IDAHO FALLS, ID – June 7, 2021 – Summer 2021 is shaping out to be busy on the Caribou-Targhee National Forest, both in terms of recreation visitors and project work. “The benefits of recreation are astounding,” said Kaye Orme, Caribou-Targhee National Forest Recreation Manager. “Not only does it have health values, but studies show communities are seeing extensive economic benefits associated with recreation as well.”
The Caribou-Targhee National Forest manages 2,770 plus miles of road, 151 bridges, 2,500 miles of motorized trails, 1,505 miles of non-motorized trails, 12 dams and reservoirs, 22 communication sites, 108 recreation sites and 502 other facilities.
This summer, Orme says the Forest is focusing heavily on improving recreation opportunities and will be conducting several projects this summer on the northern portion to improve habitat, user access and facilities. Forest staff are asking members of the public to please be patient with workers as delays and access limitations may occur during construction. Larger projects include:
Cave Falls | Work continues in the Cave Falls area to improve access and campground facilities. In partnership with Fremont County and Yellowstone National Park, Forest road crews will continue hauling in and graveling the Cave Falls Road beginning July 7. This is part of a multi-year project. Cave Falls Campground will be temporarily closed this summer as it undergoes major renovations.
Trail Creek Trailhead | Anticipated opening date is June 15. The Forest put the final touches on the Trail Creek Trailhead in Dubois, Idaho last fall. The enlarged, graveled site allows for better horse trailer access, parking and signage. Crews are fixing water drainage issues this week with new culvert installations and hope to have everything up and running once the road dries out.
Ashton/Island Park Habitat Improvement Project | Beginning in mid-July visitors to the Island Park area may notice increased heavy equipment on Forest Service roads as work begins to restore habitat on 28,000 acres of land affected by closed roads and improve wildlife habitat and water quality. The area will remain open for hunting, hiking, biking, horseback riding and other non-motorized uses. More information about the project is available at https://bit.ly/2NvSbVy.
Packsaddle Lake | This summer the Forest will begin efforts to revamp access to the popular lake just outside Tetonia, Idaho, by moving portions of FS Roads 381 and 951 and FS Trail 212 to more suitable locations and to relocate the parking area. The rerouted roads and trails will meet recreation standards by reducing the steep grade and eliminating spring rain erosion and resource issues.
To learn more about projects occurring in your area, reach out to your local Ranger District or visit the Caribou-Targhee National Forest website at https://www.fs.usda.gov/ctnf.