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On Dec.19, Pisgah National Forest posted the notice for the Courthouse Timber Sale.
This means the public has until Jan. 18 to comment on this 472 acre logging project below Devil's Courthouse in the very headwaters of the French Broad River.
The Western North Carolina Alliance is opposed to this project for many reasons.
• 192 acres of timber harvest is planned in an area known as the "Pisgah Ridge/Pilot Mountain Significant Natural Heritage Area" identified by biologists with the North Carolina Natural Heritage Program as one of the most important areas of middle and high elevation forest in North Carolina.
• Logging will have impacts on at least three rare species: Vasey's azalea, small footed bat, and brown creeper, a bird that thrives in old-growth conditions.
• Current plans turn this important natural area into a timber farm including 576 acres of past clearcuts, 472 acres of commercial logging, and 357 acres of non-commercial tree cutting.
• Courthouse Creek is an outstanding wild trout stream at the headwaters of the North Fork of the French Broad River. Steep slopes and the some of the greatest annual precipitation in eastern North America make erosion after logging and damage to water quality a concern.
Logging is proposed directly adjacent to the popular and scenic Art Loeb Trail and in the view-shed of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail.
Please take the time to write to Pisgah National Forest and communicate your thoughts about the Courthouse Project.
Submit comments to: Dereck Ibarguen, District Ranger 1600 Pisgah Highway Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
Or email comments to:
(Please put "Courthouse Project" in the subject line.)
You can find the entire project proposal at the following link: