DNR (Northwest Region) ORV Users Meeting - October 9, 2001
Oct 9, 2001
DNR (Northwest Region) ORV Users Meeting - October 9, 2001
Those present representing the DNR: Susan Emley, Olympia Office; Jesse
Herrick, Tom Murley, Christ Thomsen - Sedro Woolley Office.
User Groups represented: PNW4WDA individual members, Northern Toys, SNORT/
PSVB, BEST, Rainier Ridge Rams, Skagit Motorcycle Club, NMA.
Susan Emley discussed the current budget and how it affects ORV users. The
proviso that was signed at the end of the last session which made a drastic
point to spend ORV dollars to improve DNR trailheads to accommodate ADA (am
w/disabilities) somewhat backfired into the green sponsors. The allocation
did not allow for hiker type trail maintenance but required trailheads to be
brought to standard, though most of the DNR trailheads already are. Both
sides lost and now the government sees the ill of their ways. ORV users can
write letters to the constituents to support getting rid of the last minute
provisos that were written on this issue.
The DNR definitely needs our log of hours to be turned in for matching hours
for our Forest Watch Program. The hours that we log in can be matched for
funds to improve ORV areas.
Please write letters now and in the future to remind your representatives
how important recreating on state land is to you. Send them a letter, show
them a photo of you out enjoying your 4x4/quad/atv etc let them know how
much you enjoy your sport. When possible land closures come up and you
write them again and remind them of what you are losing they may be able to
understand your cause a little better.
Anytime you have done trail work, litter pick or improved DNR land somehow,
take the time to fill out a volunteer log sheet and get it to the DNR. We
need to be keeping track of the hours we are spending out there, it does
help them and it will help us should we face the threat of closure. Forest
Watch logs are to be turned into Jesse. Trail maintenance logs should be
turned into Christ. Christ also asked that you get in touch with him before
conducting any work, there are areas that need more work than others and
finding out what needs the most work or is the priority will better spend
your volunteer hours.
NORTH FORK AREA:
Jesse has been in contact with the representative from the Whatcom Land
Trust who owns from the end of the paved county road to the beginning of DNR
land off of the North Fork Road in Whatcom County. ORV users are allowed to
drive on the existing gravel road to get to DNR land, we are not allowed to
park or loiter on Whatcom Land Trust Land for any reason.
The gravel parking area adjacent to the Racehorse Bridge is owned by the DNR
so parking of trucks and trailers is allowed in this area. There have been
some problems with individuals attempting to get down into the creek bed
again and are pulling out barricades to get to the river. This is a big
NO-NO. Avoid stream crossings as well as any trail or area that will put
you in contact with a live stream. The Department of Fish and Wildlife as
well as Ecology will not allow us to hamper the salmon in the nearby river.
Please respect the rules for the area and stay out of the creeks and
WALKER VALLEY ORV PARK:
There is a motorcycle event taking place at WV on 10/14/01, they will be
using some of the 4wd trails - please be aware of this.
The annual fall litter cleanup sponsored by Northern Toys 4wd Club and
Skagit Motorcycle Club is occurring on Saturday, October 27, 2001. Meet at
9:00 am in the parking lot.
The Disabled Hunter Program is going on from the 13th of October through
October 31. Hunters and their partners have a blue sheet of paper that
designated them as a Disabled Hunter and they have been given keys to the
B1000 gate to gain access for both deer and elk in the area. Jesse has
posted the blue Disabled Hunter signs in the area as well if you see someone
gaining access through this gate this is probably why.
There are some problems with individuals gaining access to DNR land through
Longview Fiber's private property via Old Day Creek Road. Jesse is looking
Christ noted that the Slow, Congested Area signs have been posted at the
user's request. The main parking lot was graded last week. He is having
the CCC crew paint with red "no 4x4's" on the bollards that were installed
at the beginning of the motorcycle trails to make it very clear to the 4x4's
which trails were not appropriate or designated for their use. Please
respect the bollards and stick to the 4x4 approved trails.
Christ also asked if anyone had any concerns with the rock that was dumped
in the shoe fly area that accesses the 4x4 trails. No concern was heard
from the users but he noted he had gotten a few phone calls complaining of
the rocks. He wanted to make clear that the trails are for short wheel
base, modified vehicles, The dumping of the rocks was to discourage "Street
vehicles" which are causing environmental impacts to the area and damaging
resources. The DNR is looking at placing rock at the lower Jeep access
trail as well.
Signing the trails to indicate short wheelbase and modification or a list of
suggested equipment is something that is being planned. Discussion also
ensued about a trail rating system and having proper signage on the trails.
Christ said that once his assessment is complete it would include some of
Christ noted that there would be on-going future timber sales that will
affect trails within the park. Sales may have gone out for bid but not come
back in yet and once they do the purchaser has two years to complete the
project. Something to keep in mind.
Christ has asked for a 1-year extension for the Cavanaugh Conversion that
Northern Toys and Rainer Ridge Rams have been working on. The project was
put off for about a year due to a logging contract that went through a major
part of the trail conversion. The current trail project is due to expire as
of 12/1/01 and currently will not be completed by that time.
Discussion on future trail work party training classes was discussed; there
is a need for it and the need for trail crew leaders as well. This is a
project that the DNR is putting together and we may see something next
spring some time. Additional bobcat certification, tool certification as
well as chainsaw certification was brought up as well and will be addressed
by the DNR.
The Trailhead II grant is due to expire 11/1/01. Mark Thor is still working
this project and we do not have a firm update on where things stand at this
time, it was requested by the users that we be given an update by email or
have Mark attend the next users meeting. There was mention that he put in a
request for a 6-month extension and that will not affect applying for a
grant for construction.
Christ asked users what they thought of having a guest speaker at future
meetings such as a rep from Dept of Ecology, Fish and Wildlife, Deputy
Sheriff etc. It was thought to be a good idea by the users and will be set
up for the next meeting.
It was suggested by the users that the DNR come up with an agenda prior to
the meetings so that users are prepared for discussion at the meeting.
Christ said that he is approximately half way though the assessment and this
summer the forest fires took away from this project. He does accept those
willing to volunteer to go out and walk the trails with him. Please call him
at he office to arrange.
If anyone is aware of trails that have been converted to or had a road
placed over them please let Christ know.
They have finished paving all the way to Index now. The partial timber cut
above the pond is nearly complete.
Jesse will email out maps that he has that show DNR land as well as the
private holdings in the area.
A quick discussion covered the watershed for Spada Lake being closed to
users due to the threat of terrorism.
The Users meetings have been moved to even numbered months, the next meeting
will be Tuesday December 11, at 7:00 pm at the NW region office in Sedro
Northern Toys 4wd Club
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