Oct 01

Coast Dairies Imterim Access Plan Workshop

On October 8, 2003, from 7-9 p.m., at the Davenport Fire Station, BLM will hold a Public Workshop seeking input on the Coast Dairies Interim Access Plan.

The information from this workshop will be used to decide what public access should be allowed to the interior part of Coast Dairies (Hyway 1 inland).


1. What issues/criteria should be considered?

2. Which farm roads should be open or closed to public use? Why?

3. What rules/stipulations should apply to Coast Dairies visitors? Why?

4. What types of trail uses should be allowed (pedestrian, horse, mountain bike, etc.)? Why?

This is not going to be a time for speeches, but for people to drop in and express their concerns, opinions and hopes on a one-one-one basis with BLM staff.

It is recommended that participants review pages VII 6-10 of the Trust for Public Lands initial recommendations. These are brief, with maps, and identify the existing road system and recommendations for access. You may see this easily on line at www.tpl.org , go to the California section, then on the right side, Publications, to the Draft Coast Dairies Management Plan (June 2003). Two of the referenced pages are maps, so this is not going to take a lot of time.

We are being asked to provide input on overall Coast Dairies Management as well as individual routes and roads.

In addition to this workshop, written comments may be submitted by October 24, 2003 to:

Robert Beehler, Field Manager, Bureau of Land Management, Hollister Office, 20 Hamilton Court, Holister, CA 95024.

You may also e-mail comments to Mr. Beehler at rbeehler@ca.blm.gov .

I cannot emphasize strongly enough the importance that people express themselves on this. A brief comment could be:

Dear Mr. Beehler � I support the opening of all existing roads and trails in Coast Dairies to public use, and specifically to access for mountain bikes, wherever the roads are stable and safe enough to be open for this use. Any existing roads and trails which are safe for hikers should be considered safe for mountain bikes. Opening the roads and trails to shared uses will help get all users on the right foot, by learning to share the trails right from the beginning, and not setting up a situation where the subsequent opening of trails to shared use will cause people to believe that they are losing or giving up something. Coast Dairies, like Fort Ord, has the potential to be a model for how shared use trails can work. In addition, the presence of mountain bikes on the interior side of Highway 1 will tend to make it more safe for all users, especially in the more remote section of the property that will likely be accessed less by pedestrians.

Don�t forget that a number of North Coast and Santa Cruz residents are opposed to any access to the property until more studies are done, and that many oppose shared use trails. It is important for BLM to know that there is a large population of folks who want to see this property open and in use as quickly as possible with as extensive a trail system as possible.