June 7, 2007
In the past three years, the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest has issued between 15-20 citations along the Forestdale Creek Road, which accesses The Patch. Although rumors have swirled on South Shore that tickets are being issued for simply parking along the road, a forest service official said it’s more specific than that.
“There are a lot of young folks who are enjoying the last bits of winter out there, which is great,” said Gary Schiff, district ranger at the Carson Ranger District in Carson City. “But along with that, there have been issues with taking vehicles off the road into fairly wet areas and causing damage to the forest.
“It’s not a parking ticket like they were parked too long at a meter. It’s because they are going off the designated road into the forest, and we don’t allow cross country vehicle travel.”
Schiff said another issue is that people are hauling rails and other terrain park features onto The Patch and leaving them there, a practice that is essentially littering.
Along the same lines, while the USFS is concerned with the parking issue and equipment abandonment, the Alpine County Sheriff’s Department is focusing on cracking down on underage drinking and illegal drug use at The Patch.
“We want people to park appropriately on the side of the road and not leave things in the forest,” Schiff said. “As long as people are doing that, they are just fine and won’t get a ticket.”
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