UPDATE: After The Plumas Sun posted this story, Mt. Hough Ranger District Public Service Staff Officer Leslie Edlund responded to earlier queries. She clarified that although input on this project is requested by midnight Sept. 15, the National Environmental Policy Act process allows for public comment at any time before a decision document is signed. “We will always consider public input until time of decision,” she said. Edlund also reported that the project had been proposed to the Plumas National Forest by the Plumas Disc Golf Association, which has more than eight years’ experience designing courses. “The course would be along the access road to the Cascade trailhead and would not impact Cascade trail users,” she said.
The Plumas National Forest has announced a project to establish an 18-hole disc golf course at the Cascade Day Use Area, drawing opposition from area residents.
The PNF proposal involves installing disc golf baskets and establishing tee areas. The project will include road and parking upgrades, and nearby fuel-reduction treatments at the site off of Old Highway Road outside Quincy.
Deb Hopkins, a resident of Old Highway Road, is among the opponents of the project and any further development of the already heavily used trailhead. She is specifically concerned about drinking and smoking, and the increased possibility of human-caused wildfire.
Hopkins also pointed out that unreliable cellular service, combined with limited access, could create difficulties in reporting fires or other emergencies.
No one at the Mt. Hough Ranger District was available to comment on the project, confirm details or dates despite multiple attempts made by The Plumas Sun.
Writing on behalf of the Sierra Access Coalition, Corky Lazzarino reported that the group does not support this project simply due to the location. Because the day-use area is frequented by hikers and young families, and is near a residential neighborhood, she cited concern over the potential for noise, parking issues, overcrowding, increased risk of unattended campfires as well as the danger of flying discs near hikers and horses.
“Construction of the disc golf course would significantly deteriorate the values that the trail currently offers and cause new conflicts with the existing use,” she said.
In her public comment letter, Lazzarino listed alternate locations she said would be safer and not impact other users.
In addition to the disc golf course, the Forest Service proposal includes improvements to the Cascade Day Use Area. Hopkins suggested the Mt. Hough Ranger District implement them separately.
“Thinning and fuel reduction, [along with] prescribed burns should be happening in the Cascades trailhead area anyway,” she said. She also suggested that PNF work with Plumas County and Caltrans to improve signage and maintenance on the access road. “The improvements should be going forth unrelated to and not yoked to this proposed disc golf course!”
The Cascade disc golf project page is available at https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=63472&exp=overview. The contact phone number listed there is apparently incorrect.
Public comments, which become part of the public record, will reportedly be accepted through tomorrow, Sept. 15. However, this date could not be verified with the Mt. Hough Ranger District.
Comments should be directed to Alexander Terry, Mt. Hough Ranger District, 39696 Hwy 70 , Quincy, CA, 95971; Alexander.Terry@usda.gov. The Cascade disc golf course is Project No. 63472.