Forum Index > Stewardship > Olympic Wilderness Stewardship Plan - comment by May 17
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RumiDude
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 1:13 pm 
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contour5 wrote:
I'd be happy to pre-pay the wilderness camping/entrance fees when I buy my seasonal pass. No more high speed dashes to Forks or P.A. to get to the WIC before they close.

It's called an Olympic Wilderness Pass and costs just $30 per year and $15 for each additional person in the family. For my wife and me, it is just $45 per year which covers all the permit fees annually.

Rumi

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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 1:55 pm 
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contour5 wrote:
In summary: A resounding YES! for electronic permit stations throughout the park. Not spaced 200 miles apart- but at every single TH.

I'm assuming you're proposing that these "electronic permit stations" be battery or solar powered at those trailheads where there is no electricity?

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reststep
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 2:00 pm 
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RumiDude wrote:
It's called an Olympic Wilderness Pass

This sounds like a good deal but for some reason I don't seem to be able to find info about it on that page.  Could you provide more info or tell me where I am going wrong.

Thanks

Edit:  Never mind, I found it.  It is buried in the Wilderness Use Paragraph.

I am going to have to check that out.

Thanks for the tip.

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RumiDude
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 2:18 pm 
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reststep wrote:
RumiDude wrote:
It's called an Olympic Wilderness Pass

This sounds like a good deal but for some reason I don't seem to be able to find info about it on that page.  Could you provide more info or tell me where I am going wrong.

Thanks

Go to the page and scroll down about half way and you will find this:
Quote:
Wilderness Use Fee

The fee for Wilderness Camping Permits is $5 to register per group (for groups up to 12 people), plus $2 per person per night. There is no nightly charge for youth 15 years of age and under. Wilderness fees are non-refundable.

Annual passes are available for frequent wilderness visitors for $30; $15 for each additional household member. Interagency Senior/Access are 50% discount.

I usually get mine at WIC in PA, but we got our last one at the Staircase Ranger Station.

Rumi

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reststep
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 2:24 pm 
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Thanks

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RodF
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 4:34 pm 
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Maintained hiking trails in Wilderness Stewardship preliminary draft plan
Alternative A "No Action" current conditions  629 miles
Alternative B "minimize the human imprint"  394
Alternative C "natural resource protection"  434
Alternative D "managing visitor recreation"  506

Trails to be abandoned (Zones 4 & 5, no longer maintained)

Alternative D "managing visitor recreation": Cascade Rock, Griff Creek, Heart O'the Forest, Elwha Basin, Martin's Lake, Cox Valley, Elk Mountain, Rica Canyon, Geyser Valley, upper Royal Basin, Anderson Moraine, Mt. Hopper, Gladys Divide (Smith Lake), Putvin, Four Stream, Six Ridge, Lake Success, Sundown Lake, South Fork Skokomish, Wynoochee Pass, Skyline (Kimta-Seattle), Lower Crossing, Sam's River Loop, Upper Crossing, South Snyder-Jackson, Lunch Lake, Cat Basin, North Fork Sol Duc (6 mile ford to shelter), Aurora Ridge (partial), Aurora Creek, Mt. Storm King, Barnes Creek, upper Barnes Creek, Ericson's Bay, Cape Alava-Ozette River: 123 miles.

Alternative C "natural resource protection": all the above plus Liilian River, Dodger Point, Happy Hollow, PJ Lake, Grand Pass, Cedar Lake, Cameron Pass, Lost Basin, Constance Lake, Lost Pass, LaCrosse Basin, Black & White Lakes, Wagonwheel Lake, Upper Lena Lake, Graves Creek, Three Lakes, Skyline (entirety), Elip Creek, South Fork Hoh, High Divide,  North Coast, Duk Point Beaches: 195 miles.

Alternative B "reduce the human imprint", all the above plus Constance Pass, LaCrosse Pass, Staircase Rapids Loop, Queets, Rugged Ridge/Indian Pass, Little Divide, North Fork Sol Duc, Aurora Ridge, Happy Lake Ridge,
and except Wagonwheel Lake, Upper Lena Lake, High Divide, North Coast, Cape Alava-Ozette River: 235 miles.

Common to all alternatives:
"There will not be an increase in trail mileage maintained.  No new trails will be constructed."
"Quotas/use limits will be established for overnight and day use throughout wilderness."
"Wilderness overnight permits will be required and will not be self-issued."
"There will be no self-registration stations within the wilderness area."
"Bear canisters will be required park-wide."

Trail designations and mileage from Olympic NP's list (differ slightly from Wood's "Olympic Trail Guide").  WSP plan maps are hard to read - any errors are my own.

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RodF
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 4:35 pm 
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Maintained All-Purpose Trails in Wilderness Stewardship preliminary draft plan
All-purpose trails allow stock access, necessary for maintenance of trail bridges and footlogs.

Alternative A, current conditions: 361 miles (258 miles actually cleared last year)

Alternative B "reduce the human imprint" 250 miles
losses: Wolf Creek, Lillian, Happy Hollow, Grand Valley, Gray Wolf, Cedar Lake, Queets, Little Divide, Mink Lake, Happy Lake, Aurora, Barnes, North Fork Sol Duc: 111 miles.
"Some trails would be shifted to lower classifications with fewer facilities to construct and maintain."  "No new bridges, footlogs, or water crossings would be installed. The replacement of bridges, footlogs, or water crossings may occur if determined to be the minimum requirement."

Alternative C "natural resources protection" 184 miles
losses: the above plus: Mt Angeles/Heather Park, Hayden Pass, main fork Dosewallips, High Divide, Sol Duc, Appleton Pass, Olympic Hot Springs, Boulder Lake: 177 miles.
"New or replacement bridges, footlogs, or water crossings may be installed to reduce impacts on the riparian and riverine systems."

Alternative D "managing visitor recreation" 342 miles
losses: above Lake Angeles, Happy Hollow, Cedar Lake, Aurora Ridge (partial), Barnes Creek: 19 miles.
"Assess which trails should have bridges. This may include adding new bridges and/or removing others. Efforts would be made to increase education and awareness about safe methods for water crossings."

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"of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt" - John Muir
"the wild is not the opposite of cultivated.  It is the opposite of the captivated” - Vandana Shiva
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RodF
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 5:29 pm 
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I ask all hikers to please realize that if trails are zone 4, 5 or 6, we volunteers (WTA, Backcountry Horseman, Mt. Rose Trail Crew, Gray Wolf Trail Crew, Park trail adopters and other groups) may not be allowed to maintain them, either.

This affects a long list of trails in the Park, including: Long Ridge, North Fork Sol Duc, Cox Valley, Cedar Lake, Smith Lake, Four Stream, Graves Creek, Six Ridge, Sundown Lake, Barnes Creek, Aurora Creek, Aurora Ridge, Happy Lake Ridge, etc., now maintained by volunteers.

Zone 4 "The primary trails in this zone would be Primitive Trails.  Designated paths/routes, not part of the maintained trail system (e.g., way trails, social trails, routes, and coastal travelways) could be present."  "Way-finding would be moderate to very difficult depending on area and remoteness."

Zone 5  "No facilities or maintained trails."  "The primary trails in this zone would be Way Trails.  Other designated paths/routes, not part of the maintained trail system (e.g., social trails, routes, and coastal travelways) could be present."  "Maintenance for resource protection only if/as determined by minimum requirements analysis."

Zone 6 "There would be no trails and no established campsites in this zone."  "Trails and sites, such as campsites, would be removed and rehabilitated, or allowed to recover naturally."

In all zones "No trails would be constructed."  "Access or use might be restricted or limited for resource protection."  "Areas might be closed temporarily or permanently for restoration or to achieve desired resource conditions."

Quotes are from Draft_Zones_FULL_TABLE

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"of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt" - John Muir
"the wild is not the opposite of cultivated.  It is the opposite of the captivated” - Vandana Shiva
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NacMacFeegle
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 5:41 pm 
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RodF wrote:
Common to all alternatives:
"Quotas/use limits will be established for overnight and day use throughout wilderness."
"Wilderness overnight permits will be required and will not be self-issued."
"There will be no self-registration stations within the wilderness area."

I don't know how they are even considering this stuff! Use limits for day use? I only know of 2 places in the U.S. that limit day use: Mt. Whitney in California and The Wave in Utah. There is nowhere in the park which even remotely warrants a limit on day use, and only a few areas that require overnight quotas, and such quotas are already in place in those areas. I don't see any reason to change the permitting system.

RodF wrote:
Alternative B "minimize the human imprint"  394
Alternative C "natural resource protection"  434
Alternative D "managing visitor recreation"  506

I had not realized that all the plans would reduce the miles of maintained trails in the park, and by such huge amounts! What is their reasoning on this? Are they really worried about human impact, or do they just not want to pay for trail maintenance? edit hadn't seen your latest post! So it is because they want to reduce human impact. It doesn't really make sense, most of the trails that would be eliminated are not well used, and therefore have little impact.

Thanks, Rod, for condensing all this information!

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RumiDude
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 7:04 pm 
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Thanks RodF for pointing out some ramifications of lost trails in all these proposals. It has been difficult sorting out the maps and the text, figuring what it all means.  It certainly offers food for questions to be asked at the public meetings.

Rumi

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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 7:44 pm 
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RodF wrote:
"...Lower Crossing, Sam's River Loop, Upper Crossing..."

I can understand the "why" and support the abandonment of the "Lower Crossing Way Trail"- it's a redundant dead-end.

The "Upper Crossing Way Trail" was last cleared by Pangratz in 2008, unless I'm mistaken. It wasn't too difficult finding most of it last September- the elk keep the western half fairly well open. It would be unfortunate to lose it- one of the finest stands of mature Doug Fir in the Park are back in that grove.

As for Sams Loop: that's just nutty. That's a fairly popular dayhike destination and supports a good deal of traffic in the peak season.[1] Additionally, maintenance doesn't require a huge amount of labor or complicated logistics- it's all fairly close to the road.

To those concerned about the reduction in trail miles, please note that there has been a substantial reduction in trail miles all over the Park during the last 76 years, and at the current rate of reduction (if my calculations are correct) there will be zero miles of trail in the Park in another 50.

Just say NO to fewer trail miles. None of the proposals are acceptable.


[1] (Personal observations summer 2004- spent most of the summer in the Ranger Station. Note that no use permits are required there, and there is no way to conduct user counts, so the Park has absolutely no idea how much traffic that trail sees on a daily basis.)

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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RumiDude
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 8:47 pm 
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Ski wrote:
To those concerned about the reduction in trail miles, please note that there has been a substantial reduction in trail miles all over the Park during the last 76 years, and at the current rate of reduction (if my calculations are correct) there will be zero miles of trail in the Park in another 50.

Just say NO to fewer trail miles. None of the proposals are acceptable.

Exactly!  These proposals are a slow walk of continued limits on access and more difficult for the park users. I am sure some like that prospect. This stinks, IMO.

Rumi

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Bedivere
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PostMon Mar 17, 2014 10:52 pm 
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What, or who is driving this?  Where did these proposals come from?

If alternative A isn't a "real" alternative, then why are all the others for less access and trails?

WTH is going on here?

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sten
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PostTue Mar 18, 2014 8:01 am 
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Is there any discussion of the natural resource issues that closing those trails would address?  Or is it purely economics?

Also does 'no new trail construction' apply to this planning round, or limit future potential trail building options?
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PostTue Mar 18, 2014 10:30 am 
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The engine is being fueled by Olympic Park Associates, also known as OPA. Whether their names are attached or not, the types of limits and controls being proposed have been their agenda for decades. The driving vision for controlling access and limiting development or reconstruction for the past 3 decades has been supplied by Tim McNulty, one who has benefited greatly from ONP. Yes, the irony is not lost.

There are no economic considerations at issue here and to argue for natural resource preservation in a National Park (already 95% Wilderness) is needlessly redundant. As for future trails, there will be NONE, EVER. That has been the goal of many for decades and it will now become official written policy.

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