The Custer Gallatin National Forest released a Proposed Action for their forest plan revision in January and now they want your input. The Proposed Action is a first step – the Forest Service’s initial proposal for how they might manage the forest for the next 20-30 years. The next step is for the Forest Service to develop and compare a range of Alternatives – and your comments on the Proposed Action will shape what these Alternatives look like. The new forest plan will grow out of the range of Alternatives so commenting now has a direct impact on what will be in the revised forest plan.
Forest planning is important because forest plans set the stage for everything that happens on a forest, and these plans tend to only get revised every 20-30 years (the current forest plans for the Custer Gallatin were written in 1986 and 1987). Through forest planning we can protect areas for non-motorized recreation, recommend places for Wilderness designation, and decide what activities are suitable in what parts of the forest.
The Custer Gallatin stretches over 400 miles from east to west – from West Yellowstone, MT to Camp Crook, SD. It encompasses 9 different mountain ranges, including the highest peaks in Montana. It’s a forest where skiers sample everything from deep coldsmoke powder to Nordic crust cruising and it’s home to some of the finest ice climbing in the country. Although people flock to the forest in all seasons, it’s truly a special place for winter recreation enthusiasts.
To learn more about the Proposed Action you can read this blog post from our policy director and, when you’re ready to comment you can do so using the form below.