DATE: July 9, 2004
CONTACT: Mike Brown (775) 753-0386
ELKO FIELD OFFICE: 2004-47
Proposed Recreation Trails Open House Scheduled
Elko, Nev.--An open house will be held Thursday, July 15th, 4:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Bureau of Land Management Elko Field Office, 3900 East Idaho Street, in Elko to discuss the proposed
development of a network of recreational trails in Elko County.
In late 2002, the BLM Elko Field Office received a project proposal from the Elko
Convention and Visitors Authority to develop the Spruce Mountain Recreation Trail. The open
house will focus on this proposal as well as an alternative in the Hanks Creek/Marys River area.
The Spruce Trail would be between 70 to 80 miles long, depending on the route selected,
and would follow existing graded and two-track routes around the north and east sides of Spruce Mountain. The main turnoff to the trail would be located approximately 35 miles south of Wells, off Highway 93. The route would be passable by most full-sized vehicles; however some portions are quite narrow and would require a high clearance and short wheel-base vehicle. The area also offers excellent opportunities for mountain biking, hiking and horseback riding. In addition to the spectacular scenery, the area also has remnants of the historic mining camp of Sprucemont and the numerous old mining buildings, as well as the opportunity to see deer, elk, antelope and wild horses.
In addition to the Spruce Trail alternative, the Hanks Creek/Marys River area, with a
beginning point about 26 miles north of Deeth, has been identified as suitable for developing a
recreational trail network. The Hanks Creek/Marys River route would consist of about 60 miles of
trail with several access points possible. The route would provide access to Hanks Creek, T- Creek, and the upper Marys River. The trail network would suitable for OHVs, horses and mountain bikes.
Wildlife such as deer, antelope, and sage grouse are common in the area. Scattered aspen stands and riparian areas along the creeks and springs in the area would make good locations for camping and picnicking. The highest elevation areas along the trail route provide scenic vistas of the Jarbidge Mountains, Snake Range, and O’Neil Basin.
The purpose of the project is to provide an opportunity for a variety of recreational trail
uses. There is a regional demand for these opportunities with visitors expected from Nevada, Utah, Idaho and California.
BLM is currently developing an environmental assessment document which will analyze a
range of alternative routes. Mitigating measures will be considered to minimize environmental
impacts and to assure the proposed action does not result in undue or unnecessary degradation of public lands.
The purpose of the open house is to give people an opportunity to get more information
about the proposed project and to voice any issues and concerns they want analyzed in the
environmental assessment. Federal, state and local agencies and other individuals or organizations that are interested in or affected by BLM’s decision on the proposed recreation trails are invited to participate in the scoping process.
For questions or more information about the project, please contact Steve Dondero, (775)
753-0200, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or mail at 3900 Idaho St., Elko, NV 89801.