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Old 03-20-2013, 05:37 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Holdstrong View Post
Bravo. Wonderfully stated.

This a position that many people agree with, and needs to be continually mentioned in these discussions.

Everyone CAN use state lands, but that does not mean that everyone can use them however the heck they want.

This is not some new, strange or rare concept either. This is something we encounter every day of our lives, everywhere we go. Everyone can use the streets in our towns, for example, but that doesn't mean you can do whatever the heck you want on those streets. Same idea applies to any public space, and most private spaces too!
I think part of the problem is the manner in which ATVs are advertised by the manufacturers. A lot of ATV advertisements would lead you to believe 2 things:
  1. If you own an ATV, it is your right to use it however you like, wherever you like.
  2. If you aren't using your ATV to tear up the ground into a big muddy mess, then you aren't using it correctly.
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Old 03-20-2013, 09:08 PM   #42
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Years ago I use to get together and camp out once a year with a few 'Jeep' guys.
Those guys were definitely always trying to out-do one another.
Not that every Jeep or ATV owner is this way, but these guys had absolutely no fear of getting stuck, or doing even more damage to the road & trail which had already been torn apart by excessive 4x4 use.
Later I asked them if anyone wanted to join me in a short hike across the creek, and up & over the hill that they had just tore up, and down the other side to a pond... and they all looked at me as if I was kidding and the so called leader of the group responded, "Are you serious, do you mean walk? I didn't even know there was a pond over there...Hey Johnny, I bet your Wrangler won't make it there!"

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Old 03-27-2013, 10:29 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by DSettahr View Post
I think part of the problem is the manner in which ATVs are advertised by the manufacturers. A lot of ATV advertisements would lead you to believe 2 things:
  1. If you own an ATV, it is your right to use it however you like, wherever you like.
  2. If you aren't using your ATV to tear up the ground into a big muddy mess, then you aren't using it correctly.
Do people with motorboats get the same type of advertisements?

Motorboats are loud. Motorboats are often operated by intoxicated individuals. Motorboats often do not give right of way to un-powered craft. Motorboats often speed where they should not. Motorboats pollute the lakes. Motorboats disturb fish and wildlife. If the lakes are state land then they should be preserved like wild forest or wilderness.

I'm not advocating ATV's but why do we let so many lakes get over-run with motor boats? It seems a bit hypocritical that we should allow other technology to destroy the park and ban others?

There are hundreds of other lakes outside of the Adirondacks to destroy with motor boats, why can't we preserve those in the park?

Also the uniqueness of the Adirondacks allows people to own land in the park. So then it is OK for anyone that owns a chunk of land to destroy it how they see fit. I guess that is the freedom you get if you can afford to do such

If it is state land then there should be no motorized vehicles allowed no matter what level of damage they do, be it a boat, snowmobile or ATV.
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Old 03-28-2013, 12:03 AM   #44
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Do people with motorboats get the same type of advertisements?

Motorboats are loud. Motorboats are often operated by intoxicated individuals. Motorboats often do not give right of way to un-powered craft. Motorboats often speed where they should not. Motorboats pollute the lakes. Motorboats disturb fish and wildlife. If the lakes are state land then they should be preserved like wild forest or wilderness.

I'm not advocating ATV's but why do we let so many lakes get over-run with motor boats? It seems a bit hypocritical that we should allow other technology to destroy the park and ban others?

There are hundreds of other lakes outside of the Adirondacks to destroy with motor boats, why can't we preserve those in the park?

Also the uniqueness of the Adirondacks allows people to own land in the park. So then it is OK for anyone that owns a chunk of land to destroy it how they see fit. I guess that is the freedom you get if you can afford to do such

If it is state land then there should be no motorized vehicles allowed no matter what level of damage they do, be it a boat, snowmobile or ATV.
Hmm. I've ben backpacking for over 60 years and I have yet to see a trail or river or lake torn up by a motorboat.

