English Point, comprising roughly 300 acres of public land, is a cherished resource in the Hayden Lake Watershed. There, visitors will find “nature’s gold” in the forested setting. The benefit of its woods and trails, in the eyes of the public, far outweighs the commercial value of the land.
Beautiful, But Declining
Beneath the rugged and natural appearance of this beautiful piece of public land, the forests suffer from the cumulative effects of past fire suppression, logging, storm damage, grazing, and a drying climate. Many of the trees are diseased and dying. Many of the trails are in disrepair and not safe to navigate.
The growth of a shade-tolerant but disease-susceptible forest has led to a dense understory, crowded with the debris of dying trees. These overall declining forest conditions raise the risk of wildfire.
The development of abundant understory ladder fuels and pockets of timber with high stand densities contribute to a hazardous fuels complex that could potentially facilitate fire spread, enable torching and crowning, and result in severe fire behavior. Dead and dying trees with compromised root systems are prone to windthrow and breakage, further adding to hazardous fuel accumulation.
Engligh Point Forest Health Project Scoping Letter
To Manage for a Healthy, Resilient, and Spatially Diverse Forest
The proposed English Point Project seeks to restore the heartier early-seral character of the forests by:
- layout and mark to set up for west-side activities. (Note that, while not a part of this project, the Kootenai Fuels Reduction Project is burning brush piles along the area perimeter.) (2019)
- commercial logging west of English Point Rd – proceeds will fund reforestation and trails (2020)
- tree-planting in harvested areas; diseased trees and dense growth may be removed; prescribed under-burning may take place east of English Point Rd (2021)
- prescribed under-burning and tree-planting either side of English Point Rd (2022)
- trail-work following forest treatments
When examining the treatment map, you will discover that this is a simplified description of a well-thought-out treatment plan. The Forest Service made a thorough analysis and has taken deep consideration of the needs of the forests at English Point. Now, they are calling for input from those who frequent this cherished resource, the public.
You Can Provide Input
The input process will require some dedication on your part. But if you love English Point, this is the right thing to do. Start by reading the English Point Project Scoping Letter. It’s packed with helpful detail and tells the story in much greater depth.
Then, if you wish to submit a comment, there are three ways at your disposal:
Mail or deliver comments on paper to:
Fernan Ranger District
2502 East Sherman Ave.
Coeur d’Alene, ID, 83814-5899
Be sure to reference the English Point Forest Health Project #56148. The official comment period closes July 14, but the Forest Service will continue to accept comments until decisions are made, according to Dan Scaife, District Ranger of the Coeur d’Alene River District.
When the work is completed in a few years, the Foprst-Service-Managed English Point recreational area will be a vibrant ecosystem of pine and tamarack.