H. R. 5660: Chuckwalla National Monument Establishment and Joshua Tree National Park Expansion Act of 2023 To provide for the protection of natural and cultural resources, Tribal
collaborative management, sustainable economic development, enhanced
recreation, and equitable access on Federal lands in eastern Imperial
and Riverside counties, California, and for other purposes.
NOTE: If this bill is passed or the area becomes a National Monument or National Park the Hauser Geode Beds.may be in danger of being closed to Recreational Rockhounding even though there is a current MOU between the BLM and Recreational Rockhounds through the CFMS and ALAA. If this Bill fails to pass, the Monument or National Park Extension may be created through a Presidential Executive Proclamation.
Personal-use obsidian collection to reopen at the four Warner Mt. sites
After a year off due to the pandemic and five plus years of coordination with tribal and county partners, the Modoc National Forest will reopen the four designated collection areas in the Warner Mountains to personal-users with a valid permit.
The four collection areas shown on the map at https://go.usa.gov/x6NKB are the only locations obsidian collection is authorized on the Modoc National Forest.
Obsidian collection season will run this year from July 1 through Labor Day Weekend. Adults 18 years or older will be issued one-day permits authorizing collection of two five-gallon buckets of obsidian using hand tools only. A maximum of three permits per person per year can be issued up to three days in advance. Permits are only available at the Modoc National Forest Headquarters at 225 W. 8th St. in Alturas, Calif. Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Valid picture identification and vehicle information are required for each individual seeking permits. Permits for weekends and holidays must be obtained on days Forest Headquarters is open.
“We are happy to again offer this unique recreation opportunity and beautiful material for traditional cultural users and other artisans who use it to create amazing works of art,” said East Zone District Ranger Heidi Lowery. “It is not easy to find a balance between wise use and maintaining this nonrenewable resource for future generations, but it was clear the impacts of commercial and unpermitted mining were not sustainable or fair to the people most impacted. Hopefully all the hard work put into this new plan by forest staff and key stakeholders can offer collection opportunities, maintain the resource for future generations and limit the negative impacts on local communities, including those who have stewarded this resource for millennia.”
Though permitted personal-use collection will resume, commercial obsidian mining is no longer authorized on the Modoc National Forest.
Commercial mining impacts increased over the last decade as overseas purchasers sought large quantities of obsidian rocks. This led to unsustainable impacts to the resource, surrounding forest and nearby communities. Theft and illegal mining activities increased substantially with evidence of heavy equipment, unauthorized roads, wildfire ignitions, unsafe mining practices, impacts on other forest users and an overall unsustainable removal of this non-renewable resource.
Man cited for having a dredge stored in a container on his private property in California...
The dredge was stored inside a cargo
container on his private property and not in operation, just being
stored. The container is near a little dry creek bed on his private
property. He has a county road easement which passes through his
property and someone (allegedly) took a picture of the dredge from the
road and sent it to an LEO (Law Enforcement Officer) with Department of
Fish and Wildlife (DFW). READ MORE:
More on Dredging in California can be found Lower down on this page...
Do you Camp or recreate on Public Lands in California? Do you use a Campfire or Cookfire? (Even an open flame Propane Stove) Do you know to be legal you must have a valid California Campfire Permit in your possession? Do you know where and how to get your Free "California Campfire Permit"?
Watch a short video - take a quiz - get your online permit - save or print pdf or just bookmark the link on your mobile device to display when needed. Permits expire on December 31 of the year issued.
Do not get caught with a campfire without your Campfire Permit!
California Department of Fish and Wildlife
Please Note: BLM Links may not currently work. The BLM is re-building their websites and there are some minor problems to be worked out. When the websites are working the ALAA Links will also be updated to the new website information. Some of the websites are now working. Dec 2017
You have probably noticed that the Mojave Trails National Monument is deceiving in that the effective Monument boundary will cover an enormous amount of land, far more land than the proclamation. The Monument contains 6 no vehicular entry Wilderness Areas, but also connects to and effectively incorporates into it's boundary, another 8 no vehicular entry Wilderness Areas, 1 no entry Military Base, and the no collecting lands of the Mojave National Preserve and Joshua Tree National Park.
