Public Invited to Share Input on Hiking, Mountain Biking and Horseback Riding in Reiter Foothills Forest
June 11, 2018
Community meeting scheduled in Snohomish on June 20 to kick off stakeholder committee-driven planning process
The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) invites community members and Reiter Foothills Forest visitors to share their vision for foot, pedal, and horse-powered recreation within the state working forest near Gold Bar.
Join agency staff 5:45 to 7:45 p.m., Wednesday, June 20, at Snohomish Library Meeting Room, 311 Maple Ave, Snohomish, WA 98290, to share input about getting outdoors in Reiter Foothills Forest. This meeting launches DNR’s planning process to guide about 10 miles of hiking, horseback riding and mountain biking trail development and long-term management in the forest.
“Community engagement is an incredibly important part of how we connect the public with our state’s working forestland,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz. “By continuing the conversation with those who live by, visit, and love this landscape, we move forward together toward solutions that provide beautiful spaces to hike, mountain bike and horseback ride, as well as generate sustainable revenue for statewide public services every year.”
This effort builds on the agency’s Reiter Foothills Forest Recreation Plan, which it has successfully implemented with the opening of new ATV, motorcycle, trial-bike and 4x4 opportunities in the 10,000-acre forest. In addition to the 3.5 miles currently available and 12 miles in design, the ensuing 10 miles will round out the 25 miles of non-motorized trail outlined in the adopted plan. The meeting will begin with a 30-minute presentation followed by opportunities to share comments and questions with agency staff.
DNR staff will evaluate what they hear at this community meeting and use the input to guide their planning progress. This is the first in a series of meetings intended to gather input around Reiter Foothills Forest non-motorized recreation opportunities. In late 2018, DNR will submit a draft trails plan through a state environmental review process, which will provide another opportunity for public input.
DNR anticipates adopting a final plan in early 2019. The final plan will help the state pursue construction and maintenance funds for facilities, such as picnic areas and trails, consistent with the plan’s vision.
View more information and event details on the agency’s calendar at dnr.wa.gov/events-list. Contact Recreation Manager Ben Hale with questions or comments.
The Reiter Foothills State Forest is located between Sultan and Index, and sandwiched between Highway 2 and the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. DNR manages the area as a working forest – a place for outdoor recreation, native habitat and sustainable timber harvest projects that help fund schools, libraries, and other public services.