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Tellico closing SEND COMMENTS TODAY 10-17

bigjbear

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I also posted this in SE forum, but I know people travel from other places to wheel Tellico so I'm going to put it here, too.

Read and send in your comments before the deadline, Oct 17, 2007

http://www.sfwda.org/trails/tellico/tellico20070917.html

Forest Service Proposes Tellico Trail Closures

September 17, 2007
The Forest Service is proposing to prohibit motorized vehicles on Lower Trail # 2, Trail # 7, and Trail # 9 and to prohibit winter-time motorized vehicle use on the Upper Tellico OHV Trail System from January 1 to March 31 each year. The full text is shown below.
The Forest Service is asking for comments from the public. Deadline for public comments is October 17, 2007.
We do need all interested 4-wheeling enthusiasts to write their comments to the Forest Service. We request that you write polite and professional letters clearly stating your views and the reasons for them.
We are currently working on suggestions for talking points to put in your letters. We will post suggestions here soon.

forestservice05.png
United States
Department of
AgricultureForest
ServiceNational Forests in North Carolina
Nantahala National Forest
Tusquitee Ranger District123 Woodland Dr.
Murphy, NC 28906-3145
828-837-5152 File Code:
Date: 2350-5/1950
September 17, 2007Dear Interested Public,
I am seeking comments on two proposals to establish new Forest Supervisor’s Orders on the Upper Tellico Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Area in Cherokee County, North Carolina. This OHV area, located 15 miles north of Murphy on the North Carolina/Tennessee state line, includes approximately 38 miles of existing roads and trails that are managed for motorized recreation use. The following actions are being proposed:
  1. A Forest Supervisor’s Order prohibiting motorized vehicles on Lower Trail # 2, Trail # 7, and Trail # 9, duration of order not to exceed one year or until a reasonable plan is in place to prevent adverse impacts to the aquatic resource.
  2. A Forest Supervisor’s Order prohibiting winter-time motorized vehicle use on the Upper Tellico OHV Trail System from January 1 to March 31 each year. This would include all trails in the system except Trail # 1 and the upper section of Trail # 2 which would remain open as system roads used by vehicle types normally found on public roads.
The following persons would be exempted from these orders:
  • Persons with a permit from the Forest Service specifically authorizing the otherwise prohibited act or omission.
  • Any Federal, State, or local officer, or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force in the performance of an official duty.
  • Owners or lessees of land in the Closure Area are exempt from the prohibitions listed above to the extent necessary to gain access to their land.
  • Residents in the Closure Area are exempt from the prohibitions to the extent necessary to gain access to their residences.
PURPOSE AND NEED FOR THE PROPOSED ACTIONS
These actions are needed to correct and/or repair ongoing impacts to the aquatic resource caused by sediment entering area waters from the Tellico trail system.
Action # 1, prohibitions on Lower Trail # 2, Trail # 7, and Trail #9, is needed to provide immediate short-term resource protection measures. The greatest impact to area waters is coming from the movement of sediment off these three trails, as indicated by observation and on-site measurements of turbidity and suspended sediment concentrations.
Action # 2, winter-time closure of the OHV Area, is needed to provide resource protection. Forest Service personnel have observed that most of the damage to the trail tread occurs during the winter freeze/thaw period from January to late March, at which time soils are subject to increased rutting and displacement.
These actions would implement direction in the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests Land and Resource Management Plan to emphasize protection of perennial and intermittent streams in compliance with North Carolina Forest Practice Guidelines Related to Water Quality.
The actions would be implemented pursuant to 36 CFR 261.50 (b) which states, “The Chief, each Regional Forester, each Experiment Station Director, the Administrator of the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit and each Forest Supervisor may issue orders which close or restrict the use of any National Forest System road or trail within the area over which he has jurisdiction.”
Before a final decision is made I welcome your comments. Please make your comments as specific as possible along with supporting reasons why you believe your comments should be considered. Please include your name and address in any correspondence.
Your comments may be sent to Tusquitee District Ranger, 123 Woodland Drive, Murphy, NC 28906. Comments may also be sent via email to comments-southern-north-carolina-nantahala-tusquitee@fs.fed.us.
We would appreciate receiving your comments by October 17, 2007.
Thank you for your time and interest in our management activities on the Tusquitee Ranger District.
Sincerely,
/s/ Tina R. Tilley, Acting District Ranger
TINA R. TILLEY, Acting District Ranger
 
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therobzilla

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Jim,

WOW, that did not take long. Tellico was by far one of my favorite places to wheel.

