BWCA Updates and/or confirmation of USFS bear/food rules Boundary Waters Listening Point - General Discussion
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      Updates and/or confirmation of USFS bear/food rules     

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MikeinMpls
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05/11/2022 12:31PM  
I know this has been covered last fall, but I am just looking for any updates and/or confirmation:

It is my understanding that the USFS will NOT be REQUIRING trippers to have any kind of bear vault, blue barrel, ursack, or similar to enter (or have in their possession) the BWCA this year. I live in fear that I will have to show them my vault or ursack or whatever when I pick up my permit (and won't get a permit because I don't have any of that stuff.)

I don't want to make this a discussion about the virtues of bear mitigation methods, please.

Mike
 
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05/11/2022 12:46PM  
there was this thread a couple months ago where the conclusion was the storage order is no longer in effect
 
MikeinMpls
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05/11/2022 12:52PM  
geotramper: "there was this thread a couple months ago where the conclusion was the storage order is no longer in effect"

That is what I recall, but I wasn't sure how sure people were about it. I will re-examine the thread and interpret the USFS language as best I can.

Thanks

Mike
 
naturboy12
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05/11/2022 12:55PM  
MikeinMpls: "I know this has been covered last fall, but I am just looking for any updates and/or confirmation:

It is my understanding that the USFS will NOT be REQUIRING trippers to have any kind of bear vault, blue barrel, ursack, or similar to enter (or have in their possession) the BWCA this year. I live in fear that I will have to show them my vault or ursack or whatever when I pick up my permit (and won't get a permit because I don't have any of that stuff.)

I don't want to make this a discussion about the virtues of bear mitigation methods, please.

Mike
"


That was never the requirement to begin with. Proper hanging of containers was also allowed.
 
gravelroad
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05/11/2022 01:31PM  
Some of you may recall that a special food storage order was issued in 2020 that applied to five lakes at the end of the Gunflint Trail. I have never found any evidence that it has actually been withdrawn, even after the 2022 withdrawal of the Forest-wide order that was issued in 2021.

In the interest of avoiding any "confusion" among paddlers and badge wearers, I have sent an inquiry to the Forest Supervisor asking about the current status of that earlier order. I will report the result here.
 
hernfiry
member (18)member
 
05/11/2022 02:26PM  
FWIW, the Spring Edition of the BWJ had an editors note that the order is no longer in effect for 2022.
 
gravelroad
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05/11/2022 03:40PM  
hernfiry: "FWIW, the Spring Edition of the BWJ had an editors note that the order is no longer in effect for 2022."

To clarify - that almost certainly refers to the 2021 Forest-wide order, the withdrawal of which is already documented in the thread mentioned above.
 
05/12/2022 07:57AM  
Double post sorry
 
05/12/2022 08:05AM  
gravelroad: "Some of you may recall that a special food storage order was issued in 2020 that applied to five lakes at the end of the Gunflint Trail. I have never found any evidence that it has actually been withdrawn, even after the 2022 withdrawal of the Forest-wide order that was issued in 2021.


In the interest of avoiding any "confusion" among paddlers and badge wearers, I have sent an inquiry to the Forest Supervisor asking about the current status of that earlier order. I will report the result here."


Good luck and thanks for tryin g to clarify…


Trying to find withdrawal of orders on the FS site is frustrating and rarely fruitful :)


I believe originally we only knew that the 2021 order was rescinded was a letter sent to outfitters vs. posting on the FS website.


If the 2020 rule is in effect for the same lakes, legally it has to be posted at all the possible entries and when you get your permit. Has anyone received a Seagull or Saganaga permit this year or been to any of the entry areas? That would be a tell tale sign as well.


