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Release Date: 05/02/13

Agencies seek input on La Garita Hills analysis (05-02-13)

LA GARITA, Colo - The Rio Grande National Forest’s Saguache Ranger District and Bureau of Land Management’s San Luis Valley Field Office are seeking public input on the La Garita Hills Forest Restoration Project environmental analysis. The analysis area will encompass nearly 188,000 acres of lands west and northwest of the town of La Garita that are managed by the Saguache RD and SLVFO.
“We decided to do what is known as a landscape-level analysis, which means it will cover a large area stretching from about 7,800 feet to 12,000 feet above sea level,” said Saguache District Ranger Jim Pitts. “We feel this process will create multiple projects that complement each other and will more efficiently manage the greater La Garita Hills area.”
“This project is an excellent example of working across jurisdictional boundaries, as it includes lands managed by both the BLM and the U.S. Forest Service,” added Andrew Archuleta, BLM San Luis Valley Field Manager.
The La Garita Hills environmental analysis will help develop a better understanding of the condition and interactions of the land, water and wildlife. The analysis will also identify the desired condition of the landscape and propose methods to reach the desired condition.
Several of the goals already identified by the Forest Service and BLM include: improve human safety and protect infrastructure in areas with beetle-killed trees; reduce soil erosion and restore native plants along creeks; salvage dead and dying beetle infested trees for human use and job creation; restore beetle infested areas by planting seedlings in areas with limited natural regeneration; improve and protect wildlife habitat for a variety of species including the Rio Grande cutthroat trout; and develop forests resilient to insect infestations and severe wildland fire.
The analysis will use the new objection regulations, which are designed to engage the public early and often. More information concerning this process may be viewed at
Written, facsimile, hand-delivered, or electronic comments concerning this analysis are always welcome, but only those received within 30 days following publication of the legal notice in theValley Courier (expected on May 3, 2013) will be eligible to participate in the objection process.Submit written comments to: LGH Project, Saguache Ranger District, 46525 Hwy 114, Saguache, CO 81149.  Electronic comments may by submitted online using the “Comment on Project” option on the project’s webpage or emailed to: For more information and to view the project webpage, visit

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2015, the BLM generated $4.1 billion in receipts from activities occurring on public lands.

  PO Box 67      Saguache, CO 81149  

Last updated: 05-02-2013