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USFS - Lassen National Forest

 I support the components of Lassen’s grant request that involve cooperation with the Friends of the High Lakes.
 
FotHL has been working hard to sustain trails in there area, and have had great success. They set a model of teamwork with their agency partners, and regularly deliver good plans, and then follow through with good execution, and good follow-up. They’ve crafted a straightforward grant request, and approval is particularly important because it helps maintain motorized access to a Semi-Primitive designated area (I believe this is unique in this state). [Randy Burleson - 4/5/10]



 I am writing this letter to show my support for the following Grant Applications. 1) G09-04-53-G01 and 2) G09-02-08-G01. OHV use is on the increase across the country. The High Lakes OHV in the Lassen National forest is a very popular destination year round for many different users. In recent years the Friends of the High Lakes has coordinated several user groups in the area in order to maintain and repair trails within the area. Much has been done for the area, however much more work is needed to have a properly managed and sustainable OHV area. This grant funding will provide the Forest Service and the Friends of the High Lakes the support that is needed to be successful. I fully support these applications. [Darryl Merrin - 4/5/10]


 
 My name is Gary McElroy and I have been using the High Lakes OHV Area for over 20 years with my family and friends. The High Lakes are part of our family history and I wish to continue to be able to utilize the area with my family and friends for many years to come.

I feel it is vital that this grant be approved to help with maintenance and Education for the High Lakes OHV Area.

Friends of the High Lakes has done more since its inception in 2007 to improve the area and keep the trails open than has been done in the last 20 years combined. Volunteers can only do so much with fund raising and donations making this grant vital.

Communications is also a critical need in this area and the repeater project will fill a great communications void in the area. Radio equipment is not inexpensive to maintain and this grant will ensure it will be kept in top notch condition for years to come.

There are many other items that the Friends of the High Lakes need to help maintain and educate that this grant will help pay for and I feel it is a necessity. Education is the key to keeping this area open for the public and this grant will help with that tremendously. [Gary McElroy - 4/5/10]


 We are writing on behalf of ourselves, as well as for the Quincy Wheelers 4WD Club in support of grant G09-02-08-G01.  We moved from So Cal to Nor Cal upon retirement.  Among the many fine attributes influencing our move to Quincy were the lakes and historic trails within The High Lakes OHV Area.  Shortly after we settled in here, we learned of the trail closures affecting some of the trails that were essential to the areas we prize. 

The Friends Of The High Lakes (FOTHL) organization has been amazingly effective in its level of commitment and achievements with a local base of folks who love The High Lakes and live in the local area.  FOTHL is 100% volunteer powered--anyone with affection for The High Lakes area can be a part of the group.  FOTHL is an excellent example of a working partnership with the Lassen National Forest.  The responsibilities and complexities of maintaining The High Lakes OHV area, has approached the limits of this volunteer organization.  There are no professional grant writers within the FOTHL, just people with a passion for the area.  FOTHL continues to bring hard working and knowledgeable folks together with the common goal of keeping The High Lakes area open to all.

Under the persistent and skillful guidance of our trail boss and FOTHL founder, Ken Knull, we were able to remediate decades of neglect in cooperation with the leadership staff of the Almanor Ranger District, as well as the Lassen National Forest Supervisor’s office.  To date, we have accomplished a lot, but much still remains to be done; and as we learned driving on the trail, “momentum is your friend.”  We respectfully request you to look favorably upon this grant application, so we do not lose our momentum helping to keep The High Lakes open to the public.

Thank you for your time and consideration of this grant application. [Glenn & Deb Odell - 4/4/10]



 Grant #G09-02-08-G01- We support and request your approving this grant for the people of this area. [Norman Sovereign - 4/4/10]



 I am writing you to let you know how important it is to me and my family that the Friends of the High Lakes is included in the Grant funding for 2010. I lived in Chico, Ca for five years (2002-2007) while going to school at California State University Chico. At least once or twice a month I made my way into the hills towards the High Lakes OHV area to get away and enjoy the great beauty of Mother Nature. I have personally seen the High Lake OHV area in many states of condition. Over the final years I really saw improvement and respect for what is “Chico’s hidden Gem” (well at least that what I called it). The people that use these areas are very mixed. You have your “I don’t care” attitude users and then on the opposite end of the spectrum you have “Please respect and enjoy” attitude of users.  Now with the Friends of the High lakes in place there has been much improvement to the attitude of all its users. But unfortunately that is just not enough.  The Friends of the High Lakes still struggles (mainly because of man power and funding) to help keep this public land open for all users. I honestly think that without The Friends of the High lakes and their volunteers this area would be closed. I still go out there as much as I can to enjoy the area, even though I am currently living in San Diego 600miles away. So for me it’s even more important (because it’s not in my back yard anymore, and getting up there takes a lot of time and planning). I would really be distraught and upset if this area were to be closed due to the lack of funding and support, actually it would be a real Shame to me, myfamily, my friends, and to the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts.  So please help keep this public land open for all by helping the Friends of the High Lakes and their mission to keep these trails open for all. [Andrew Burr - 4/4/10]



 Everyone asking for Grant money does it with honorable intentions to manage our public lands , provide sustainable recreation and protect resources.  I agree with all of that and am not one to say "do not fund"  but there are exceptions from my point of view. 
 
In reviewing these grants for 2009/2010  It it is alarming how the % of actual work on the ground changes from one agency to another.  From experience I would like to see no more than 5% of the grant request for staff under Ground Operation go to management.   The key to sustainable recreation on our public lands are for our grant money to be spent on the ground.  
 
Every single grantee should be preaching "Stay on Designated Trail"   regardless what your job is, it is the responsibility of every person involved with OHV that this message has to pushed.
 
Every single grantee should encourage those that are law abiding citizens to put pressure on the "Willfully Ignorant" to change their way so that we can have a "Sustainable OHV recreation"  for future generations. 
 
Lastly I want to thank every single person involved in working on  OHV recreation for your time and dedication . [Ed Waldheim "OHV activist for access to public lands for all" - 3/28/10]


 I am writing in favor of the following Grant Application:
 
1.) G09-04-53-G01
2.) G09-02-08-G01
 
Any money spent on organization of volunteer efforts and/or on the ground projects is a dollar well spent in our National Forests.  If it wasn't for the efforts of user groups like FOTHL, OHV destinastions like this would be closed to motorized wheeled travel.
 
I commend FOTHL of their efforts and hope the group gets the funding they need to continue keeping trails open. [Casey Crandall - 3/23/10]


 This grant is really needed.  The High Lakes area was poorly managed for many years and it became a lawless jungle.  Then we had some fires and blocked drainages and we had a deteriorating OHV area and experience. The High Lakes is in catch-up mode from these years of neglect, and still has a need for the projects outlined in this grant just to stay open.  The past couple of years have shown great work from the Lassen National Forest and from FOTHL.  This is an important year to finish many of the projects outlined.  I fully support it. [Nick Repanich - 3/19/10]



 I am writing in favor of the following Grant Application:
 
1.) G09-04-53-G01
2.) G09-02-08-G01
 
Any money spent on organization of volunteer efforts and/or on the ground projects is a dollar well spent in our National Forests.  If it wasn't for the efforts of user groups like FOTHL, OHV destinastions like this would be closed to motorized wheeled travel.
 
I commend FOTHL of their efforts and hope the group gets the funding they need to continue keeping trails open.
 
Thank You, [Damion Farley - 3/19/10]



 We are in support of this grant application.
 
The Lassen Nat'l Forest has partnered effectively with Friends of the High Lakes to work towards repair and preservation of the High Lakes area impacted by prior lack of maintenance, extensive fire damage and inappropriate use.  The Friend of the High Lakes have implemented highly successful mitigation, educational and monitoring efforts in a wholehearted volunteer effort to preserve public use of an important recreational area.  Their efforts were recognized by the Forest Service in receiving Region 5's Forest Service Volunteer of the Year Award in 2009.  Neither the Forest Service or the grassroot volunteer organization Friends of the High Lakes has the funding and manpower to continue effectively with this stewardship program on their own; it is the collaborative partnership that makes the program highly successful.  Support in the form of funding for signage and other materials needed to maintain the area and appropriately direct camping and trail usage is critical to the success of this partnership venture. [Pete and Peggy Moak - 3/21/10]



 As a member of the Recreation Outdoors Coalition I am writing to express our members support for the High Lakes grant request GO9-02-08-GO1.
 
High Lakes is a very desirable OHV area that has been adopted by a very well organized group of volunteers who have a vision and understand the value and needs of the area.  They have a burning desire to maintain the area for managed recreation that not only provides quality recreational opportunity but also to protects the resources and heritage.  Friends of High Lakes has done their research and come up with very creative ideas for how to mitigate the issues with sustainable solutions.  They have presented the FS with their vision and have a very good working partnership with the agency, which is very supportive.
 
The match on this project makes it a very cost effective grant to fund.  ROC supports this grant. [Brendan Hathaway - 3/21/10]



 We are opposed to providing OHV money to the USFS to close the trails!

We have paid to have the trails put in to their inventory. Now they ask for OHV money to have them closed! As we have seen in the "Route Designation" process the USFS is not a good investment for OHV funds.
Give the grants to groups that actually enhance OHV opportunity, like the BLM. [Brendan Hathaway  - 3/17/10]


 I support this grant application for ground operations within the High Lakes OHV Area (# G09-02-08-G01).   It demonstrates the Forest Service’s continued commitment to rehabilitating trails and campsites within this scenic and popular OHV area, and managing visitor use.  It provides funds to implement an agreement with the Friends of the High Lakes volunteer organization to maintain the trails and provide educational materials and safety equipment.  It benefits the public by providing visitor information that encourages safe and responsible OHV use.

I do recommend the Forest Service consider a seasonal closure in the whole OHV area to prevent damage to trails and adjacent resources from vehicle use too early in the spring/summer season after snow melt when trail conditions are very wet.  [Elizabeth Norton - 3/17/10]



 Please do not give any state money to a federal agency to close our public land to us.  I whole heartedly reject what the federal government is doing to our lands.  They are tying to kill local economies and discourage people from living free.  It appears as if they all want us to sit and a desk and enjoy the forest on a screensaver. [Casey Crandall - 3/11/10]