By Rebecca Robbins
The USDA Forest Service is seeking public comments on a pre-decisional environmental assessment for the Southern HDs Landscape Restoration Project located on the Columbine Ranger District of the San Juan National Forest.
The project goal is to restore the land to more natural vegetation conditions and reduce the risk from wildfire on approximately 35,000 acres in the HD Mountains south and east of Bayfield, in La Plata and Archuleta counties.
You can participate in the planning process by sharing suggestions for how to make the project better, specific concerns or information you may have about the project area. A public comment period is open through Sept. 17.
The proposed activities are to use a combination of vegetation thinning with machinery and by hand with chain saws, vegetation reduction using managed goat grazing, treatment of noxious weeds and prescribed burning. The proposal also includes possible road maintenance on forest system roads and development of temporary roads and skid trails.
You can view the environmental assessment describing the proposed action, with maps, and submit written comments on the project Web page at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=58742. Written comments can also be sent to the Columbine District Ranger, P.O. Box 439, 367 Pearl St., Bayfield, CO 81122.
Only those individuals or entities who submit timely, specific written comments during identified public comment periods will be eligible to object to the proposed decision. This comment period is the last opportunity to establish eligibility to object to this project. Comments received, including names and addresses of commenters, will be part of the public record.
For more information or for a hard copy of the environmental assessment, please contact the Columbine Ranger District office at (970) 884-2512.
All offices on the San Juan National Forest are currently conducting business and providing services virtually. For information on the San Juan National Forest, call (970) 247-4874.