Heavenly work gets federal OK | RecordCourier.com

Heavenly work gets federal OK

Staff Reports

Work to widen ski trails, remove obstacles and realign the snowmaking pipelines at Heavenly Ski Resort could begin soon after a federal decision was issued last week.

Ski trail widening to reduce bottlenecks and improve skier flow, will include tree removal and selective boulder relocation on approximately 12 trails, with grading required in two locations to match the widened area to the grade of the existing trail.

Due to the widening, any existing snowmaking lines will be relocated to the new edge of the trail. Removal of obstacles, such as boulders, stumps and logs, will take place on 11 trails to improve natural snow surface coverage, improve early season use of those trails, and conserve water used in snowmaking.

"Heavenly Mountain Resort is an exemplary partner. Throughout the planning of this project, they have worked alongside our commitment to improve recreation experiences for our visitors," said Forest Supervisor Jeff Marsolais, of the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. "Together, we will continue to work on innovative and unique resource protection measures that meet the needs of the public, while providing world-class recreation on National Forest System lands."

The proposal to remove trail obstacles was addressed in the Heavenly Ski Resort Master Plan and includes protection of native plants and revegetation, removal of invasive plants, chipping of large woody debris and existing felled trees, stump grinding, and boulder height reduction.

Project work could begin as early as spring/summer 2018.

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The Decision Notice/Finding of No Significant Impact is available at http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/ltbmu/Heavenly2017.