The 5.4-million-acre Chugach National Forest in southcentral Alaska, America’s most northerly national forest, published a new Forest Management Plan in April 2020. Covering an area the size of New Hampshire, stretching from the snowy peaks of Prince William Sound to the Kenai Peninsula, the Chugach features spectacular coastal mountains with some of the best and wildest backcountry terrain in the world. (See below for video and image gallery from our ambassador Luc Mehl!)
The 2020 Forest Plan maintains current winter travel management on the Kenai Peninsula. The Kenai Winter Access Plan was hammered out in 2007 and continues to work well for both motorized and non-motorized winter recreationists, and we are fine with the Forest Service choosing to maintain the status quo in this regard. However, we’re concerned that the 2020 significantly waters down protections for the 1.9 million acre Nellie Juan-College Fjord Wilderness Study Area (WSA), located in the Prince William Sound.
The WSA was created in 1980 by the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA). This truly wild and roadless landscape also includes the highest concentration of tidewater glaciers in North America, and we believe it deserves the highest level of permanent protection in the new forest plan. Unfortunately, despite strong public support for additional protections for the WSA, the 2020 plan fails to recommend additional areas within the WSA for Wilderness beyond what was recommended in the old (2002) plan, and it reduces or eliminates important management tools that are necessary for protecting the Wilderness character of the WSA and its potential for inclusion in the National Wilderness Preservation System.
The CGNF forest plan revision is a good example of forest planning but we're not finished yet! Read more about why it's been such a success and what next steps are.
https://winterwildlands.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/PC-Hilary-Eisen_Custer-Gallatin-NF_On-the-ancestral-lands-of-the-Crow-Cheynne-and-Sioux.jpg12001500Melinda Quickhttps://winterwildlands.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngMelinda Quick2021-05-05 17:00:382021-04-28 20:16:31Custer Gallatin Forest Planning: Getting Close to the Finish Line
As the popularity of outdoor recreation and use of public lands increases, funding for the Forest Service and other land management agencies has not kept up. Read our full report and take action today!
https://winterwildlands.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Funding-the-Forest-Service-Blog-Mar-2021-Images-of-Examples-of-Project-Needs.jpg7361502Winter Wildlandshttps://winterwildlands.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngWinter Wildlands2021-04-05 11:15:472021-04-07 08:54:21Funding the Forest Service
WWA and Outdoor Alliance are teaming up to measure the economic impact of backcountry skiing on the Manti-La Sal National Forest.
https://winterwildlands.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Manti-La-Sal-NF-Utah_PC-John-Buie-via-Flickr.jpeg6671000Melinda Quickhttps://winterwildlands.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngMelinda Quick2021-03-30 09:51:072021-03-30 09:56:35Take the Survey for Manti-La Sal National Forest