With the increased interest in the off road sport, it's only a matter of time before Tellico and other are going to be closed. I hear the traffic at Tellico now to hit the trails is horrible...

Sorry to hear this.


On a side note, I spoke with both Paul and Ralph this week, thinking next year sometime we are going to head back east for a long trip with the buggy for some wheeling.

Hope the family is doing well.

Rob
 

bigjbear

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Today (the 17) is the last day to send in comments.

Sample letter:

U.S. Forest Service
Nantahala National Forest
Tusquitee District Ranger
123 Woodland Drive
Murphy, NC 28906

[insert date]

RE: File Code : 2350-5/1950
Supervisor’s Orders on the Upper Tellico Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Area

Dear District Ranger,

My name is YOUR NAME HERE and I am writing at to express my concerns about the above-referenced Supervisor’s Orders addressing vehicle use of the Upper Tellico OHV Area.

My understanding of the September 17, 2007 letter is that the Forest Service intends on enacting two new Supervisor’s Orders that will close the Upper Tellico OHV Area during the winter months, and will close specific trails (Upper #2, 7 and 9).

Trails Upper #2, #7, and #9 should not be closed. From your letter and from the research that has been conducted, there is no scientific evidence that the Tellico trail system or any one trail in particular, have any impact on streams in the area. The streams that were sampled originate above the OHV area, and samples were only taken down stream of the OHV area. In order to demonstrate that sediment load is coming from a specific area, it is necessary to sample the stream/river both upstream and downstream of the area.

With respect to seasonal closures of the entire area, your agency did not provide and I have not seen any proof that demonstrates the time of year is directly tied to increase potential for impacts. There is no data provided by your agency to suggest that sedimentation from January 1 to March 31 occurs at a higher rate than sedimentation during other months of the year, which makes a winter-time closure unfounded.

[Write a paragraph here about what Tellico means to you. Talk about what you do to preserve the area, talk about how your practice Tread Lightly and how you participate in trail clean up, etc.]

The OHV community is willing to support reasonable management prescriptions, but the Proposed Orders are not rationally connected to the proposed riding restrictions. A well-conceived and thoughtful planning process should be conducted rather than hastily-prepared Orders in response to closure demands of anti-access special interests. My intent with this letter is to show my strong opposition to these and any trail closures and to request my contact information YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION HERE be added to any further communications regarding the Tellico ORV area.

Here's what I added to mine:

I have enjoyed the Tellico ORV area and its trail system since moving to the area in 1997. I have worked to keep the area clean and in good repair during work days over the years. In the past Trout Unlimited worked with Southern Four Wheel Drive Association, it is unfortunate that some of thie members have chosen to turn their back on that past partnership. I hope the US Forest Service won’t do the same. Tellico receives thousands of dollars and man hours each year from people involved in OHV community.
 
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lamberthkp

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Any news on Tellico now days? I look online often to see if anything is going on since it's closing.

Each time I visit North GA I hear someone saying that they are trying to re-open the place. I have searched the internet and have not found anything recent, so not sure if it's always rumors or if something is being done on a local area level.
 

FOR MUD

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If......And I mean IF.... It ever reopens, it'll be gravel roads. Tellico as it was, is gone forever.

Go support all the other parks in the tri state area to help them stay open.
 

Stomis

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If......And I mean IF.... It ever reopens, it'll be gravel roads. Tellico as it was, is gone forever.

Go support all the other parks in the tri state area to help them stay open.

Wasnt tellico closed because the erosion from all the wheeling was horrendously bad? I thought I saw pictures from that place of washout ruts between trees that were like 15 ft deep and it was actually getting dangerous.
 
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