Example Letter: Speak Up for Mountain Loop Trails
In June 2017 the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest released a draft proposal for a timber harvest project in the popular Mountain Loop area. You can read about the proposal on WTA's blog. Below is a sample letter you can use to submit comments.
Comments on this proposal are due by 5 p.m. Monday July 3.
Email your comments to the Forest Service at: email@example.com. Make sure to include “Comments on S.F. Stillaguamish Vegetation Project” in the subject line. Also, make sure to include your name and mailing address in the email.
Dear District Ranger Peter Forbes,
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the proposed South Fork Stillaguamish Vegetation Project. The Mountain Loop Scenic Byway is home to some of the most popular and cherished recreation opportunities in the state. From Heather Lake to Mount Pilchuck and Lake 22 to Mount Dickerman, and many others, this area provides access to breathtaking landscapes. With its proximity to the Seattle metropolitan area, the Mountain Loop provides easy access for many Washingtonian’s to enjoy our state's incredible natural resources. Given the importance of the Mountain Loop for hiking and other outdoor recreation and the resulting impact on the outdoor recreation economy to gateway communities such as Granite Falls and Darrington, I am writing to both request changes and lend support for provisions in the current vegetation project proposal.
- Remove the Heather Lake trail parcel from the timber project.This is the most popular trail in the Mountain Loop area and is simply too important to be logged. The proposal would negatively impact the visual quality and trail experience for decades.
- Plan any logging-related special closures of Heather Lake, Mount Pilchuck, Sunrise Mine/Vesper Peak, Lake 22, and Mount Dickerman for the non-peak season (October-April).
- Design the timber project so that it does not negatively impact recreational access and trails, including not deteriorating the visual quality of trials, not using trails to haul logs and ensuring that trails are in the same condition or better when the project is complete.
- I strongly support and appreciate the proposed recreational improvements including the road to trail conversions, the expansion and development of trailhead parking lots and the upgrades of several bathroom facilities at popular recreation sites.
This is a beloved area to me and many other trail users across Washington. As such, it is important to strike a balance between forest management and recreational use. Thank you again for the opportunity to comment on the proposed South Fork Stillaguamish Vegetation Project in the Mountain Loop Scenic Byway area.