ALAA has established an Email Addfress email@example.com and a letter mailing address of ALAA; 2010 West Ave. K #528; Lancaster, CA 93536-5229. We are asking Rockhounds who contact the BLM in support of continued Recreational Rockhounding inside the California National Monuments to please include ALAA with a cc; or Bcc; of any emails and if you send a paper letter to please include a copy to the above address. There is still a lot of work to do before we can rest and the collecting of rocks and minerals in the monuments is finalized. Thank you for your effort and support
Recreational Rockhounding is the collecting of reasonable amounts of nonrenewable resources such as rock and mineral specimens and materials, common invertebrate and common plant fossils, semiprecious gemstones and Petrified wood for noncommercial (Personal and Educational) purposes where permitted by law. Recreational Rockhounding is accomplished in a manner that prevents hazards to public health and safety, and minimizes and mitigates environmental damage.
Support your right to collect Rock and Minerals in the Southern California Desert and the New National Monuments - Get Involved, be Pro-Active. It is the only way to save Rockhounding inside the Mojave Trails National Monument! It is up to you!
September 23, 2014 the California Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District, issued a unanimous opinion generally affirming the theory of federal preemption in the mining context. This is a big win for mining community, which has been attempting for roughly five years, through multiple cases in multiple forums, to secure a judicial ruling on the 2009 moratorium and its successors. Read More on California Gold Mining
BLM Issues Interim Final Supplementary Rules for Kanaka Valley (BLM News Release) The BLM's Mother Lode Field Office is requesting public comments on proposed new rules affecting 695 acres of public land known as Kanaka Valley inEl Dorado County. http://ow.ly/DWnlN Speak now or forever hold your....... you know the rest!
New 3,800 acre Solar Site Planned Near Hauser Beds
Quartzite Solar Project Draft Environmental Analysis Available for Public
CommentThe Bureau of Land Management is
seeking public input on actions that would allow the proposed development of the
Desert Quartzite Solar Project, a 450-megawatt solar development in eastern
Riverside County. 3,800 Acres (5.9375 Sq. Miles)
The draft EIS/EIR and draft Land Use Plan Amendment, along with the
agency preferred alternative for the Desert Quartzite Solar Project, can
be viewed on the BLM ePlanning website at: https://goo.gl/GmkJk4.
The publication of the draft Environmental Impact Statement in the Federal Register
through the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday, Aug. 10 will
signal the start of the 90-day public comment period, which will end on
Nov. 8. In addition to the draft EIS, other documents made available
for comment include the Environmental Impact Report and draft Land Use
This notice lists the newspapers that will be used by all Ranger Districts, Forests, and the Regional Office of the Pacific Southwest Region to publish legal notices required under 36 CFR 214, 218, and 219. The intended effect of this action is to inform interested members of the public which newspapers the Forest Service will use to publish notices of proposed actions, notices of decision, and notices of opportunity to file an appeal/objection. This will provide the public with constructive notice of Forest Service proposals and decisions, provide information on the procedures to comment, appeal, or object and establish the date that the Forest Service will use to determine if comments, appeals, or objections were timely. Click on the forest of interest and see what Newspapers will have the Public Notice anouncement about that forest and the USFS Actions.Read the Notice Here....
CALIFORNIA FOSSIL IVORY ALERT - Our First warning to any dealers with a business in California or those dealers that plan to attend the West Coast Gem & Mineral Show (Fall), Santa Ana CA November 11 -13 of this year (or any show in California). The California Ivory ban goes into effect on July 1, 2016 and it will be illegal to sell any fossil ivory in the state after that date. The legislation's definition; "Ivory" means a tooth or tusk from a species of elephant, hippopotamus, mammoth, mastodon, walrus, warthog, whale, or narwhal, or a piece thereof, whether raw ivory or worked ivory, and includes a product containing, or advertised as containing, ivory. You will risk confiscation of your fossil ivory and very stiff fines and other penalties for having any of the legally collected material available during the shows or for sale in your business. From AAPS May 2016 Newsletter
In California there is already an existing ban on Ivory import and sales, but
that ban has an exemption for sale of Ivory that had been imported prior to
January 1, 1977, which protected a significant portion of the Ivory owners in
California at the time. Experts tell us that exemption covers millions of
dollars of ivory objects in the state that don’t fall into the otherwise very
narrow exemptions in the existing law.
