Emigrant Crevice Mineral Withdrawal Environmental Assessment Available for Public Review and Comment

Bozeman, MT… The Emigrant Crevice Mineral Withdrawal project on the Custer Gallatin National Forest was announced by the Secretary of the Interior in the November 2016. Publication of the corresponding Federal Register Notice temporarily segregated the lands for up to two years while an environmental analysis was conducted. The Custer Gallatin Forest has completed the draft environmental analysis and is asking for public input on the proposed action by April 29, 2018.

Emigrant Gulch is located south of Livingston, Montana in the Paradise Valley near Pray, Montana. Crevice Mountain is located east of Gardiner, Montana near Yellowstone National Park and the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness Area.

The proposal is to withdraw approximately 30,370 acres of National Forest System lands from location and entry under the United States mining laws, but not from leasing under mineral and geothermal laws. This would prohibit the location of new mining claims for the next 20 years. A decision on this proposal is expected prior to November 2018. The proposed Mineral Withdrawal does not apply to private lands or Federal lands with valid existing rights in the area.

The purpose of the Withdrawal is to protect and preserve the scenic integrity, important wildlife corridors, and high quality recreation values in the historic "Emigrant Mining District" and the "Jardine/Crevice Mining District". As part of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, the proposed Withdrawal area provides important wildlife habitat and corridors for grizzly bear, Canada lynx, and other wildlife species and is the headwaters of a number of streams that flow into the Yellowstone River. The area also provides high quality outdoor recreation opportunities which are important to the local economy.

If the Emigrant Crevice Mineral Withdrawal is not approved by the Secretary of the Interior, the Federal lands within the area will reopen to locatable mineral entry, including filing of new claims.

The environmental assessment and associated project documents are available on-line at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=51258 or at the Custer Gallatin National Forest Supervisor’s Office, 10 East Babcock, Bozeman, MT. For additional information please contact Sitka Pence at sitkapence@fs.fed.us, or 406-587-6985.

Written comments must be submitted via mail, fax, or in person (Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding holidays) to: Mary Erickson Forest Supervisor, ATTN: Sitka Pence, PO Box 130, Bozeman, MT 59771. Electronic comments including attachments can be submitted to https://cara.ecosystem-management.org/Public/CommentInput?Project=51258.

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https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/custergallatin/alerts-notices/?cid=fseprd575374