Interest To The Off Road Community
Headlines Dated January/February
Ditch Effort for Paragon Adventure Park
article about this past weekend's ride.
The Petition To Save Paragon Adventure Park
Let the voices
of the off-road community be heard, sign your name to the growing petition list
to save Paragon Adventure Park. There are already over 6,000 signatures! The power
of this petition may help the Knosps to raise political support to find a new
location for the park.
County, MN To Get a New 85 Mile ATV Trail
It's not all bad news about OHV places. A new 85-mile OHV trail has been approved
by Aitkin County officials and and the Minnesota DNR. The new trail will link
with existing trails, giving OHV riders almost 500 miles of trails to ride in
northern Aitkin County and southern Itasca County.
Forest Service Says It Wants To Do Better - Yeah Right!
by negative press about campground closures, as well as criticism from conservation
activists about a lack of public involvement in the process, the US Forest Service
says it wants to do better. In one of his last acts as chief of the Forest Service,
Bosworth has tapped a national review team to gauge the effectiveness of citizen
participation in the recreation facility planning process. He charged the national
team to conduct a thorough review and make recommendations by April 2, 2007. For
the next 60 days, according to a Forest Service spokesman, no national forest
will make any decisions about what recreational facilities will be closed, kept
open or changed to meet public needs. Asked how the the recreation facility planning
program came about, a spokesman said it was an internal initiative, neither prompted
by Congress or the Bush administration. They intended to use the program to shut
down areas deemed "unprofitable" or undesirable (defined by who?).
bad could the land closures get? The Forest Service manages about 15,000 camping
areas and other recreational sites on 155 national forests and 193 million acres
of public lands. The agency is imposing a for-profit model on all of those sites.
An example of what we're looking at is in Oregon's Deschutes National Forest,
where only 14 out of 212 existing developed recreation sites would remain open
and free to public use according to research by the Western Slope No-Fee Coalition.
All the rest will be shut down, turned over to concessionaires or kept open as
fee sites, he said. In Colorado, half of the 140 campgrounds and other facilities
in the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison national forests face closure. The
US Forest Service spokesman acknowledged that in the face of mounting criticism
and press attention, it was time to figure out how public participation in the
process might be best improved. How about this you wads? Cut out all of the bureaucratic
fat in Washington DC and use the money to run National lands!
of Recreation Forums To Be Held This Spring With the American Recreation Coalition
and the US Forest Service
In order for outdoor enthusiasts to keep their right to enjoy and use public lands
and waterways, a series of recreation forums will be held throughout the country
this spring. A series of Recreation Forums convened by the American Recreation
Coalition (ARC) and the National Forest Foundation in conjunction with the US
Forest Service and other agencies and partners will be held throughout the country
this Spring. Forums will be conducted in Golden, CO, Marietta, GA, Los Angeles,
CA, Portland, OR and Chicago, IL. The Regional Forums will produce information
and a listing of suggestions and recommendations for a national Recreation Forum
in Washington, DC, in April 2007. If you live in one of these areas please go
and be heard!
Mean Big Business In Canada Just Like Here in the USA
economic impact study commissioned by The Canadian Off-Highway Vehicle Distributors
Council (COHV) reported that in 2005, Canadians spent $3.3 billion on activities
directly involving 975,000 operating All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs). The largest
share of expenditures, 25.4%, was for acquisition of new ATVs, and, second and
just a little less, 24.9%, was spent on accommodations and meals outside the home.
Only a bureaucrat would spend good hard earned money on a study to prove something
that has been proven a hundred times before. ATVs are good for the economy and
provide good tourist dollars for riding areas; that's a fact no one can dispute.
County, Utah Officials Take on the BLM!
by the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) emergency order restricting off-highway
vehicle (OHV) travel in the popular Factory Butte area, the Wayne County commissioners
have proposed an amendment to the county's general plan that would basically trounce
the BLM's new rules by allowing cross-country OHV use in the area, which is located
east of Capitol Reef National Park. The proposed draft reads "Open, cross-country
OHV recreation is a firmly established recreational activity and an important
cultural value for a large segment of the citizens of Wayne County." The county's
intent according to the draft is to preserve the open and unrestricted nature
of cross-country travel that has existed historically in the Factory Butte area.
The BLM closed most of the land to OHV use citing threats to two endangered species
of cactus. Last fall the BLM began a new off-road policy for the area limiting
OHV use to 220 miles of designated trails and a 2,600-acre "OHV zone" known as
Swing Arm City. The entire Factory Butte area comprises almost 200,000 acres.
According to the Utah Shared Access Alliance, "The county has a duty and
even a fiduciary responsibility to protect the interests of their citizens." We
Mentality - You Tell Them J.!
forum letter posted at the Salt Lake Tribune tells it like it is!
Happening With Paragon Adventure Park!
article in the Times Leader spells it out. Basically the landowner has been offered
$9K an acre for 2,500 acres of the 4,300 acre property. That's a cool $22,500,000
for the landowner, PCA Corp. Paragon Adventure Park's opponents have announced
a press conference where they will reportedly go over the details of the planned
project. The plans are said to call for an air cargo facility that could create
approximately 5,000 directly-related jobs and more than $100 million in investments,
and that the project could lead to another 100,000 created jobs by businesses
that would relocate close to the airport. One of the only things standing in the
way of this prosperous project is the 25-year lease that Overland Enterprises,
owner of Paragon Adventure Park, has with the landowner, PCA Corp. The landowners
are suing Overland and its President, Kyle Knosp, for breach of lease. Simply
put they want Overland out of there! Mr. Knosp said that he is being bullied into
giving up the lease so the landowner can make a huge profit on the property sale.
Attorney Jill Moran, representing the landowner, has stated that Mr. Knosp failed
to make rent payments and failed to provide financial and insurance information
to the landowner's agents as was called for in the lease. She went onto say that
Overland also damaged the land by cutting tress and paths, and digging ditches.
The killer here may be the insurance that Paragon was to carry. The rumor has
been that a number of off-road parks have lost their insurance coverage the past
few years. If Paragon lost theirs, the cause may be lost.
Forest Service Abusing the Recommended Wilderness Areas programs?!
This Blue Ribbon Coalition article brings you up to date on how the northwest
US Forest Service agents are planning on robbing us of our public lands by use
of this program. The most important quote of the article is "sadly, the Northern
Region of the US Forest Service seems to think they, not Congress, have the authority
to manage these lands -- as Wilderness! New Forest Plans state that Raw will now
become closed to all motorized use, including winter snowmobile use." The
forest service is yielding power it is not authorized to use as designation of
"Wilderness" is supposed to be left to Congress and the American citizens
not some cheese-head bureaucrat!
should you care? New Forest Plans, under the guidance of the Northern Region Forester,
dictate that large areas of the 25 million acres managed by US Forest Service
Region 1 (Northern Region), which are public national forest and grasslands in
Montana, North Dakota, northeast Washington, northern Idaho, and northwest South
Dakota, will be classified as RWAs and be closed all forms of motorized recreation.
National Forest (WY) Management Plans - Is Bad News On The Horizon?
According to Forest
Officials preliminary options for management of the Shoshone National Forest range
from creating five new wilderness areas to none, and from no new road construction
to some road building. These officials are outlining the various scenarios in
a series of meetings in Jackson Hole, Thermopolis, Dubois and Lander.
According to one
of the forest service staff, they are just showing people where we they are in
the planning process. They say that they are not done yet, but based on what we've
seen from other supposed plan meetings and the result, I wouldn't bet the house
on that. They go onto say that there are a lot of things not in the plans yet,
but they want to give folks an idea of what the plan is going to look like. If
its not done or anywhere near completion then why hold the meeting. I believe
it is their plan to just wear people down to not care and give up. The forest
officials hope to develop a more extensive plan that is 80 to 90 percent complete
for another round of public meetings targeted to be held in February. Then, the
public will be given almost six weeks to provide feedback on the plan and a follow-up
meeting in April. Then a draft revised plan will be released in June, followed
by a 90-day comment period for interested groups and individuals to officially
present their concerns before the final plan is selected. Two of the more important
issues are roadless areas and recreation. In its current state, the draft plan
offers three options with land uses designated to address these issues. The options
were reportedly created based on information received from public meetings last
October and November. To no
one's surprise one of the options will place more land in wilderness designation,
thereby eliminating any motorized use there. This appears to be just one more
slap in the face to the OHV community waiting to happen.
Adventure Park In Fight For It's Life
to Paragon's owner: "currently Paragon and PCA Corporation (land owner) is
in legal dispute over our lease agreement for this property. We have done everything
within our powers to honor our agreements with the land holding company, but they
are trying to evict us from the premesis so they can sell the property. We are
still in business and will remain in business as long as possible and we are fighting
this with every measure available."
else can we say other than this really stinks! Paragon is reportedly in the 3rd
year of a 25 year lease with the landowners, and they decide well we want to sell
it right now so we're going to try and put the screws to you! It is just not right!
Forests and Grasslands Could See Large Closures!
federal government and bureaucrats at work against you! Read this article
and the one right below if you want to understand what is really going on with
the Federal Government's new Recreation Site Facility Master Planning fiasco for
our national lands! The US Forest Service is planning to cut their $346 million
maintenance backlog by 20 percent by 2010, 70 percent by 2015 and 90 percent by
2020. How will they do this? By shutting down a lot of facilities. Many critics
are saying that the Forest Service is sneaking the process through with very little
if any public involvement. The end result will be a lot less access to forests
and fewer recreational opportunities. Read on to become outraged.
Really Informed Editorial Regarding the Recreation Site Facility Master Planning
this article if you read nothing else this year! Written by Robert Funkhouser,
President of the Western
Slope No-Fee Coalition Group, this commentary goes into the nuts and bolts
of how the USDA-Forest Service is using the Recreation Site Facility Master Planning
(RSFMP) program to gut our National Forest program here in the USA. Mr. Funkhouse's
article contains numerous facts that will enlighten you and point out the true
end result. The Forest Service is trying to tell us that they aren't getting nearly
enough money to run all of the national forests and grasslands, while their funding
has increased 22% over the last 10 years. What's the real problem? While funding
has gone up, more and more of it has gone to support the forest service bureaucrats
in Washington DC and not the forests themselves! According to one study, less
than 20% of the funding gets to the forests. The Western Slope No-Fee Coalition
estimates that RSFMP will close or decommission between 3,000 and 5,000 recreation
sites. Many of these sites will be gated and will no longer be accessible. Closures
already have begun on some forests, with little or no public notice. So has decommissioning,
including the removal of drinking water systems, picnic tables, toilets and fire
rings. Thousands of other sites are slated for increased fees, new fees and reduced
operating seasons. RSFMP focuses on the Forest Service's developed recreation
program, including trailheads, day-use areas, lake and river access points and
campgrounds. But similar policies are being embedded in forest Travel Management
Plans and will bring the same approach to hiking, biking and equestrian trails,
OHV areas and even roads. In other words, lots of closures and restricted use
for these activities. All being done as quietly and secretively as possible. Folks
we need everyone to write their congressional and senate representatives and voice
their outrage about this now. Before it is to late! Fire the bureaucrats!
your Congress Rep here and Senate
Rep here. Write to them now and tell them the US Forest Service's RSFMP
program is not for us.
Management Open House For The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest (WI) on Jan.
National Forest will be hosting five open houses in January to present information
related to this new rule. The rule, which moves the forest to designate a system
of roads and trails for OHV use and prohibits their use in any other areas of
the forest. According to a forest spokesperson this open house provides the public
an opportunity to interact with
Forest Service personnel, ask questions and learn more about the Travel Management
Rule, and to offer their input regarding the forest's travel route plans. The open house is scheduled for
Wednesday, Jan. 31 at the Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center, Ashland. A presentation
at 6-6:45 p.m. will be followed by the open house 6:45-8 p.m. For more information,
call Ms. Suzanne Flory at (715) 362-1354. Wisconsin OHV folks need to attend this
meeting to make sure our voices are heard!
Gear and Accessories Tips and Tricks
ATV's, are small motor
vehicles with large tires used of transportation or racing across off-road terrain.
All Terrain Vehicles are controlled with motorcycle hand controls. The ATV's are
a fun and exciting way to experience the wilderness, and can be a useful means
of transportation in rural settings. The ATV has gained huge popularity because
of its versatility. So there
are many different types of ATV's nowadays from companies such as Honda, Polaris,
Kawasaki, Suzuki, Yamaha, and Arctic Cat. There is a variety of models and varying
engine sizes for the different outdoor activities like racing, hunting and camping.
and Public Use of Forests
opinion letter coming out against the ATV crowd. This one is from Minnesota. The
author is specifically stating that ATV use and a good-quality non-motorized experience
are not compatible. But it is reported that the writer, Matt Norton, is the staff
attorney for the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy. Gosh I wonder if
that is an environmental group that is totally against
OHV use and this is their tactic to seem somewhat reasonable to gain more ground.
That is after all their tactics! They'll appear reasonable to gain cooperation
and once they've maxed out those results then they turn to extremes and the the
courts. On top of that, he's siting statistics that are 4 years old. Things have
changed dramatically in the past 4 years!
Page In The Epic Surprise Canyon Battle!
October of 2006 San Bernardino County launched a new skirmish in the old fight,
using an 1866 law to claim it owns most of the roads within Mojave National Preserve.
The county in October sued the US Department of the Interior, seeking title to
14 roads within the preserve. The county says that it would like to have a guarantee
that the network of roads across the preserve could not be arbitrarily closed
or excessively restricted. In its response filed Tuesday (January 2007), the federal
government denies the county's claims and asks the court to dismiss the suit.
According to a Greenie attorney, Utah and some counties have viewed R.S. 2477
not as a shield to protect public access, but as a sword to defeat protection
of land and water. The sky is falling, they'll lay waste to everything!! How can
you listen to these people any more. They'll say anything to further their cause.
(AZ) To Host An Attempt at the "World Record ATV Parade" on February
down on the page to see the blurb about the event. Fore more information call
928-916-0657. Read about their first attempt in 2006.
Changes To ATV Law in WV Goes Down
The proposed ATV safety law
that had many folks concerned and would have caused problems for many West Virginia
towns with connectors to the Hatfield-McCoy Trails System did not make it out
of an interim committee. The committee rejected the proposed ATV safety bill by
the slimmest of margins, six to five. If it had passed through committee it would
have been up for consideration when the legislative session began. The bill would
have prohibited anyone under 18 from riding an ATV on paved roads; allowed all
counties to regulate ATV use (pass their own set of laws); prohibited any passengers
on ATVs unless the manufacturer instructions allowed them and would have created
an ATV incident form for police to use when gathering information about accidents.
As many of you know, we
were against the legislation for a number of reasons. The primary one being a
potentially different of laws for each and every county. If the state wants to
regulate ATV use, it needs to grow a backbone and propose a set of rules for statewide
enforcement. At least make it easy on everyone to be informed.
ATVers Charged With Riding In Off Limits Area of the Jefferson National Forest
ATV riders accused of riding through national forest land face up to 50 federal
charges in what officials call an illustration of an escalating problem. A US
Forest Service representative stated that illegal ATV use has overtaken illegal
dumping (dumping of garbage) as the national forests' top enforcement issue. This
certainly doesn't help our image! First time offenders that get caught riding in the national forest illegally,
don't have to go to court. They simply pay a fine of around $150. The second time
offenders face a much bigger punishment! They have to appear in federal court
and could be fined up to $5,000 or six months in jail.
Negative Article About ATVs - This one In South Carolina
To Open Two Parks For ATV Riders
ATV enthusiasts took to the streets in the past protesting delays in the promises
of an ATV park. Their protest efforts were not in vain; their efforts lead to
the state promising to open two off-road vehicle parks, one temporary and one
permanent, in Collier County. Political activism works. We just need to do it
more often! Now what about the full-size rig folks?!
National Forest Has A Proposal To Restrict OHV Use
off-road in the Dixie National Forest in Utah will be restricted to authorized
roads, trails or other specific areas if a proposed motorized travel plan is approved
by federal officials later this year. According to a spokesman for the Dixie National
Forest team, this is a proposed plan and now they want to hear from the public.
Off road enthusiasts now its time for you to be heard!
ATV Licensing For South Dakota
Governor Mike Round's task force began work Monday on a new law that may require
licenses for more than 60,000 ATVs in South Dakota! The new law also could lead
to license fees, taxes and/or other “funding mechanisms” to pay for off-road trails,
including a major trail system being proposed for the Black Hills.
Important Off-Road and OHV Articles