By Staff 4-19,2016
The U.S. Forest Service would like to remind all visitors that there are still a number of temporary road closures in place across the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. These restrictions are in place for a variety of reasons, including timber operations, wildlife habitat protection, road preservation, and public safety.
One road closure to be noted in particular is Forest Road 516 located in the southern Snowy Range, Medicine Bow National Forest. This road serves as access to the Pelton Creek area on the east side of Six Mile Gap, and just north of the Colorado/Wyoming border.
Per Forest Special Order, MBR-2016-LAR078, this road has been closed in order to protect public health and safety while logging operations take place in the area, and to help prevent resource damage that can come as a result of motorized traffic during spring melt. The order was signed on March 15, 2016 and is expected to be in place until May 31, 2016.
Antler shed hunting occurs in this area during the spring and early summer and may be impacted by the closure. Although shed hunting is legal on public lands when in season, using restricted roads for access is not. It is advised that hunters keep this in mind when planning an outing. Current conditions and closures can be discussed with local Forest Service office personnel while picking up a free motorized vehicle map. Also keep in mind that motorized vehicles are never permitted in wilderness areas. This includes bicycles, and wheeled hand-carts as well.
Recently, Forest Service Law Enforcement contacted a group of shed hunters who had illegally entered the closed 516 Road, and citations were issued. Law enforcement patrols have been increased in the area since the time of the incident.
The public is reminded to be aware of and abide by Forest Service and Wyoming Game & Fish regulations. This includes but is not limited to: not harassing wildlife, ensuring the area you’re visiting is open to activities, and checking road access/closures. For example: In non-wilderness areas, vehicles must stay on legal, designated routes; and shed hunting on the Medicine Bow National Forest west of the Continental Divide is not permitted January 1-April 30.
Violations of Forest Service regulations are Class B misdemeanors, and can result in the issuance of a citation, court ordered restitution, and/or the seizure of all equipment and products used and collected during the commission of the violation.