T
 
gravelroad
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05/12/2022 11:15AM  
timatkn: "Good luck and thanks for tryin g to clarify…

Trying to find withdrawal of orders on the FS site is frustrating and rarely fruitful :)"


You may be amused by the (lack of) progress to this point:

 
05/12/2022 04:05PM  
What’s the lack of progress? You got an email back saying 1. All current orders are posted online, 2. The order you asked about is not there, so 3. It is not in effect. That seems clear enough to me. I’m not worried about getting a ticket.
 
mschi772
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05/12/2022 06:39PM  
I agree with gravelroad that calling unceremonious disappearance from a website that relatively few people use or even know to check doesn't really strike me as "formally withdrawn." This kind of "good enough" attitude toward communication is what I've experienced any time I've interacted with the USFS. If my previous experiences with them are anything to go by, your continued pressure for clarity and specificity will prompt Luke to get Ann Schwaller to echo the same bureaucratic explanation at which point you'll begin to feel like you're talking to a wall and give up. It is clear that these notices could be handled much better, but the government is rarely interested in improving the status quo, and the people at the level we're dealing with (Dept of Ag--->USFS--->SNF---->BWCAW) likely don't have the resources or the incentive to make an effort to improve much in the way they do things.
 
tumblehome
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05/12/2022 08:23PM  
IMO ‘Formally withdrawn’ must not mean- officially stated to the public.

With that, could it be that the USFS had meeting and formally withdrew the order? They then instructed the webmaster to remove the order which is the public face of the USFS. Short of them publishing the minutes from the meeting, removing the order from the website is the end result of the withdraw.

In Government, if it doesn’t say you can’t- then you can.

Tom
 
gravelroad
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05/13/2022 10:46AM  
Drip by drip by drip. And yes, I used to do this for a living. Including the time I hoisted them by their own petard, and a senior federal judge smiled and suggested it was time to let them off the hook and let them go fix their timber sale. :-)



 
thistlekicker
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05/13/2022 02:02PM  
deleted

 
mschi772
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05/14/2022 08:00AM  
gravelroad: "Drip by drip by drip. And yes, I used to do this for a living. Including the time I hoisted them by their own petard, and a senior federal judge smiled and suggested it was time to let them off the hook and let them go fix their timber sale. :-)



"


Jeezus, why would the termination order need to be specially requested in order to see it? Holy heck, government agencies can be spectacularly dense.
 
LesliesDad
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05/14/2022 01:02PM  
Just for the record . . . I agree with Gravelroad. I've dealt with Luke in Duluth before. Couldn't get a straight answer from him.
 
gravelroad
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05/14/2022 01:28PM  
LesliesDad: "Just for the record . . . I agree with Gravelroad. I've dealt with Luke in Duluth before. Couldn't get a straight answer from him."

Luke is inches away from getting slapped with a FOIA request. His career plans would benefit from some additional training on the subject, it appears.
 
billconner
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05/14/2022 06:08PM  
A little surprised. I talked with Luke over a period of a couple years and found him helpful and candid. He basically said what his precessor told me was incorrect and I think he's right.
 
gravelroad
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05/16/2022 04:00PM  
And now we have confirmation that the Seagull etc. order was withdrawn - a mere thirteen months after the fact. I don’t recall any public mention of this:

“Thank you for your patience while I was receiving the Termination Order from the Forest Law Enforcement Office. It is attached.

“In addition, if it is helpful or applicable to provide context, recently Superior National Forest did upgrade its website (as all National Forests and Grasslands are in the process of doing) to the new/upgraded agency template. In this transition, the Forest made the decision for the sake of clearer messaging to post active orders to the Forest Orders page and not have them listed with terminated orders. Obviously the Forest is still required to and does carry out the termination orders and individuals are more than welcome to request them for whatever reason they see fit (as you obviously have) and we’ll be happy to send them your way.

“In such a shift, I understand that some people who may be used to seeing termination orders intermixed with active orders might question the interpretation of the new page or wonder about an order they don’t see. My apologies if this in any way applied you. Please know that from now on, the Forest Orders page will be home to the active orders for those wanting to know what current information applies to today’s visit to the Forest. If something doesn’t make sense or isn’t clear, please let us know. We’d be happy to discuss further.

“As always, please let me know if I can be of any additional help.

“Best,

“Luke Laaveg (he/him/his)
Visitor Services and Information
Forest Service
Superior National Forest
Supervisor’s Office
p: 218-626-4300
luke.laaveg@usda.gov
8901 Grand Avenue Place
Duluth, MN 55808
www.fs.fed.us
USDA Logo Forest Service Twitter USDA Facebook
Caring for the land and serving people”


 
LesliesDad
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05/17/2022 07:14AM  
Good work Gravelroad.
As a side note: I showed the " . . . (he/him/his) . . . " part to my wife because I couldn't believe it. She, being a retired university employee, informed me that this is now becoming a somewhat common practice at Marquette Univ. smh
 
MikeinMpls
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05/17/2022 08:31AM  
As the OP, I thank everyone for their input on this thread. Just as I had thought, the answer was not as easy as it may have appeared. The government bureaucracy works against itself when people are searching for a simple answer to a simple question.

Mike


 
05/17/2022 09:43AM  
And what, exactly, is wrong with someone choosing to share the pronouns that they want others to address them by?
 
MikeinMpls
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05/17/2022 10:35AM  
geotramper: "And what, exactly, is wrong with someone choosing to share the pronouns that they want others to address them by?"

Nothing. Mine was just an observation, but I've edited my comment out of my post because I, for one, will not be going down this rabbit hole. My original post was about bear rules, and I regret even commenting on LesliesDad's post.

Mike
 
05/17/2022 10:45AM  
Thanks Mike. I don't particularly want to derail the thread either, but I found the backhanded comments about pronouns fairly callous.

LesliesDad: "Good work Gravelroad.
As a side note: I showed the " . . . (he/him/his) . . . " part to my wife because I couldn't believe it. She, being a retired university employee, informed me that this is now becoming a somewhat common practice at Marquette Univ. smh"


I also find the doxxing and criticism of Luke in this public forum to be inappropriate at best. He's just doing his job.
 
05/17/2022 12:56PM  
Luke seemed pretty clear and even apologized. People who work for the government don't always feel the need to respond or apologize for any delay, so I count it as a good interaction. I think most people in the NPS and the forest service are pretty helpful if you approach them with respect. There are always grumpy people in every walk of life though. Try going to Russia and getting anything done. Even the gift shop people act like they want to shut the window in your face for trying to buy something. Not right now, though.
 
gravelroad
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05/17/2022 03:01PM  
geotramper: "Thanks Mike. I don't particularly want to derail the thread either, but I found the backhanded comments about pronouns fairly callous.


LesliesDad: "Good work Gravelroad.
As a side note: I showed the " . . . (he/him/his) . . . " part to my wife because I couldn't believe it. She, being a retired university employee, informed me that this is now becoming a somewhat common practice at Marquette Univ. smh"



I also find the doxxing and criticism of Luke in this public forum to be inappropriate at best. He's just doing his job. "


If by “doxxing” you’re referring to posting verbatim a message in which he ENCOURAGED contact AFTER I told him I’d be sharing his response:

You’re full of it and yourself.
 
nooneuno
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05/17/2022 06:50PM  
LesliesDad: "Good work Gravelroad.
As a side note: I showed the " . . . (he/him/his) . . . " part to my wife because I couldn't believe it. She, being a retired university employee, informed me that this is now becoming a somewhat common practice at Marquette Univ. smh"

I agree, the first few times you see this it does tend to catch the unenlightened by surprise.

Nooneuno (him/he/his/hey asshole)
 
05/17/2022 06:52PM  
We’re all getting snippy now :)

I think people are sensitive to posting conversations in general…Technically wasn’t doxxing but there were disparaging comments about Luke along the lines of career plans, getting slapped with a FOIA, training, that weren’t necessary. Especially when the employee gave all the answers needed in 5 days—-granted needed some prodding :)

The other side of the story is this whole line of questioning the orders wasn’t even necessary. If it isn’t listed on the website, on your permit or at the entry point the orders are not enforceable…I can totally see as a FS employee that this was low priority or no priority…especially with the late ice out (behind on maintenance), all of the closures and flooding going on.

I applaud you for getting the information and explanation. I wouldn’t of done it but I appreciate knowing more.

T



 
SinglePortage
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05/18/2022 06:31AM  
I am thrilled to discover that the bears have lost their taste for our food and will no longer be a threat to my prized provisions. Who says that the Forrest Service can't solve problems.
 
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