Archive for June 2012

Meeting with Gunflint Ranger District

Meeting with USFS

Banadad Trail Plan 2012June 29, 2012, 10:00 a.m.

Poplar Creek Guesthouse B & B

Present: Ted Young, John and Barb Bottger, Kate Kelnberger, Pete Harris, Jon Benson (USFS Wilderness Manager), Tom Kaffine (USFS Forestry Technician), (Suzanne Cable,  USFS Asst. District Manager)

John opened the meeting with comments that Ted knows the trail and we’ve had a good format in presenting our plan in past years.

Ted reported that, even with the shortened season (March 18 was last day of skiing), the Banadad had  900 skier days.  Ted tracks the numbers by counting the day permits and adds 10% for those who don’t fill out day permits.  In 12 years of tracking, this is the 3rd highest year.

Jon asked that Ted turn in the day permits to the USFS.  The USFS has started preliminary discussions of making the Banadad the primary entry point but that will be a ways off.

Ted reported that the big project of 2011 was building the bridge between Banadad and Rush Lakes done last  fall.  Three 30’ power poles were put in with the old cedar decking on top.  Volunteers also worked opening the trail in that area.  We had 174 hours of volunteer time by North Star Ski Club and Minnehaha Academy Ski Team.

Jon asked that we turn in the volunteer hours to the USFS as they are tracking as well.

Power equipment is used outside the BWCA, including the Tim Knopp trail, which is an access trail to the first part of the Banadad.

2012 Plans:

West End Reroute Mike and Sue Prom bought property on contract for deed with permission from landowner to proceed.  We will move the trail off the “Rib Lake Rd” but it is unclear how snowmobiles and fisherman will access Tripp Lake.

We have flagged and GPSed the tentative trail.  The south end has already been moved about 50’ to avoid wetlands according to county regulations.

We still need to have the corridor appraised.  The BTA will have to pay for this out of pocket.  The BTA must also provide 25% of grant provided.  A total of $3-4,000 will be the responsibility of the BTA.  Our grant deadline is June 2013.

Can the USFS provide a cash grant of $1,500?  Suzanne made a note to check this out.  This could be under a challenge cost share agreement. Timing – this fall to pay for initial appraisal requirement.

Suzanne would like a letter to Dennis to frame a request for funding to occur on Forest land.  If this funding could happen it would have to come from 2013 fiscal budget  which starts on October 1, 2012.

The BTA will meet on July 9 and will have made a decision on fundraising.  John will contact the USFS with our plans.

Tom has taken on trail responsibilities in this zone.

Jon will ask if Dennis needs to submit a letter of support in this effort.

Volunteer Crew: Within trails remote interior 70-90 hrs. of volunteer time is required to widen 1 mile of trail.

Request:  We could use help along with the MCC.

Prescribed Burn Areas: The burn area is a problem, both Ham Lake and the prescribed burn around Meeds Lake with downed, burned trees.

Request:  That USFS provide a crew to take on this project. Jon suggested that USFS fire people get in there to see if they can clean some of that out.

Remote Trail Widening: MCC crews are lined up to do this work in July.  Ted will make sure this crew gets in to the portage.  Tom is working with Chad on this project.  Tom will have this crew check on the bridge due to recent heavy rains.  This could be delayed due to calls to fires out west.

Outside the BWCA:

1.  Chainsaws are used to clear larger trees.

2.  A tracked vehicle with a brush hog to mow the stubble.

3.  East end of Banadad will be cut with power brush saw.

4.  Moose Trail – 4-1/2 miles mechanically mowed.

5.  East end parking – widen the parking area.

Conclusion: The partnership remains a good one!  Suzanne and Jon will be sure a current letter of agreement is on file.

Delicious “Banadad” cake was served by Barbary Young.  Meeting ended at 11:00 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Barb Bottger