We are the Friends of Pahranagat Valley Corporation, and we want to improve and re-open Little Ash Springs.
Our group is a pending non-profit made up of residents who seek to “serve, preserve, and enhance” our valley. We plan on completing other projects as well, but Little Ash is currently our main focus. This unique site has been enjoyed by Pahranagat Valley’s residents, as well as visitors, for generations, and we want our children and grandchildren to have the chance to enjoy it as well.
In recent years Little Ash became extremely popular, receiving more and more visitors, but it was not properly managed. Our group was formed in response to concerns about overcrowding and misuse of the site. It became almost impossible for locals to enjoy Little Ash due to the overcrowding and sanitation concerns. Currently the BLM has placed a temporary closure on the facility for two years, citing safety concerns. A padlocked Little Ash means both loss of recreational opportunities for locals and tourists and lost revenue for local businesses, particularly R Place across the street.
Friends of PV saw an opportunity to create a management plan that improves the site for recreation, manages visitors so it is not overcrowded or overused and protects the natural environment of the spring. We have met monthly over the past couple years and have had several meetings with the BLM, state and county officials and the public. We have created an initial concept and are now in the process of moving it to a full-fledged plan to propose to the public and the BLM.
Part of our plan would include having improvements made to the Little Ash Springs site and then have our group, Friends of Pahranagat Valley, manage the site with the hope that down the road we will be able to have that land and some of the surrounding land transferred to Lincoln County. Sam Lytle, a civil engineer and founder of Civil FX has created an impressive 3D video visualization of the general direction we desire to go with Little Ash Springs.
BLM officials have been helpful in providing feedback as we have met with them. They acknowledge the need to resolve the Little Ash problem. When we’re dealing with public lands, the process is slow and options are weighed against impact to the environment and wildlife. The Caliente Field Office applied for and received a grant to create a management plan and environmental assessment for the site. Basically this plan will decide the fate of Little Ash. The BLM will hire someone to analyze a series of options, one of them being our detailed proposal.
From there the local field manager will make a decision on which option the BLM will persue.
Friends of PV is playing a key role in this process. We are confident and excited that the plan we are creating will balance local needs with environmental concerns to make an enjoyable and well-managed site that will be an asset to our county.
We desire and welcome your feedback. We want to make sure the plan we create is something the community can get behind. We will be adding information, including how you can get involved, at our new website – friendsofpv.org.
President, Friends of Pahranagat Valley Corporation