The Daily Guide Winter 2023 - 12

Pulse
BU SINESS WITH PURPOSE
The topic - shared stewardship
and the efforts to mitigate over a
century of excessive fire suppression.
Ranger
Bradshaw explained
Layne Miller, Utah Rock Art
Research Association
MOTORIZED AND NONMOTORIZED
USE OVERLAP
SUCCESS
A similar project was visited
by the tour in neighboring Sevier
County in the town of Richfield.
In this instance, the project to
develop the Pahvant mountain
biking trails - which overlapped
with the popular off-road vehicle
Piaute Trail, a 270-mile loop
with over 1,000 miles of side
trails to explore. The project also
involved federal land managed
by the U.S. Forest Service.
The tour attended a panel discussion
hosted by Sevier County
with representatives of the user
groups and land managers affected
by the project. Bryan Carter
representing the motorized users
made it clear: " We wouldn't be
where we're at without partnerships. "
This refers to the extensive
collaboration between the
various investors including local
businesses and as the mountain
biking trails project coordinator,
Carson DeMille, pointed out:
" [the state of] Utah was the major
investor in the development of
these trails. "
The panel also included
Charles Brown, a rancher of 50
years, who has been grazing his
cattle on the land where the trails
were built. He was brought into
12
the project to help with getting
cattle guards installed where
needed. He also praised the project
saying, " The most dramatic
thing to happen to us has been
the bike trails, " in reference to the
increase in tourism and economic
benefit to the area.
Amy Meyers, Director of the
Sevier County Tourism office,
and avid cyclist, confirmed the
tourism impact of the ATV and
mountain bike trails to be $32
million a year.
This portion of the tour stood
out to tour member Dylan Timmer,
owner of 50+ year-old Salt
Lake City based Wasatch Touring
shop: " My highlight was getting
to meet with the folks in Richfield
who worked together to get
the Pahvant trail system built.
I've ridden those trails many
times and I found it really interesting
to learn what the process
looked like to put those in. "
FIRE MITIGATION
At the Ponderosa Picnic Area
in Beaver County, the group met
with Courtney Bradshaw with
the U.S. Forest Service and Grace
Patrick with the Utah Shared
Stewardship office. The picnic
area sits along the Beaver River
where the trees were showing off
a range of beautiful fall colors.
GUIDE / OUTDOOR RETAILER WINTER 2023
the goals of the mitigation
project: " Fire ecology science
has come a long way in the past
100 years and we're working
to restore the landscape to its
natural state without having an
extreme fire event. " She said the
four objectives of the project are
to reduce fuel for fire risk, provide
economic growth, develop
recreational access, and to protect
the Beaver River watershed.
Before the project started, the
trees were so thick where the
picnic ground is now the area
was impenetrable. Once the fuel
load was thinned, the wood was
offered for free to the public to
use as firewood.
The Beaver River hosts three
hydroelectric power stations and
a wildfire with the excessive fuel
build up could have demolished
those power stations and put a
good portion of Beaver County in
the dark.
The other advantage of thinning
the forest has been the
re-establishment of wildlife
migration and movement within
the canyon. While this has
caused an increase in automobile
and wildlife collisions, plans are
underway to raise funds and develop
wildlife overpass crossings
throughout the canyon.
SUSTAINABLE POWER
Another aspect of energy
stewardship shared on the tour
included how the state of Utah
is working towards sustainable
electrical power resources.
Redge Johnson, the Executive
Director of Utah's Public Lands
Policy and Coordinating Office
(PLPCO) joined the majority
of the tour and explained:
" Utah wants to eliminate gas
and coal power plants and the
emissions those plants produce,
but we can't shut them down
until we have built enough new
power producers to ensure a solid
foundation of baseline energy
resources. " He talked about massive
hurdles the energy sector
faces in the forms of gaining
permissions to install sufficient
transmission lines, managing
the lobbying of special interest
groups, and balancing the
development of new power plants
including geothermal, solar,
wind, and nuclear options.
This effort was expanded upon
by Thom Carter, the Director of
Government Affairs for Pacific
Corp, also known as Rocky
Mountain Power, the private
power company. " We serve over
1 million meters across Utah
drawing on a range of power
resources. " Carter emphasized
the goal of Pacific Corp was to
provide power with the " lowest
cost and least risk. " When asked
what was meant by " least risk " he
confirmed the least risk of having
power outages happen on the
grid, but he emphasized that it
also included the least risk to human
safety and the environment.
Tour delegate Darcie Renn,
Vice President of Sustainability
at Alterra Mountain Company
said, " I loved seeing the variety
of energy opportunities in
action across Utah - in particular,
the geothermal plant and
solar arrays. However, it was the
narrative provided by the local
facilitators that really brought to
life some of the challenges and
opportunities associated with
the transition to more renewable
energy sources in Utah. "
CULTURAL PRESERVATION
Stops at sites hosting Native
American petroglyphs and
pictographs offered a lens into efforts
around preserving cultural
heritage throughout the state.
Generally described as " rock
art " , stewards at both locations
admitted that term is not ideal
LISA RAMSPERGER

The Daily Guide Winter 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Daily Guide Winter 2023

The Daily Guide Winter 2023 - Cover1
The Daily Guide Winter 2023 - Cover2
The Daily Guide Winter 2023 - 1
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The Daily Guide Winter 2023 - Cover3
The Daily Guide Winter 2023 - Cover4
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