Winsor Re-Route Public Comment Period

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Legal Notice of Proposed Action Opportunity to Comment USDA Forest Service Winsor Trail Re-routes

  The Espanola Ranger District, Santa Fe National Forest is proposing to use volunteer labor and materials to re-route three sections along the Winsor Trail #254. The re-routes would help with watershed and trail sustainability, plus provide a more enjoyable and safer experience for the various groups that utilize the Winsor Trail. The Winsor Trail is a National Recreation Trail and is heavily used by the recreating public. The trail is currently open to hiking, mountain biking and equestrians; no motorized use is allowed. The trail is located in Santa Fe County, NM. Specifically, the re-routes are located off Highway 475 between the Norski Trailhead parking lot and Pacheco Canyon Road (Forest Road 102).

  Two sections need re-routing due to the original layout of the trail, which has resulted in significant erosion and rutting. The third and shortest section is a potential hazard for all user groups. The pitch from the trail to the road is very steep and great care must be taken to maneuver down the steep pitch to the road. Plus, drivers do not necessarily see users as they come off this section of trail; the proposed new piece of trail will run alongside the road and provide for better visibility of oncoming cars and vice versa.

  The re-routes would not alter the approved use of the Winsor Trail, and the trail will remain open during construction. Construction is tentatively planned for spring/ summer 2014. The construction would occur primarily with the volunteer group, Santa Fe Fat Tire Society, but additional volunteers from the community are welcome to participate. Please contact Jennifer Sublett, District Volunteer Coordinator, at 505-753-7331 or jasublett@fs.fed.us for more information on how to get involved in volunteering.

  Preliminary analysis shows that this proposal falls under a Categorical Exclusion (CE) and therefore neither an Environmental Assessment nor an Environmental Impact Statement is required. No extraordinary circumstances that would preclude use of the category have been identified to date.

  The purpose of this comment period is to allow the public early and meaningful participation on a proposed action implementing the land and resource management plan prior to a decision being made by the Responsible Official. With this notice we are combining our scoping effort required by 36 CFR 220.4(e)(1) and the Notice and Comment requirement required by 36 CFR 215.

  Copies of the proposed action, documentation of the evaluation used for the CE, and additional information about the proposed action can be obtained from the Espanola Ranger District office.

  The comment period ends 30 days following the date of publication of this legal notice in the Albuquerque Journal. Expected date of publication is November 8, 2013. This publication date is the exclusive means for calculating the time to submit comments on the proposed action. Those wishing to comment on this proposal should not rely upon dates or timeframes provided by any other source.

  Only those who provide comment or otherwise express interest in the proposed action during the comment period will be eligible as appellants. Interest expressed or comments provided on this project prior to or after the close of this comment period can be considered, but will not constitute standing for appeal purposes. To be eligible for appeal, each individual or representative from each organization submitting comments must either sign the comments or verify identity upon request. Comments must meet the requirements of 36 CFR 215.6.

  Comments (written or oral) must be submitted by the close of this comment period to Jennifer Sublett, District Volunteer Coordinator, P.O. Box 3307, Espanola NM 87532; phone number: 505-753-7331; fax number: 505-753-9411. Comments may be submitted by email in word (.doc), portable document format (.pdf), rich text format (.rtf), text (.txt), hypertext markup language (.html), or any other format readable by Microsoft Word to: comments-southwestern-santafe-espanola@fs.fed.us. If you have comments regarding traditional cultural concerns, please contact Anne Baldwin, Espaola District Heritage Staff at the same numbers as above. Comments may also be hand delivered weekdays 8:00 am - 4:30 pm at the above stated address. All comments received and the names and addresses of those who comment will be placed in the project file and become a matter of public record. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Abq. Journal: November 8, 2013

More Info:

Legal Notice of Proposed Action Opportunity to Comment USDA Forest Service Winsor Trail Re-routes

Santa Fe National Forest