Sustainable Roads

Suiattle River Road, Forest Service Road #26 at milepost 20.8, Downey Creek.
Edward Henderson photo

Nationwide there is a $5 billion backlog of required maintenance on the 400,000 miles of roads on our National Forests! In response to the requirements of the 2005 Travel Management Rule, The Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest (MBSNF) project on Sustainable Roads is developing a strategy to identify important roads to be maintained and kept open. This Sustainable Roads strategy is scheduled to be in place by 2015. MBSNF currently has a budget that allows maintenance of only 25% of the 2,500 miles of road on the forest.

The project has held eight public meetings with 300 participants and taken Internet surveys from 1,800 people. NCCC has assisted MBSNF staff with the public meetings. The mass of raw data collected is still being organized before it can be evaluated. Preliminary results of the public input are expected to be compiled by March 2014, when they will be released.

The  Summer-Fall 2013 issue of our journal The Wild Cascades includes a detailed article on the Sustainable Roads program and its current status. Also you can read our Re-Wilding The Cascades page for our general philosophy of logging roads in the Cascades.