These final supplementary rules by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) become effective on March 28, 2016. They will have a huge negative effect on gathering wood, camping, bicycling, hiking, ranching, jeeping, river trips, and the environment in Grand and San Juan County. These new rules for the Moab and Monticello BLM Field Offices are listed on the Federal Register .
These final rules go way beyond real land management and gives the BLM even more power over the public. The Bureau of Land Management doesn’t appear to be happy with managing the land for multiple use they appear to be wanting to be more like the national park service with these new rules. The following maps give you an idea of the large area of land in Grand & San Juan County Utah that will be negatively affected.
Remember that the new rules cover a wide range of issues from domestic animals hiking with you to having camp fires. These new rules set the stage for the BLM to close even more public access and visitation to most of Grand & San Juan County.
The following map illustrates the mass area (in yellow) that these new rules will affect both in San Juan County and Grand County.
Once again here are the new rules for the Moab Field Office.
Unless otherwise authorized (So if it doesn’t have a sign saying it is authorized then its not?) on all public lands within the BLM-Moab Field Office jurisdiction:
(1) You must not burn wood pallets.
(2) You must not camp in archaeological sites posted as closed to camping.
(3) You must not camp in historic sites posted as closed to camping.
(4) You must not operate a motorized or mechanized vehicle on any route, trail, or area not designated as open to such use by a BLM sign, a BLM map, or the Moab Field Office Travel Management Plan.
The following rules apply only to the enumerated areas:
(5) You must not gather petrified wood in the following two areas:
i. The Colorado Riverway SRMA; and
ii. High visitation sites within the Labyrinth Rim/Gemini Bridges SRMA.
(6) You must not possess or use glass beverage containers in the following areas:
i. Moab Canyon Sand Hill within sections 20 and 21 of Township 25 South, Range 21 East, Salt Lake Meridian; and
ii. Powerhouse Lane Trailhead, Lower Mill Creek, and the North Fork of Mill Creek for a distance of one mile from the trailhead at Powerhouse Lane within sections 3, 4, 5, 8, 9 and 10 of Township 26 South, Range 22 East, Salt Lake Meridian.
(7) You must not camp at a non-designated site.
(8) You must not ignite or maintain a campfire at a non-designated site.
(9) You must not dispose of human waste in any container other than a portable toilet.
(10) You must not gather wood.
Rules 7, 8, 9 and 10 apply to lands within one half mile of the following roads:
i. Utah Highway 313;
ii. The Island in the Sky entrance road between Utah Highway 313 and Canyonlands;
iii. The Gemini Bridges Route (Grand County Road No. 118) and the spur route into Bride Canyon within section 24, Township 25 South, Range 20 East, Salt Lake Meridian; and
iv. The Kane Springs Creek Canyon Rim route from U.S. Highway 191 to where it first crosses the eastern boundary of section 20, Township 27 South, Range 22 East, Salt Lake Meridian, exclusive of the State and private land west of Blue Hill in sections 25, 26, 35, and 36.
Rules 7, 8, 9 and 10 also apply to the following:
v. Lands within Long Canyon (Grand County Road No. 135) coincident with a portion of the Colorado Riverway SRMA and the BLM lands within Dead Horse Point State Park.
vi. Lands along both sides of U.S. Highway 191 bounded by Arches National Park on the east, private lands in Moab Valley on the south, the Union Pacific Railroad Potash Rail Spur on the west, and private and state land near the lower Gemini Bridges Trailhead on the north.
vii. Lands located between the upper end of the Nefertiti Rapid parking area in section 1, Township 19 South, Range 16 East, Salt Lake Meridian, along the shoreline of the Green River on the east side of the river to Swaseys Take-Out in section 3, Township 20 South, Range 16 East, Salt Lake Meridian. This includes all public lands between Nefertiti and Swaseys along Grand County Road No. 154.
viii. Lands including Castle Rock, Ida Gulch, Professor Valley, Mary Jane Canyon, and the upper Onion Creek areas that are south of the Colorado Riverway SRMA, below the rims of Adobe and Fisher Mesas, and west of the private land in Fisher Valley.
ix. Lands along the Potash Trail (Grand County Road Nos. 134 and 142, between the western end of Potash Lower Colorado River Scenic Byway (Grand County Road No. 279) and Canyonlands National Park) that are east of Canyonlands National Park, south of Dead Horse Point State Park, and other state and private lands north of the Colorado River and west of the Colorado Riverway SRMA, excluding riverside campsites accessible by water craft from the Colorado River.Show citation box
x. Lands located at the southern end of Spanish Valley located on the east and west sides of U.S. Highway 191 to the rim of the valley, south of the San Juan County line to the Kane Springs Creek Canyon Rim Road.
xi. Lands within the Mill Creek Canyon ACEC and the Mill Creek Canyon Wilderness Study Area (WSA). Backpack-type camping within the Mill Creek Canyon ACEC and the Mill Creek Canyon WSA is allowed at sites one-quarter mile or farther from designated roads and greater than 100 feet from Mill Creek and archaeological sites.
xii. Lands within Desert Bighorn Sheep lambing areas (46,319 acres) as shown on Map 9 of the Approved Moab RMP.
The above map shows the area in San Juan County that is effected by the Monticello Field Office.
Monticello Field Office rules. Unless otherwise authorized, (So if it doesn’t have a sign saying it is authorized then its not?) on all public lands administered by the BLM-Monticello Field Office:Show citation box
(1) You must not camp in archaeological sites posted as closed to camping.
(2) You must not enter archaeological sites posted as closed to the public.
(3) You must not use ropes or other climbing aids to access archaeological sites, unless operating under a permit.
(4) You must not bring domestic pets or pack animals to archaeological sites, posted as closed to the public.
(5) You must not operate a motorized or mechanized vehicle on any route, trail, or area not designated as open to such use by a BLM sign, a BLM map, or the Monticello Field Office Travel Management Plan.
(6) You must not ignite or maintain a campfire within the canyons in the Dark Canyon SRMA or White Canyon SRMA. Wait until you read what the SRMA covers….
The above map pertains to the new rule in the Dark Canyon SRMA rule #6.
6. Final rule: You must not ignite or maintain a campfire within the canyons of the Dark Canyon Special Recreation Management Area or White Canyon Special Recreation Management Area.
This area only had 5 fires from 1980 to 2014 which doesn’t indicated there being a problem with fires in this area. So why would the BLM fabricate the follow explanation and justification for rule #6?
Campfires are prohibited within the canyons of the Dark Canyon SRMA because of the canyons’ high density of archaeological resources. Prohibiting campfires will reduce the risk of starting wildfires, which can cause extensive damage to those resources. Also, by prohibiting campfires within the canyons, the BLM will reduce the risk that visitors will remove ancient wood from archaeological sites for fuel. Campfires also are prohibited in the canyon in the White Canyon SRMA because it is a narrow slot canyon in which burning poses significant health and safety risks. In addition, the logjams that people rely on to navigate the canyon are targeted for firewood. By prohibiting campfires within the canyons of these SRMAs, the likelihood of wildfires will be greatly reduced, thereby providing greater protection of human safety, wildlife, livestock, public land resources, and private property.
Anyone that has spent time down in the lower end of Dark Canyon (BLM area of Dark Canyon) or the areas listed knows there is very little fuel in the canyon to burn. There is also very few if any archaeological sites in the bottom of the canyon that fire would have any effect on. I would also like to see the documentation that supports the BLM’s claims that people are removing wood from archaeological site to build a camp fire?
Also the idea that a log jam is what people use to navigate a canyon is absurd. Log jams come and go with the flooding of each year and the navigation of a slot canyon is done by following the canyon. The large log jam in White Canyon’s the Black Hole caused more problems for people traveling through the Black Hole than anything else. It was a good deal when the BLM burned out the log jam a couple years later.
How in the world did they come up with this stuff. The author of the new rules has less common sense than a rock if that is possible. I guess when you’re a government agency that has no accountability you can just make this kind of stuff up because nothing is going to happen to you if you lie.