Don't misunderstand me, I prefer places where motors aren't allowed. But trying to compare motorboats and ATV's misses the point completely. It's like comparing A Teddy Bear to a Grizzly.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:55 AM   #45
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So because the damage is not visible to a trail it isn't there?

I bet you I can fix trail erosion or clean up a few beer cans easier than I can clean an entire lake of oil pollution.

That Teddy bear you refer to might have been infected with small pox.
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:40 AM   #46
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So because the damage is not visible to a trail it isn't there?

I bet you I can fix trail erosion or clean up a few beer cans easier than I can clean an entire lake of oil pollution.

That Teddy bear you refer to might have been infected with small pox.
If you spent any significant time in the woods you would know that your argument has no merit. There are people here who were backpacking and boating, probably before your parents were born who have witnessed first hand the damage that AtV's do and have also witnessed any changes to the lakes from motorized craft?

Oil Pollution? Got list of the lakes where oil pollution from boats has killed the fish and the flora? Be interested in seeing it. More worried about the spread of invasives then oil pollution.

And you and I can't do much about fixing trail erosion unless the causes are eliminated. However I'm sure many of us can compile a list of areas that need work for you.
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:46 AM   #47
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I can see you just want to argue. OK.

Let me know where your well is and I will dump oil in it for you. Then let me know how you feel about it.

For someone so old and wise you only seem to see the short term effects.

PS any trail erosion CAN be fixed with fill if one is so inclined to get it out there. Detoxifying water, and millions of gallons requires one big water filter, OR many, many years of natures own purification processes.

I mean no disrespect. I have owned ATVs and 4wd jeeps and I know what they are capable of doing to the land. I also think on improved trails they don't do any harm other than air, noise, (and thermal pollution) if operated responsibly. By improved trail I mean one in which gravel is continuously spread to prevent rutting and culverts and bridges are included for drainage and stream crossing. I still do not think it is a good idea to be allowed within park on state land, no matter what the land designation is. The only exception I could possibly think of is state camp grounds and those roads are usually paved. Rangers and search and rescue should be permitted as well.

I feel the same for motor boats and snowmobiles. Snowmobiles themselves probably do the least harm, but the principle is the same. Wild to me means no motors. JMO. Just because you can't readily see the damage, doesn't mean it isn't there or it isn't coming in the future.

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Old 03-28-2013, 01:38 PM   #48
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Mtn Bikes on trails

Since I think most of us that like hiking are against ATVs.

What is everyones thought on Mtn Bikes?

I used to be an avid Mtn Biker but now I just hike on trails. Before you applaud me it isn't because I was thinking about erosion... my wife switched me over to a hybrid bike and I don't go on anything but a dirt road or flat gravel trail anymore.

I know bikes do some damage but more often than not if the trail was really bad, I would get off and walk my bike. So the impact was probably not much worse than hiking.

Thoughts?
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Old 03-28-2013, 02:58 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by haderondah_wild View Post
I can see you just want to argue. OK.
I'm pretty sure that wanting to argue is a pre-requisite for posting on these forums.

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Originally Posted by haderondah_wild View Post
Since I think most of us that like hiking are against ATVs.

What is everyones thought on Mtn Bikes?
A lot of people will suggest that if wheeled carts are allowed on trails, then mountain bikes should be allowed too because the impact is the same. This is not true- mountain bikes can and do create a lot more impacts than wheeled carts.

The difference is that mountain bikes are self propelled, whereas carts are not. Mountain bikes also have a pretty significant mechanical advantage due to the gears. A wheel on a cart will typically never spin faster than the ground is moving, so you don't get "skids" and "peel outs." On a mountain bike however, due to the self-propelled nature, the mechanical advantage, and potentially high speeds of travel, the ground and the wheels aren't always moving 100% in conjunction with each other- which causes that skidding and peeling out, which creates impact.

That being said, I think the mountain bike policy in the Adirondacks is somewhat flawed. Under current regulations, they are allowed on any and all trails in Wild Forests, and are prohibited on all trails in Wilderness Areas. There are many on Wild Forests that are unsuited to mountain biking, and there are many trails in Wilderness Areas that would be well suited to mountain biking. I like the current regulations in the Catskills, where Mountain Bikes are allowed in wilderness areas on designated corridors (most of which, if not all, are old roads). I wouldn't want to see mountain bikes on every old road in a wilderness area- for example, the Western High Peaks is filled with old roads but I think should remain free of bikes, because it protects the solitude and remoteness of the area. But I would be ok with bikes on some wilderness trails in the Adirondacks.
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Old 03-28-2013, 03:41 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by haderondah_wild View Post
I can see you just want to argue. OK.

Let me know where your well is and I will dump oil in it for you. Then let me know how you feel about it.

For someone so old and wise you only seem to see the short term effects.

PS any trail erosion CAN be fixed with fill if one is so inclined to get it out there. Detoxifying water, and millions of gallons requires one big water filter, OR many, many years of natures own purification processes.

I mean no disrespect. I have owned ATVs and 4wd jeeps and I know what they are capable of doing to the land. I also think on improved trails they don't do any harm other than air, noise, (and thermal pollution) if operated responsibly. By improved trail I mean one in which gravel is continuously spread to prevent rutting and culverts and bridges are included for drainage and stream crossing. I still do not think it is a good idea to be allowed within park on state land, no matter what the land designation is. The only exception I could possibly think of is state camp grounds and those roads are usually paved. Rangers and search and rescue should be permitted as well.

I feel the same for motor boats and snowmobiles. Snowmobiles themselves probably do the least harm, but the principle is the same. Wild to me means no motors. JMO. Just because you can't readily see the damage, doesn't mean it isn't there or it isn't coming in the future.
Last I knew (In my infinite wisdom) it takes at least two to make an argument.

I don't have a well. Sorry

You can "fill" as much as you want. Erosion will still take place. And sometimes the fill might do more to upset the "balance" then not.

My point was comparing the ATV's to motorboats isn't a valid argument. Hell Backpackers do damage as well, and in the case of some areas, lik he High peaks, the volume of backpackers in a relatively small area is more damaging to the ecology then a lot of motorboats on a big lake. By your standard we might also ague the facts that cars should not be allowed within the Adirondack pary because the pollution from heir emissions kills trees near the road, and the salt used on the road in the winter also effects the flora and subsequently the fauna. Lot more damage there then what motorboats do do a lake. The worst damage a motorboat does for a lake is give humans access.

You can ask anyone who knows me, I don't like motorized boats either in fact their are people on this forum who witnessed me chasing a motorboat up the Raquette River with a kayak because of excessive speed.Just for the record, I caught it. I think there should be a number of lakes where motors should not be allowed.

BUT, an ATV does far more damage then a motorboat. Period. End of Story. Absolutely no room for argument. So if you want to make your point, do it with an argument that has some validity.

And you're right. I do like to argue, but I don't just argue. I debate fiercely for those causes that I am passionate about, and when I do I try to present information and comparisons that have validity to them. I'm just suggesting that you do the same.

The one problem with your point about the ATV's on the improved trails is the part about "responsibly". It's unfortunate that are people who choose to not be responsible, nor considerate. And it only takes one to really mess up a trail. And it's impossible to separate the responsible ones from the jerks. So, it's necessary to ban the vehicles because of the few bad eggs. It's not a question of "fair" it's a matter of necessity.
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Old 03-28-2013, 03:59 PM   #51
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By my standard I KNOW for a fact that the roads in the Adirondacks are doing a ton of damage. The amount of salt that is used causes major issues for plant life. BUT, I will also say that there is a relatively small area of road frontage compared to the area of lakes, so we live with it. Also the volume of air in the atmosphere is very large compared to the volume of water, so it takes less amount of pollutants to disturb the system. Also newer cars put out very, very small amounts of hydrocarbons and particulates into the air. Two cycle boats burn and dump oil into the water at a very high rate.

And as you know even if you banned cars, the air would still get polluted due to cross effects from other areas, just as some lakes would have become 'dead' from acid rain from factories in Michigan.

Also I do not hike often in the high peaks because I know the trails damage the soils and plant life. It is not so bad when it is contained to only a few miles of trails and when people contain themselves to those trails.

And if you think oil does no damage, then please, let it be dumped into your water - not having a well does not excuse your argument. It does damage, end of story. If you think otherwise then please ask the DEC why they do not allow motors larger than 5hp on Hemlock and Canadice lakes in the FLR. Both those lakes are reservoirs for the drinking supply to Rochester.

Mineral oil is a known carcinogen, even in small doses. You don't see it's effects right away, but it eventually kills life... GUARANTEED and PROVEN in lab rats.

Soil erosion is actually a natural process that takes place in all geological systems. The rate at which it happens and whether it is by humans or not is your concern ONLY. And what does erosion kill other than your willingness to hike a trail? Nothing. It disrupts the plantlife but they will adapt and regrow. That has been proven over and over.

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Old 03-28-2013, 04:27 PM   #52
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By my standard I KNOW for a fact that the roads in the Adirondacks are doing a ton of damage. The amount of salt that is used causes major issues for plant life. BUT, I will also say that there is a relatively small area of road frontage compared to the area of lakes, so we live with it. Also the volume of air in the atmosphere is very large compared to the volume of water, so it takes less amount of pollutants to disturb the system. Also newer cars put out very, very small amounts of hydrocarbons and particulates into the air. Two cycle boats burn and dump oil into the water at a very high rate.

And as you know even if you banned cars, the air would still get polluted due to cross effects from other areas, just as some lakes would have become 'dead' from acid rain from factories in Michigan.

Also I do not hike often in the high peaks because I know the trails damage the soils and plant life. It is not so bad when it is contained to only a few miles of trails and when people contain themselves to those trails.

And if you think oil does no damage, then please, let it be dumped into your water - not having a well does not excuse your argument. It does damage, end of story. If you think otherwise then please ask the DEC why they do not allow motors larger than 5hp on Hemlock and Canadice lakes in the FLR. Both those lakes are reservoirs for the drinking supply to Rochester.

Mineral oil is a known carcinogen, even in small doses. You don't see it's effects right away, but it eventually kills life... GUARANTEED and PROVEN in lab rats.

Soil erosion is actually a natural process that takes place in all geological systems. The rate at which it happens and whether it is by humans or not is your concern ONLY. And what does erosion kill other than your willingness to hike a trail? Nothing. It disrupts the plantlife but they will adapt and regrow. That has been proven over and over.
The new 4 stroke motors, along with the new oil injection engines, both on snowmobiles and outboard-motors have become very efficient and clean running. The older 2 strokes are fading away.....

Erosion also effects the aquatic fauna in streams and lakes .

I read on the internet that 'plastic' boats release toxic chemicals into the water also, especially when they scrape bottom and leave those unsightly stripes on the pretty rocks.

And did you now the amount of carbon those packpacking stoves produce!! Talk about a large carbon footprint!!!
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:38 PM   #53
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The new 4 stroke motors, along with the new oil injection engines, both on snowmobiles and outboard-motors have become very efficient and clean running. The older 2 strokes are fading away.....

Erosion also effects the aquatic fauna in streams and lakes .
4 cycles aren't new. And they also usually route the exhaust directly into the water. The EPA regulations are much more lax than for cars.

Oil injection does not solve the problem, nor does direct injection but it does make it better.

My second point is that erosion takes place whether it is from a tire or the wind and rain. Hydrocarbon pollution is not natural. It didn't happen until we introduced motor boats into those lakes.

