News Release

For Release:  Dec. 8, 2008       
Contact: Jeff Fontana (530) 252-5332 or Lynda Roush (707) 82502300
CA-N-09-17

BLM Seeking Comments for New King Range Wilderness Plan

The U. S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is seeking public comments on issues that should be addressed as the agency develops a wilderness management plan for the King Range National Conservation Area (NCA) on the northern California coast.
 
The Northern California Wild Heritage Wilderness Act, approved by Congress and signed into law in October 2006, designated 42,585 acres in the King Range NCA as wilderness.  The wilderness plan is required to ensure that wilderness values are protected.
   
Deadline for comments is Jan. 23, 2009.  They can be mailed to the BLM Arcata Field Office, 1695 Heindon Rd., Arcata, CA, 95521, or sent by email to rwick@blm.gov.  The BLM will incorporate comments into a preliminary plan which will be available for public review and comment later this year.
 
Bob Wick, planning and environmental coordinator for the BLM Arcata Field Office, said the new wilderness plan will supplement land use decisions contained in the King Range NCA Resource Management Plan for King Range areas that have been designated as wilderness.  It will focus on implementing these national wilderness management goals:

• Providing for long-term protection of wilderness characteristics
• Managing for visitor use that will leave the area unimpaired for future wilderness use
• Using minimal tools, equipment or structures in wilderness management
• Authorizing non-conforming, but accepted, uses such as motorized access for grazing management and access to scientific instruments.

The King Range covers 68,000 acres and extends along 35 miles of coastline between the mouth of the Mattole River and Sinkyone Wilderness State Park.  It is the nation’s first national conservation area, established in 1970.

-BLM-

Arcata Field Office     1695 Heindon Rd.     Arcata, CA  95521