Go Back   Pacific Northwest Four Wheel Drive Association > Around the Camp Fire > Camp Fire Chat
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Camp Fire Chat Pull up a chair sit down and talk

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-10-2010, 10:04 PM
Ceg_'s Avatar
Ceg_ Ceg_ is offline
ForestWatchVP.org
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Selah, Washington
Posts: 1,719
Default Three-day weekend brings out ‘idiots’

http://sportsyakima.com/2010/06/thre...0%99/#comments
Three-day weekend brings out ‘idiots’
June 7, 2010 by Scott Sandsberry


YAKIMA, Wash. — Memorial Day weekend is annually welcomed with poignant regret over lost heroes and loved ones, with relief over the end of cold-and-wet and the onset of warm-and-dry, and with relish over the prospect of a three-day break from day-job drudgery.

For those who manage or maintain trail systems, though — and even for those who recreate on those trails according to rules and trail ethics — Memorial Day weekend isn’t welcome because of, as one four-wheeling enthusiast put it, “that bunch of idiots out there.”

This year’s holiday weekend — which left rutted trails and mudbogged meadows in and around Naches and Cle Elum Ranger District trail systems — was dreaded by public land managers and reputable off-roader clubs alike for three reasons.

The first was the weather — the wettest late spring in recent memory — which left trail systems and nearby meadows soft and muddy.

“We had made the decision a month before that we weren’t going to close the (Naches Ranger District frontcountry) trails because it had been dry,” said Naches District Ranger Irene Davidson. “But then we had rain.”

The second was closures of trail systems in other areas — most notably Reiter Foothills (“the Pit”), a popular off-roading area on state land near Gold Bar in Snohomish County that has been closed since November because of creekbed damage and unauthorized trail use.

That meant a huge influx of visitors who might otherwise have recreated elsewhere, filling the Little Naches, Rimrock and Manastash areas with more trail-riding enthusiasts than ever before.

That meant, even though the majority were still rule-following club members, there were also greater numbers of the ones who simply ignore trail rules and ethics.

“That was the highest number of off-road vehicles I’ve seen in past years,” said Ron Rutherford, a member of a Yakima-area club called the Jeeping Nomads.

“A lot of these folks, they were just independent individuals who left their manners and common sense at home and just let it all out,” Rutherford said. “I’m part of a reputable club and we’re trying to do the right thing and keep the trails in good shape, so we did a little education and asked them to follow the rules.

“But by Saturday some of them were like, ‘Hey, there’s no enforcement, anything goes!’”

Yakima County Sheriff’s Deputy Steve Sutliff, who for much of the time has to be the sole officer patrolling off-road vehicle use over the Chinook and White Pass corridors, called it “normal, run-of-the-mill off-road vehicle activity” that just happened to be a lot of riders in limited space.

“Long Meadow and the Ponderosa really got hammered,” Sutliff said. “The Ponderosa (a camp-and-trails area east of the Little Naches drainage), to me, was a mudhole. There must have been 20 or 30 dirtbikes and quads in there. That area is kind of designed for that, but not when it’s wet like that. It was just a lot of mud.”

In some cases, the trenching of some of the trail systems wasn’t because of people breaking rules. It was just the vast number of people riding around on the trails and dispersed camping areas.

“There was no place for them to go, really, because there was snow up higher and it was rainy, so they just rode the same trails over and over again,” Sutliff said. “The Kaner trail (No. 676) was really mucked up all to ****. All the trails were. It didn’t matter where you went — everything was wet.”

With more people heading to the hills to recreate and fewer public lands in which to do so, this kind of problem isn’t going away, said Mark Mauren, statewide recreation program manager for the Department of Natural Resources.

“The real tragedy is if you look at the history of development of recreation trails, both motorized and non-motorized, you’ll see the majority of investment was done in the ’60s, ’70s and early ’80s,” Mauren said. “Since then — whether you’re talking about state parks, the Department of Natural Resources, the Forest Service or whoever — we as a society really haven’t invested at the same level, and yet our population has doubled.

“We haven’t been able to adapt to that change or even have the staff to manage this influx of people so that we don’t have these impacts that we’re seeing across the state.

“And it’s good people; these are well-intentioned people, but they just have nowhere to recreate, whether motorized or non-motorized. In my mind, that’s really the tragedy.”

Filed under All, Outdoors
__________________
Clay Graham
PNW4WDA Region 4 Public Relations
PNW4WDA Beverly Dunes Coordinator



Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-10-2010, 11:04 PM
dirk's Avatar
dirk dirk is offline
that WOHVA guy
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: washington
Posts: 645
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceg_ View Post
With more people heading to the hills to recreate and fewer public lands in which to do so, this kind of problem isn’t going away, said Mark Mauren, statewide recreation program manager for the Department of Natural Resources.

“The real tragedy is if you look at the history of development of recreation trails, both motorized and non-motorized, you’ll see the majority of investment was done in the ’60s, ’70s and early ’80s,” Mauren said. “Since then — whether you’re talking about state parks, the Department of Natural Resources, the Forest Service or whoever — we as a society really haven’t invested at the same level, and yet our population has doubled.

“We haven’t been able to adapt to that change or even have the staff to manage this influx of people so that we don’t have these impacts that we’re seeing across the state.

“And it’s good people; these are well-intentioned people, but they just have nowhere to recreate, whether motorized or non-motorized. In my mind, that’s really the tragedy.”
Mark's comments seem pretty fair.
__________________
Bryan Peterson
WOHVA | PNW4WDA
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-11-2010, 09:09 AM
Dave McMains's Avatar
Dave McMains Dave McMains is offline
"OLD GUY"
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Moses Lake, WA.
Posts: 241
Default

This has been something I have said for years! I am glad that someone in the government is finally seeing what we have known! I hope we can work something out to ease the overcrowding.
__________________
Dave McMains
PNW4WDA Treasurer
NRTP selection Committee member
Cle Elum Ranger Dist. ORV Ranger
Build your rig to fit the trails, don't change the trails to fit your rig!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-11-2010, 09:16 AM
Ceg_'s Avatar
Ceg_ Ceg_ is offline
ForestWatchVP.org
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Selah, Washington
Posts: 1,719
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave McMains View Post
This has been something I have said for years! I am glad that someone in the government is finally seeing what we have known! I hope we can work something out to ease the overcrowding.
__________________
Clay Graham
PNW4WDA Region 4 Public Relations
PNW4WDA Beverly Dunes Coordinator



Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-11-2010, 09:22 AM
Grumpy's Avatar
Grumpy Grumpy is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Kennewick, WA
Posts: 467
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave McMains View Post
This has been something I have said for years! I am glad that someone in the government is finally seeing what we have known! I hope we can work something out to ease the overcrowding.
Yeah, open some ground back up!
__________________
Dave Walters
Tri Cities Peak Putters
Land Use Coordinator

www.peakputters.com


It's a Scout thing
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-11-2010, 07:52 PM
dexter dexter is offline
moonshiner
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: spanaway wa.
Posts: 24
Default

We really need more trails. But there to many green people in this state.
Also to many square mmiles of land tied up in wilderness for the number of people that like our kind of recreation.
__________________
frank cieplik
moonshiner
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-11-2010, 09:42 PM
Grumpy's Avatar
Grumpy Grumpy is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Kennewick, WA
Posts: 467
Default

"Study" areas have closed ground historically open to us, and there are members of congress trying to get those areas closed administratively. Get familiar with that, because we're going to be fighting it more and more. This administration in already trying to corrupt the Antiquities Act to it's own ends...Happily, there is some good news in NorCal. Maybe. Two counties are going after the Shasta-Trinity NF, and I hope to **** they get it right!. Check Don Amador's blog on BRC...
__________________
Dave Walters
Tri Cities Peak Putters
Land Use Coordinator

www.peakputters.com


It's a Scout thing
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-13-2010, 09:52 PM
Merrick Graves's Avatar
Merrick Graves Merrick Graves is offline
Old Goat
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Naches
Posts: 563
Default

I went thru the Manastash area today. It (the damage) was not as bad as suspected. That's not to say the area was unscathed. But just not as bad as we were led to believe.

Now to what to expect next year. It's being discussed.

I went thru the Naches last weekend. The area around the Kaner has been hammered. People who could not get thru the trail just went where they wanted. Really good way to show the New District Ranger what to expect.

What to expect next year. Thats also being discussed. What I do know for sure what one Ranger District decides the other will do the same!
__________________
Sometimes when I give my 2cents, I expect change!
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:19 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.