DNR invites public input on proposed forest trails in Beltrami Island State Forest

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources invites anyone with an interest in recreational trail systems and motorized recreation in the Beltrami Island State Forest in Beltrami, Lake of the Woods and Roseau counties to attend a public meeting on Wednesday, June 28, to review a set of proposals that include changes to trail systems in the state forest.

The meeting will be from 6 to 8 p.m. at the DNR Forestry Office, 804 Cherne Drive NW, Warroad, with a presentation at 6:30 followed by time for questions and answers, map review and comments.

Draft recommendations aim to improve trail sustainability and to enhance recreation opportunities. Proposed changes include adding new trails and trail connections, designating new hunter-walking trails and undesignating unsustainable minimum maintenance roads. The draft proposals reflect feedback gathered during an open house in June 2016.

The forest is classified as “managed” with respect to motor vehicle use, which means that forest roads and routes are open to motor vehicles unless posted closed. The DNR does not propose changing the “managed” classification.

Anyone unable to attend the June 28 meeting can review the project documents online on the trail revision project page and submit written comments through Friday, July 28.

Comments received at the meeting and during the public comment period will be used to develop a final recommendation that will be submitted to the DNR commissioner for approval. Changes to state forest trail designations must be made by commissioner’s order and published in the State Register.

Written comments may be submitted by fax to 651-297-1157, by email to foresttrailplanning.dnr@state.mn.us, or by mail to Joe Unger, Parks and Trails Division, Minnesota DNR, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul, MN  55155-4039.

For more information, call 651-259-5279 or 218-308-2372.