The Bureau of Land Management has proposed a Travel Management Plan that will affect motorized access to nearly 1 million acres of public lands near Safford, Arizona. The proposed travel network contains 2,389 miles of roads with 494 miles designated as closed under the preferred alternative C.
The proposed plan will affect motorized roads northeast of Safford, Arizona where many popular areas and trails are located. Some popular areas within the Travel Management Area are the Hot Well Dunes OHV Area, Black Hills Back Country Byway, River View Campground, Indian Bread Rocks Picnic Area, North Santa Teresa Wilderness, Peloncillo Mountains Wilderness, Canyon Overlook Picnic Area, Bear Springs Badlands, Round Mountain Rockhound Area, Hoverrocker Wilderness Study Area, Safford-Morenci Trail, Gila Box Riparian National Conservation Area, and Dankworth Village.
The proposed action is part of the Bureau’s crusade against motorized use of public roads on federal lands across the western US. The resource advisory council of the Bureau has vowed to complete 19 travel management plans that include over 20,000 miles of roads on public lands in Arizona.
These roads are being closed in a process called travel management planning, which is required under the Bureau’s travel management rules promulgated by Executive Order 11644 signed in the early 1970s. The proposed action scrutinizes the environmental impact of roads on wetlands, riparian areas, wilderness areas, rivers and streams, and endangered species habitat. The Bureau claims the proposed action will enhance recreation opportunities and address resource concerns in the project area. However, the proposed action will limit our use of our public land.
The proposed action, which contains nearly 18,000 pages of documents, will have a profound impact on dispersed camping and river access on public land northeast of Safford, Arizona. A majority of closed roads are short spur trails that were legally established through decades of use.
You can find the documents relating to the Gila San Simon Travel Management plan here.
View the map of the proposed action below
This action is open for comment and you can submit your thoughts using the comment form below.