Thursday, March 22, 2012

Wash. Examiner Publishes Article on FS Trail Guide Scandal

It looks like the new FS Trail Guide scandal has hit the big time with posting of an article today by the Washington Examiner.

Washington Examiner Article on FS Trail Guide Scandal
As I said in the article, I believe this project is a prime example of gross incompetence by the federal government on any number of levels.  The first question that should be asked is, “Why was this project needed when the FS already has a number of highly skilled OHV trail master-performers and proven OHV BMPs?”  Second, “Who authorized this frivolous and unneeded project that was funded with taxpayer dollars?”

Third, “When is the agency going to ‘man-up’ and admit this was a huge mistake on their part and assure Congress, taxpayers, and the OHV community that something like this won’t happen again?”

All of those are questions that must be answered and the sooner the better.  HQ urges readers to leave a comment at the Washington Examiner website to show that we are not going to be insulted by this type of bias.

Thanks again to Ron Arnold and the Washington Examiner for covering public land recreation issues.


  1. Thanks to the Washington Examiner for reporting on this very important and divisive issue. At stake is access for Hunters, Fisherman, Mountain Bikers, Horseback Riders, OHV users; Motorcycles, Quads, Snowmobiles, 4x4 Vehicles, etc. It's not just one group that will be affected by these changes- nor is it just one small area- it's Nationwide and involves thousands of miles of ESTABLISHED existing roads. Many of these are Historical Routes taken by Settlers in the Westward expansion of our Nation in the 1800's.
    As an aging American, I can no longer hike or backpack to my favorite spots or explore our Public Lands on foot. I use my 4x4 to Responsibly recreate and enjoy our Nations's Land that was set aside for American's to enjoy. I belong to 4x4 organizations that teach Stewardship and Tread Lightly philosophies. Many of these organizations help educate fellow travelers and volunteer to clean up and provide Trail Maintainenance. They are supporting local communities by contributing to their economies. There is one project that 4x4 volunteers for a Severely Disabled group of young people, providing the opportunity to experience our Great Outdoors in the Sierras known as Camp WAMP.

    Please don't buy into the idea that Preservation and Conservation means denying access to our Public Lands by any means other than on foot!
    Let your elected leaders know that Public Lands means just that- For the People!
    Nora Lee
    Northern California

  2. Don, U.S. Rep. "Doc" Hastings is my Member of Congress, and it starts to look like he and I are going to become well acquainted over the next few weeks. I have spoken with his staff about some of this, but now, with this, I am about to become one of their favorite constituants. Any help or advice you would like to throw in would be more than welcome.

    Dave Walters
    Tri Cities Peak Putters
    Land Use Coordinator
    Kennewick, WA

  3. Dave, I think you should ask Cong. Doc to have Congress request a GAO audit of TMR? From what I have seen (and even a growing number of FS staffers will admit privately) that it
    has been a giant failure. I believe it has diverted hundreds of millions from actual trail maint. projects (e.g. “caring for the land”) to bogus planning efforts that had no environmental benefit but rather… placed the agency in legal jeopardy as witnessed by the dozens of post TMR eco-lawsuits.