Saline Preservation Association

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Jukebox Mark

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 #46 
Photographs.

There's been a lot of chatter over the years, but it seems to me that NOW is when people who either have or know where there are really old pictures, or even 8mm films from the valley need to share that information with SPA. It is a minor assumption on my part, but not an unreasonable one, that SPA will be the organization that will most actively pursue the 20th century cultural aspects of usage at the Springs in order to maintain as much of the status quo as possible.

Since I did not start visiting the springs until 1990, I doubt that my pictures are of much use. But there are plenty from the 1970's that, even they may not technically comply with some legal term of art like "historic", are more than relevant to the overall EIS process.

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Jukebox Mark

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 #47 
p. 67 of the EIS:

Park personnel have described the [SPA] community as effective in handling instances of unruly or loud visitors and visitors who do not follow the general camp cleanliness guidelines. The established community has maintained a self-managing policy and contacts park law enforcement only when an issue cannot be resolved within the community. Recently, there has been a noticeable shift in the community as new visitors vacation in the warm springs area. These visitors are often unfamiliar with the traditional recreational community and its norms. As the community expands with these new visitors, the cohesiveness of the community also seems to be changing.

So there is SOME acknowledgement .


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DVExile

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 #48 
WRONG: The preferred plan says the palms stay but as they die out only natural regrowth of the palms is permitted - no planting of palms.  New palms grow wherever they happen to take root.  At least they let the palms stay and I suppose it is likely new palms will tend to grow where the old palms are.  So palm shade probably good for the future. :WRONG

EDIT: So my reading comprehension apparently stinks - preferred plan does not immediately remove the palms but as they age and die does not appear to allow new palms to grow.  So eventually all the palms go away with the preferred plan.

The burro fence surrounding the springs presumably will reduce the local burro population - less access to water means fewer burros.

As to removing the burros being essentially impossible you have all the horse/burro/PETA nuts to thank for that.  They can't be killed and the legislation says they must be adopted by loving owners who will give them foot massages twice a day.  Not surprisingly that means the adoption facilities tend to be full and there is no place to put burros that would be rounded up.  Thus no round ups since no place to put the rounded up burros.

So cutting off access to water and letting nature take its course on the population is about the only thing the NPS has to work with.  Hence the plan for the fence.  Side benefit no more stepping in burro poop or having burros raiding camp sites.  Count me as in favor of the fence.  Also in favor of the airborne 20mm canon solution to the burro problem but alas that doesn't seem to be in any of the alternatives.  The BLM has this year begun asking congress for more leeway in dealing with the burro/horse problem.  Expect endless PETA lawsuits to keep anything useful from happening.

Preferred plan also wants to remove the piping from the cold spring that currently waters the trees to the south of the lower springs providing shade and some windbreak to that camping area.  Preferred plan also eliminates the lawn. 

Honestly the preferred plan seems just about as good as anyone could hope for as far as maintaining reasonable access to the springs.  The place is being killed by IG and FB posts combined with increased road maintenance by Inyo County.  The mandatory no cost permit system would at least hopefully force people into some minimal education before showing up with drones, unleashed dogs and loud music.

I suspect no matter what the change some folks will be unhappy and likely everyone will be unhappy with some part of it.  But really - it will never be the same regardless.  Social media and better road maintenance means the place is doomed unless there is some reasonable management of it.
Salt Peter

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 #49 
I've still not had a chance to delve into the proposals due to work. Plan to get into it this weekend. I know in the past the NPS had issues with the palms. Last month I was over at the Grapevine Ranger Station and the area just south of the actual station has a lot of palms. Is the NPS going to remove those as well? I know they aren't in Saline but if it isn't native to Saline I doubt it is native to the rest of the area either.
RC Pilot Jim

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 #50 
The NPS actions sound pretty benign to me (unless I haven't read all of it). I plan to "attend" the webinar May 31st.

Reading the "alternative Draft Plan" Camping permits and non-replacement of non-native plants jumped out at me. The last 20 plus years we live to far south (San Diego) to use the springs more than 14 days per year. We don't attend the big Holiday weekends so wonder how involved the "camping permit process"would be for off weeks??

 "The fourth point is not replacing vegetation in the lower warm springs as it dies off". Overtime way after I pass from this plain the protection we enjoy from the wind will disappear. What are the NPS's plans to restore the wind blocks? If any?



The preferred alternative in the draft plan proposes actions including

  • Camping permits would be required. Permits would be free at first, but a fee might be implemented later. Camping would continue to be limited to 30 days per calendar year. Dispersed camping will be allowed in designated areas.
  • Remove non-native vegetation (including palms) from the Upper Springs. No replacement palms would be placed at Lower Springs when existing ones die naturally.
oregonjohn

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 #51 
Mark, as you, I have been reading and digesting what is in the “plan”. From what I have read NPS will erect a 5’ tall 4 strand smooth wire fencing around the entire Warm Springs area. I believe that would keep all the feral burros out of the springs. Don’t think the interior fencing would be in play at that point. NPS still wants to fence the settling pond, but at least they don’t want to take it out.

I do have serious concerns about how much involvement the Tribe will have in the management and involvement of the Springs. In the past, the spokesperson for the Tribe has berated Saliners and the nudity in the area. So I need to research the LEIS and what the Tribe has to say.

The bridge above Briggs Camp is NOT inside the Park boundary. It really is not a bridge anymore. The BLM contracted to infill where the old bridge was and was basically put back to what it was before it was blown up.

OJ
hbmurphy

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 #52 
Are you referring to the Bridge that they just built going from BLM/Briggs to Middle Park?
James Sel

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 #53 
South Park No longer has a bridge
Thunder58

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 #54 
Coming from some personal experience with Indian involvement I must agree with peneumbra. If the tribe gets involved there will be many more restrictions placed on the springs. Going forward we need to keep the goals for the springs in the present.
Salt Peter

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 #55 
Great points all around. I hope to make it to more than one of the public meetings.

FWIW the south park bridge is outside the DVNP border.
Jukebox Mark

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 #56 
I too will have more to add to the discussion as the digesting process continues.

For the moment, consider this. Since the flow to the soaking pools is occasionally disrupted by issues at the source pools, it should be an essential part of the public discussion that the fences at the source pools include gates, and that appropriate access to these gates be provided.

Does that mean one key, which stays with the caretaker, or a combination lock with some kind of honor system? Perhaps start out with a combination lock and regression to a key (or keys) should the honor system not prove sufficient.

I too share Silver Bob’s sense of hypocrisy that the fences are a tacit admission by the NPS that they lack sufficient resolution to remove the underlying problem. However, it is likely that the reality is a little muddier. Even with the financial resources of the military, China Lake NAWS has to rely on the BLM to do its horse and burro gathers in the Cosos. Chances are the. NPS is similarly constrained. Heck, DVNP couldn’t deal with the bridge problem in South Park until volunteers working through the BLM stepped up and helped make things happen.

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starryeyedwonder

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 #57 
Quote:
the NPS is really, really tight on following rules


All federal agencies are.  The reason is because each agency head knows every "Final Rule" will be challenged by some opposing group and final determination won't be resolved until a judge rules on the resulting court case. That's the reason a sitting president's choices of federal judges are so important.
peneumbra

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 #58 
If the "tribe" had their way, the Valley would be off-limits to anyone besides "tribal" members. That is not (and never will be) acceptable.
Lorlie

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 #59 
Since it is mentioned in the plan, the Timbisha Shoshone Homeland act might be worth looking at. Here is the link. Because of the act I believe tribal involvement is mandated, BLM or Park Service. 


https://www.congress.gov/bill/106th-congress/senate-bill/2102/text/enr



Flipper

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 #60 
It concerns me greatly as to the secrecy of Timbisha Shoshone Tribe being invited to a secret squirrel meeting that no one else was invited to attend.

Does anyone know of legal descriptions that pertain to public use of lands for 75 years as Silver Bob mentions? Is there a time frame that grandfathers the continued use of said lands?
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