Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Help Donstradamus Decide on Issuing Predictions for 2012

Donstradamus

This was updated (in bold) Dec. 29, 2011 to gauge the accuracy of Donstradamus' 2011
predictions made in Dec. 2010.  Please comment if you think Donstradamus should quit making
predictions or if he should continue - Thanks!


10- A pro-access Democrat congressman will switch to the GOP once House oversight hearings on Travel Management and other land closures are scheduled in mid-January 2011.  Several DEMs did vote for H.R. 242 to address the closure of level 3 roads in Region 5 - Pretty close

9 - A new OHV-oriented Luddite movement spreads across several western states. Dirt-bikers throw GPS units away and use maps instead. They leave cell phones at home when they go on trail rides with their buddies. Several guys I ride with have gone back to using maps when directions are needed - Sorta close


8 - Snowmobile sales spike due to heavy snowfall in the Winter of 2011. Environmentalists blame the high snow levels on global cooling that they claim is a byproduct of global warming. An ISMA June 2011 news release stated OSV sales were up 5% in the USA and greens still blame use global warming as main reason for any weather events - Dead on

7 - An all-electric OHV Park will be sited near a major population center in the USA. Left-wing eco-groups should applaud the facility, but complain instead.  Electric OHV parks are being talked about - Sorta Close

6 - Good News – Green mountain-bikers will finally get their long-time wish for a “Wilderness Area” that allows mountain bikes. Bad News – It is only 20 acres in size and riders must dismount when going downhill to reduce soil impacts. I believe one of the "Wilderness Bills" (maybe Testers') gave mountain bikers one or two trails as a bone (cherry-stemmed in the Wilderness proposal) - Sorta Close

5 - A new upstart political party that supports pro-trail legislators and policies will become an important factor in the 2012 elections. There is a new OHV trail polticial action committee, but effectiveness depends on OHV support - Close

4 - Federal land agencies allow OHVs to be used to treat invasive plant species such as the European Beach Grass at the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area and other coastal sites. The agencies rotate OHV use similar to how farmers rotate goatherds to manage unwanted vegetation.  The FS may consider allowing OHVs to "manage" some of the small pine tree "islands."  - Pretty close 

3- Diesel powered dual sport motorcycles long favored by the military are offered to the public in a civilian version as a way to help motorcyclists save on fuel costs. No info - Miss

2 - A MX superstar from the 1980s quits his unhealthy lifestyle. He adopts a vegan diet and trains for 5 months under the direction of Jillian from the Biggest Loser TV series. He places 2nd at the Hangtown MX race held near Sacramento. No info - Miss


1- A former motorcycle-racing champion wants to give back to the sport and donates $300,000 dollars to a national off-road advocacy group to help keep trails open.  No info on such a donation - Miss 
 
# # #

Thursday, December 23, 2010

HQ on Holiday R&R Dec. 23-Jan. 2

The General will be taking some time off to be with his family from Dec. 23 to Jan. 3.  Will reopen HQ on Jan. 3.  Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  FYI for those of you who wanted to see the FS official response back to BRC about the reinstatement of the 2" rain rule... I have posted that FS letter below:

FS Dec. 20 Letter to BRC
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/Mendocino_Rainfall_response_to_Dec_14_letter0001.pdf

I hope to hear from some of you who go up and enjoy Stonyford over the Holidays.

Merry Christmas,

Don

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Thoughts from HQ on Christmas, New Years, and the OHV Struggle

The Trails You Take in Life are Important
 - Don Amador

The Recreation HQ wants to wish all its readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. The General believes that OHV may be starting to turn the corner in the land-use fight.


Sure, there have been some setbacks such as the “cost recovery” issue that effectively stopped a number of historic enduros held in the Sierra Nevada, CCMA remains closed, enviros filed new “Subpart A” lawsuits against the FS in CA, NV, and ID, and non-street legal and street-legal OHVs have been banned on many historic trails (i.e. unauthorized routes) and forest roads.

However, looking on the bright side OHV does have some good news. Here are just a few: BRC legal and partners got the court to rule against the closures in the Little Belts Travel Plan; a stipulation was signed on the Six Rivers National Forest case to help stop illegal road ripping; a potential disaster in the So Cal Roadless case was averted because of OHV legal involvement; OHV leaders encouraged the FS to hold off implementation of Subpart A in Region 5 and elsewhere, BRC legal and partners successfully intervened in the ongoing Eldorado NF lawsuit and the new Subpart A lawsuit on the Stanislaus NF; and OHMVR is working on its own asbestos study that could help in the fight to reopen CCMA. OHV/BRC legal and partners argued before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and it was captured on video -- and they did a darn good job!

There are many other good news items such as the fact that Carnegie SVRA (under threat of a court ordered closure last Christmas) is still open. Also, the Mendocino National Forest just went back to its old “2 inch rain policy” so that it would not be closed all winter by an ill-advised ad hoc “extended rain closure” policy. And, the Shasta Trinity National Forest has not yet published its MVUM, which is the implementation tool for the TMR FEIS/ROD. HQ believes that Forest wants to work with the OHV community and develop a real program with an official OHV trail coordinator that will work on post Subpart B project level trail efforts. There are other good news stories too.

Finally, a lot of you got involved in the political process this election cycle. While OHVers may not have gotten the results they wanted in CA, OR, NV, and WA, the off-road voter did help boot out anti-OHV legislators in other states on November 2 and we now have pro-OHV and pro-access chairmen in various House committees.

HQ believes that 2011 will be very busy on the land-use front and encourages the OHV community to stay engaged and be of good cheer. There are sure to be a lot of ongoing and new battles that we must fight. However, HQ believes there is a light at the end of the tunnel and looks forward to celebrating many new victories with my friends next year.

There are too many partners to thank and name in the above issues, but you know who you are and I appreciate your support, friendship, and commitment.  All of the above victories and ongoing fights are a TEAM effort.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

The General
PS – Now enjoy some time with your family… That’s an order!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Official Quiet Warrior Racing "Less dBA =s More Trails" T-Shirt Up for Auction



3 day auction on eBay for offiicial Quiet Warrior Racing "Less dBA = More Trails" T-Shirt.  You bid will help support the land-use work of The Quiet Warrior.  Thanks for bidding and Merry Christmas.  This size is XL.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Quiet-Warrior-Racing-Less-dBA-More-Trails-T-Shirt-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem1c18076fd5QQitemZ120662224853QQptZApparelQ5fMerchandise

Thanks,

Don

Another OHV Christmas Miracle - 2" Rain Policy Reinstated on Mendocino NF

Reinstated  2" Rain Policy on 2009 MVUM

HQ believes in and celebrates Christmas as a special time where hearts are changed and miracles happen. One such miracle happened late last week when the Mendocino National Forest reinstated the time-proven 30-year old “2-inch” rain closure rule.


Beginning in late October after the new “it’s closed all the time during winter” rain closure was put into effect, HQ and BRC started to get a lot of calls from riders complaining about the OHV trail networks at Upper Lake and Stonyford being closed for extended period of time.

Nov. 29 blog with overview and link to Nov. 15 BRC letter to FS stating concerns about the new extended time-period rain closures (good overview)
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/11/new-mendocino-nf-wet-weather-ohv-policy.html

HQ understood the FS had placed this issue under review but it appeared to be progressing at slow pace. Last week, HQ and BRC became concerned that the issue would not be resolved before the Holiday camping season started on the Mendocino where the “Fouts Springs OHV Camping Area” becomes the largest city in Colusa County. Often there are 3-5 thousand family campers staged in that complex with kids of all ages enjoying their new or newly purchased used OHVs.

In the meantime, HQ continued to be deluged with emails and phone calls from frustrated and angry OHVers (including motorcycle dealers, enduro riders, BRC/AMA/D36 members, riders who were not members of any club, and even former FS staff).

Based on those concerns HQ and BRC ramped up their communications with agency leadership urging  they expedite the decision-making process so the OHV community could enjoy the Forest over the holidays. On December 14, BRC sent a letter to the FS that made a formal request for the agency to reinstate the historic and NEPA compliant 2-inch rain rule so that the OHV holiday season would not be ruined for thousands of recreationists.

BRC December 14 Letter Making Formal Request to Reinstate the 2” Rain Closure Policy
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/Contreras_rain_dec_14.pdf

HQ and BRC commend the Forest for working hard last week to wade through the red tape so that the 2-inch rule could be reinstated on December 17. BRC also commends the agency for using the site-specific Remote Automated Weather Station (RAWS) at Bartlett Springs for the Upper Lake OHV Area and Fouts/MNFO3 for Stonyford. HQ urges riders to monitor these RAWS for themselves. And, please sign up for FS email alerts for closures with Tamara (her info is below).

Bartlett Springs RAWS for Upper Lake OHV Area
http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/mesowest/getobext.php?sid=BLTC1&table=1&banner=off

MNF03/Fouts RAWS for Stonyford
http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/mesowest/getobext.php?sid=TS378&table=1&banner=off

GET ON HER EMAIL LIST!

Tamara Schmidt
Public Affairs Officer
Mendocino National Forest
825 N. Humboldt Ave.
Willows, CA 95988
Email: tamaraschmidt@fs.fed.us
Phone Number: 530-934-1137

It is also important to remember when FS System Trails are closed by the 2-inch rule, that FS System Roads remain open for public use by hunters, woodcutters, and OHV riders. If you have any questions about rain closures be sure and call ahead before you travel up there. In addition, the FS still has the authority to issue a temporary emergency closure order (that supercedes the 2-inch rule) should the area be hit with a catastrophic rain event, wildfire, or some other natural disaster.

HQ will remain open until Congress goes home and the holidays begin. We wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy OHV New Year!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

MUST SEE LEGAL OHV TV - BRC/MIC/TWS Counsel Argue Before the 9th Circuit

Stop and Watch OHV Court TV

It’s not often that riders get to see an OHV “legal football game” on TV. However, in BRC’s News Release today you will see OHV attorneys and counsel from The Wilderness Society argue before the U.S 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in what the HQ feels is an important case.


BRC News Release on en banc review
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=717&filter=media

MUST SEE OHV TV - 25 Minute Video with BRC’s Paul Turcke/Lead Counsel and MIC/SVIA’s Paul Gale/Friend of the Court, and Megan Anderson/The Wilderness Society
http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/media/view_subpage.php?pk_vid=0000006124

In the 9th Circuit it has been hard at times for “conservative” interests (i.e. OHV, timber, businesses, etc.) to intervene in environmental lawsuits. Often those conservative interests are only given “limited intervenor status" instead of full intervenor status. Instead of having a seat at the table during discussions and more importantly during the remedy phase negotiations of the suit -- those conservative groups have been told to sit at the back of the legal bus and only given minor roles.

Having been in federal court a number of times with Turcke and other attorneys (both OHV and green), I found this 25-minute video highly fascinating. The General thought Turcke did an excellent job of giving the court his perspective from the trenches on why full intervenor status is important. HQ thought Gale gave the court a good historical perspective on this issue.

On the other hand, I did not think the court was overly impressed with Anderson’s somewhat nuanced presentation.

It’s hard to predict what the court will decide. However, riders can be assured that BRC legal and friends are out there on the judicial football field engaged in timely and effective legal actions to preserve and protect continued OHV access to public lands.

Thanks for your service and support!

PS: I know BRC would appreciate a donation to help support this case. If you are able, please donate to this case which stemmed out of the original Sawtooth NF lawsuit.  Go online and in the contribution instructions type in "Sawtooth Lawsuit en banc review"

DONATE HERE
https://www.sharetrails.org/secure/join_or_contribute/?c=1

An OHV Christmas Miracle - A Case Study in Perseverance


QUOTE OF THE DAY

Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after another. ~Walter Elliott, The Spiritual Life

Many of us fondly remember the original “Miracle on 34th Street” movie (I did not like the remakes). The Recreation HQ believes that OHV may have its own version of that movie for this Christmas called the “Miracle on the Gasquet-Orleans Road.”

Triplicate Article on Miracle
http://www.triplicate.com/20101213110976/News/Local-News/Forest-access-deal-may-end-suit

HQ riders have been following the recent developments of the stipulation signed by the court regarding the Six Rivers NF lawsuit that addressed ad hoc road ripping without public notification and an unfair MVUM that had closed several important jeep trails.

BRC News Release on Stipulation
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=715&filter=media

HQ Blog with History and Overview of Six Rivers Case
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/12/ohv-legal-effort-takes-forward-step.html

The General believes that this tactical suit was key in bringing the environmental groups to the table. I don’t think the collaborative stakeholder process would have successfully resolved the issues surrounding several important and historic jeep trails (or the ad hoc closing of routes) without the litigation.

Is this lawsuit an OHV version of the Normandy Invasion? No. However, it is a key battle in OHV Wars and one that is worth the fight.

Thanks for your service and Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Stonyford/Fouts Springs Youth Correctional Facility in Omnibus Bill - Poll Included

Correctional Facility in Middle of Family Camping Area

HQ wanted to alert riders about S. 1571 (Deafy Glady/Fouts Springs Boys Ranch Land Exchange Bill) being in the current version of the Omnibus Lands Bill for 2010. It is found in Title XXXII – Land Conveyences and Exchanges


Here is history, letters, photo of the S. 1571 Issue
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/04/hearing-today-on-land-exchange-bill-at.html

The General on behalf of BRC has opposed this bill because it would transfer ownership of the 80-acre Fouts Youth Correctional Facility from the Forest Service to Solano County. While that may not seem like such a big deal, it could be devastating to the OHV program there because if the County decides to sell it (it has never been profitable) to an anti-OHV purchaser like Robert Redford… then OHV would be considered a non-compatible use and the area would be eventually closed. Remember that ALL land use decisions are political and an owner like Redford of Jane Fonda – with both financial and political power - would spell the end of OHV use there.

Let’s hope all the letters that BRC, AMA, ARRA, QWR, D36ers, CAL4, and Pirate4x4 members have sent will encourage GOP senators to block this Omnibus Bill.

Take Open Congress Poll on this Issue
http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-s1571/news_blogs


PS- Yes they do have escapees – Just had one get away during the WFO Enduro.  Not cool!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

QWR Sends Congrats to Arnold for Winning 2010 AMA Award


The Recreation HQ congratulates Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for winning the AMA’s 2010 Motorcyclist of the Year Award. Actually, if you read the following news release… this is one award he may not want.


AMA News Release on Arnold’s Award
http://www.ama-cycle.org/news/story.asp?id=2404

Unlike some years where a rider wins an award for having a positive impact on motorcycling, the award this year correctly takes Arnold to task for signing SB435 – the CA “sound reduction” bill.

