Targhee aerial

The Caribou-Targhee National Forest is seeking public comment regarding a proposed expansion of Grand Targhee Resort that would increase the ski area’s footprint by nearly 50%.

State lands proposals due

A Wyoming agency is seeking ideas for developing more than 7 square miles of state land in Teton County.

The 4,655 acres are used to fund schools. The land sprawls across 18 parcels, including high-profile locations like Crystal and East Gros Ventre buttes, a square mile along Highway 390 and a section that hugs Grand Teton National Park near Kelly.

The Office of State Lands and Investments, which was directed by legislation to do the study, has opened an application period for developers. Proposals are due Friday.

Find information about submitting applications and a map of the parcels online at Lands.Wyo.gov.

Candidate water forum Oct. 8

The Jackson Hole Clean Water Coalition is hosting a forum to allow prospective town and county elected officials to share their perspectives on the region’s water quality challenges.

The live virtual forum will take place from 12 to 2 p.m. Oct. 8. The first hour is devoted to Jackson Town Council and mayoral candidates. The second will focus on Teton County Commission candidates.

The forum will be presented by Teton County Library and moderated by Max Ludington of Legacy Works Group.

An informational white paper will be released a week before the forum. Find it online at TetonConservation.org/candidate-water-forum-2020.

The Jackson Hole Clean Water Coalition is a collaborative group of local government agencies and nonprofits working together to protect and improve surface and groundwater quality by engaging individuals in science-based programs and initiating communitywide action.

Targhee growth comments

The Caribou-Targhee National Forest is looking for public comments about a sweeping expansion proposal at Grand Targhee Resort that includes on-slope restaurants, a handful of new lifts and a nearly 50% increase in the 64-year-old ski area’s footprint along the west slope of the Tetons.

The proposal, which is now in the scoping phase, seeks to add approximately 1,200 acres to Targhee’s current 2,517-acre permit area on the forest. The new acreage is split into two similar-sized Teton Canyon expansion zones to the south and west, which together would be served by four new ski lifts and have nearly 280 acres of cleared runs.

The changes sought would increase developed ski terrain or cleared runs at Grand Targhee by 76%, from 520 acres to 915 acres. Other elements of the plan include rebuilt and all-new lifts within the current boundary, a tubing park, a guest yurt, 29 miles of new trails, 5.6 miles of new roads, and a zip line, ropes course and aerial adventure course that would be located above the primary base area.

Snowmaking would be expanded in a dozen areas totaling 57 acres. New restaurants would be located at the summit of Fred’s Mountain and the Sacajawea Lift.

Find an online comment form at TinyURL.com/TargheeExpansion. Comments are due Oct. 12.

Forest e-bike comments sought

The U.S. Forest Service is proposing to clarify its rules governing electric bikes on national forest lands like those managed by the Bridger-Teton National Forest.

Currently, e-bikes are not allowed on national forest roads, trails, and on lands that are not already designated for motor vehicle use.

To make it easier for individual forests to allow e-bike use on roads, trails and lands, the Forest Service has proposed new definitions for an e-bike, breaking them into class 1, 2 and 3 vehicles. The proposed changes to Forest Service regulations also include guidance and criteria for designating e-bike use.

Comments are due Oct. 26. Questions may be directed to Penny Wu, Forest Service recreation staff, at penny.wu@usda.gov or 303-275-5168. Submit comments online at TinyURL.com/USFSe-bike.

Draft Madison rule released

Montana’s draft Madison River recreation rules have been released and are now available for public review.

The documents can be found online at FWP.mt.gov. Comments are being taken through Oct. 30.

A public hearing for the draft rule will be held at 6 p.m. Oct. 20 via Zoom. The public will be able to watch the public meeting streamed on Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks’ YouTube channel and will have a dedicated phone line to call in and provide public comment.

The environmental assessment outlining proposed changes to the recreation rules looks at three alternatives. The analysis looks at each alternative for effects on the recreation, natural and physical resources, heritage and economics of the Madison River.

Direct questions to Jessica Snyder at 406-444-9785 or jesssnyder@mt.gov.

-Compiled by Mike Koshmrl

Contact Mike Koshmrl at 732-7067 or env@jhnewsandguide.com.

Mike has reported on the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem's wildlife, wildlands and the agencies that manage them since 2012. A native Minnesotan, he arrived in the West to study environmental journalism at the University of Colorado.

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