Canyon Lakes Ranger District hosting public meetings for hazardous fuels reduction, forest health project

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The Canyon Lakes Ranger District is hosting two open-house style public meetings to discuss proposals for the Elkhorn project area. The meetings are scheduled for May 22 in Red Feather Lakes and May 30 in Fort Collins.

The Elkhorn Project area is approximately 22,300 acres and is generally defined by the Cache la Poudre River and Colo. State Highway 14 to the south, the Manhattan Road (County Road 69) to the east, the Deadman Road to the north and a portion of Forest Service Road 517 to the west. It is adjacent to the communities of Crystal Lakes, Red Feather Lakes, Manhattan and the Upper Poudre Canyon.

The purposes of this project are to reduce hazardous fuels adjacent to communities; improve forest health; enhance watershed condition; provide economic forest products; enhance bighorn sheep habitat; provide for long-term recreational opportunities in the Christmas tree area; and maintain an effective transportation system for the area. Proposed vegetation management includes both mechanical and hand treatments, along with broadcast prescribed fire.

The May 22 meeting will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Red Feather Lakes Fire Station, located at 44 Firehouse Lane. The May 30 meeting will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the district office, located at 2150 Centre Ave., Building E. There will be a number of display boards and maps, along with U.S. Forest Service employees available to answer questions.

Information regarding this project is available online at

The U.S. Forest Service is asking for input from the public to further this analysis. These meetings are merely one opportunity to provide input. The public can also provide written feedback during the scoping and comment period, which starts today. For inclusion in the analysis, please submit comments prior to June 10.