STURGIS, S.D. (KELO) — The unseasonably warm weather will lure people out to the hiking trails. However, one trail system will be closed beginning Monday, November 6th, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)/Black Hills National Forest.
The west half of the Sturgis Trails System will be temporarily closed for a hazardous fuels reduction operation.
“The hazardous fuels reduction means thinning out of trees and brush for fire control,” said Scott Jacobson, Public Affairs Officer, USDA.
Multiple hazardous fuels reduction operations will take place on the trails.
Tethered logging will be done which is a steep slope logging system that uses equipment tethered to steel cables. The cables will be stretched across the trail and heavy equipment will be utilized.
Officials stated the safest process was to temporarily close the trails. Barricades will be posted at the trail system entrances.
When it is safe to use the Sturgis Trails again, a public notification will be sent when the operations are finished and trail rehabilitations are complete. It is unknown how long the process will be completed by the contractors.
The City of Sturgis and Black Hills Trails maintain this trail system though a permit authorized by the Black Hills National Forest.
The trailhead on the east side of Vanocker Canyon will continue to be open for use.
For more information about the Black Hills National Forest and trail system maps: