First hunting season with travel management laws

Contact(s): Charlie Marsh, Pine Ridge District Ranger: (308) 432-0300


(Chadron & Halsey – November 22, 2010)   Sunday, November 21st marked the end of the first rifle deer hunting season with new Travel Management requirements for the Nebraska National Forests & Grasslands’ (NNF&G) Pine Ridge Ranger District and the Bessey Ranger District.  Overall NNF&G numbers of out-of-area and out-of-state hunters were up this year.   


Because travel management is a significant change for public land users, the Forest Service District Rangers from both areas directed efforts toward a great deal of travel management education, handing out maps and assisting visitors.  “Besides having our office open during the first weekend, several local businesses graciously helped us distribute the new free motorized vehicle maps, (MVUMs) to hunters,” said Charlie Marsh, Pine Ridge District Ranger.   “We followed up by having several teams of Forest Protection Officers conducting patrols and handing out MVUMs to assist hunters,” he said.


Further east, the NNF&G’s Bessey Ranger District covers more of the Sandhills area.  “The number of phone calls we received prior to this season was really up,” said Terry Baker, Bessey District Ranger.  “Besides handing out MVUMs, our folks spent a significant amount of time on the District and in the campgrounds helping interpret,” he said.


Marsh and Baker noted that existing MVUMs with specified roads and trails designated open are ‘not written in stone,’ and welcomed comments for future possible map changes.