Forest Service Seeking Public Input on South Fork Boulder Road

Release Date: Jun 8, 2017  

COLVILLE, WASH (June 8, 2017) - Colville National Forest Officials are seeking public input on the future of Forest Service Road (FSR) 6110 commonly known as South Fork Boulder Road in the western part of Ferry County located off the Boulder-Deer Highway west of the Kettle River.

In 1998, flooding washed out portions of FSR 6110 (South Fork Boulder road) making it impassable, and the road was closed for public safety. Before the 1998 floods, this road system provided public access for dispersed camping, creek fishing, gathering forest products, pleasure driving, viewing scenery, snowmobile use, and access to both the lower Taylor Ridge trail (#74), and the Thompson Ridge Jeep Trail (#107). The road also provided needed access for administrative uses like livestock and grazing allotment administration, key ingress and egress for wildfire and other emergency response, vegetation management and timber contracting, and other key monitoring and project level activities.

“The goal is to provide for adequate access into this area for fire suppression, recreation, grazing permit administration and forest restoration activities while minimizing the impacts to water quality and fish habitat” said Joshua White, District Ranger. “All of the management alternatives must address eroding of any cut/fill slopes, protect and improve aquatic habitat, and slow the spread of noxious weeds,” White added.

Officials are looking at four alternatives; the proposed action is to reconstruct the existing South Fork Boulder road to a standard that is suitable for passenger cars and would include 2 bridge replacements. Under this alternative, the road would remain a designated groomed snowmobile trail with a parking area.

The second alternative is to decommission and stabilize the existing road at the junction Boulder-Deer highway, and reconstruct the road into a trail for both motorized (OHVs of 50” or less) and non-motorized users and also includes 2 bridge replacements.

The third alternative proposes to change the primary access of the road to begin at the junction of County Road 593 (Hodgson-Lakin Road) and County Road 594 (Hodgson Spur Road). This alternative also includes 2 bridge replacements.

The fourth alternative proposes to construct the primary South Boulder access west of the current road and includes 0.9 miles of new road construction, 1 bridge replacement, 2.8 miles of road reconstruction, and 2.4 miles of road decommissioning. 

For more detailed information on these alternatives, please visit project website at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/projects/colville/landmanagement/projects

Public comments will be considered and used to identify issues associated with the proposal, and potentially generate other alternatives, so please be as specific as possible. We will have a formal comment period when the draft environmental analysis document is ready for review, and there will be an opportunity to provide additional input at that time.

Both written and verbal comments are welcome. To be most useful, comments should be received no later than July 8, 2017. Comments can be mailed or hand delivered to: Joshua White, Three Rivers Ranger District, 255 West 11th, Kettle Falls, WA, 99141. The office hours for those wishing to make hand delivered comments are 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. We will also accept correspondence at the following email address: comments-pacificnorthwest-colville-threerivers@fs.fed.us . Please put “South Fork Boulder Road Scoping Comments” in the subject line of your email. If you have any questions, additional information can be provided by calling Lisa Green at 509-684-7211