Lower Cowpasture Restoration and Management Project

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For Questions Regarding the Lower Cowpature Restoration and Management Project, contact Michael Williams at:  mrwilliams04@fs.fed.us.  


Final Environmental Assessment (EA) and Draft Decision Notice/Finding of No Significant Impact - July 30, 2015:

Due to technical difficulties, we are not able to provide the links for the documents listed below.  However, you can access them in a different location on our website.  Please go back to the Home page and select the "Land and Resources Management" link on the left hand side, then select "Projects" on the left hand side under the Land and Resources Management heading.  From the Project page, scroll down and select "Lower Cowpasture Restoration and Management" project below the "Under Analysis" heading.  The documents will be at the bottom of the page for Lower Cowpasture. 

  • Draft Decision Notice and Finding of No Significant Impact: [PDF]
  • Draft Decision Notice Map: [PDF]
  • Final Environmental Assessment (EA): [PDF]
    • EA Appendix A - Treatments: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix B - Projected Temporal Schedule: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix C - Monitoring: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix D - Alternative 2 Maps: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix E - Alternative 3 Maps: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix F - Soil Unit Map Legend: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix G - Scenery Treatments, Mitigation Measures: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix H - Key Regulated Pollutants and Significance in Smoke: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix I - Region 8 Smoke Management Guidelines: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix J - National Forest System Roads: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix K - Response to Comments from Scoping: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix L - Response to Comments from Draft EA: [PDF]
    • EA Appendix M - Project Update Form: [PDF]

Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) - May 8, 2015:

  • Draft Environmental Assessment:  [PDF]
  • Draft Environmental Assessment Appendices:  [PDF]
  • Draft EA Cover Letter:  [PDF]
  • Legal Notice for Notice and Comment on Draft EA:  [PDF]
  • Appendix K:  [PDF]


  • Alternative 2 - Proposed Action:  [PDF]
  • Alternative 3 - Preferred Alternative:  [PDF]
  • Alternative 3 with Forest Plan PWA Inventory:  [PDF]

Project Information:

  • Project Overview:  [PDF]
  • Team Members:  [PDF]

Scoping Notice - July 14, 2014

Past Project Maps

Meetings/Field Trips:

  • 03/18/13 – Millboro Elementary School; Millboro, VA – (CANCELLED)
  • 03/25/13 – Millboro Elementary School; Millboro, VA – (CANCELLED)
  • 04/08/13 – Millboro Elementary School; Millboro, VA
  • 05/20/13 – Alleghany County Government Complex; Clifton Forge, VA
  • 06/21/13 – Public Field Tour
  • 07/15/13 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA
  • 08/08/13 - Public Field Tour
  • 09/16/13 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA
  • 10/31/13 – Public Field Tour
  • 12/02/13 – Alleghany County Gov Complex, Clifton Forge, VA 
  • 03/24/14 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA
  • 04/22/14 Public Field Tour
  • 04/24/14 – VDOT Lexington Residency, Lexington, VA
  • 07/21/14 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA
  • 12/08/14 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA – (CANCELLED)
  • 12/10/14 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA
  • 06/08/15 – Millboro Elementary School, Millboro, VA

Potential Projects:

Additional Tools:

Lower Cowpasture Restoration and Management Project

The Lower Cowpasture Restoration and Management Project is a collection of multiple forest management projects managed as one large landscape level project.  The emphasis for the Lower Cowpasture Restoration Project is watershed restoration including water quality improvement, vegetation restoration, recreation management, and native species protection and habitat improvement. 

The Forest Service will work collaboratively with the public and several partners to identify projects to incorporate into this project.  A series of public workshops, fieldtrips, and discussions will be held to identify projects that best meet the objectives of the Lower Cowpasture Restoration and Management Project, and the revised George Washington Forest Plan.

The project location is a diverse area with a wide range of natural resource opportunities.  The Forest Service is currently generating a list of projects to implement in the near and reasonably foreseeable future to help move toward the desired conditions identified in the Revised Forest Plan.  Public participation is strongly encouraged to discuss current projects, and to help identify additional projects for implementation.

Project Area:  

The area is approximately 117,552 acres of which approximately 77,680 acres are National Forest System lands.  The project area is located within the Cowpasture River, Jackson River, and the Calfpasture River watersheds in Bath and Alleghany Counties.


A series of public workshop and field trips will be held to seek public involvement/participation in the planning process for the Lower Cowpasture Restoration and Management Project.  

Projects currently being implemented in the project area include:

  • Warm Springs Mountain Restoration (prescribed fire)
  • Mares Run Vegetation Management (timber management and wildlife improvements)
  • Wildfire rehab in the Rich Hole area

Potential Projects:

Fire:  This area is part of the larger Appalachian Fire Learning Network and includes the Warm Springs Mountain Restoration area.  There is an opportunity to expand the restoration area across this landscape in partnership with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and Douthat State Park.

Aquatic Passage:  Potential aquatic passage projects include Wilson creek dam removal and culvert replacements to allow fish passage.

Watershed Improvements:  Watershed improvement projects include repairing slope failures in Simpson Creek drainage along I-64 corridor. 

Wildlife:  Proposed wildlife habitat improvement projects include wildlife clearing and waterhole development.

Timber Management:  Potential timber management projects include timber harvesting and timber stand improvements.

Non-native Invasive Species:  Proposed projects include invasive plant management activities along forest system roads, in forested stands, and the Walton Tract.

Transportation:  Potential transportation management projects include maintenance of existing roads, decommissioning roads, blocking unauthorized roads, changing maintenance levels, and placing seasonal use restrictions on some roads.

Recreation/Wilderness:  Proposed projects include invasive plant management activities, developing better public access to Rough Mountain Wilderness, and construct/improve connector trail segments with Douthat State Park trails.