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Comments by Leona Walden

July 7, 2002

Chris Rowney, Deputy Chief for State Forests
Californi Department of Forestry
Po Box 944246
Sacramento, CA 94244

RE: Draft Management Plan and EIR for Jackson Demonstration State Forest

Dear Mr. Rowney:

For nearly twenty years I have hiked, camped and horseback ridden innumerable times in Jackson State Forest. There have been many changes over the years many of which resulted in the loss, temporarily or permanently, of trails which I loved. I firmly believe the highest and best use of Jackson State Forest is as a carefully managed forest for the recreational and educational use of the citizens of California. The years I participated in the Mendocino Fifty Endurance Races in Jackson State are highlights in my life and in those of my friends.

The areas of old growth and aged second growth trees are most valuable left standing. I strongly oppose the Draft Management Plan for Jackson State Forest. I oppose the plan's clear cutting, large-scale commercial logging, cutting of the oldest second-growth stands, inadequate stream protection, herbicide use, and lack of a plan to expand recreation. I personally want Jackson State restored to an old growth redwood forest for habitat, recreation, education and research.

I favor restoration of Jackson State Forest, which the draft EIR fails to evaluate. The closest alternative, Alternative E, does not restrict timber operations to those needed to restore the forest to old growth, to enhance recreation opportunities or to improve wildlife and botanical habitats. It does not include significant expansion of recreation, nor direct that proceeds from timber harvests be spent within Jackson State. The EIR does not present data on the cumulative impacts of past and proposed logging operations. Its stream protection measures are not justified scientifically. It does not recognize the critical habitat contribution that Jackson State could make to the recovery of the Marbled Murrelet. For all of the above reasons, the Draft EIR fails to provide me with the information and analysis I need to be able to judge the merits of the Draft Management Plan.

Please carefully consider your plans for Jackson State Forest with the future in mind. It's value is in the preservation of the trees and the wildness aspects. Please preserve Jackson State Forest for my children, my grandchildren and the generations to come.

Thank you.

Leona Walden
Po Box 745
Mendocino CA 95460