Carson National Forest Plan Revision

A Shared Vision through Forest Plan Revision


Plan Revision Process

Welcome to the Carson’s Forest Plan Revision page. The forest plan provides strategic direction to guide management of the forest resources and is a framework for decision making on site specific projects and activities. The Carson National Forest is currently in the process of revising its existing 1986 Forest Plan under the 2012 Planning Rule. Under the 2012 Planning Rule, plan revision takes approximately 4 years and involves three distinct phases: (1) assessment of the current conditions and trends of forest resources and multiple uses; (2) development of a revised plan; and (3) monitoring and implementation of the final approved plan.

Where are we now in the process?

The Draft Environmental Impact Statement has been posted. The Draft Proposed Land Management Plan and updated alternatives are also available. These versions are being provided as a preview prior to the official comment period which is expected to begin this summer. We are not soliciting comments at this time. We ask that the public review these documents now but wait until the official comment period to submit comments.

We are again hosting monthly open houses. Look for an upcoming formal public comment period this summer.

The third version of the Draft Wild and Scenic River Eligibility Evaluation (April 2019) is available, including summaries of comments received on the first two versions, and responses.

The Recreation Opportunity Spectrum current inventory is complete (October 2018). Recreation opportunity spectrum based on the alternatives is coming soon.

The Wilderness Evaluation (March 2019) has been updated to clarify the evaluation process.

An updated version of Potential Species of Conservation Concern Report (March 2019) is available.

The Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment and Socioeconomic Vulnerability Assessment have been posted.

Forest Plan Revision Schedule

The Carson National Forest began revising its forest plan in 2014 using extensive public involvement and best available science under the new planning guidelines. The following table outlines the planning phases, process and activities.



Proposed Date



  • Evaluate existing and relevant data and information
  • Assess sustainability of social, economic and ecological resources within the plan area and a broader landscape
  • Begin public involvement and communication processes

September 2015

Species of Conservation Concern (SCC)

(In progress)

  • Evaluate existing and relevant data and information about species indicating substantial concern about the species’ capability to persist over the long term in the Carson National Forest.
  • Begin communication and public input on Potential SCCs.
  • Concurrence of Potential SCC List with Regional Forester.
  • Final SCC when Final Forest Plan Decision is signed.

Release date: May 2015

Approved Potential List March 2016

Updated 2019

Final List Spring 2019

Plan Need to Change


  • Utilizes information gathered from the assessment.
  • Reviews key findings
  • Highlights areas of the 1986 Forest Plan that need to be updated in the revised forest plan

September 2015

Public Involvement and Comments on Assessment, SCCs, Forest Plan Need to Change


  • Obtain public feedback on Assessment, SCCs, and Plan Need to Change

September 2015

Notice of Intent


  • Notification to Revise the land management Plan in Federal Register with a 45 scoping period for public comment on the Proposed Action

October 2015

Wilderness Inventory and Evaluation Process


  • Initiate process for wilderness recommendation to determine what forest lands may be potentially eligible for designation as Wilderness as required by 2012 Planning Rule

Inventory March 2016

Evaluation September 2016

Public Involvement during Wilderness  

(In Progress)

  • Obtain public feedback on each step of wilderness process

Fall  2017-2018

Eligible Wild and Scenic Rivers

(In Progress)

  • Obtain public feedback on Wild and Scenic River eligibility evaluation

Process document April 2017

Evaluation v1 September 2017

Evaluation v2 January 2018

Evaluation v3 April 2019

Preliminary Draft Proposed Plan


  • Address potential desired conditions, management objectives, and other plan components based on needs to change
  • Release for public comment
  • Identify issues raised by the public and develop alternatives to address the issues

July 2017- Forest-wide Plan Components and (v1)

December 2017-Forest-wide, Designated Areas, and Management Areas (v2)


Public Involvement during Preliminary Draft Proposed Plan

(In Progress)

  • Obtain public feedback on Preliminary Draft Proposed Plan, management areas, and alternatives

Winter 2017- 2018

Draft Proposed Plan and Draft EIS

(In Progress)

  • Develop a draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) that analyzes the effects upon the environment of each of the Plan alternatives

Spring 2019

Public Comments on Draft Plan and EIS

  • Obtain public feedback for at least 90 days on proposed plan and draft EIS
  • Comments are used to prepare a final EIS

Summer 2019

Final EIS and Draft Record of Decision (ROD)

  • Based on comments received during comment period, Final EIS is prepared
  • Final EIS includes FS responses to comments received during comment period
  • Draft Record of Decision (identifies the preferred alternative) is prepared

Spring 2020

Objection Process

  • Prior to approving the preferred alternative, the public may raise issues related to the Plan revision and suggest ways to improve the plan decision
  • Final EIS and Draft ROD are made available for objection
  • Objections must be filed within 60 days following public notice date
  • Regional Forester reviews objections within 90 days after objection-filing period ends and renders written response

Summer 2020

Final Decision

  • Based on objection review and response, final Record of Decision is made by the Carson National Forest Supervisor

Winter 2020

Implementation and Monitoring

  • Forest Service implements the Plan and begins on-going monitoring