Marshall Woods Environmental Assessment
The Lolo National Forest has released its Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Marshall Woods Restoration Project, “an integrated project to improve forest stand conditions and reduce hazardous fuels in the lower Rattlesnake Creek drainage and the Marshall Creek-Woods Gulch area”. They’re hosting a public meeting this coming Wednesday evening, March 18th, 6-8 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel. Public comment will be accepted through April 6th. The RCWG is evaluating the proposed actions this month and we’ll be submitting comments.
As you can see from the the Lolo NF links and the Google Earth view below, this project is pretty big–the project area encompasses about 20 square miles, and “treatment” (mainly thinning and prescribed burning, along with some trail and road modification and noxious weed control) is proposed for almost 4,000 acres within the Rattlesnake and Marshall Creek watersheds.
I requested GIS layers for Preferred Alternative B and created the Google Earth view below (I’ll add a link to the .kmz file later this weekend–meanwhile please email me if you want to look at the map data).
Concerns have been raised about log truck traffic along the Rattlesnake Recreation Area road and within the populated areas of the Rattlesnake Valley. The current EA is the culmination of a lengthy planning process involving a range of stakeholder input. Please consider attending the public meeting on March 18th, and along with commenting on the EA, please contact the RCWG if you have questions or concerns.