Friday, December 30, 2016

Sierra Pacific Industries to clearcut log near Stumpy Meadows Lake Recreation Area NE of Placerville.

PANORAMIC Photo By RealLucky64
THP 4-16-007 ELD (Airperson THP) Sierra Pacific Industries, 1,559 acres; 49% clearcut, 26% fuelbreak, 18% commercial thin, 6% selection, 1% roadside logging.  Lower Pilot Creek, Upper Pilot Creek, Missouri Canyon, Whaler Creek, Brass Creek, Zero Spring, Little Grizzly Canyon, Gaddis Creek (MD: T13N R11E Sec 25, T12N R11E Sec 1, T13N R12E Sec 31, 32, 33, 34, T12N R12E Sec 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16).  Winter operations, high erosion hazard, steep slopes up to 80%, 21 road drainage work sites, rubicon roadless area, herbicides, oversized units, impaired 303.d watershed, goshawk, osprey, bald eagle, Cooper's hawk, foothill yelled legged frog, 4 sensitive plant species, scattered large trees.  Estimated public comment deadline: 01/25/17. VIEW

This THP is about 12 miles NE of Placerville, CA and about 10 miles north of Pollock Pines and Highway 50 near the townsite of Quintette at an elevation of 3,200 to 4,800 feet.  It is also adjacent to Stumpy Meadows Lake, a popular picnicking, swimming, fishing, boating, and camping destination with 3 campgrounds, a boat launch and nearby waterfall hiking and OHV trails.  Section 2 is adjacent to the Rubicon Roadless Area.  Sierra Pacific Industries is planning a mostly clearcut tractor and cable logging operation in ponderosa pine, sugar pine, incense cedar, Douglas fir and white fir forests.  Ground based equipment is proposed for use in areas designated for cable logging in units 330M, 332M, 102M, 256M, 310M, 251M, 254M, 400H, 401H and 331M.  Existing landings and roads are also proposed for use within the watercourse zone of Pilot Creek in unit 100M, and also for skidding operations within the watercourse zone of Pilot Creek in unit 331M.  SPI wants an exception to the Forest Practice Rules to be able to tractor pile slash on slopes between 40% and 50% grade, and use tractors on slopes over 30% grade that do not flatten before reaching a watercourse.  21 road drainage sites are planned for work including rocking, dip construction, ditch cleaning and culvert repair/replacement. Three goshawk nests were reported including a goshawk nest in section 4 within the THP area, and two goshawk nests were reported .8 miles from the THP area in sections 2 and 35.  Four osprey nests were reported including an osprey nest within 125 feet of the THP area in section 4, two osprey nests were reported within .2 miles of the THP area in section 11, and an osprey nest was reported 1.6 miles from the THP area.  Two Cooper's hawks were also reported including a nest in section 10 within the THP area, and a nest in section 24, one mile from the THP area.  Three bald eagle nests were reported within .7 miles of the THP area in section 13, and a foothill yellow legged frog was reported 1.2 miles from the THP area in section 18.  There are 14 CA spotted owl nesting territories within the THP area (within 230 feet to 1.6 miles of THP units).    Stebbin's phacelia was found in section 10, Red Hills soap plant was found in section 25, arching sedge was found in sections 4, 10, 25, 31 and 32 and Sierra bayberry was found in section 10 along the banks of Pilot Creek.

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