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Showing posts from September, 2019

Chugach National Forest (CNF) is attempting to ban pack llamas

Chugach National Forest (CNF) "short circuited" the NEPA process by providing no pubic notice to eliminate commercial use of pack llamas based on a perceived disease threat to wild sheep and goats. Since CNF's ban identifies pack llamas as a disease threat, this opens the door to eliminate them for all uses (including recreational) in the future. The public process was "short circuited" because CNF did not include verbiage that banned llamas in their draft Chugach National Forest Land Management Plan that was open for public comment in 2018.  However, this pack llama ban was added to the Final Chugach National Forest Land Management Plan after the public comment period was over which effectively eliminated comment by the pack llama user group. Now the pack llama user group is faced with protesting the final CNF decision during the objection period. Your comments on past proposals to ban llamas on pubic lands has been very effective and we need your support agai…

Pack Llamas Under Seige on Alaska's Public Lands

Pack llamas have historically played an important role on our public lands, whether they are used to pack equipment for trail maintenance or to haul out human waste as they do in Rocky Mountain National Park. However, over the years there have been scientifically unfounded proposals made by government agencies to ban llamas from our public lands.

History of Llama Bans in Alaska (Past and Current)
In January 2015 a ban on domesticated sheep, goats, alpacas and llamas in Alaska’s national parks was proposed in a National Park Service (NPS) compendium. After a public comment period ended in February 2015, domesticated sheep and goats were banned, but the pack camelids (llamas and alpacas) were still allowed in Alaska’s national parks with written permission from Alaska’s park superintendents and a current health certificate.Pack Llamas Get OK After Proposed Ban in Alaska National Parks.
In December 2016, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) approved the Eastern Interior Resource Managemen…

Hike #9 (September) - Upper Ship Creek, Chugach State Park (Alaska)

If you want to get off the beaten path for a more wilderness experience close to Anchorage, take a hike in the upper Ship Creek drainage in Chugach State Park. To avoid snow and harsh weather in the passes and upper reaches, I generally hike there June through mid-September although you can hike into November depending on weather.  My preferred access point is the South Fork trail head  (although there is access in Arctic Valley.) To get to the trail head, take the Eagle River Loop/Hiland Road exit off the Glenn Highway just past the weigh station. Turn right at the traffic light onto Hiland and continue about eight miles up the road. Take a right onto South Creek and follow it to West River Drive and take another right. The parking lot is on your left.

The trail starts out on a boardwalk for a short distance and then turns into a trail that traverses the right side of the South Fork valley as you head away from the parking area. (If you continue on the main trail, it eventually drops…