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Contact: Janet Coles, 915-828-3251 x2400
(Pine Springs, TX) Guadalupe Mountains National Park Superintendent Dennis A. Vásquez announced that the National Park Service (NPS) is seeking public input on a Final Environmental Assessment for a new Wilderness Stewardship and Trail Management Plan for Guadalupe Mountains National Park. The purpose of this plan is to guide park staff when making decisions regarding the future use and protection of the park's Congressionally-designated wilderness, as well as improving the park's trail system. after undergoing a scoping and 30-day public comment period on preliminary draft alternatives in March and April of this year, the park has developed an environmental assessment consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). This is the third of several points during the process in which park staff will actively invite public input.
A copy of the Final Wilderness Stewardship and Trail Management Plan and Environmental Assessment may be downloaded from the NPS Planning, Environment and Public Comment site at https://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=34722 or by contacting Guadalupe Mountains National Park Chief of Resource Management Janet Coles at Janet_Coles@nps.gov, or, in writing, to: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Attn.: Wilderness Stewardship Plan, 400 Pine Canyon Drive, Salt Flat, Texas 79847. For more information, please call Chief of Resource Management Janet Coles at (915) 828-3251 x2400.
Public comments may be submitted from December 15, 2014 through January 14, 2015. While the preferred method of receiving comments is via the electronic public comment form on the NPS Planning, Environment and Public Comment (PEPC) System at http:''planning.nps.gov/, the public may also provide feedback in writing by mailing it to the park.
The Wilderness Stewardship Plan includes the park's 46,850 acre federally-designated wilderness, 35,484 acres which have been deemes eligible for wilderness study, in the park's backcountry management zone, and the park's more than 80 mile system of trails.
Said Vásquez, "we have developed a Wilderness Stewardship and Trail Management Plan and Environmental Assessment, which will protect the wilderness values of Guadalupe Mountains National Park, while providing greater public access to backcountry and wilderness areas in the park. Throughout the development of the plan and environmental assessment, we have received input form park and regional office staff, as well as input and feedback from the public, park visitors and neighbors, tribal groups, other government agencies and other interested parties, which we have reviewed and addressed in the Final Draft Wilderness Stewardship and Backcountry Plan and Environmental Assessment. During this 30-Day public review and comment period, we would like to receive the public's comments and feedback on the actual plan and environmental assessment. Your comments are important to us, and while we welcome input throughout the planning process, your comments will be most beneficial to our planning effort if we receive them between December 15, 2014 and January 14, 2015."