Plans to mine in the headwaters of some of the most pristine streams in the region could be short-circuited by a federal move to withdraw the areas in question from mining activities.
Earlier this summer, the Bureau of Land Management published its intention to close off lands around tributaries of the Smith and other rivers in Curry and Del Norte Counties.
The announcement triggered a comment period that closes soon, after a pair of public meetings.
The Smith River Alliance supports the withdrawal proposal.
Grant Werschkull from the alliance tells us of the meetings and the timeline ahead.