Forum Index > Stewardship > Public comment till 03-13-2019: restore Elwha Rd/Olympic Hot Springs Rd access
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Anne Elk
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PostSat Feb 23, 2019 8:04 pm 
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Ski wrote:
the effects are also seen upstream of where the dam was formerly located

"Stabilization" issues notwithstanding, one thing mentioned in the documentary film on the Elwha restoration is that salmon have already been seen spawning upstream from the dam locations - that has to be encouraging, maybe the most important sign that "it's working".

As an aside, one of the best programs I ever saw on the relationship between salmon and forest health was the "Salmon Forest" episode from the popular David Suzuki series "The Nature of Things".  Unfortunately CBC tightly controls its intellectual property; you can't stream it in the US, and as far as I know it's not available for the consumer market (at consumer prices).  However a number of our libraries have it.  Here's the trailer.  Until I saw this film I had no idea that salmon were such an integral part of forest ecology.
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Ancient Ambler
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PostSun Feb 24, 2019 2:09 pm 
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I'd like to thank each of you for your comments and for considering the alternatives to restore vehicle access to the Elwha Road/Olympic Hot Springs Road south of the closed gate at Madison Falls.

If anyone has not yet submitted your comments, you still have time.  The deadline to submit comments is tonight (February 24, 2019) at 10:59 PM Pacific Standard Time.  The easiest way to submit comments is via the green “Comment Now” button at this National Park Service   web page.

Just to be clear, the topographical map included in my post above is not a government document.  ONP provided two sketch-type maps in their Presentation document (linked at the above website).   I felt that it would be more useful to show the approximate locations of the two action alternatives on a topo map, so I drew dashed lines on a topo map as consistently as I could with the routes on ONP's sketch map, which ONP carefully referred to as "approximate".  The topo map depiction is intended to illustrate the general location of and the topography crossed by the two alternatives, not their exact locations.  Thus, if ONP chooses the bypass alternative, the final route could be higher up the hillside than the dashed line I drew on the topo map.

Ski, you make a good point about the the north end of the bypass alternative being too close to Sanders Creek.  ONP's sketch map has it ending just north of Sanders Creek, but in ONP's text about the bypass route, ONP does indicate it is possible to continue higher on the slope farther past the Sanders Creek former temporary bridge location (ONP Engagement Letter, p. 5, para. 2 under "Alternative 2"). 

Finally, thank you RL for the info about Return of the River.  I really enjoyed watching it this afternoon.  As a side note, on page 1 and 2 of its Engagement Letter (linked at the above website), ONP mentions that its General Management Plan and the Elwha River Ecosystem Restoration Implementation SEIS call for continued public vehicular access to this area of the park and that ONP's ecosystem recovery efforts in this area depend on vehicle access.
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Ski
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PostSun Feb 24, 2019 9:16 pm 
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Anne Elk wrote:
Until I saw this film I had no idea that salmon were such an integral part of forest ecology.

Those who were involved in the process of coming up with the "Northwest Forest Plan" made a huge error in judgment when they selected the Northern Spotted Owl as the "Indicator Species".
Had they instead chosen the Chinook Salmon, they would have gotten far more supporters on their side.
The choice of the owl was a monumental blunder in policy making, and a piss-poor choice in regard to marketing.

And yes, the forest revolves all around that fish. It's been that way for millennia.


AA, thanks for the reminder. wink.gif

BK

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Malachai Constant
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PostSun Feb 24, 2019 9:21 pm 
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True as far as effect but SO better indicator species because it was not affected by as many external factors I.e. over fishing, siltation, peradatory, etc. of course that was before barred owls were a factor.

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rubywrangler
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PostThu Feb 28, 2019 10:52 pm 
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The comment period has been extended through 3/13/19.
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Ancient Ambler
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PostFri Mar 01, 2019 1:04 pm 
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Thank you, rubywrangler, for reporting that the comment submission deadline has been extended to March 13, 2019.  I have edited the title for the original post in this thread to reflect the new deadline.

I also found this morning that ONP has added a third document to the list of documents to consider when forming your opinions on which alternative (no action, bypass route, elevated roadway) you prefer.  The new document is entitled "Plan View - All Engineering Solutions", and it was added to the comment website on February 22, 2019, according to ONP Planning and Compliance Lead Christina Miller.  Ms. Miller indicated that the recent addition of this "Plan View" document is one of the reasons the comment submission deadline has been extended.  Ms. Miller said that if you previously submitted a comment and wish to submit another comment after reviewing the "Plan View" document, you are encouraged to do so.

To view and download the document entitled "Plan View - All Engineering Solutions", click here.  The "Plan View" document is a 14 MB topographic map that depicts the proposed route of the elevated road alternative and the route of various engineering "solutions" that could be selected to form the bypass route alternative.

For example, "Plan View" shows two "Boneyard" routes, one relatively close to the river elevation and one far above the river elevation.  If you wanted a lot of vertical separation between the north end of the bypass route and the river elevation, you might want the north end of the bypass route to be comprised of the higher "boneyard" solution.    I will attempt to obtain some more information on these engineering "solutions" in the next few days from ONP.
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PostFri Nov 08, 2019 7:21 pm 
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Thursday October 31, 2019 12:32 PDT

Olympic National Park News Release   

Public Invited to Review and Comment on Plan for Olympic Hot Springs Road Long-Term Access


Public Meeting Set for November 13; Comments Accepted November 4 Through December 18

PORT ANGELES, WA: The National Park Service will release the Olympic Hot Springs Road Long-Term Access Environmental Assessment (EA) for a 45-day public review and comment period on Monday, November 4, 2019.

During the public comment period, the National Park Service (NPS) will host one in-person public meeting where Olympic National Park and Federal Highways staff will be available to discuss the EA. The meeting will be held from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm on Wednesday, November 13 at the Elwha Klallam Heritage Center, 401 East First Street in Port Angeles, Washington 98362. The presentation will begin at 5:45 pm followed by a question and answer period.

The purpose of the project is to rehabilitate the 8.2 mile Olympic Hot Springs Road within Olympic National Park to ensure public and administrative access to visitor use areas within the Elwha Valley. The rehabilitated roadway would provide year-round road access to the Elwha Ranger Station and Glines Canyon Spillway Overlook, and seasonal access to Whiskey Bend Road and the upper portion of Olympic Hot Springs Road to Boulder Creek Trailhead.

This access would continue to serve several popular trailheads, day use facilities, and private lands. Park staff would also continue to use the road to maintain trails and other facilities, operate the Ranger Station and access the pack stock operations area, park maintenance area, and Elwha Ranger Station Historic District. The park General Management Plan and Elwha River Ecosystem Restoration Implementation Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) call for continued road access to this area of the park. Actions to monitor, evaluate, and adaptively manage ecosystem recovery require vehicle access.

The EA analyzes three options which include a no action (current management) alternative, modifying the current road alignment to raise grade, or a reroute of one mile of the road outside the floodplain. The National Park Service preferred alternative is the reroute of the one mile section.

The EA will be available beginning November 4 for review and comment on the project planning website at https://parkplanning.nps.gov/OHSREA. Comments may be submitted directly on this site by clicking on "Open for Comment" and following the links to review the document and submit a comment. Comments will be accepted starting Monday, November 4 through 11:59 p.m. MST on Wednesday, December 18, 2019.

“Long-term and sustainable public access in the Elwha Valley is important for public enjoyment.  The Olympic Hot Springs Road provides access to Olympic’s gorgeous high country, the Elwha Historic District, and the continuing restoration of   the Elwha River following the largest dam removal in history,” said park superintendent Sarah Creachbaum. “We appreciate the public’s participation in this process.”

Comments on the EA can also be mailed or hand-delivered to: Olympic National Park, Attn: Superintendent Sarah Creachbaum, Olympic Hot Springs Road Long-Term Access EA, 600 East Park Avenue, Port Angeles, Washington 98362.

Comments submitted by phone or email will not be accepted. Comments submitted on behalf of other individuals will also not be accepted.

You should be aware that your entire comment – including personal identifying information such as your address, phone number, and email address – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

-NPS-

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Gregory
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PostSat Nov 09, 2019 4:22 am 
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The Elwa will live in the glacial till where ever it pleases or dynamics dictate.
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Forum Index > Stewardship > Public comment till 03-13-2019: restore Elwha Rd/Olympic Hot Springs Rd access
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