SOPA Quarterly Report

Four times a year, the Forest publishes a Schedule of Proposed Actions (SOPA). To view our Schedule of Proposed Actions, please visit the Forest Service SOPA page for the White River National Forest.

White River National Forest Current and Recent Projects

Sort By:    Name    Status    Management Unit    Purpose

Developing Proposal

Access to the Tailor Lode

Analysis to provide access to a private inholding between Peaks 6 and Peaks 7. Project would entail construction of 1,500 feet of new road from the top of the Zendo lift (BSR) to the private inholding.

Camp Hale Restoration and Enhancement Project

The purpose of action is to improve aquatic, riparian, and wetland conditions in and along the Eagle River, maintain or improve recreation opportunities and facilities, and conserve historic values in the Camp Hale area.

Independence Pass Winter Gate Project

The current winter gate parking area located adjacent to CO-82 east of the town of Aspen will be redeveloped into an improved parking facility.

Keystone Forest Health and Fuels Project

Proposal to implement approx. 1250 acres of fuels reduction and vegetation management activities. Potential treatment activities include clearcuts, precommercial thinning and pile burning. Potential locations have been identified with stakeholders.

Supplement to the Weber Hut EA

The Dillon Ranger District will be analyzing an alternative parking lot location to the location that was analyzed in the July 2014 Environmental Assessment

Vail and Beaver Creek Summer Construction CE

Proposal from Vail Resorts to identify major projects Vail and Beaver Creek Resorts would like to accomplish during the 2015 summer construction season that they believe are either already approved, are maintenance or can be approved with a Cat Ex.

Vail Intermountain Fuels Project

Enhance the wildland urban interface community protection zone through vegetation and fuels reduction treatments adjacent to Vail Intermountain and West Vail. Helicopter yarding to accomplish fuels treatments is proposed.

Under Analysis

WRNF Wild and Scenic River Suitability Study

Interagency Wild and Scenic Suitability Study on the Colorado River and Deep Creek. USFS Draft Record of Decision was posted April 7, 2014. The legal notice was published in the Glenwood Springs Post Independent on April 7, 2014. The entire EIS can be found:

Arapahoe Basin - Beavers Lift, Trail Development, and Summer Use Improvements

The Forest Service is proposing to implement certain projects included in the Arapahoe Basin Master Development Plan. The proposed projects include: incorporating the Beavers into A-Basin?s operational boundary and providing lift access and trails within the Beavers terrain (avalanche control/snow safety work would be conducted and patrolled throughout the proposed terrain); installing a new lift to improve access to Montezuma Bowl; replacing the Pallavicini and Molly Hogan lifts with more current lift technology; removing the Norway lift; expanding the snowmaking water storage reservoir; and installing a zip line and challenge/ropes course.

Basalt to Gypsum Motorized Singletrack

The action proposed by the Forest Service to meet the purpose and need consists of four elements: Construct a parking area, reconstruct approximately 11 miles of trail, restore a wetland, and rehabilitate- and close approximately 20 miles of trail.

Blanco Ranger District Outfitter/Guide Permit Reissuances

Renewal of 18 existing outfitter/guide special use permits. Permits allow for hunting, packing, fishing, camping, horseback riding, hiking, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Permit term will be for 10 years.

Breckenridge Multi-Season Recreation Projects

Proposal includes ziplines, mountain bike trails, and challenge courses on Peaks 8 and 7

CDOT Highway 133 Debris Dump Site and Placita Roadside Landscaping

CDOT is proposing to permanently store natural road debris inside the bottom switchback east of McClure Pass on Hwy 133. Project will fill in a 16.1-acre depression from original road construction. Includes revegetation of the old Placita fill site.

Colorado Outward Bound School Special Use Permit Reissuance

reissue COBS a new 10-year priority permit and consolidate all their use on the WRNF under a single permit

Dillon-Malta 230 kV Electric Transmission Line

Reissuance of special use permit to Xcel Energy for the existing 230kV electric transmission line from Dillon Substation, to the Malta Substation. The permit was originally issued in 1978, reissued in 1983, and expired in 2008.

