BITTERROOT RIDGE RUNNERS SNOWMOBILE CLUB et al v. UNITED STATES FOREST SERVICE et al
ORDER granting 65 Motion for Clarification. The Court remands the Travel Plan without vacatur of the Travel Plans restrictions on mountain bike use in WSAs. Signed by Judge Dana L. Christensen on 8/8/2018. (ASG)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MONTANA
BITTERROOT RIDGE RUNNERS
SNOWMOBILE CLUB; et al.,
UNITED STATES FOREST
SERVICE; et al.;
FRIENDS OF THE BITTERROOT; et
Defendant-Intervenors Friends of the Bitterroot, et al. filed a Motion for
Clarification or in the Alternative to Amend the Judgment. (Doc. 65.) Plaintiffs
oppose the motion (Doc. 67) and Federal Defendants have not responded, but have
noted their position in an Exhibit attached by Defendant-Intervenors (Doc. 66-1).
For the reasons stated below, the Court grants the motion.
Defendant-Intervenors ask the Court to clarify that its June 29, 2018 Order
on Summary Judgment does not vacate the Bitterroot National Forest Travel Plan’s
(“Travel Plan”) restrictions on mountain bike use in the Bitterroot’s Wilderness
Study Areas (“WSAs”). (Doc. 66 at 2.) The Court remanded the Travel Plan to
the U.S. Forest Service to: (1) conduct an objection response period with respect to
these additional miles of trails in the Sapphire and Blue Joint WSAs; (2) take the
objections into consideration; and (3) either modify the FEIS and Final ROD
accordingly, or show that the eligibility of the total 110 miles of mechanized use
closures in WSAs is permissible under the APA. (Doc. 61 at 32.) DefendantIntervenors argue that the Court’s Order does not explicitly provide for vacatur of
the mountain bike restrictions in the WSAs, and therefore did not explicitly resolve
the parties’ arguments in this regard.
Plaintiffs oppose the Motion and contend that Defendant-Intervenors are
simply rearguing their position stated in the summary judgment briefing and that
Defendant-Intervenors have not presented any new evidence, new law, or
extenuating circumstances warranted to grant the motion to clarify. (See Doc. 67
The Court appreciates both parties positions in this matter, and it is apparent
that there is some confusion regarding the June 29, 2018 Order, based on the
Forest Service bulletin (Doc. 66-1) interpreting the Court’s Order to allow
mountain biking pending completion of the three steps outlined in the Order. (See
Doc. 61 at 32.) Thus, the Court grants Defendant-Intervenors’ Motion, and
clarifies that the June 29, 2018 Order intended remand of the Travel Plan without
vacatur of the Travel Plan’s restrictions on mountain bike use in WSAs.
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that the Motion for Clarification (Doc. 65) is
GRANTED. The Court remands the Travel Plan without vacatur of the Travel
Plan’s restrictions on mountain bike use in WSAs.
DATED this 8th day of August, 2018.
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