Public Scoping Notice

The National Park Service (NPS) has been asked to provide access across Fort Bowie National Historic Site (FBNHS) to a mining claim on adjacent Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands. The 1872 Mining Law requires that federal land management agencies allow access to mining claims. The mining claim is accessed off of Apache Pass Road on an unimproved and unmaintained two-track road, suitable for high clearance vehicles. The two-track originates on BLM lands, crosses FBNHS for approximately ¼ mile near the southwest boundary of the site, and terminates on adjacent BLM lands.

In addition to the request for access, the proponent has also requested that vegetation along the road be cleared and that the road be improved to allow for access of heavy mining equipment and two-wheel drive motor homes to the mining claim. The section of two-track on FBNHS crosses the historic Butterfield Overland Road, active from 1858-1861, and the Southern Transcontinental Route to California used during the last half of the 19th century. This segment of road is currently narrow, rutted, rocky, and passable primarily in high clearance four-wheel drive vehicles. Proposed road work would include: widening, rock removal, drainage, grading and other related actions. The proposed improvement of this road will allow greater access into the mining claim and adjacent areas of the historic site.

NPS is analyzing the impacts to the ¼ mile of road on NPS lands. We are not analyzing the direct impacts of the mining operation because the operation is not occurring on NPS lands. As required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Endangered Species Act, and the National Historic Preservation Act, NPS must also analyze the cumulative effects and connected actions of this proposal.
Comment Period: Closed        06/03/2010 - 07/06/2010
Document Content:
Public Scoping Letter for Mining AccessPublic Scoping Letter for Mining Access   (686.5 KB, .doc file)
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