Every day, more roads and trails used by the public for motorized

vehicle travel are being closed and even more areas are threatened.

For the most part, there are few answers about why trails are closed.

THE USDA Forest Service often uses the general statement that a

specific road or trail is not part of the Travel Management Plan, that

an area is part of a vital watershed or a threatened or endangered

species lives in the area. But most often there is no explanation.

In the last few months, the local Travel Management Plan has begun

implementation by the Mountaintop Ranger District in the San

Bernardino National Forest , which includes the area surrounding

Big Bear Lake. The funding for this has come mostly from the

Recovery Act funds, and the materials used for blocking roads and

trails as well as other formerly open areas popular for camping and

relaxing are large boulders from the new bridge project next to the

Big Bear Lake dam.

Some of the work has been undertaken by the Forest Service while

much of it has been completed by private contractors. These

contractors have used red dayglo paint on living trees to mark areas

where roads are to be blocked. Trail access is then blocked with

boulders, the ground along the trail is chunked and covered with

brush in order to camouflage the old road.  The problem is that the

camo does not hide the old road and the brush used in hide the road

is cut from living trees, a procedure that is apparently sanctioned by

the Forest Service. Once the work is completed, and presumably

after many citizens complained about the dayglo red paint on tree

trunks, the contractors have gone back to paint over the red paint

with brown paint, which shows up only slightly less then the red paint

since it does not match. This methodology likely  causes more

damage to the forest than motorized vehicle user could cause in 20

years, especially from those users who travel on public lands

responsibly. It seems that our grandchildren's money could be more

wisely utilized.

Some the road closures are old, historic roads that should never

have been closed. The problem is that the USDA Forest Service,

when the local travel management plan was created, held several

meetings for public input and provided a period for public comment.

And the public land users who travel via motorized vehicles were not

vocal enough. Which is why we have created tis section on the

SoCal 4x4 trails web site. We cannot let this happen again and we

must do what we can to get some of these important and historic

roads and trails reopened.

Below are important links to more specific information, who to

contact and important document downloads. Being informed makes

taking action easier. And taking action will help preserve OUR

access to our lands. But the most important factor for the land users

is to use the land responsibly.


Motorized Vehicle Use on Public Lands

Information & Issues Vital for Continued Access to OUR Lands!


Copyright 2013 Don Alexander


San Bernardino National Forest Fire Conditions

(CLICK HERE!)

San Bernardino National Forest Weather Conditions

(CLICK HERE!)

San Bernardino National Forest Off Highway Vehicle

Info (CLICK HERE!)

Road Conditions (Highways) (CLICK HERE!)

Fire Restrictions (CLICK HERE!)

San Bernardino National Forest Alerts and Notices

(CLICK HERE!)

Cal 4 Wheel Safety Requirements (CLICK HERE)


LINKS TO IMPORTANT

INFORMATION WEB SITES


FOREST SERVICE HANDBOOK NATIONAL

HEADQUARTERS  WASHINGTON, DC

CHAPTER 20

this document is CHAPTER 20 - TRAVEL

ANALYSIS


FOREST SERVICE HANDBOOK NATIONAL

HEADQUARTERS  WASHINGTON, DC

CHAPTER 10

this document is CHAPTER 10 - TRAVEL

PLANNING FOR DESIGNATIONS


FOREST SERVICE HANDBOOK NATIONAL

HEADQUARTERS  WASHINGTON, DC

CHAPTER 7710

this document is CHAPTER 7710 –

TRAVEL PLANNING


Environmental Assessment

Motorized Travel

Management EA

San Bernardino National

Forest

this document published in January,

2009, is the key document covering, if you

looking deep enough, what is going on in

the San Bernardino National Forest right

now.


Road Analysis Process

In August 1999, the Washington Office of

643 Decisions about Managing the

National Forest Transportation

System".


Road Analysis Report

2nd edition

Angeles, Cleveland, Los Padres, and San

Bernardino National Forests


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