On Sunday March 1 and 15th, 2015 a group of 10 avid rockhounds met in Quartzsite to consider the 4 possible options for road closures in the LaPosa TMP. Without exception we all favored OPTION A, no road closures. All 10 of us are aging, in our 70’s and 80‘s. We depend on these roads every winter, October through April, exploring new areas, and past found areas, to gather and collect a variety of rocks, which we cut, polish, admire, and use to make jewelry. Our very access depends on these roads as we are no longer able to walk long distances carrying tools, water, and rocks. Quartzsite is where we like to gather, because it is a rock oriented town, hosting the Road Runners Rock and Gem Club, with over 900 members, and the QIA Pow Wow, added to the many shows and vendors available throughout town. Many of us own 2nd homes here in Quartzsite and all of us contribute to the local economy during our winter visits. Some of us or our family members are disabled and depend on freedom of access to our public lands which would be denied with many of the proposed road closures. In addition to rockhounding most, if not all of us, enjoy the natural beauty of the desert and keep count of all the wildlife we see while exploring and prospecting. Wild flowers and many varieties of plant life are now in bloom.
Having stated our real feelings that NO ROADS SHOULD BE CLOSED, our group did spend a lot of time studying the detailed maps showing both the road numbers and proposed closures. We focused on the C Alternative as we felt the D alternative was just too restrictive. In an effort to make our comments clear and to the point we have listed the road numbers, slated for closure, that we want to remain open and have given our reasons why they should remain OPEN.
Road #LP1517 Collect Jasper, Agate, Quartz, Calcedony, etc.
Road #LP2378 Important Access road to Hi Jolly
Road #LP1517 Important Access road
Road North of LP1863 is not numbered but much used to collect Dumortierite and Star burst, all the non numbered roads in this area are closed but should be left open as in proposal B
Road #LP2550 Important access road
Road #LP4374 Collect Star Burst material, etc.
Road #LP2250 Important access road
Road #LP1517 Access to Copper tailings, Scheelite, other copper minerals available at the Copper Bottom and other mines in the area. This road continues to Tom Wells Road but does not show on the map. This is an important road and should remain open.
Road #LP1572 Collect Petrified wood, Jasper, Rhyolite, etc.
Road #LP4117 Collect Jasper, Calcedony, Quartz, Agate, etc.
Road #LP3160 Collect Rhyolite, Calcedony, Jasper, Agate, etc.
Road #LP1102 Collect Calcedony, Jasper, Agate, etc.
Road #LP287 Collect Jasper, Agate, Calcedony, quartz, etc.
Road #LP3084 Important as it is the only access to this large area
Road #LP3085 Important access to this large area
Road #LP2749 Connects to areas to collect copper minerals, etc
Road #LP2726 Blocks two open roads
PLEASE NOTE: “Etc”. has been added in many cases because we often make other unexpected finds while exploring an area.
All washes should be left open as they tie important areas together and often make routes shorter and washes tend to repair themselves after heavy rains.
Although having the large maps in our last meeting made things much easier, having no reference points on the maps, for example major roads named, made this more time consuming and nearly impossible to orient ones self.
Trying to make comments using provided maps by computer is most unfair to those making a conscientious effort to comment on the proposed LaPosa TMP.