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Utah recreation area closed due to abuse by campers

Overnight camping is no longer allowed on Utah’s East Fork Little Bear River Wildlife Management Area due to abuse by campers. The area is still open for day use and fishing access.

The East Fork Little Bear Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is located just west of Porcupine Reservoir along East Canyon Road in Paradise. The land in Cache County was not originally acquired as a public camping spot. However, the Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) decided to allow camping on the property, hoping those who stayed would respect the area and take good care of it. Most have, but over the years some campers have marred the area to the point that the DWR has decided to close it to camping.

“The misuse of the area by campers has included leaving trash and human excrement scattered across the WMA,” DWR Northern Region Habitat Manager Daniel Olson said. “Wooden fences on the WMA have been broken apart, chopped up and used as firewood. Campers have also left campfires unattended and have built them even when campfire closures were in effect on the WMA. Roads and habitat have also been damaged. We’re going to reclaim and improve the area and make it a great place to fish again.”

Before acquiring the property, the East Fork Little Bear basically ran through it in a straight line. After acquiring it, DWR biologists altered the flow of the river, placing bends and meanders that changed the flow of the water, creating additional pools and riffles for fish. The 1-mile stretch is an especially good place to fish for brown trout in the fall. Cutthroats are another species anglers sometimes catch.



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UpriverJouce
15 days ago

P.S. Fox Creek campground up the Entiat River…I am so happy to live here and hope good folks keep showing up and enjoying the beauty of our backyards.
Now if the rest of the campers showed the same respect wherever they camp….(any state etc.)…(:+)…….

UpriverJouce
15 days ago

Very sad..But!..Today I visited campgrounds upriver from my home. They were opened this last weekend for the 1st time this season.(Oka-Wen)..I usually go up to check on campfires after the weekenders leave..I found one red-cup, and one plastic spoon still in it’s wrapper..The campfires rings that looked as if they had a fire seemed to be put out with lots of water.
Waay to go my camping friends in the Wenatchee forests!

gray
15 days ago

“As ye sow, so shall ye reap.”

Is anyone really surprised by this closure? Does anyone not believe this is a harbinger of future closures on public lands?

10,000 can come and go with no effect; 10 can come and spoil it for all. It is naive to believe that a “commons” can exist in this country without the minority ruining it for everyone. Either we pay the stewards to enforce the rules, repair the damage, and haul the trash… or we lock it up. So far, as a public, we’re unwilling to pay sufficient to protect the commons.

Eric
9 days ago
Reply to  gray

I agree. The budget given to the state and federal agencies is rarely sufficient to really protect the resources. There are just too many who think that rules don’t apply to them. Call them entitled or whatever, they are selfish and harmful, and never seem to suffer any consequences.