Just like so many of Arnold’s recent endorsements of the far-left agenda, SB435 did not make sense as written, will do little if anything to reduce loud street bikes, and brings harm to the motorcycle industry and community.

Quiet Warrior Racing opposed SB435 early on and urged the legislature and Governor Schwarzenegger to oppose this goofy bill.

QWR SB435 Blog on Arnold Signing Bill
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/09/arnold-signs-sb-435-no-surprise.html


QWR SB 435 Alert to Send Letters to Arnold
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/09/action-alert-send-letter-today-to-ca.html


The General had high hopes for Arnold when he took office but when he started to embrace the radical environmental agenda of the left…those hopes were dashed. By signing SB435, Arnold has justly earned his place in motorcycle history. Congrats big guy!

OHV Legal Effort Takes Forward Step


Good news from HQ. Over the past several years, riders have asked why BRC does not file complaints instead of just intervening? Well, that is a complicated issue but to make it simple, it is harder than most realize to win against the federal government. Even green groups lose a lot of the time. And it is far more challenging for access interests to win OHV/access complaints against the federal government.

One reason is that current environmental law (ESA, CWA, etc) and the courts give a huge edge to suits filed by green groups. OHV does not have its version of ESA upon which to base a lawsuit. However, this case presented a rare opportunity to allege arbitrary road closures without a public process and that the MVUM was adopted without following proper procedure.

See BRC News Release on Legal Stipulation Approved by Court
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=715&filter=media

As some riders know, The General (on behalf of BRC) has been working on federal access issues on the CA North Coast since the late 1990s. One of those issues was the rumored Smith River NRA's habit of closing or permanently decommissioning roads without public notification. Also, HQ heard concerns
about a number of historic jeep trails that were closed in the recent MVUM.

To the agency's credit they convened a stakeholder group that was professionally facilitated by the Center for Collaborative Policy. The Center held the group's feet to the fire to participate in a substantive
manner to resolve access issues on a number of roads including 305.125 (see video)

Youtube of Jeep on 305.125 - "Let's keep it open."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2nU194f-ksU

HQ believes the collaborative process also helped the agency in its decision to inform the parties before it performs "ground-disturbing activities" to permanently remove a road from public use.

In OHV Wars this is one small step forward that we all should enjoy. Even my enviro friends should feel some pride that we collectively were able to sit down and hash out some very contentious issues in a civil manner.
 
Donate online (and in the contribution instructions space – type in “Six Rivers Lawsuit”

https://www.sharetrails.org/secure/join_or_contribute/?c=1

If you want to support the work of Don Amador as BRC Western Representative on projects like the Six Rivers to do the foot work in preparation of the administrative record (i.e. prep. for suit/appeals) etc., please go online below and type in “western rep. expenses” (that helps support my work at BRC)
https://www.sharetrails.org/secure/join_or_contribute/?c=1

Thanks for your service!

Monday, December 6, 2010

HQ Gives Kudos to Ryan Henson for Forest Service Award

The General wants to acknowledge his counterpart, Ryan Henson, from the conservation/environmental movement for receiving a well-earned award from the USDA Forest Service. Ryan, a policy director for the California Wilderness Coalition, was presented on November 30 with R5’s Regional Forester’s Award for “Partner of the Year.”


See Dec. 6 FS News Release on Henson Award
http://www.fs.fed.us/r5/news/2010/employee-awards.shtml

HQ has worked with Henson on a number of legislative issues including the 2006 North Coast Wilderness Bill (HR233), the new OHV program (SB742), and the Del Norte County/FS/User OHV Stakeholder Group. The General has also met with Henson to discuss strong pro-OHV/trail protections should the potential NCA designation for the Berryessa/Snow Mountain area ever come to fruition.

It’s not often HQ recognizes a representative from the environmental community since The General has found most of them to be disingenuous and not trustworthy. Unlike numerous enviros I have worked with, Henson has proven to be a man of his word and somebody I can call friend.

Henson also has a long history of supporting managed OHV recreation at designated areas such as Stonyford, Upper Lake, Cow Mountain, and Chappie-Shasta.

This recognition should not be taken as an endorsement of his Wilderness agenda but rather a simple acknowledgment of his hard and effective work for his constituents.

Congrats Ryan… you deserve this award.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Join QWR and Send Letter to Sen. McConnell to Block Massive Lands Bill


A number of riders have asked the Recreation HQ what they should be doing to advance a pro-access agenda in Washington, DC during this Lame Duck session. As you know, this is a hectic time on The Hill and often our messages can get lost in the confusion.


However, HQ believes that we should encourage Senator Mitch McConnell to block any Omnibus Land/Water Legislation during this Lame Duck session and only allow votes on bills that lower our tax burden, reduce the deficit, and reduce the size and scope of bloated federal agencies.

Link to McConnell’s Dec. 1 Statement
http://mcconnell.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=585ae38d-746a-4a17-8065-72073226bdf3&ContentType_id=c19bc7a5-2bb9-4a73-b2ab-3c1b5191a72b&Group_id=0fd6ddca-6a05-4b26-8710-a0b7b59a8f1f

Here is a link to potential land/water bills that could be included in an Omnibus Bill – A big thanks to our friends at the Western Business Roundtable for this list!

About 60 Land/Water Bills Slated for Inclusion
http://docs.westernroundtable.com/water/2010/Analysis_LandsPackage_11-10.pdf

HQ knows a lot of recreation groups have or are sending/Faxing in letters today to support McConnell’s effort to have the Senate only vote on fiscal issues. To help support those efforts, QWR sent in a letter today and is asking you to do the same. Here is the text of that letter.

QWR LETTER (feel free to cut and paste, etc)

December 1, 2010

Senator Mitch McConnell
Republican Leader
361-A Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
FAX: 202.224.2499

RE: Oppose Lame Duck Omnibus Land/Water Legislation

Dear Senator McConnell:

As an outdoor recreation advocate, I urge your office to oppose any effort by the Lame Duck Congress to pass an Omnibus Land/Water Bill. The recreation leaders I work with in the equestrian, hunting, off-road, and snowmobile communities do not support the bundling of individual land/water bills into one massive Omnibus package.


Here at Quiet Warrior Racing, we believe that each piece of legislation should be vigorously debated in the public arena. Only the land-use bills that have legitimate consensus and are thoroughly vetted with local and diverse stakeholders should merit a vote.

During this Lame Duck session, QWR urges your office to focus on those legislative items that deal with reducing our tax burden, lowering our deficit, and reducing the size and scope of bloated federal agencies. Thanks for reviewing QWR’s request.


Sincerely,


DON


Don Amador, Owner
Quiet Warrior Racing
555 Honey Lane
Oakley, CA 94561
Office: 925.625.5309
Email: damador@quietwarriorracing.com

You can FAX a short letter to Senator McConnell at: 202.224.2499 or use the email comment form below:

McConnell Comment Form
http://mcconnell.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=ContactForm

ARRA has a letter generator that sends a note to your own U.S Senator (do this too)
https://secure3.convio.net/arra/site/Advocacy?pagename=homepage&page=UserAction&id=249&autologin=true&JServSessionIdr004=dqjp5pqxa1.app332a


Thanks in advance for your help in stopping a massive land-use bill from being shoved down our throats by this Lame Duck Congress.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

41 Congressmen and 70 Outdoor Groups Ask Forest Service to Champion Recreation on Federal Lands


The Recreation HQ wants to join BRC and other recreation groups in saluting the 41 Members of Congress who sent a letter to the Chief of the Forest Service asking him to make sure that recreational activities are included in the new Planning Rule.


BRC News Release on House Letter to the FS
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=713&filter=media

Congressional Letter to the FS
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/11_19_10_USFS_Letter.pdf


In addition, HQ salutes the 70 outdoor recreation groups who also sent a recent letter to the Chief of the Forest Service asking him to promote and protect multiple-use recreation on Forest Service System lands.

Coalition for Recreation in the National Forest’s Letter to the Chief (a good read)
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/COALITION-FOR-RECREATION-IN-THE-NATIONAL-FORESTS.PDF

The General appreciates the various OHV groups such as AMA, MIC, SVIA, ARRA, BRC, NOHVCC and many others who signed this important letter. HQ asks you to review who signed this letter and send them a thank you.

As some of you know, there is a lot of hard work (often behind the scenes) underway by a number of OHV groups and individuals to promote and protect responsible OHV recreation on public lands. Much of this work goes unnoticed and underappreciated.

The General is taking special note of the above work and is sending several thank you notes today. HQ hopes you do the same.

# # #

Monday, November 29, 2010

New Mendocino NF Wet-Weather OHV Policy - Sign Up for Alerts!

"Just Riding in the Rain" (yes, I am soaked)

The Recreation HQ wants to give riders who visit the Mendocino National Forest an update on the agency’s new and evolving rainfall-based wet-weather closures. As some of you know, the agency has historically used the “2 inches or more of rainfall in a 24-hour period with roads/routes remaining closed until there has been 48 hours of NO measurable precipitation” as the foundation for its wet-weather closure policy.


Several months ago this policy had apparently expired which left the agency with no clearly defined wet-weather policy. The freak/heavy 1st rainfall of the season occurred on Oct. 23/24 and the agency had to implement some sort of closure that had not been fully vetted. This resulted in what HQ felt was a protracted and needlessly long closure that did not make a lot of sense based on any number of factors. HQ got a lot of calls from riders who were frustrated with this new wet-weather policy.

The General, on behalf of BRC, made an appointment with FS staff to review this issue during the days before the WFO Enduro. Part of that effort was to review the order of events to see if there were any problems or issues that could be addressed and also to find solutions.

Upon review of the events and after a number of conversations with FS staff, BRC issued the letter below that highlighted several tenets that should be considered in development of the final wet-weather closure policy.

BRC Nov. 15 Letter with Key Tenets on Wet-Weather Closures
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/Rainfall_Mendo_final_nov_15.doc

HQ believes that the agency should have an effective science-based wet-weather closure policy that both makes sense to the riders AND protects the watershed.

Finally, the agency must have an effective public outreach program so that riders can be informed about closures and other emergencies that could impact their outdoor plans.

HQ encourages riders to contact Tamara Schmidt to get signed up on the unit’s alert system.

Tamara Schmidt
Public Affairs Officer
Mendocino National Forest
825 N. Humboldt Ave.
Willows, CA 95988
Email: tamaraschmidt@fs.fed.us
Phone Number: 530-934-1137

Thanks for your service!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving Thoughts and Best Wishes from the Recreation HQ


I believe fans of OHV recreation in general and those who ride at Carnegie SVRA specifically have a lot to be grateful for during this Thanksgiving Season.


I attended the induction of Clark Collins to the AMA Hall of Fame this weekend in Las Vegas. Collins founded the BlueRibbon Coalition in his garage in 1987. It was a one-man show at that time. He was prompted to start the BRC to fight land closures because the then Governor of Idaho told him at a land-use meeting that off-roaders were politically insignificant.

The Governor was right. At that time, OHV was not very well organized and in many cases did not even have a “seat at the table” when it came to the land-use debate. Radical environmentalists were emboldened by the passage of the 1984 Wilderness Act that created new designated Wilderness areas (remember that motorized and mechanized uses are banned there) throughout the country. Many high-quality single-track and jeep routes in the Sierra and Coast Range were closed by that legislation.

Then in the early 1990s, over 7 million acres of sand and desert riding were closed by the California Desert Protection Act.

I was there during the S21 fight and the loss of that land still stings and is a force that drives me today.

I could go on and on with a long OHV history lesson, but I won’t do it at this time. Rather, the OHV community should be proud that we no longer are viewed as a weak opponent by the radical environmental movement, land agencies, legislators, or the media.

On the federal level, anti-OHV House committee chairmen were replaced on November 2 by pro-access and pro-recreation legislators. Instead of the House holding hearings about why more lands are not being closed to motorized use, I expect to see hearings about why the agencies are closing roads and trails including the ongoing closure at Clear Creek.

I also expect to see the House try and reform the way environmental law firms are rewarded when they sue and then have their attorney fees paid for by the taxpayer.

On the state level, we have a strong OHV program (SB 742) that was put into place in 2007/2008 with a ten-year sunset. While it may continue to be attacked, the OHV community is well positioned to fend off those blows.

Be assured there will be many future battles to fight on both the state and federal levels. But on this Thanksgiving, let us be genuinely grateful for families, friends, our troops, and the fact that OHV is no longer a wallflower at the great public land-use dance, but an active and engaged participant in that venue.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Vichy French in the New Congress

Don Amador at Omaha Beach Memorial in France

Since the November 2 elections, The General has been reflecting on a number of issues related to land-use politics.


In 2009, HQ wrote about Mark Rey (a former timber lobbyist who was a cabinet officer in the Bush administration) who took a job with Wildlaw, a law firm that specializes in anti-OHV and anti-timber lawsuits.

June 2009 Blog on Mark Rey Taking Job with Wildlaw
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2009/07/3-phases-in-life-of-land-use-advocate.html

Mark's 2010 Wildlaw Lobby Form
http://soprweb.senate.gov/index.cfm?event=getFilingDetails&filingID=87A1BE50-60DF-4EC0-A76C-52DB7597597C


While HQ sarcastically gave Rey some kudos for winning that job, implicit in those accolades was a profound disappointment that somebody who was a trusted conservative would take a post with our political and philosophical opponents.

The General has often shared his frustration (with riders and even some of my environmental contacts) with the Bush administration’s almost total lack of support or oversight for recreation issues on FS and BLM lands. The OHV community that I work with was initially optimistic that Rey (in his role as Undersecretary of Agriculture that had oversight of the FS) would be sympatric to our issues.

Sadly, the Bush administration’s (and Rey’s) “hands-off” management style allowed closure advocates in the agencies to develop anti-OHV programs such as TMR and the landscape level closure at Clear Creek. Frankly, I don’t think Timber folks got much better treatment.

You can make excuses (some may actually be legitimate) for the Bush years that they got hit with two wars and Katrina. But the fact remains that having a disinterested undersecretary who paid little if any attention to recreation issues did not help our cause rise about the other distractions.

As conservatives take over control of the House and have an increased presence in the Senate, the question should be asked what role if any a trusted albeit ineffective former conservative should have in post election strategy sessions?

HQ remembers there were apologists for the Vichy French during WW2. However, that term is forever associated with people who cannot be trusted. The General wonders how history will judge folks like Rey who took a job with a political opponent?

# # #

HQ Computer Survives Attack - But Needs Email Addresses

The computer system at HQ was recently hit but survived the attack and while most all critical information was backed up, the private email list was lost. If you received private email updates from HQ and would like to continue those updates please send a private email (put test in the subject line) along with any strategic partner email addresses in the cc to:




damador@cwo.com




Thanks for your service and support!

Friday, November 19, 2010

BRC Founder Clark Collins Honored Tonight at AMA Hall of Fame

Clark (left) and Don (right) on Idaho Trail

The General will be leaving HQ today to fly down to Vegas to honor the founder of the BlueRibbon Coalition, Clark Collins. As some of you know, Clark is being inducted into the AMA Hall of Fame tonight and it is an award that is richly deserved.


TG joined BRC in 1990, just 3 years after it was founded in Clark’s garage in 1987. What started as basically a one-man show has ended up as the most effective national grassroots motorized advocacy group in the country.

I remember one of Clark’s stories (he has many!) about what prompted him to start BRC. It was when the then governor of Idaho told him at a land-use meeting that off-roaders were politically insignificant.

The HQ believes that the OHV community has become stronger over the last 23 years and is no longer taken for granted in the political process (remember that all land-use decisions are political).

The one thing Clark taught me was to never give up. I remember his words almost every day when riders ask me why I am still so optimistic. I tell riders that at the end-of-the-day we really don’t have any other option. To give up is not in the cards. Being an effective leader means conveying a positive attitude and strategy to the troops.

OHV still has a long way to go and HQ looks forward to helping us become even a stronger and more effective voice for responsible OHV recreation on public and private lands.

If you want to honor Clark today, please go online and join BRC and/or make a donation. Feel free to type in “AMA Hall of Fame” in the “contribution instruction” space.

JOIN OR DONATE:
https://www.sharetrails.org/secure/join_or_contribute/?c=1

Thanks to Clark and YOU for your service!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Support AMA D36 LAO's 2011 Calendar Fundraiser - Help Keep Trails Open

Donate 20 Bucks and Get this Cool Calendar

Riders sometimes ask what their local AMA District is doing to fight the closure agenda of anti-OHV groups. In addition, they ask how they can support those efforts.


To answer those questions the Recreation HQ wants to feature a “2011 Calendar” fundraising effort by AMA Dist. 36 to generate funds to partner with groups like BRC in various legal actions and to support local clubs fight unreasonable cost recovery charges that are literally making AMA sanctioned events in Northern California and elsewhere an “endangered species.”

The General has had the honor (either as the western representative for BRC or as The Quiet Warrior) to work with AMA Dist. 36 in many joint efforts to protect and promote responsible OHV recreation on public lands.

QWR so strongly believes in what AMA Dist. 36 is doing that it is supporting this fundraising effort. This project offers a 2011 Dist. 36 Calendar featuring on the cover the 2010 KTM 450 XC-W ISDE Replica (yes, I have already bought raffle tickets for this separate “Bike-based” D36 LAO raffle/fundraiser and I hope I win!) with cool bike and rider shots featured each month.

All funds raised will go directly to support the aggressive pro-OHV agenda of the AMA Dist. 36’s Legislative Action Office (LAO).

With Christmas just around the corner, how about donating $20 dollars to this fundraiser and get a dirt-bike based calendar for free?

To donate to this fundraiser and get a free calendar contact:

Kraig Traum (this guy is a tireless fundraiser and I salute him!)
D36 LAO Fundraiser
2470 Palm Ct.
Brentwood, CA 94513
Email: d36moose@att.net
Phone: 925.260.0315

Thanks for supporting this effort.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

TRAIL TIPS - Camo that Ghost Route

Pre Camo of Ghost Trail

Post Camo of Ghost Trail

Trail riders often ask HQ what are some simple trail tasks that I can do while out on a trail ride?


Being a responsible rider is really no different than being a responsible hiker or camper. Just as we pick up trash around our campsite or pick up an empty can while on a hike, off-roaders can look for simple ways to protect the resource when they are on the trail.

One issue that can impact trails during the fall season is when leaves are covering the system trail and new ghost routes are developed because riders cannot see the system trail.

In the above photos, you will see a ghost trail treated by The General recently while on a trail ride. Actually, TG accidentally ended up on the ghost route and found out it dead ended at the top of a 10 foot cut bank above the road. It looked like a number of other riders had blown by the system trail and took the ghost trail only to find out it was a dead end. This was both a resource and safety issue.

When you find a situation like this you have several choices. One, you can ignore the issue and let somebody else deal with it. Two, you can tell one of the rangers about it (this is a good idea particularly when there is a big tree down or other large issue to deal with), but it may take the agency a number of days to deal with it. Or three, you can stop for a few minutes and work on the simple issue yourself.

The simplest way to address this ghost route was to drag some down branches across the route and also scatter some leaves and woody debris over the tracks.

As you can see in the above pre and post photos, the camo treatment worked pretty well.

The Recreation HQ encourages you that while out on the trail; you should be looking for simple resource issues that you can address. Don’t pawn it off on somebody else. Be part of the solution.

Thanks for your service!





g


Thursday, November 11, 2010

HQ is Closed Nov. 11-4

The General will be in the field Nov. 11-14.  HQ will reopen on Nov. 15.

HQ Thanks Veterans

Don in a WW2 GI Foxhole Near Bastogne

On this Veteran’s Day, The Recreation HQ wants to personally thank Dave, Tom, Del, Patrick, Clarence, Jeremy, Gunny, Johnny, Little Dave, Clark, Dad (passed away in 1998), and all of my friends and family who have served in the military.

Your service inspires me and gives me the strength to aggressively defend your access rights to public lands. How screwed up would this world be if you bravely defended us overseas from foreign threats while your rights at home to use and enjoy trails and jeep roads were lost?

While I cannot compare the work I do to your service, be assured that I will continue to do my small part to preserve and protect the rights you have defended.

God Bless you and THANKS for your service!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Land Agencies Should Use "Signs" to Address NOA at CCMA and other Sites

REDWOOD NATIONAL PARK - ORICK BEACH

Since the BLM issued an emergency closure order in May 2008 that closed the Clear Creek Management Area to all users, the Recreation HQ and groups like BRC have urged the agency to adopt the use of “warning signs” used by sister agencies to address valid public safety issues v. the use of closures or expensive capping/ soil treatments.


CA State Parks uses signs to warn against undertow and dangerous ocean waves. Redwood National Park uses signs that count the number of people killed by downing on the beach and tallies those numbers on its warning signs.

At issue with the CCMA closure is that there is not one documented case in CA of a human contracting asbestosis/cancer and dying from recreational activity on public lands that contain naturally occurring asbestos. Yet, the BLM refused to even review or consider a signing prescription for CCMA because the line officer said he had made up his mind that the area should be closed to OHV and other motorized uses.

March 31 Blog on Faux Liability Issue at CCMA (a good read with background info)
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/03/faux-liability-issue-at-ccma.html

HQ believes it is just this type of arbitrary federal action that the new Congress will investigate and have oversight hearings on.

HQ urges all federal land management agencies to strongly consider a “signing” prescription for routes/areas that contain NOA

A spokesman for a major environmental group told me recently that the whole NOA issue is “much to do about nothing.” HQ agrees and hopes that the agencies can put this to rest once and for all and get back to the job of providing quality motorized and non-motorized recreation at CCMA and in the other 42 CA counties where NOA occurs.

Thanks for your service!

Friday, November 5, 2010

HQ Closed Nov. 5-8

The HQ is Closed Nov. 5-8.  Will reopen on Tue. Nov. 9

Big Green Up in Smoke?

 
BIG GREEN UP IN SMOKE?