East Aspen Metro District Mosquito Control

Mosquito control using a natural bacterial byproduct, "Bti" on areas east of Aspen near Wildwood School & Difficult CG. Less than 5 acres of wetland areas to be controlled on an as-needed basis. Treatment is by hand, after assessment is completed.

Finley Ditches #1 & #4 Special Use Permit

Andlinger Properties Capital Corp. of Vero Beach, FL has requested a special use permit authorizing use of National Forest System Lands for two existing historic ditches in the Capital Creek area of the White River National Forest, the Finley #1 & #4

Gypsum Creek C&H Allotment Grazing Analysis

The Forest Service proposes to reissue the term grazing permits on the Gypsum Creek domestic cattle grazing allotment for 592 cattle between June 16 and October 16 annually (3,204 animal unit months), construct several range improvements to improve livestock distribution and management, and use sheep grazing to control poisonous plants.

Independence Pass Winter Gate Project

The current winter gate parking area located adjacent to CO-82 east of the town of Aspen will be redeveloped into an improved parking facility.

Lancaster Mine CERCLA Removal Action

The FS & the CO DOR, Mining, & Safety will be conducting final restoration work on the Lancaster Mine. Prior work has confirmed the presence of elevated lead & arsenic in the mine waste and zinc & lead in surface water below the mine.

Morapos Creek, Wilson Mesa and Deer Creek Sheep and Goat Grazing Allotments

The proposal is to re-authorize sheep grazing on the Morapos Creek, Wilson Mesa and Deer Creek allotments and identify resource management opportunities.

Shadow Creek Ranch - Smith Ditch No. 2

New authorization for operating and maintaining an existing irrigation ditch (Smith Ditch No. 2) that was previously authorized and expired in 1980. the ditch diverts water from Deep Creek to the Shadow Creek Ranch.

Snowmass Ski Trail Enhancements and High Alpine Chairlift Replacement

Snowmass Mtn proposes construction of a Skill Level 3 Trail; construction of the Elk Camp Bypass; installation of snowmaking infrastructure; creation of gladed terrain in six distinct pods; and replacement/realignment of the High Alpine Chairlift.

Summer Construction Projects at Breckenridge

Installation of a snowmaking line between Peak 7 and the lower Peak 6 terrain; trail widening and grading on the Monte Cristo trail.

Summit Huts - New Hut Construction and Associated Access Trail and Parking Lot

Proposed hut to be located in the Weber Gulch drainage above French Gulch Road (between Weber Gulch and Black Gulch). Parking lot would be constructed on French Gulch Road across from the Sallie Barber Trailhead.

Summit Public Radio - Buried Powerline Reconstruction

Reconstruction/replacement of the buried powerline (8,100' x 20')on Bald Mtn. The line provides power to an electronics communications facility on private land.

Travel Mgmt Plan Rev BNC Corridor Cliff/Meadow Lake, Mansfield/Clark Point and Clinetop Cow Camp

Provide access from campsites to the BNC motorized trail system. Provide access to Clark Ridge by allowing mixed motorized use on a sect. of BNC road. Correct designations and mapping errors providing motorized and non-motorized trail opportunities

Tucker Lift at Copper Mountain

Installation of the Tucker Lift was approved for construction in the 2006 Copper Mtn. Trail and Facilities EIS; however, the alignment has changed. This analysis is for the new lift alignment.

White River National Forest Oil and Gas Leasing Environmental Impact Statement

The WRNF Oil & Gas Leasing EIS will revise the existing 1993, Oil & Gas Leasing availability decision for the WRNF. The proposal will make revisions to the availability of certain WRNF lands for lease and to the stipulations on lands available.

Analysis Completed

Avalanche Campground Healthy Forest Campsite Relocation

The Forest Service proposes to permanently relocate the existing Avalanche Campground loop into an open meadow with oak brush cover. A one lane gravel road would be constructed off of Avalanche Creek Road northwest of the current horse loop parking and extended approximately 300 yards. Existing sites within the current campground footprint would be closed and decommissioned. Ten campsites with spurs and two horse camps with corrals would be constructed to replace the sites proposed for decommissioning.

Dillon Ranger District Outfitter Guides Additional Use

Several priority use O/G permit holders have requested additional use. The use is available as determined by the District O/G Capacity Analysis. Proposed uses include hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, rock climbing, & mountaineering.

Eagle/Holy Cross 2013 Motor Vehicle Use Map Update

Environmental assessment analyzing impacts of allowing unlicensed OHVs on certain segments of the open road system on Eagle/Holy Cross Ranger Districts is now available for review. The draft decision is subject to objection pursuant to 36 CFR 218, subparts A and B. Objections will only be accepted from those who previously submitted specific written comments regarding the project during scoping. Objections must be submitted within 45 calendar days following the publication of a legal notice in the Vail Daily, the newspaper of record. Objections, including attachments, must be filed via mail, fax, email, hand-delivery, express delivery, or messenger service to: Scott Fitzwilliams, Forest Supervisor, White River National Forest, 120 Midland Ave, Ste 140, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601 or

Emergency Power Line Clearing Project

The Arapaho, Roosevelt, Medicine Bow, Routt, and White River National Forests are proposing to remove all dead and dying trees (i.e., hazard trees) along power lines crossing National Forest system lands in Northern Colorado.

Hunter Creek-Smuggler Mountain Cooperative Plan

An Environmental Assessment and draft Decision Notice and finding of no significant impact analyzing projects from the Hunter Creek-Smuggler Mountain Cooperative Plan has been completed and is available for review. There will be no further comment period on this project, but individuals who submitted timely and specific written comments during the scoping period (March 28 to May 11 , 2013) will have eligibility to file an objection under 36 CFR ยง218.8. Instructions for filing an objection are detailed in the decision. Objections to the documents must be received within 45 days of the publication of a legal notice in the Aspen Times.

Keystone Frontside Improvements

Keystone Resort is proposing a variety of improvements to the frontside of the ski area including snowmaking installations, trail widening and grading, relocation and replacement of the Summit House Restaurant, and new mountain bike trails. Comments concerning the proposed action will be accepted for 30 calendar days following the publication of a legal notice in the Glenwood Springs Post Independent (estimated to be February 8, 2012). The public is encouraged to provide substantive comments on the Notice of Proposed Action, including supporting reasons the Forest Supervisor should consider in reaching a decision.

Piney 2012 Project

Approximately 1,200 acres of vegetation treatment and forest product removal are proposed. Widespread mortality of lodgepole pine due to mountain pine beetle activity in recent years has changed vegetative conditions in the project area prompting a modified silvicultural prescription as analyzed in the 2005 Piney River Project Environmental Assessment. The modified silvicultural prescription includes clearcutting, clearcutting with reserve trees and sanitation/salvage treatment. Minor amounts of Engelmann spruce, sub-alpine fir and aspen would also be removed. Associated activities would include road maintenance on system roads and temporary road use (construction, use and obliteration).

South Rifle Habitat Improvement

Implement wildlife habitat improvements on approximately 6,000 acres across the south side of the Rifle Ranger District. Treatments include cutting sagebrush, oakbrush, and mountain shrub and prescribed fire in aspen, pinyon-juniper, and Douglas fir.

Swan River Stream Restoration

Implement stream restoration activities on the Swan River in the existing dredge habitat. Project also includes riparian work and road/stream crossing relocations.

Tenderfoot Mountain Motorcycle Trail System

The Forest Service has prepared an environmental assessment and draft decision notice and finding of no significant impact for the Tenderfoot Mountain Motorcycle Trail System Project located on the Dillon Ranger District, Summit County, Colorado. The Tenderfoot Project is subject to the objection process pursuant to 36 CFR 218. Objections must be submitted within 45 calendar days following the publication of a legal notice in the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. The Proposed Action would create an approximately 31-mile motorized trail system with 21 miles of single-track and 10 miles of existing road. Twenty-two miles of user-created, non-system trails in the area would be closed and rehabilitated. The proposed trail system would be managed for all non-motorized uses as well as for single-track motorized uses (motorcycles). The proposed action represents numerous modifications that were made to mitigate environmental and social concerns.

Tennessee Creek Vegetation Management Project

The project will include vegetation management for insect and disease, as well as wildfire mitigation. The project includes treatments that will improve wildlife habitat, watersheds and closes non system routes in the project area.

