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Important Information Regarding Bagby Hot Springs

The American Association for Nude Recreation (AANR) has been working with volunteers over the last several weeks regarding nudists being cited for merely being nude at Bagby Hot Springs in the Mt. Hood National Forest. In addition to at least two known citations, numerous other individuals have been threatened with citation for merely being nude in public at the Bagby Hot Springs.

Information has been related to the nudist public by those outside AANR that the United States Forest Service (USFS) officials do not have an “order” granting them the authority to cite for nudity at Bagby. The situation is unfortunately not quite so clear-cut. An apparently valid order has been in place regarding the prohibition of nudity, subject to limitations, in the Mt. Hood National Forest of which Bagby Hot Springs is a part since July 1992. However, as recently as August 5, 2009, the USFS, on its official Web site, has stated that nudity is allowed in the immediate area of the hot springs but not in the “developed” area adjacent to the hot springs. This is NOT what nudists are being told by Forest Service employees on the site.

We confess to being puzzled as to the change in the enforcement policy, as for decades the USFS has had a practice at Bagby that has been not one of prohibition but of support and management of nudity at the hot springs that did not result in citations or threats of citation in the hot spring area.

AANR is actively working to attempt to reverse this change in practice. An AANR team is working at a local level as well as at a national level to quickly resolve this situation.

However, we need your help. Numerous volunteers have stepped forward and have been supplying us with information regarding the day-by-day circumstances at Bagby. In addition, we could use a clear picture of the signs that showed management of nudity at the hot springs that existed prior to the change in practice there. If these signs are still posted we need that documented. If the signs have been taken down, any information as to when this happened would be helpful.

We also need to know if you have had any additional contact with Forest Service employees that may shed light on what brought about this change in practice as well as any ongoing information that is relevant. This information should be forwarded to your regional Public Land Liaison Shirley Gauthier at sherbog@msn.com

The USFS has historically, while giving autonomy to its local districts, closely followed local and state laws in these areas. Given the nudist friendly laws in Oregon and the statements posted on the USFS official site, we are hopeful that this will work in our favor in resolving this issue.

However, in the meantime, INDIVIDUALS DO RISK CITATION FOR MERELY BEING NUDE IN ANY DEVELOPED AREA IN THE MT. HOOD NATIONAL FOREST. THIS IS CURRENTLY BEING INTERPRETED BY THE OFFICALS ON THE SCENE AS INCLUDING BAGBY HOT SPRINGS THEMSELVES.

Updates will follow, as information is available. Thank you in advance for your assistance.

Respectfully,

Steve Hubbard, Public Land Liaison

American Association for Nude Recreation

steve@nearlybare.com                                    

(Please see the Order Occupancy and Use of Mt. Hood National Forest below.)

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