Additional Public Meeting Scheduled for Soda Mountain Solar Project in San Bernardino County
The Bureau of Land Management has scheduled an additional public meeting for public comment on the Soda Mountain Solar Project's draft environmental document. The meeting is scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 11, 2014, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Travelodge Inn and Suites Yucca Valley Meeting Room, 54850 29 Palms Highway, Yucca Valley.
The Director’s Protest Resolution Reports analyze each unique or summarized protest issue statement received on each individual BLM Proposed Resource Management Plan to determine whether the State Director followed established procedures, considered relevant information in reaching proposed decisions, and whether the proposed decisions are consistent with the applicable statutes, regulations, and BLM policy.
The following Director’s Protest Resolution Reports are available for online viewing or download.
HR6286 Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act of 2012 --- This bill would close rockhounding areas under new wilderness, but leave off road access in place. Rockhounds should read the text of the bill and should contact their elected official to voice their opinion on this bill. Read the bill below on this page under Clear Creek Management Area. Read a letter to Congressman Doc Hastings through the hyperlink below.
Resource Management Plan Revison - Read the Plan - Affects Horse Canyon Agate Beds
National Forests in California
Inyo National Forest shares plan direction for Sustainable Recreation and Aquatic-Riparian Resources
The Inyo National Forest is finalizing its environmental impact statement and forest plan. To celebrate our progress, and prepare you for when we release the final documents this fall, we’re offering you a preview of the Inyo’s updated plan direction for sustainable recreation and aquatic and riparian resources. This isn’t the only preview we have planned. In the coming weeks, you’ll see updated plan direction for wild and scenic rivers and species of conservation concern. All this information will be available on-line at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/r5/FPRPreview.
When you see the Inyo’s final forest plan later this year, you’ll notice we made a few changes based on many of the suggestions, ideas and comments you provided us. For instance, we refined our analysis particularly around recreation, wild and scenic rivers, recommended wilderness, aquatics, grazing and fire management. We improved the plan’s architecture to provide better organization and clarification based on your comments on the draft forest plan (published May 2016).
Curious about the Sequoia and Sierra National Forests? We’re continuing to address public comments in a revised draft EIS for these two forests. We’ll share updates on that progress in the coming months as well.
These previews offer a glimpse into plan development as it is happening. This process is information sharing; we are not receiving formal comments. The completed, final EIS and Inyo plan will be available for a 60-day objection period this fall. If you have questions feel free to contact Deb Schweizer, Public Affairs Officer, Inyo National Forest, at 760-873-2427.
Sustainable Recreation (Recreational Rockhounding is not included)
The Cleveland National Forest received funding from the California Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Grants Program to decommission unauthorized routes, as defined by the 2008 Motorized Travel Management decision, that have the greatest resource impacts.
That $5 permit to access certain parts of national forests in Southern California could soon be a thing of the past, thanks to a recent ruling by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. A panel of judges unanimously agreed with four hikers who objected to paying a fee to use a portion of an Arizona national forest. Read the Court Ruling
BUSTED! Los Padres National Forest ticketed 200 Santa Barbara families for parking by the side of the road to let their kids play in a rare snowfall. It seems that little adventure requires an "Adventure Pass." Read the story HERE.
San Gabriel Valley Tribune writer Steve Scauzillo explains how it could affect the Adventure Pass (http://www.whittierdailynews.com/news/ci_19974329) which is only available for the Angeles, San Bernardino,Cleveland and Los Padres national forests:,
The strongly worded, 15-page decision says any member of the public who walks, hikes, rides a horse, picnics on the side of a road, camps at undeveloped sites, even parks in a national forest "without using facilities and services" is allowed to do so without being charged. Charging a fee, such as the Adventure Pass, even for someone who visits an area with amenities but doesn't use them, violates the FLREA [or, Federal Lands and Recreation Enhancement Act], according to the decision.
SACRAMENTO, CA (July 31)-- The Eldorado National Forest is free from preservationist litigation attacking a Travel Management Plan that originally closed just over 900 miles of roads and trails. Today Senior U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton issued his final order and judgment in a case originally filed in 2009. Download final order - PDF
October 14, 2012 - Eldorado NF Releases Travel Management Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (TM SEIS) On Re-opening Routes Closed via Court Order Read More:
October 14, 3012 - Brief History of Legal Battle over Eldorado NF Read More: