; I expect YOU to be more involved in these actions (Public meetings, EA?s and EIS?s) in the future. I expect YOU to maintain a united front and continue to move forward.

The Hayman Roads Analysis generated over 1500 comments, the majority of them from the motorized community. The Hayman Roads EA generated 94 comments; not enough comments from YOU.

I expect these roads to be re-opened one day and YOU need to be more involved to make IT happen.

October 5th, 2004, 03:06 PM
so what can we do right now? has any one contacted the blue ribbon coalition? maybe we need some national help on this?

October 6th, 2004, 09:13 AM

A slap in the face indeed.

I think that the USFS really shot themselves in the foot with the modification of Alternative C.

I have worked pretty hard to play by the rules set forth by NEPA, and had believed that the USFS had done a good job with the writing of the initial options, with their preferred alternative being Alternative C. Alternative C would have kept the roads of Wildcat Canyon open for public motorized use.

What happened behind closed doors can only be speculated about, but it smacks of collusion between the "greenie" interested parties and the USFS to close the roads. They worded the new alternative in such a way as to leave open the possibility of reopening the roads if a local govt manaegement agency will foot the bill for mainentance. (what a freakin crock).

My initial reaction is to say, well if they want to play it like that, then so be it. I will let them continue to close more and more roads until the remaining open areas are completely trashed due to forced overuse. I will let them continue to close more roads, forcing previously respectable users to misuse closed trails as there are now limited alternatives.

We worked within the process and got JOBBED!

The USFS has turned their backs on the OHV community, so let them continue to legislate and shut down trails to motorized use. Let them further restrict our right to enjoy the land that we supposedly own (and are happy to share with other users). Let these so called stewards of our lands continue to ally with the radical green movement. But most importantly, let them, in the end, reap what they have sown. They are sowing seeds of discontent which will eventually grow into a thicket of noxious weeds that will destroy the very land they are trying to protect.

This rant is sponsered by me, a person who has dedicated thier life to the protection of the environment, and the conservation of our resources. I do this for a living. I am not some redneck-hick-tundratearingup-irresposible-user. I am just pissed.

While I appreciate Gene's well constructed letter, I ask him, why the heck should I continue to try? Its a lot easier to be irresponsible and tell the USFS to bite me, than it is to be responsible and continue to work within a system that they are blatantly abusing!!


Well I guess I will have to see if I can remotivate myself to care anymore.....

October 25th, 2004, 08:14 AM
thank the democrats