Originally Posted by lysol
How do you know what is closed or not in GWNF? I can't seem to find anything online that says there is a restriction to thoroughfare only.
I was planning on exploring the area west of Harrisonburg this Saturday...
GWNF is closed. The rangers were instructed to close everything that requires maintenance, like a trash can or a bathroom (from an email sent out by the US Forest Service via spokesperson Barbara Walker, who cannot answer any questions b/c she is furloughed). All facilities in all national parks or forests are closed to citizens. All road ways not fitting the above, not requiring permits (some locations are still selling existing permits from commercial facilities until they run out), or not requiring admission are open for travel. Basically, you can drive anywhere there is no gate, cones, or sign. All facilities, campgrounds, and offices are closed.
The Forestry website redirects you to their daddy, the USDA, which just runs around. There is a 'shutdown procedure', but I haven't seen anything relavent in it. Of course, I didn't look very hard, either.
Per the US Forestry website:
Due to the lapse in agency funding, the sale of all types of permits (i.e., recreation, firewood, forest products, mineral materials for example) are suspended, recreation.gov reservations are suspended, and all federally owned recreation sites are closed. All offices are closed. These services will be available once funding is restored.
USFS shutdown procedure http://www.usda.gov/documents/usda-fs-shutdown-plan.pdf
"Unlike national parks, which have gates and entrance fees, the Blue Ridge Parkway — like other federal parkways including Natchez Trace in Mississippi and Tennessee, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Memorial Parkway in Wyoming and George Washington Memorial Parkway in Virginia — is not closed to traffic but National Park Service visitor centers, historic sites, campgrounds, picnic areas and restrooms along the routes are shuttered because of the budget impasse in Congress."
Which is from an interesting story about a privately owned Inn on the BRPkway that the feds have forced closed, though the road remains open. These workers don't get hand out pay like the vacationing fed employees when it is over. Or like the pigs blocking the entrance to a private establishment on leased land... yet Texas and Florida National Parks still pump oil for private companies.
Back on topic...
I know this is fact: "Other sections of the (Appalachian) (T)rail that are managed by the U.S. Forest Service have not been closed down." (Those controlled by the NPS have been closed)
So why close the roads, ya know?
I also know the district ranger of Sequoia and Sierra National Forests, Dave Martin, has been quoted to say:
"Only scattered camping is available now at non-concessionaire managed sites in the national forest. We're in the middle of (deer) hunting season and a lot of hunters are out there camping. Trails also remain open. There are too many roads leading into national forests to gate every entrance. While forests remain accesable, services will be limited."
Hope this clears the air a little.