Which is worse is never the debate. They are all bad. That was my original point. I did however find this to be a provocation:

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But trying to compare motorboats and ATV's misses the point completely. It's like comparing A Teddy Bear to a Grizzly.
The volume of most motor lakes in the Adirondacks are very small. Therefore if traffic is heavy they get polluted (in parts per million) much quicker than larger lakes. They are much more susceptible.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:01 PM   #54
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By my standard I KNOW for a fact that the roads in the Adirondacks are doing a ton of damage. The amount of salt that is used causes major issues for plant life.
Salt is a big issue. But it's used relatively sparingly in the Adirondacks, especially compared with areas outside the park. They really only use it on roads that are major routes connecting towns. Most of the small side roads just get sand. Then in the spring, they drive around with big vacuum trucks to suck all of the sand up to re-use again the next year.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:13 PM   #55
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I recall the EET professors at Paul Smith's telling me that the Adirondacks used a TON of salt. They had the rusted through cars to prove it that weren't that old.

Maybe things have changed... I still see the damaged trees on the side of the road though.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:40 PM   #56
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I recall the EET professors at Paul Smith's telling me that the Adirondacks used a TON of salt. They had the rusted through cars to prove it that weren't that old.

Maybe things have changed... I still see the damaged trees on the side of the road though.
Well... the key word is "relatively." Yes, they use it a lot less in the Adirondacks than many municipalities outside the park do. But they still use it a lot on the main roads. The classic example of the impacts from salt is Cascade Pass- there used to be numerous birch trees lining the road, in between the pavement and the ponds (if you look at old postcards of the pass, you can see them). They've all since died from the salt. Ever since the Olympics, there has been a "bare pavement" policy in place on the main Adirondack roads.

Just goes to show... if you think the impacts from salt in the Adirondacks are bad, one can only imagine what it must be doing to water quality in areas outside the Adirondacks that have a lot more roads and use a lot more salt.

PS- What year did you graduate from PSC? I got my bachelors there in 2008. I also taught there for a few years more recently.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:55 PM   #57
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PS- What year did you graduate from PSC? I got my bachelors there in 2008. I also taught there for a few years more recently.
My plan was to get my EET degree from PSC and then go to Potsdam and get my bachelors in Biology (and then ?). I would end up abandoning that career path after my first year at PSC. That was in 1998/99.

I wound up going into Mechanical Engineering and got my degree in that instead. Now I work for the evil auto industry and actually spend about half my time in an engine lab exposed to oil

I'd rather it be in our labs than in the lakes though.

On the good side my job is entirely related to R&D in fuel economy and emissions devices for vehicles.

Although I will admit no manufacturer does any of that out of the kindness of their heart. It is politics and economics that drive everything...

I visited PSC last year. I was surprised at how much it has changed since I was there. Seems like it has grown quite a bit.

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Old 03-07-2014, 11:21 AM   #58
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It's not just what you ride, it's "how' you ride. Yes, ATV's often tear up trails because people abuse the power available on an ATV. If you ride gently "over" the road not "thru" the road by spinning the back tires you would not cause damage. Also riding on an electric ATV would eliminate the irritating "noise" factor. Obey the speed limits in the park and enjoy the flora and fauna. Stick to the main park roads and stay off of the hiking trails and allow electric ATV's on DEC roads so others could enjoy the park as well. How to enforce? That's most likely the reason why they're not allowed because it would require more Rangers and manpower. It would permit those who cannot "hike" anymore to still enjoy.
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:07 PM   #59
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I own a ATV that I use around home. I don't rip and strip on the trails on my property. But even that if the trails get to wet I park it or I'll rut it all up. That being said I believe there is no place for ATV's on State land in the ADK. It would only take a few bad apples to do severe damage to the land scape and unless there was a maintenance program to repair and maintain these trails ATV use would not be practical. My two cents.
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Old 03-09-2014, 06:29 AM   #60
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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.
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