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Randito
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 8:32 am 
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Kim Brown wrote:
Given the chalet is about to drop into the drink, according to the photos Tomlike posted, seems to me that ONP should have had acted to either made a good attempt to save it, or have it removed.

Because when it drops, the fish issue will trigger a lawsuit that can't likely be defended. At least had they either removed or saved the chalet, a lawsuit either for or against the chalet could have a defense. But fish advocates?  .....doubtful.

IDK -- the last time the chalet was moved, parts of it were overhanging the river before it was moved.    Looking at the photo posted there is still distance between the river bank and the chalet. 

I think no matter what happens or what action is taken or not taken by ONP some group is going to sue...

So I don't think the threat of lawsuits should be a top consideration in guiding the decision process of ONP administrators.   

If money was no object -- relocating the chalet to a site outside the wilderness boundary and far from the river using a heavy lift helicopter seems a good long term solution -- but one that will piss off multiple groups -- i.e. Wilderness Watch will be pissed over the use of a helicopter and historic preservation interests will be pissed over the chalet no longer being located near its historic location.

Congress could amend they 1988 wilderness boundary designation and create a donut hole in the wilderness boundary (Like what is used for Camp Muir) and create a history preservation district surrounding the chalet and provide funds to move the chalet off the flood plain and onto a site excavated on the adjacent hillside.

But that's no going to happen...
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 9:45 am 
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That's what I said; either way, there will be a lawsuit. But if the thing drops, fish habitat will be affected, and their inaction will be a part of that suit. Not sure there will be a viable defense.

Did you see the photo Tomlike posted? It's leaning on the edge of the bank, directly over the river. it's right there. Not close, not some distance. It's there.

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Randito
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 9:57 am 
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Kim Brown wrote:
Did you see the photo Tomlike posted? It's leaning on the edge of the bank, directly over the river. it's right there. Not close, not some distance. It's there.

Yeah I saw it.

To contrast:

Before move:


Recent photo:

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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 9:59 am 
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I see what you mean. The river channel is a consideration, not only actual water.

There are no plans to move it now, so far as I know, not even an utterance.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 10:03 am 
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Ski wrote:
Yeah... there might be some non-biodegradable items in the chalet that may fall into the drink, but "damage" to fish habitat is (I believe) kind of a stretch.

Could be - but that would be for a judge to decide.

But I think ONP's inaction will be at issue in any lawsuit. And my guess is, that they will lose.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Randito
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 10:08 am 
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Kim Brown wrote:
So what's the argument then?? It's hanging over the bank now, as it was then.

H'mm when I look at the recent photograph -- I see at least a couple feet snow covered ground between the edge of the chalet and the river bank.   vs in the pre move image there is over a foot of the chalet hanging in the air.

Also the recent image seems tilted and distorted -- I don't think the chalet is actually leaning over.
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 10:14 am 
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Ski wrote:
Another high-water event will scour out and undercut that bank and drop the thing into the ditch.
Too bad they didn't move it farther back when they had the opportunity.

Yes, I think that will be the crux. Either move or remove, and they did neither. From what I recall in talking to NPS about it, and the egregious neglect to update the NEPA document as new information came up this document being a big bit of neglect – and they knew it was left out - they deserve a lawsuit. It was a sloppy NEPA document.

The document  in the link discusses historical value and structures in particular, which was not in the older document. This newer document, written by NPS superceded an older document by the USFS that was then the guidance for wilderness values and management - and did not discuss history.  They were encouraged - berbally and in writing - to include the updated document in their list of NEPA docs, but did not.

That still pisses me off.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 10:16 am 
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Randito wrote:
Also the recent image seems tilted and distorted -- I don't think the chalet is actually leaning over.

Could be. I'm not there, I don't know. Regardless, because geomorphology is alive and well, it will end up tanking because nothing's being done.

At any rate, if the thing drops into the drink (or channel), it's likely a lost suit

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 11:29 am 
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I have no doubt that rivers will reclaim their original floodplain. No paper is required to believe that. We live in nature’s geomorphology.

ONP is not going to save the chalet.  I wonder if, since there’s no flush fund to remove it, the plan is to let it drop, get sued, then they’ll have to remove it. Perhaps there’s a mitigation fund to tap into, but it needs a legal catalyst to do so. Just thinking out loud. I have no idea, nor, frankly, do I care much. Pretty sure it’s a moot issue.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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HikerJohn
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 2:05 pm 
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As I remember the last move, Jeff Monroe, was the leader of this and offered initially to do the move gratis, but NPS required him to accept a contract and money to do the job.

The move back in 2014 was designed to be a temporary one with a final move to a final location once the NPS got their act together about a final plan.
https://www.peninsuladailynews.com/news/a-moving-honor-sequim-man-to-be-awarded-for-his-work-in-relocating-enchanted-valley-chalet/

Picture from last year shows at least 10' from the river in the current position.  My initial question was about the current state, both

IMHO, the NPS needs to accept that structures like this do not disrupt the "wilderness experience" and needs to accept help from volunteers to work on a final plan.
I'm afraid the OPA guys are just the loudest guys right now-- unless other interested parties step up to be equally loud, their opinions are the only ones that will be heard.

Any idea of who you would write to to "save the Chalet" (again!)??
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reststep
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 2:59 pm 
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Maybe contact Friends of Olympic National Park. They might have some ideas about who to contact but I don't know.

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Randito
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 4:27 pm 
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HikerJohn wrote:
IMHO, the NPS needs to accept that structures like this do not disrupt the "wilderness experience" and needs to accept help from volunteers to work on a final plan.

That's all well and good, but the Green Mountain Lookout restoration project experience indicates that,  doing any sort of restoration project within a wilderness area is quite challenging.
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Logbear
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 8:20 pm 
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HikerJohn wrote:
Any idea of who you would write to to "save the Chalet" (again!)??

In a MOA between Olympic National Park and Washington State Historic Preservation Officer, it is mentioned that the Park Service will:
"proactively engage members of the preservation community to participate in the planning process"

"Preservation groups such as the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation,  Friends of Olympic Trail Shelters (FOOTS),  The Olympians,  and Backcountry Horsemen of Washington will be invited to participate in the comment period"

You might try one of those organizations.

OPA isn't mentioned.
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Kim Brown
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PostFri Mar 27, 2020 8:40 pm 
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HikerJohn wrote:
IMHO, the NPS needs to accept that structures like this do not disrupt the "wilderness experience

Could very well be that NPS (or ONP) management doesn't agree with structures in wilderness at all; though historical structures are specifically discussed as viable wilderness values in the newer guidance I linked to earlier. There are extremists in every walk of life, including agency staff.

ONP is designated as a World Biosphere Reserve; perhaps that makes their management decisions a bit easier for them; preserve the biosphere of the place before anything else if at all anything else, that is....

At any rate, I think it's been long enough that an entire new NEPA process would have to start again. If not yet, then it would have to soon. I think a NEPA is good for five years. The 5 years might be specific to an Environmental Impact Statement though. This wasn't an EIS.

The chalet is running out of time.

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Pyrites
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PostSat Mar 28, 2020 1:07 am 
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The Chalet needs a good song.
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