Northway gave me a heads up on this but I thought I would pass this along to you folks for a number of reasons.
I am also posting this in the hunting section as a help before people get into trouble. This might also change many peoples hunting plans and I felt that
the forum community should know about something that bothers me.
BLM had a meeting in Fairbanks, last Tuesday. At the meeting they discussed how many different trails would be closed as they were being conveyed to Ahtna. I don't think many know the extent of this or the traditional and historical significance of the areas that they are summarily closing without much discussion.
Liberty Falls- Supposedly the state made a mistake in its surveying and missurveyed the area so the Ahtna Native Corporation owns it through its selection.
Liberty falls has been a waystation and tourist spot since 1918 on the Chitina to Fairbanks Highway.
It is closed until further notice and you would get cited for trespassing even if you had an Ahtna Shareholder's card unless you get a land use permit.
5 mile/Nagengast Mine Road/ Burma Road- This trail is also old. I have an Alaska Sportsman magazine from 1982 where they explored it and I know that the mine was in production from the early 1960s. This road is closed and it will not be accessible for those who want to go sheep hunting.
Its 17.b status was rejected.
Obrien Creek Trail- This was one of Guy George's Horse Trails. Guy George was the Part Native Guide who is featured in Larry Kanuits Alaska Bear Tales. He fought off a sow grizzly who attacked him with an Ice Axe which he lodged in the Sow Grizzly's eye. He used the trail from the early 1970s.
Red Hill-Mile 68 Richardson-This was an old mining claim that was also a stop over on the way from Valdez to Tonsina. The old corduroy bridges and road still can get you to Kimball lakes very quickly.
Fourth of July Creek-This led up to Quartz Creek and was an old trail to the ghost town of Bel Caro which was one of the biggest AK ghost towns in 1899. This is on the Tonsina Lake side of the Richardson at mile 63.
Haley Creek Trail- This was a trail that was built by Bud Conkle in the late 1960s by Bud. He used it as a horse trail and it is featured in the book Trail of the Eagle. Supposedly there is a old miners cabin on this trail that is a door into the hillside. Again this trail is locked off.
Guides and there are two registered guides that use this area. Many more have the option of getting in there but they are not using this side anymore because Ahtna wants $6000 for a commercial access to this area from the Copper River.
Hundell Creek Drainage- Near Lower Tonsina. The trail climbs to the small hanging glacier in the valley above. This was a trail used by Agnes Taylor for probably 35 years and is now closed off.
I am not a racist. I grew up and live there three to four months a year.
I would live there full time if I could open a school in Chitina.
I just think that it is inappropriate for the Ahtna Native Corporation to seal up so much history and beautiful country.
I have my ways in. But this puts a lot of pressure on a very small area.