Vail Mountain Recreation Enhancements

In response to the Ski Area Recreational Opportunity Enhancement Act of 2011, Vail Resorts has proposed a package of non-ski based projects to provide year-round recreation at Vail Ski Area, taking advantage of existing infrastructure and designed for a variety of visitors. Comments on the Draft EIS for this project will be accepted for 45 days after publication of the Notice of Availability (NOA) in the Federal Register (anticipated March 7, 2014). The NOA is the sole means of calculating the close of the DEIS comment period. The entire DEIS can be reviewed and downloaded from Comments may be submitted directly on the website, emailed to, or mailed to Vail Mountain Recreation Enhancements DEIS, Roger Poirier, Project Leader, White River National Forest, 120 Midland Ave., Ste 140, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601.

On Hold

American Tower- A-Basin Communications Site

New authorization for construction of cellular phone comm site along US Highway 6 between Loveland Pass and Keystone (A-Basin). The facility will be multi-carrier facility consisting of one prefabricated equipment shelter and two towers.

American Tower- East Dillon Communications Site

New authorization for construction of a cellular phone comm site along I-70 between the Eisenhower Tunnel & East Dillon. The facility will be a multi-carrier facility consisting of one prefab equip shelter and 2 towers.

Aspen Highlands Golden Horn Project

Aspen Skiing Company has proposed to reinstall a detachable surface lift running approx. 2,540 ft with 640 ft of vertical rise on the Golden Horn run in the summer of 2013. Approximately half of this distance will be on NFS land.

Bowles Ditch and Pipeline Authorization

Reissuance of expired SU Permit for a spring development and pipeline approx. 1300 feet long. Also for a ditch for supplying water to fish ponds on private lands that is approx. 200 feet long. The permit will continuee to have a 10 foot wide use area

Lava Boulder Creek Exploratory Well

The White River National Forest, Rifle Ranger District, is preparing an environmental assessment for the Lava Boulder Creek Exploratory Development Program. The U.S. Forest Service is proposing to authorize Antero Resources to conduct surface use operations associated with natural gas exploration and potential development of lands they currently hold under a federal mineral lease (COC-66708) in the East Divide Creek area. The proposed project area occurs about 16 miles south-east of Silt, Colorado (Mesa County) within portions of Sections 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22, in T8S, R90W, 6th P.M. A Notice of Proposed Action is available for public review and comment. The official comment period ends October 29, 2012. Please refer to the Notice below for more information, including maps of the area and how to submit comments.

Lower Blue Sagebrush Enhancement Project

Construct water dev. to enhance sagegrouse brood-rearing habitat. Design & implement a livestock grazing prog. to enhance habitat conditions required for all sagegrouse life stages in partnership with current & future livestock grazing permittees.

Public Service Company of Colorado (PSCo) - Reissuance of Transmission Lines

Reissuance of transmission line permits to PSCo that have expired: Hopkins/Leadville Line, Wolcott-Avon-Vail line, and the Wolcott to Beaver Creek line.


Arapahoe Basin EIS

Lift/trails development in the Beavers, snowmaking reservoir expansion, new surface lift, etc.

Competitive or Direct Sale/Exchange of the Dillon Work Compound Parcel

To offer for competitive sale to the public, or direct sale or exchange to a governmental org, an admin. site (Dillon Work Compound) comprising approx. 11 acres. This sale/exchange is being proposed under the authority of the FSFREA of 2005.

Eagle/Holy Cross Ranger District Public Rock Collection

Designate common use areas for public to collect landscape rocks on the two districts

Gypsum/Turkey Creek Dispersed Site Rehabilitation

The objective of the project is to improve stream bank and riparian conditions to improve stream health in Gypsum Creek and Turkey Creek. This project would subsequently bring these areas into compliance with the Forest Plan.

Little Rock 1-19 Exploratory Well

Willsource Enterprises is proposing to construct 1 well pad, access road, and pipelines; and to drill 1 exploratory well in Federal lease COC 058835 (Formerly called Little Beaver 2-20)

Two Elk Fish Barrier

to construct a permanent fish barrier that would eliminate upstream migration of non-native fish into Two Elk Creek from the Eagle River. The current population of fish would be chemically removed and replaced with native cutthroat trout.

Project Archive

Some of our older projects can be accessed in our Project Archive.