Crow Wing County Invites Public Input on Forest Assessment

Comment period closes October 1st


(Brainerd, MN) – The Crow Wing County Land Services Department invites public comment on the High Conservation Value Forest Assessment.


As a next step in its certification achievement, the County is completing a process to identify its High Conservation Value Forests, in conjunction with its Recreational Trails Comprehensive Plan process. This strategic long term planning effort will become an effective tool for County resource managers to identify future recreational opportunities and meet the forest management objectives to protect, enhance and restore High Conservation Value Forests. The FSC certification standard includes a process for identifying, managing and monitoring high conservation value forest areas, including old-growth forests, water source protection areas or cultural and historic sites and this process is helping inform the comprehensive trails plan.


Kirk Titus, Land Services Department Supervisor for Public Land Management said, “The HCVF assessment reinforces our commitment to sustainable forestry and has identified several special and unique areas within our land base. Through this process, we can effectively manage, protect and enhance these natural resources.”


The Land Services Department manages 103,000 acres of tax-forfeit land for timber production and diverse recreational opportunities for County residents and visitors. Since 2008, these lands have been third-party certified and recognized as responsibly managed.  A requirement of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification standard is the completion of a High Conservation Value Forest (HCVF) Assessment. The Comprehensive Recreation Trails Plan and HCVF assessment will help address the challenges of land management  while planning for quality long term recreation experiences. The HCVF process includes four parts:  an assessment of forest resources, public consultation, management planning, and monitoring.


Titus noted, “Our mission is to be responsible stewards of the land, and use the best forest management practices to sustain a healthy, diverse and productive forest for future generations. Forest certification will help us achieve this important management mission.”


The draft assessment, available for public review, outlines the requirements of the assessment and the high conservation values that are included in the FSC standard.  The written assessment is available to download online and can be viewed at the Land Services Department offices. The 60-day public comment period closes October 1st.


Comments on the High Conservation Value Forest Assessment should be directed to:


HCVF Comments
c/o Dovetail Partners
528 Hennepin Ave, Suite 202
Minneapolis, MN 55403
612-333-0430 (tel)
612-333-0432 (fax) (email)


The Crow Wing County High Conservation Value Forest Assessment can be downloaded at:



More information about the assessment and planning process is available at: