Revising the Shoshone National Forest Plan

Jul 16, 2013
The Shoshone National Forest forms the eastern border of Yellowstone National Park and includes portions of the stunning  Wind River, Beartooth and Absaroka mountain ranges. As the nation's first national forest, the Shoshone is uniquely wild and scenic with more than half of the forest's 2.4 million acres designated as wilderness and another 30% is pristine and roadless. The forest supports abundant wildlife and a strong local economy based on hunting, fishing, recreation and tourism. Though the Shoshone remains one of the least developed of the national forests, it is under threat from oil and gas development and motorized recreational use.

The Forest Service is currently revising the Shoshone's Forest Plan, which will spell out how the forest can be used for the next 20 years.

Our flights took us over some of the key areas recommended for wilderness designation in the Forest Plan, including the DuNoir Special Management Unit and the Wood River/Franc's Peak roadless areas, all of which have incredible wildlife values. The remote Dunoir valley has been called "Shangri-la" by locals working to protect it. Draining into the upper Wind River, the valley is blanketed by lush old growth spruce forest, Douglas fir and whitebark pine and is critical habitat for elk, antelope, moose, deer, wolverine, lynx and grizzly bear.

The final Forest Revision Plan for Shoshone is due out in October 2013.