San Juan Public Lands briefs

Summer office hours for San Juan Public Lands

The San Juan Public Lands Center has returned to summer office hours. The center, which houses San Juan National Forest and BLM Tres Rio Field Office employees, will be open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday for the summer.

The Pagosa Ranger District in Pagosa Springs, Columbine Ranger District in Bayfield and Dolores Public Lands Office in Dolores will remain open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. The Silverton Public Lands Center will be open 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. starting June 2 (Thursdays through Tuesdays, closed on Wednesdays).

These offices include visitor centers and San Juan Mountains Association bookstores, which offer maps, books, permits, educational items and other materials for sale, as well as free U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management information.

Information on the San Juan National Forest can also be found at: www.fs.usda.gov/sanjuan/, and BLM information is available at: www.blm.gov/co/st/en/fo/sjplc.html

For more information, contact the San Juan Public Lands Center at 970 247-4874.

Firewood cutting permits on sale

Tags to cut firewood on National Forest or BLM lands in southwestern Colorado will go on sale at agency offices and selected retail outlets on Monday, May 7. A minimum purchase of $20 allows the bearer to gather two-and-a-half cords of firewood for personal use from federal lands prior to December 31, 2012. Each tag is good for one-half cord of firewood. The appropriate number of tags must be securely fastened to the firewood in a visible manner before the vehicle is driven from the place where the firewood was gathered. One household may purchase permits for up to 10 cords of firewood per year for personal use. Gathering firewood for resale requires a commercial permit.

Permits, which come with a brochure and map, are available at the following Montezuma County locations:Dolores Public Lands Office, 100 N. 6th Street, Dolores; City Market, 508 E. Main, Cortez; Dolores Food Market, 400 Railroad Ave., Dolores; Cox Conoco, 201 E Railroad Ave, Mancos

On the Dolores Ranger District, all standing dead ponderosa pine trees are protected for wildlife habitat and cannot be cut down for use as firewood. On the Columbine and Pagosa Ranger Districts, all standing dead ponderosa larger than 15 inches in diameter are protected for wildlife habitat and cannot be cut down for use as firewood.

Most National Forest and BLM roads are now dry enough to be opened to traffic at this time, allowing the public to access backcountry areas for this and other uses. Updates on specific San Juan National Forest road conditions are available on the Web at: www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/sanjuan/recreation

For more information, contact the San Juan Public Lands Center at 247-4874.