Below is an e-mail I sent to San Bernardino NF requesting additional on a proposal for seasonal closure of Holcomb Valley....
I have been alerted about a pending seasonal closure in Holcomb Valley that has some people concerned.
The below is from the Forest Service website and is very cryptic with what is happening. While there is a section that indicates comments are being accepted, there are no project document to review and understand the scope of what is being proposed.
And, more important, what is the comment period timeframe????
Seasonal closure in the Holcomb Valley area for resource protection and public health and safety. Gates would be installed, and closed by Forest Order based on wintery conditions when driving would be unsafe and damage the roads and other resources.
Holcomb Valley area, east and north of (but not including) Polique Canyon Road (2N09) to Highways 38 and 18 and the San Bernardino National Forest boundary.
District: Big Bear Ranger District
No documents are available for this project.
- Wildlife, Fish, Rare plants
- Watershed management
- Special area management
Est. Scoping Start
Expected implementation: 07/2016
The below was received from San Bernardino NF:
I appreciate all of your questions, concerns, and input regarding the proposed short-term closure in Holcomb Valley. This project was initially announced on our schedule of proposed action as a project we started developing. The proposed action is still in development with additional information required. In order to reduce confusion, I wanted to provide the following summary:
The purpose and need of this project is improve watershed condition, reduce impacts to federally listed species, provide protection for Forest Service roads, and provide for public safety.
Currently, the draft proposal is to implement a short-term closure on the east side of Holcomb Valley along Forest Road 3N16, from Forest Road 2N09 (Polique Canyon) to Doble Dump Road. This would include Forest Service roads that connect to this section of 3N16. Because of the soil type and location of the road, the Forest Service has to invest limited maintenance funds annually to keep the road in a condition suitable for sedans (maintenance level III). By implementing a short-term, seasonal closure when road conditions are susceptible to significant damage, the Forest Service can allocate those funds to other roads that are often neglected due to lack of road maintenance funding. The short-term closure would provide for public safety and reduce risk to emergency personnel by decreasing the number of winter rescues to Forest visitors stranded in snow. This would not be an annual closure, it would be implemented as needed based on road conditions affected by snow depth or soil moisture throughout the winter.
As the development of this project continues, we will continue to update the project status on our San Bernardino National Forest NEPA webpage. We will also announce opportunities for comments once a more detailed project description, including maps, is completed and available for review. Thank you for your expressed interest in this project.
San Bernardino National Forest
41374 North Shore Dr. Hwy 38
Fawnskin, CA 92333
As it stands, this a a proposal that is being developed. Additional information is being gathered. There is no projected timeframe for public comments.
Under the new Forest Planning Rule, comments may be submitted early in the planning stage. When it get to official "public comment" time-frame, there will be limited opportunity to affect a change in the proposal. Comments submitted now will help frame the proposal....
If you wish to comment, submit your comments to: