CUSTER - Black Hills National Forest officials are asking the public to avoid parking in front of closed Forest gates.

Gates are closed to provide a seasonal refuge for wildlife, protect road surfaces and other resources, and provide for public safety as some of the roads are converted into part of the snowmobile trail in the winter.

Parking has increased in some areas due to the start of hunting season across the Black Hills National Forest.

“Forest employees may be working behind the closed gate and are unable to exit the area if a vehicle has parked in front of the gate,” said Scott Jacobson, Public Affairs Officer, Black Hills National Forest.

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As a safety reminder, use caution when driving on forest system roads and carry extra supplies. “It is a good idea to let someone know when you expect to return from the woods as well,” said Jacobson.

For more information on the Black Hills National Forest, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/blackhills, follow the Forest on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/blackhillsnf or Twitter: https://twitter.com/BlackHillsNF

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