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Old 03-09-2014, 09:18 AM   #61
geogymn
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My favorite hiker is the discreet hiker, the one I don't hear or see evidence of. The same would be true with ATVs, it just would be harder to accomplish.
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Old 03-09-2014, 01:26 PM   #62
redhawk
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Originally Posted by Schultzz View Post
Thank you for your response Wellsley.

I believe that if ATVers would pay the going fee (whatever that would be) an area could be set aside for their use. The trails could then be groomed using the fees paid by them. It is true that ATV's can do damage, but so do hikers. In Alaska hikers don't just make ruts which cause erosion, they destroy all vegetation on trails and when it rains the trails become extremely dangerous especially for rescue crews. Since hikers do not generally pay fees for their recreation the damage never gets fixed. Thousands of hikers with aggressive soles can cause lots of damage too. Let ATV's use the main dirt roads in the Park and let them pay stiff fees if they want to ride. ATV people spend money. Lots of money. The State of NY has been accepting fees for registration but has done little to provide areas for them to ride. Unfortunately many ATV's are ridden throughout the Park illegally perhaps "out of spite" and little is done to stop it. I know Tug Hill has some trails available now for a fee for a sticker. Unless you can literally "fly" in and out of the park your "intrusion" to nature is going to leave an effect whether hiking or otherwise. That is fact. I know that loud speeding ICE's can be very irritating. I am a hiker too, but also ride with as low an impact as I can.
I agree with your assessment that hikers do damage too. However, being realistic, it take a Hell of a lot of hikers to impact the environment the same amount that an ATV does even with both groups doing their best to minimize their impact. When you factor in the hikers and the ATV riders that don't try to minimize or for that matter those who abuse the privilege, then the difference is thousand fold.

The idea about special trails with the fee is a good one, but then the question becomes where?

What has always boggled my mind is that out in Wyoming and Montana there are literally hundreds of miles of trails for snowmobilers and ATV's. Yet they insist that they have the "right" to access the National Parks. Yet, that right nas never been taken from them. They have the same right as every other citizen to access the park, they just can't take their sled or ATV in.
So I wonder, with all the miles of land they can use, why the insistence of having the hiking trails opened up to them? They have to know that doing so will impact the experience of the people who hike, ski or showshoe the trails.

I have no more rights as a hiker than someone who owns an ATV. We are both allowed access to the trails equally. ATV riders can hike, ski or snowshoe just about anywhere on public land and so can I. They cannot take their vehicle on the trails and neither can I.
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Old 03-09-2014, 02:22 PM   #63
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For years, ATVs have repeatedly flaunted state land use regulations there. They head back there in large crowds of 10-15 vehicles, tear up the ground, and generally just trash the place, leaving a wake of discarded beer cans and fast good wrappers behind. Before there could be any chance of ATV use on state land at all, the ATV community would have to step up, organize, and begin to self-regulate itself far better than it has in the past.
At Lake George there was a Village-owned rundown beach that was improved to include native gardens. The ATV crowd, angered that they could no longer access the lake in winter at that spot, took down the “for non-motorized use” signage and the snow fence and ripped right through to the lake. Any attempt that winter to deter the ATV’s from using the park as their right of way was circumvented by the trespassing ATVs. The next spring the gardens had to be replanted. This was expensive. Unfortunately, the ATV’ers have set the tone ……
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