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Thu, Jan. 27

NPS seeks public input on Wupatki National Monument backcountry plan
Plan provides protection and preservation of irreplaceable resources and wildnerness

NPS seeks public input on backcountry management plan at Wupatki National Monument. (Photo/National Park Service)

NPS seeks public input on backcountry management plan at Wupatki National Monument. (Photo/National Park Service)

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. —The National Park Service is seeking public input on a new management plan and associated environmental assessment (EA) for Wupatki National Monument.

The draft Backcountry Management plan will provide protection and preservation of irreplaceable resources and wilderness character, while establishing long-term direction for public access and experiences to be had in eligible wilderness and other backcountry lands of the monument, according to the NPS.

The EA describes two alternatives: a no-action alternative and an action alternative — which has been identified as the NPS preferred alternative.

The no-action alternative reflects a continuation of current management practices, as established in the park’s 2004 General Management Plan.

The action alternative presents a phased approach to expanding visitor opportunities in the monument’s backcountry through additional guided hikes and the potential for permitted, unguided access to a section of the backcountry. The action alternative also includes updated management zoning descriptions and boundaries, visitor capacities, and monitoring indicators and thresholds established to guide resource protection and management.

Public input is vital, according to the park service.

More information is available at the National Park Service project website at www.parkplanning.nps.gov/WUPABackcountry to download a copy of the complete EA and submit comments. Feedback will be accepted through Jan. 16.

Information provided by the National Park Service

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