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Shoshone plan vehicle access raises concerns

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CODY, Wyo. (AP) — Environmental groups say they object to a plan that could allow more vehicles within the boundaries of Shoshone National Forest.

A draft final management plan for the forest would open up some 50,000 acres of roadless areas to snowmobiles and off-road vehicles. Forest officials released the plan in January.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports the plan will establish the rules for the national forest for the next two decades.

Groups including the Greater Yellowstone Coalition say the possibility of more vehicles in prime elk, bighorn sheep and grizzly bear habitat is troubling.

Proponents of vehicle access say any increase in vehicle use would be modest and no threat to the forest. Forest officials say the change wouldn't necessarily result in more vehicles but opens up that possibility in the future.

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Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, www.trib.com

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