Wild and Scenic Rivers

Flow chart showing the process of how a wild and scenic river are chosen.

The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act of 1968, establishes a National Wild and Scenic Rivers System for the protection of selected national rivers and their immediate environments, which possess outstandingly remarkable scenic, recreational, geologic, fish and wildlife, historic, cultural, or other similar values which are to be preserved in free-flowing condition.

View of Green River in canyon below Flaming Gorge DamThe Forest Service 2012 planning rule requires a comprehensive inventory of rivers and their evaluation for eligibility during forest plan revision.

In 2005 and 2008 respectively, the Ashley National Forest conducted a Wild and Scenic Rivers Eligibility and Suitability Study. During this study, the Ashley determined that two rivers, the Green River, below the Flaming Gorge Dam, and the Uinta River, within the High Uintas Wilderness, were the rivers on the Ashley suitable for a WSR designation.

The rivers that were analyzed during the previous eligibility study will not be reanalyzed during Plan Revision.  However, if changed circumstances exist, this may necessitate a new eligibility review for certain rivers in limited circumstances.  In addition, the Forest Service 2012 planning rule requires a slightly finer scale than completed during the previous eligibility study; as such, some additional river segments will require eligibility evaluation.  Approximately 41 river segments have been identified that will require evaluation study.  These are primarily tributary streams to other river segments previously analyzed in the 2005 study. Click here to view the List of Rivers and Map of Rivers to be analyzed in the eligibility review.

The Ashley National Forest anticipates releasing the draft Wild & Scenic Eligibility report in February/March, 2019.  The report will be available for public input.

For more information about WSR analysis, click on the following links:

Key Contacts

Cathleen Neelan, Forest Plan Revision Team Leader