Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut on highly erosive slopes near Stirling City and Inskip.

PANORAMIC Photo By dukeross
THP 2-15-036 BUT (Shews THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 978 acres; 68% clearcut, 31% selection, 1% roadside logging.  Fall Creek, Crane Valley Big Kimshaw Creek (MD: T23N R4E Sec.2, 11, 13; T23N R5E Sec.6; T24N R4E Sec.1, 12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 25, 26, 35, 36; T24N R5E Sec.6, 8, 9, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 28, 29, 30, 31).  Winter operations, steep slopes up to 70%, extreme erosion hazard, road failure sites, 167 road drainage work sites, impaired 303.d watershed, oversized units, herbicides, chips creek roadless area, wet area, 5 CA spotted owls within 1.3 mi, 2 goshawk territories within .25 mi, cascade frog within I mi, 3 sensitive plant species, trees up to 100 years old.  Estimated public comment deadline: 08/01/15. VIEW

This THP is about 20 miles NE of Chico, CA up near Stirling City and Inskip by the headwaters of Kimshew Creek.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation on highly erosive granitic soils in ponderosa pine, sugar pine, white fir, Douglas fir and incense cedar forests at an elevation of 3,000 to 6,000 feet.  Sections 8 & 9 are adjacent to the Chips Creek Roadless Area, and the headwaters of Kimshaw Creek contains several waterfalls popular with hikers. There are multiple road failure sites including moderate rilling and sediment transport from seasonal roads 21OU2 and the P Line road, extensive rilling and sediment transport along seasonal roads 310R and 320R, and 300 feet of road failure along seasonal road 22OU5 inside a class I (year-round) watercourse.  1.9 miles of road construction is planned, and over .8 miles of road re-construction is planned.  SPI wants to use ground based equipment on steep slopes designated for cable logging to construct firebreaks and install waterbars.  167 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, culvert repair/replacement and re-construction of washed out crossings.  A cascade frog was reported in section 19, and there are 3 goshawk territories nearby, including a goshawk territory within .25 mi of unit 5, a goshawk territory within .25 mi of unit 17, and a goshawk territory in section 1. Clifton’s eremogone were found in units 6, 26, 29, 30, 31, 33, 34, 35; close throat beardtongue was found in unit 3 and Mildred’s clarkia was found in units 12, 19, 20 and 21.  There are CA spotted owl nesting territories within .25 mi of units 6, 7, 19, 20, and 21. More information is available on the THP Tracking Center website.

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