Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area OHV Designated Routes
The 1994 Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area Plan (the Plan) established separate management areas with differing resource emphases. The current designated routes project at the Dunes is a process to designate a sustainable system of trails and areas for motor vehicle use. This project covers only Management Area 10 C, 4,455 acres consisting primarily of vegetation, where the operation of OHVs is allowed only on “Designated Routes”.
The goal of this project is:
to determine the routes and areas that will provide OHV riding opportunities and access
minimize impacts to the environment and protect the ecology of the Dunes
Jerry Ingersoll, Siuslaw National Forest Supervisor, explains the scope and purpose of the project in this video shot on site at the Dunes.
Follow the Project
Public input has been and continues to be an important component of this project.
The Forest hired a facilitator in July 2009 to assemble a working group of diverse interests to provide information necessary for the preparation of a proposed action and to involve the public early in the planning process. The group recommended a system of designated trails and open riding areas that would meet the 1994 Plan direction.
In June 2011, a Notice of Intent was published in the Federal Register and a scoping letter for the project was mailed. In this letter, the Forest Service described our proposal and asked for comments. We received over 900 individual comment letters and petitions containing more than 3200 signatures and comments.
key issues were then developed based on the comments received
from the key issues, five different alternatives were developed
Responses to comments will be included as an appendix in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS).
We have our eye on a proposed decision that could add 2.3 additional miles of designated trails and 518 additional acres of open riding areas. Current unauthorized, user developed routes will be allowed to revert naturally or be physically closed in some manner.
We estimate that a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and draft Record of Decision on route and area designations, including responses to over one thousand public comments will be released by early Fall.
This summer we are working with the Fish and Wildlife Service to complete formal consultation on the project.