The Recreation HQ believes the election of 2010 delivered a gut-punch to the Big Green Agenda. Here at HQ, The General is still trying to understand exactly what the national electorate said. However, HQ will try and give you a short initial overview of how the election might impact OHV recreation and access to public lands.


The key Big Green or Big Pork or Big Global Warming incumbent losses include Tom Perriello, Richard Boucher, Ike Skelton, and Jim Oberstar. The Oberstar and Boucher losses generated both a political and real 9.0 earthquake that was felt here at the HQ.

A number of long-time incumbents and champions of Big Green proposals -- such as Wilderness designations, full-funding for LWCF for acquiring private lands for non-motorized uses, pork projects for non-motorized uses, billions more from new cap and tax programs for acquiring more private land for non-motorized uses, other tax schemes to acquire even more private land for non-motorized uses, new harsh regulations on vehicle emissions or vehicle access, and increased budgets to close forest roads and trails – were given the pink slip by the American People.

HQ believes that these aforementioned incumbent losses combined with the newly elected Tea Party-backed conservatives is a clear mandate to clean-up Washington, push the reset button on massive federal spending programs (including Big Green initiatives), and hold all federal agencies accountable including the EPA, FS, and BLM.

HQ believes it is safe to say that this new Congress will be inclined to support responsible access to public lands v. the old Congress where land closures, land acquisition for non-motorized use, and vehicle restrictions were the order of the day.

It will be interesting to see how this election changes the national land-use equation.


Thanks for your service!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Government Agencies and Shredding Documents - Corruption a Real Concern

THIS CLOSURE IS BASED ON AGENCY CORRUPTION

The Recreation HQ wants to assure riders and other readers of this blog that the issue of government agencies shredding documents to avoid their disclosure because of a FOIA, public record act request, or congressional inquiry/subpoena should be a real concern.


Article on Government Shredding of Documents
http://nation.foxnews.com/justice/2010/11/03/team-obama-better-not-shred-documents

Article on the Congress and its Agenda for Access and Public Land Management
http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2010/11/republicans-house-natural-resources-committee-planning-big-changes-public-lands7178

The Recreation HQ has experienced real world agency corruption on many occasions when after filing a FOIA or PRA request with federal or state government agency, The General would often get calls from his friends who worked at the agency and here is how those calls went…”Hey Don, I just wanted to let you know that we have been running the shredders here at the BLANK office because the agency does not want to be embarrassed or worse.”

The most recent example of that corruption is with the EPA Region 9 Office where they denied a FOIA asking for correspondence between the EPA, BLM, and other interests. What the EPA did not count on is the BLM complying with the same FOIA request which showed collusion and dishonesty designed to support the closure of Clear Creek to ALL publics.

2009 Overview of Agency Corruption and EPA Case Study to Prop up Closure
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/01/epa-violates-public-trust-at-clear.html

The Recreation HQ believes that Congress has a valid concern that agencies who have acted in a corrupt manner have already fired up their shredders or have hired shredding trucks to come and destroy thousands of documents that would show corruption, collusion with far-left wing environmental groups, or “science” that was ginned up to promote the closure agenda of the EPA or similar agencies.

The General wishes the new Congress good luck in this noble effort to acquire the public record associated with so much of the anti-access and anti-business agenda of this administration.

Thanks for your service!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

HQ is Back - Help Stop Omnibus Lands Bill in Lame Duck Congress

The General on One of the OHV Trails in the Stonyford NCA Plan

The Recreation HQ is back on the trail after a brief hiatus during the 2010 Election Cycle. As some of you know, there are a number of Wilderness, National Monument, or National Conservation Area proposals throughout the country pending action in the Lame Duck Session of the current Congress or waiting for action by the president via executive orders if they are not voted on and passed in the Lame Duck Congress.


Today, the BRC issued a national alert regarding its concerns about an Omnibus Lands Bill being voted on and passed into law between now and when this Congress adjourns.

BRC Alert on Lame Duck Omnibus Lands Bill
http://www.sharetrails.org/alerts/?alert=1261

HQ agrees with the BRC position that land-use bills should be bill-specific and decided on an acre-by-acre analysis with a substantive stakeholder process. These bills should not be lumped into one massive one-size-fits-all land-use plan.

As you know, some environmental groups are proposing legislation for a National Conservation Area that bisects the main Stonyford and Upper Lake OHV Areas on the Mendocino National Forest. The General, on behalf of BRC, has communicated that it does not feel a NCA designation is warranted for this area and is a bad idea. However, we have stated that if a NCA bill is proposed that it has language to protect existing OHV recreation, permitted OHV events, and other recreational uses of the affected area.

Proposal for the “Stonyford” NCA
http://wilderness.org/content/americas-great-outdoors-should-protect-berryessa

It is important for you to communicate with your elected officials (that are still in office) that you do not want an Omnibus Lands Bill voted on in the Lame Duck Session of Congress.

Send this letter today so the Lame Ducks have this on their desk when they return to the Hill.

Thanks for your service!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Massive OHV Legal Win in 8th Circuit Court of Appeals


The Recreation HQ is proud to share this recent and historic pro-OHV legal victory in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals.


See BRC News Release on This Victory
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=709&filter=media

Link to Decision (a good read)
http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-8th-circuit/1541421.html

Decisions like this don't just happen, and this is a satisfying turn in a climate of endless anti-OHV litigation being filed against the Forest Service by radical environmental groups seeking to impose their "vision" (I call it a nightmare) of what a forest should look like.

Many of these “visions” include the creation of imaginary buffers around non-motorized land classifications that extend onto motorized areas. Also, these eco-hallucinations include banning OHV use in areas because of perceived impacts to flora and fauna and/or failure of the agency to complete endless studies of same.

OHV continues to get pounded by the anti-OHV crowd, but this victory (and some others coming soon?) may help ease the pain and give hope that we are not fighting a losing battle.

Donations are needed to support the work of the BRC. Please consider a donation so we can continue our effective efforts to champion and protect responsible OHV recreation.

Donate to BRC Legal Fund – tax deductible
https://www.sharetrails.org/secure/join_or_contribute/?c=1

Donate to Support the Work of the BRC Western Representative (type in “western rep” in “contribution instructions” icon – tax deductible
https://www.sharetrails.org/secure/join_or_contribute/?c=1

To Support the Non-BRC Work (political, special projects, etc) of the Quiet Warrior send non-tax deductible support to:

Quiet Warrior Racing
555 Honey Lane
Oakley, CA 94561
Email: damador@quietwarriorracing.com



Thanks for your service and support!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

New "Subpart A" lawsuit filed against Bridgeport Ranger District's Travel Plan

The General on an ATV near Carson City


Recently the Recreation HQ posted an article about the green’s “lust for closures” based on their new “Subpart A and Roadless” lawsuit filed against the Stanislaus National Forest’s Travel Plan.




Green Lust for Closures
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/08/new-green-subpart-lawsuit-shows-lust.html


Now it looks like CBD basically cut and pasted their legal tenets of the Stanislaus case in the new suit filed against the Bridgeport Ranger District in Nevada.

New CBD Lawsuit Filed in Nevada Against the Bridgeport Ranger District
http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2010/Bridgeport-ORVs-10-20-2010.html



Article about Lawsuit (with quotes from BRC’s Brian Hawthorne)
http://www.rgj.com/article/20101021/NEWS/10210319/1321/news



HQ has warned riders that we are entering the middle of OHV Wars and this new attack by CBD et al is nothing more than an effort by them to get a judge in some venue to issue a court order that defines the “minimum road network” in future Subpart A travel planning. The concept of a minimum road network has been around for a long time. The danger here is that enviros want it defined in a court. Not a good thing for access interests!



As recreation groups review and prepare for a possible intervention in the Stanislaus case, riders in Nevada will have to decide it they want to fight this attack on a popular riding area in the Carson City area.



Thanks for your service and support!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Signs - An Important Management Tool


The Recreation HQ believes that respect for our natural resources should actually start with the agency. When visiting various Forests, The General looks for “signs” that an agency has made a commitment to managing the unit.
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PHOTO: A "sign" this unit cares about the resource
*

HQ believes that signing is a critical management tool that is often missing on many units. Signs are an important way the agency communicates to the public. Signs that inform the general public can either convey the agency’s commitment to managing recreational activities or they (by their absence) convey a lack of caring.

As we continue on the somewhat arduous (and controversial at times) travel planning journey, HQ believes that the agency must commit to managing the resource and communicate that decision to the general public via an effective signing program.

As always, thanks to riders for your support and to those in the agency who work hard to convey their commitment to the management of our public lands via an effective signing program.

Feedback and comments are welcome from riders and agency folks who follow this blog.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

HQ Closed - Oct. 14-17

The General will be in the field from Oct. 14-17. HQ will reopen on Oct. 18.

Note from HQ on the Elections and the Trail Party


Between now and the election, Don Amador, (founder of the Trail Party), will be taking some time away from the Recreation HQ and focusing more of his energy on the elections.

The Recreation HQ will still be posting stories regarding trail issues but those posting will be spaced farther apart until after November 2.

If you would like to follow the Trail Party you can find it at:

BLOG SITE of the TRAIL PARTY
http://trailpartyvotersguide.blogspot.com/



Thanks for your service and support!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

HQ Bell Tolls for Closure of Intermountain Forest Assn.


The Recreation HQ has sounded its official bell today in mourning. Several days ago, The General got word that the Intermountain Forest Association will be closing its doors at the end of the year.
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PHOTO: Don standing by a Cat (the type he used to run and service in the 1970s) near Rio Dell.
*





HQ believes this closure is directly related to the never ending war declared (circa late 1960s) by radical environmental groups, left-wing foundations, and their supporters in Congress to put the timber industry “out of business” on public lands. Some of you may not know that The General worked in the timber and construction industry in the early 1970s (see blog below for that bit of history). He might have stayed in the resource industry but at a young age he saw the “handwriting on the wall” when Redwood National Park was established which put Cal-Pacific Lumber (and many others) out of business.

Don’s History of Logging on the N. Coast
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2009/10/roads-of-my-father.html




The General is proud of his relationship with the timber industry as part of the multiple-use family. Over the years we have fought many administrative, legislative, and legal battles together. One such fight was against the Clinton-Gore Roadless Initiative.

The magnitude of the IFA closure cannot be overstated. The General believes it rivals the murder of Gil Murray- by the Unabomber- on the “land-use” Richter scale.

Again, HQ is still processing this event but wanted its followers to know that it rang the official HQ bell today in mourning of IFA’s closure. The War on the West against timber, OHV, mining, and ranching continues.

Video of HQ Bell Being Sounded
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L74pQrRWG6s




Let us not forget the families put out of work by the extreme environmental movement and let us resolve today to fight back even harder against their job-killing agenda.

Thanks for your service!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

HQ is Closed - Oct. 5-7 - Meetings on N. Coast


The General will be on the N. Coast at various access meetings from Oct. 5-7. HQ will reopen on Oct. 8.

Dealernews Oct 2010 - Land Use Battle is Front and Center


The Recreation HQ commends Dealernews for addressing the issue of “land-use advocacy” in its October 2010 edition. There is an excellent overview of the fight for OHV access as the lead article with BRC’s executive director, Greg Mumm. That article also includes an interview with Cycle Gear’s CEO, Dave Bertram.
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PHOTO: Cycle Gear's Dave Betram presents BRC with 10K as part of CG's Trail Fund Support
Program for BRC.
*



In that same issue, Dealernews does a short Q&A with The General regarding his take on the land use battle.

Q&A with The General (includes some wins and highlights import of local clubs, etc.)
http://www.dealernews.com/dealernews/Building+Your+Business/The-Generals-take-on-off-road-recreation/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/689779





Riders often ask why the industry and dealers are not more involved? HQ believes this issue of Dealernews may help answer some of those questions and to point out those dealers and industry leaders who support the effort. Good job Dealernews! The General salutes you.

Thanks for your support!

Monday, October 4, 2010

H.R. 689 - The FS/BLM OHV Land Exchange Bill a Success!




















PHOTOS: Upper Left - BLM's Sky Zaffarano, the OHV Program Manager, pointing to FS land that is now in BLM authority. Upper Right - The General on one of the maintained dirt bike trails.


The Recreation HQ is proud to give riders an update on just how the passage of H.R 689 (the FS/BLM land exchange bill at Chappie-Shasta OHV Area) is doing.

BRC News Release on Success of H.R. 689 (includes quote from Cong. Herger)
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=707&filter=media

The General, on behalf of BRC, helped tech and support the Redding Dirt Rider’s Buckhorn Enduro this last weekend. Before the event, he had a chance to do a “post-passage of the bill” tour with the BLM OHV Manager on that unit, Sky Zaffarano.

Over the years, this unit had been co-managed (or not - depending on your point of view) by both the FS and BLM. It had mixed agency lands and the different land management regulations that exist between the FS and BLM often created conflicts and problems.

This is a great example of where local users got together with elected officials and found a legislative solution to a problem. Since I last visited the area, it appears this new management prescription has resulted in better trail maintenance and new opportunities for the motorized community.

The Chappie-Shasta OHV Area is a destination site in the HQ’s opinion. Besides challenging dirt-bike trails, it offers a great camping/staging area with a giant touring loop for 4wds and ROV/UTVs. Views include Lake Shasta, Mount Shasta, and the Trinity Alps.

HQ recommends this unit as a must place to visit for the OHV enthusiast. Keep in mind a lot of the higher elevation trails are closed due to snow in the winter time.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Arnold Signs SB 435 - No Surprise


The Quiet Warrior was disappointed (but not surprised) yesterday when The Governator signed SB 435 into law.
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PHOTO: The Quiet Warrior
*



Over the years, HQ and QWR have seen his administration embrace too many far-left proposals and programs. There for awhile, every time the Obama administration would propose a new EPA regulation the Governor’s Office within 5 minutes would issue a news release praising that job-killing regulation or law.

As much as I am critical of the Governor regarding his passion for environmental over-regulation, QWR is even more critical of the street-riding community for digging their own grave on the street-sound issue.

I remember doing an OHV Sound Day at Malcolm Smith’s shop back in 2003 to help educate riders about the new CA 96 dBA law.

Article on Malcolm Smith Sound Day
http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?filter=media&story=243



What is not in that story is that the loudest bike at the event was not a dirt-bike going through the SAE J-1287 sound check but a v-twin about 50 feet away in the street blowing a 105 dBA on my sound meter (remember the dBAs from dirt-bikes in the article were taken from 20 inches).

No this time, obnoxiously loud street bike owners are to blame for Arnold signing SB 435. Just as in my interview with Chris Daniels on KMJ radio who is a strong conservative and generally against government over-regulation… when it came to SB 435 he (and many others) have become desperate for ANY measure (no matter how ineffective that bill might be) that gave even the slightest hint of addressing excessively loud street bikes. Also another industry person who is a life long motorcyclist told me last week that he was in favor of the bill for many of the same reasons.

Blog with KMJ Radio Interview (a good case study of to why Arnold signed the bill)
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/09/radio-talk-show-on-sb-435-with-quiet.html




Let’s hope Arnold’s signing of this bill sounds a clarion call for both OHV and street riders to respect the rights of others when it comes to being grossly obnoxious on either the road or trail.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

ROV Online Course - Get Educated About Side by Sides



















The Recreation HQ spends a lot of time alerting riders to various land-use issues as they relate to OHV recreation. Recently, HQ came across an online educational program designed to promote responsible ROV recreation.
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PHOTOs: Upper Left - E-Course Test Certificate, Upper Right - ROVs/ATVs on Kipu Ranch Tour

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Link to News Release with Online Course
http://www.rohva.org/PressRoom.aspx




Trail and vehicle education is important at HQ. The Quiet Warrior took this test today and feels it offers the ROV/UTV newbie some valuable "rules of the trail" to help keep users safe. Even experienced ROVers will benefit from taking the course. TG and his wife are big fans of ROVs and while on vacation on Kauai took an ROV/ATV tour of the Kipu Ranch.

Kipu Ranch ROV/ATV Tours
http://www.kiputours.com/


HQ believes ROVs are a great way for families to enjoy the great outdoors and getting boned up on the right way do use these vehicles makes a lot of sense. The Quiet Warrior suggests this course will be of benefit to the recreational users as well as agency and law enforcement staff who are new to ROV use.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Scot Harden to Zero Motorcycles, Interview, and Thoughts


The Recreation HQ and The Quiet Warrior want to congratulate off-road racing legend, Scot Harden, on his new post at Zero Motorcycles. As many of you know, The General, on behalf of BRC, attended the 24 Hours of Electricross and was the event’s official sound tester.

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PHOTO: BRC's Don Amador on Zero Dirt Bike
*


Video of “Sound Test” at start of Race
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3r5SJPKO5w




If this issue is of interest, I suggest you read Jeff Cobb’s excellent interview with Scot Harden as it highlights the pros and challenges associated with this new technology. The article also touches on some of the environmental factors in the land-use equation.

Interview with Zero’s Scot Harden
http://www.motorcycle.com/events/interview-with-zeros-scot-harden-89981.html



Besides the “battery longevity” issue, HQ believes the electric motorcycle industry should work hard to promote a responsible land-use ethic that strongly discourages the creation of illegal “bandit trails” routes on public and private (private land that you don’t have permission to be on) land.

50 Year Old Guys and Illegal trails in SF Bay Area
http://marinbiker.com/




Being at Electricross and talking with a lot of electric motorcycle enthusiasts, The Quiet Warrior was surprised by the number of riders (even riders who claimed to be “environmentalists" and were against gas-powered dirt-bikes) who thought these products were just the ticket to enable them to ride illegally in local state and county parks.

What many riders don’t know is that The General/BRC helped Zero Motorcycles with some land-use tenets in their Code of Ethics.

Zero Motorcycles’ Code of Ethics

1.) Zero Motorcycles is dedicated to engineering high performance motorcycles that do not harm the environment. Our motorcycles will be free from emissions and noise. We will be environmentally conscious in our actions to help ensure a cleaner environment through recycling, responsible waste disposal and respecting nature.

2.) Zero Motorcycles will provide transportation options, both on road and off road, that are practical, efficient and contribute to a cleaner environment.

3.) Zero Motorcycles will stand behind the quality of our products by providing excellent customer service to ensure all customers are completely satisfied.

4.) Zero Motorcycles will make a consistent effort to promote a responsible, fun, honest and safe environment for all aspects of operating a motorcycle.

5.) Zero Motorcycles will respect all others with whom we share the roads and recreation areas. We are also dedicated to respecting the members of the greater community. We will use common sense and be aware of our surroundings when sharing the trails and roads. We will ride safely and respectfully.



Again, Scot has a lot of work ahead of him at Zero. The Quiet Warrior hopes that one of the issues he will tackle is to damp down what could be a growing counter culture of illegal trail riding and building by OHVers using this new technology.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

New QWR "Less dBA = More Trails" T-Shirt Up for Bid



The Quiet Warrior wants to thank all of you who have given him a warm welcome and offered support for Quiet Warrior Racing. As an earlier blog noted, QWR is a private consulting company that will be, among other things, promoting a “sound” land-use ethic on public roads and trails.
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PHOTO: New QWR "Less dBA = More Trails" logo on back of T-Shirt
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QWR looks forward to continuing its work as a contractor to BRC as well as branching out into other venues and issues such as SB 435. As some of you know, QWR took an early position on SB 435 and was recently featured on Fresno’s KMJ Radio in an interview and was quoted in an AP article on the bill. QWR urges you to listen to the entire show (interview and post interview phone calls from listeners) as it is very enlightening and is a good case study of the issue with all sides being presented.

Link to KMJ Radio Interview and AP Story
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/09/radio-talk-show-on-sb-435-with-quiet.html



One way QWR supports itself is by offering official T-shirts for auction. This is an easy way for riders to help QWR’s efforts - in Sacramento and elsewhere - to champion access to public roads and trails.

Recently, QWR developed a new “Less dBA = More Trails” T-shirt and the 1st one of the batch (in Large) is being offered on eBay.

New Less dBA = More Trails T-Shirt
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=120625324688&ssPageName=ADME:L:LCA:MOTORS:1123



QWR again thanks all of you who are supporting its efforts to promote and protect responsible off-road and street motorcycle access to public roads and trails. Watch for QWR website and other new stuff coming in the near future.


Good News - RV Dump Station to Work at Stonyford for Jackhammer, WFO, and Bearfoot Enduros


The Recreation HQ has just been informed that the Mendocino National Forest will be operating the RV Dump Station at Fouts Springs for the following events. As many riders know, the Forest has secured a grant from OHMVR to drill a new well. However, due to many bureaucratic hurdles the agency was not able to complete the project in time for the 2010 Fall riding season.
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PHOTO: BRC Weekend Warrior at Fouts Dump Station
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FS staff from Water Tender 38 will be at the RV dump station with non-potable water at the following times and dates to allow for RVers to empty their black and gray water tanks. As before, you will be responsible to bring your own potable (drinking) water. Standard dump fees will be collected.


TIME - Noon to 4:30pm

10/17/10 – Jackhammer

11/14/10 - WFO

11/21/10 - Bearfoot


HQ appreciates the agency extending the hand of friendship to the OHV community by providing this interim service to address the RV dump needs during high use weekends.

The General wants to thank the new OHV program manager and Forest leadership for pulling this together. As some of you know, Sarah Ridenour is the new OHV program manager.

See blog with info on Sarah
http://thegeneralsrecreationden.blogspot.com/2010/05/new-ohv-program-manager-at-stonyford.html



Here is Sarah’s contact info should you have any questions.

Sarah Ridenour
OHV Manager
Grindstone Ranger District
Mendocino National Forest
5171 Stonyford-Elk Creek Road
Stonyford, CA 95979
Phone 530-963-1327
sridenour@fs.fed.us



HQ looks fwd to seeing many of you on the trail or at events this Fall.