2011 Kapka Butte Action AlertShould a new sno-park be built at Kapka Butte? The Forest Service is seeking comments now and the Bend Backcountry Alliance needs your input today.
The short version:
As an organization, we believe the Forest Service should take no action and not construct this sno-park. None of the proposed alternatives related to the sno-park's construction successfully tackle existing conflicts, provide mitigation for increased motorized traffic, accommodate the needs of alpine skiers, boarders, and snowshoers, or address the issues at Dutchman Flat parking area, an area of concern to all winter outdoor recreationists.
How you can help:We need your voice. Send an email to the Forest Service stating that you oppose any action on the Kapka Butte sno-park. Just a sentence or two will do. Email them (and cc: us, please) here:
(Please put “Kapka Butte” in the subject line of your email.)
The comment period ends soon. Please send your email today.
The backcountry ski, snowboard, and snowshoe community appreciates your effort!
More details:The Forest Service has outlined four alternatives for Kapka Butte, three of which are variations that entail construction of the new sno-park. Alternative #1 is for the Forest Service to take no action on Kapka. We believe this is the best option for those wanting to pursue quiet, human-powered winter recreation. Here’s why:
- Construction of the sno-park will not address everyone’s concerns about parking issues at Dutchman Flat or user conflicts on Tumalo Mountain
- The Forest Service has not provided for mitigation of existing user conflicts, nor does it outline a plan to deal with the increased snowmobile traffic the additional parking will bring to the Century Drive corridor.
- Reasonable alternatives to the options under consideration were not thoroughly researched or vetted with the public.
- The Forest Service has repeatedly told Bend Backcountry Alliance that it can make no changes to overall winter use of lands within the Century Drive corridor without a winter travel management plan in place. Construction of a sno-park at Kapka Butte would constitute a major change and yet no overall plan is in place.
- While some of the options under consideration include the addition of nearby dog-friendly ski trails, there is no plan (or funding) in place to actually groom these trails. (Also, please keep in mind these trails are in close proximity to what will be a major motorized staging area.)
The Bend Backcountry Alliance has been quiet for some time, largely due to the extended wait for the release of this proposal. But now it’s time for all of us to rise up. Please submit your comment in favor of no action on Kapka Butte now by sending a quick email today.