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expatriate's picture
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Forest Service Road Closures

In 2000 I returned to Montana after four years overseas and tried to access my old haunts in the mountains. To my surprise, I kept running into gates and blocked roads.

In the latter part of the Clinton administration, the Forest Service began closing or obliterating roads throughout the national forest system, arguing that they didn't have the money to maintain them, or that they were detrimental to wildlife and the environment.

Is this still going on, or have conditions improved in the last two years? Seems to me this is an attempt by the environmental lobby to close off the land to everyone but the granola-eating backpacking crowd.

bitmasher's picture
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Forest Service Road Closures

Hey now, I eat granola and I have a backpack. Wink Not terribly fond of the greatful dead though.

In CO, public access roads to public land has always been an issue, I went to a DOW meeting last year where several people were complaining about such and such unit being hard to get too. DOW said it was lack of money.

However, I was not aware of this becoming worse so in the last few years, but I do (vaguely) remember some talk about the roads not being maintained because of environmental concerns.

cowgal's picture
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Forest Service Road Closures

Hey Bit - the granola eaters Ex is talking about all live in Boulder! They're the ones that get on TV and tell us all to live 'as one' with nature! And yes they've been active in getting roads closed off for many years. The Colorado back country is a lot less accessible now than it was 25-30 years ago. As Ex pointed out this is unfortunate for the folks that are unable to hike in. Even mtn bikes are prohibited from many areas, they're considered a motor vehicle.

expatriate's picture
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Forest Service Road Closures

Bitmasher, not all the granolas live in Boulder. There's quite a few of them in Missoula, MT, too. Haven't seen any in Alabama, yet, though.

What I'd really like to see is a class action suit filed by handicapped sportsmen claiming that the road closures violate their rights under the Americans With Disabilities act.

And by the way, cowgal, I like the Dead. I can only eat nuts and berries in limited amounts, though.

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2002-11-07 06:32 ]

bitmasher's picture
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Forest Service Road Closures

Quote:


What I'd really like to see is a class action suit filed by handicapped sportsmen claiming that the road closures violate their rights under the Americans With Disabilities act.

That certainly would put an interesting twist on access versus environmental "pureness". If the disabled one the suit, I guess it would mean that access to forests is fundamentally a service of the government. I wonder which side the ACLU would take...

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