The Ely Times

The Forest Service is looking for input on the Timber Creek Girl Scout Camp. 

The Timber Creek Girl Scout Camp is located in Timber Creek within the Duck Creek Basin on the Schell Creek Range located north of McGill, about 25 miles from Ely.

This camp area was originally set up under permit to the Girl Scouts and the camp was managed by the Girl Scouts for many years. 

In 2006, the site was accidentally included within wilderness under the White Pine County Lands Bill, which created major issues for managing the site.  

About five years ago, the Girl Scouts requested to be released from the permit.  The Forest Service granted that request and the management of the camp reverted back to the Forest Service.  According to what Forest Service, about one year ago, congress passed a bill with a provision that adjusted the High Schells Wilderness boundary. The camp is no longer within the wilderness which provides opportunities to determine future management. 

A beautiful location that sits at an elevation of 8,500 feet. Visitors to the area enjoy hiking, horseback riding, fishing and off-road vehicle riding, among other activities. 

Surrounded by a dense forest of Engelmann spruce, ascent and white fir trees that provide ample shade and beautiful fall color makes it a picturesque setting for a wedding, family reunion, or retreat of any kind. 

The camp has a number of buildings some of which have fallen into disrepair.  There are two old outhouses that are no longer functioning.  The site is in a beautiful high elevation setting, however, it needs a lot of work to be useable again.    

The Forest Service does not currently have a plan, just ideas and possible options.  So, they are leaning to the public for thoughts and ideas.  

Initial proposals and suggestions include the Forest Service issuing a Special Use Permit to a third party to manage and operate the Timber Creek Girl Scout Camp as an organizational camp similar to White Pine County’s Camp Success. Organizations could include state, local, tribal governments, non-profit or service organizations.  

The down-side to this option is that there is a lot of work to be done.  The site needs new vault toilets, the water system needs to be reconstructed and other repairs are needed.  Any group that would be interested would need the funding or horsepower to take this on and maintain it long term.

Another suggestion is that the Forest Service could retain management of the site. Funding could be acquired through the Southern Nevada Public Lands Managemenct Act (SNPLMA) or other sources to complete the work that needs to occur on the site. 

 A project like this would likely take 2-5 years to complete.  Once that is done, the site would need to be managed as a large group site associated with the Timber Creek campground.  Reservations would be made  for a fee for family reunions, weddings, retreats, groups and other similar events.  

The Forest Service would maintain management and maintenance responsibilities.

The last option, which is the least favorable to the Forest Service is that the Forest Service would remove the structures and rehab the site to its natural setting.  

Thoughts, comments and ideas on this issue are encouraged.  Comments must be received by April 17, 2020.  Comments can be emailed to jose.noriega@usda.gov, or by contacting 775-289-5129.