Wilderness Areas receive $49,926 in stewardship funding

Contact(s): Carol Underhill

WEAVERVILLE, Calif. — Trinity River Management Unit District Ranger Joe Smailes is pleased to announce that the Trinity Alps and Chanchelulla Wilderness Areas were selected as recipients of Wilderness Stewardship Performance funding of $49,926. The funds will be used to implement a Wilderness Education Plan, complete an invasive species inventory, provide solitude monitoring and develop a Search and Rescue Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with County Sheriff Offices.

“Wilderness Stewardship Performance is the suite of activities which the Forest Service uses to track how well the agency is meeting baseline performance elements for preserving wilderness character,” explained Smailes. “Preserving Wilderness Character is the Forest Service’s primary responsibility under the Wilderness Act.”

Signed in 1964, the Wilderness Act was landmark legislation that set aside 9 million acres of wilderness for the enjoyment of present and future generations and established the National Wilderness Preservation System. Four Federal land management agencies manage more than 109 million acres of designated wilderness. Managing more than 37 million acres in more than 445 units, the U.S. Forest Service is responsible for more wilderness areas than all of the other Federal land management agencies combined.

Preserving Wilderness Character in the Wilderness Areas has become increasingly important as the areas are becoming more popular and crowded in recent years. “With the increased visitation brings impacts such as trail and campsite deterioration, litter, packstock impacts, human waste disposal, disruptions to wildlife, invasive species, user conflicts, abandoned campfires and water pollution,” said Smailes. “These funds will help us begin to tackle these issues in the Wilderness.”

For more information about Wilderness Stewardship Performance, please visit: www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd637854.pdf. For more information about the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, please visit: www.fs.usda.gov/stnf .

PDF version of this press release

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