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Plan To Close Dunes To Vehicles Progresses

Public comments on a plan to close some unauthorized off-road vehicle trails in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area are due by Dec. 10.

The Gazette-Times reports that an 150-page draft environmental impact statement about the plan has been released for public comment.

The recreation area covers 29,000 acres from Florence to North Bend along the Oregon Coast. It’s a popular playground for riders of dirt bikes, dune buggies and four-wheelers.

Some 5,930 acres of open sand has been set aside for off-road vehicles.

There’s another 4,455 acres of vegetated areas where riding is allowed on 34 miles of designated trails.

Over the years, however, riders have carved out a 135-mile web of trails through the vegetated sections. Now the Forest Service is cracking down on riding in unauthorized areas.

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