Offroader Letter Submission

Post here for comments/information relating the to BLMs travel managment plan for the Bear Lake area.

Re: Offroader Letter Submission

Postby dj » Wed Mar 09, 2011 12:09 pm

The Pocatello BLM "computer guy" has responded by linking to a Google Earth Map which they seem to have already prepared BUT just not releasing to the public on their web site. HOWEVER, this field office has chosed to put an entirely unique piece of "spin doctoring" on their maps - Their maps are produced to only show "What will be left" after a closure NOT wat they intend to close. That means that anyone trying to make sense of what trails are actually in jeporday of closing must look at a map and TRY AND REMEMBER WHAT USED TO BE THERE BUT ISN'T NOW! A terribly poor way to produce a map! And, the most unusable if not downright deceitful of any we have seen.

To help overcome this terrible mapping - Offroading Home has produced a colored trail map in which the differenc scenarios are shown in "reverse color order" so that the brighter colors override the darker. Namely, what's open now is dark red; what will be open after they get through is bright yellow (which overides the red) and you will see the remaining red (i.e. what we expect to see for closed trails) still showing up where trails "used to be." It's not as complicated as it sounds - go take a look. The map is available on the blog at


What needs to happen is that the BLM grant an extension as the Havasu office has done! I'll include a portion of the letter from the "computer person" for your purusal.

Code: Select all
I was able to convert the BLM Bear Lake Travel Management Plan to KML
files.  I am attaching a zip file containing a KML file for each
Alternative (plus a metadata file) that is being presented in the
Environmental Assessment (EA).  The National Environmental Policy Act
(NEPA) requires that viable alternatives be presented for federal land
management actions unless categorically excluded from the NEPA
process.  There are three alternatives for designated travel routes on
BLM-managed land being presented in the EA for the Bear Lake Travel
Management Plan (TMP):

Alternative A represents the current existing travel routes as
inventoried and recognized by the BLM Pocatello Field Office (DRAFT)

Alternative B represents the travel routes being PROPOSED for
designation in the EA by the BLM Pocatello Field Office (DRAFT)

Alternative C represents a third alternative for designated routes
that will be included in the EA (DRAFT)

We simply MUST obtain an extension to enable riders to verify and comment on the trails after the snow has melted. To spring this decision on the riding community during a time when they cannot ride the trails is a cheap shot, and something we shouldn't tolerate from public employees!
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Re: Offroader Letter Submission

Postby dj » Thu Mar 03, 2011 3:06 pm

The BLMs Mr. Patterson replied to the submitters letter thusly:

Our Geographical Specialists is out of the office until Monday, March 7.
When he gets back in the office, I will get with him and send you a map
with the Lat/Long coordinates.


Chuck Patterson
Outdoor Recreation Planner
Pocatello Field Office
4350 Cliffs Drive
Pocatello, Idaho 83204

Careful followup with this is necessary to not let this topic drop. ADDITIONALLY, followups should be sent which specifically and directly request an extension to the public comment deadline - which will enable:
1) The BLM to supply the mandatory mapping information regarding their intended CLOSURES sufficiently geo-specified and detailed enough to enable informed public decisions and comment;
2) Time and weather such that public verification of the trails is possible in order to make such public comment; and
3) Span the areas natural heavy use riding times so that the maximum number or area stake-holders, including area governments, businesses and frequent riders, can make an informed and worthwhile comment.

Please feel free to make your own comments.
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Offroader Letter Submission

Postby dj » Thu Mar 03, 2011 2:54 pm

ORH has received a copy of an email sent to the coordinator for the BLMs Bear Lake Travel Plan.

He is a concerned rider who has submitted GPS tracks of trails in the past and make several good points, which will interest others:

Mr. Patterson,

I see that your department is attempting to close motorized vehicle
routes. I found that what you have is in PDF format. Do you have
anything with Lat/Long coordinates or a topo map overlay so that I can
determine what is being closed and what will remain open?

I am having difficulty understanding exactly which trails are being
closed. Google Earth format or .kml or .gpx would help tremendously.
Also, I would like to try to put together a group to ride some of the
propose trail closures. These trails are closed this time of year and
would be difficult to actually go see and understand. Is there a way
to postpone the decision on the proposed route closures until we can
see what is proposed?

Please help us understand what options you have proposed. I will even
be in your area this week, so if I could stop by to copy what your
sources are for the lat/long measurements you have, that would help.
Without these measurements, we do not know what you offer.

Thank you,

ORH encourages other riders to do the same. Both those who have ridden any of the extensive Bear Lake Area trails in the past OR ANYONE who might in the future (or children might) like to ride them!

Please send copy's of your communications to the BLM to Offroading Home, or feel free to post them here yourself.
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