Wednesday, January 18, 2023

OHV WELCOMES NEW FOREST SUPERVISOR ON THE ELDORADO NF

Joe Stout (L) with QWR's Don Amador (R) on Field Trip
South Cow Mountain OHV Area - BLM Ukiah Field Office

 

OHV WELCOMES NEW FOREST SUPERVISOR ON ELDORADO NF

 

QWR wants to congratulate Joe Stout on his recent appointment to serve at the new Forest Supervisor on the Eldorado National Forest.  I had the privilege to work with Joe during his tenure with the BLM and believe he will do an excellent job in his new role with the Forest Service.  

 I especially appreciated Joe coming out to a tour of the BLM’s South Cow Mountain OHV Area 2016 when he was BLM’s State Office Deputy Director. 

 Here is link to that field trip.

https://quietwarriorracing.blogspot.com/2016/11/

  

Also, I will provide a link to the FS News Release on Joe’s Appointment and text as well.

https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/eldorado/news-events/?cid=FSEPRD1083626

 

PLACERVILLE, Calif. - The Eldorado National Forest welcomes Joe Stout as the new Forest Supervisor beginning January 17, 2023. Based in Sacramento, Stout has served as the Associate State Director for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in California since May 2015. Stout is replacing Jeff Marsolais who accepted an Associate Deputy Chief position in Washington, DC.

 

“I am excited to take on this new leadership role with the Eldorado National Forest and look forward to actively engaging with our staff, partners, organizations and local communities in the shared stewardship of the forest,” Stout said.

 

Joe’s leadership experience includes serving as Acting BLM California State Director from fall 2018 to early 2020. Prior to coming to California, Joe spent six years in the BLM’s Washington Office as the Acting Chief of Staff for the Director’s Office, Division Chief for the Decision Support, Planning and NEPA Program, and Legislative Affairs Specialist. He also worked in Colorado as the Acting Associate State Director; State Office Planning and NEPA Coordinator; and as a NEPA Coordinator, and Acting Assistant Field Manager in the Kremmling Field Office.

 

As Forest Supervisor, Joe will lead a team that oversees four ranger districts and manages programs in natural resources, fire and aviation management, public services and engineering. The Eldorado National Forest includes over 600,000 acres within major watersheds of the American, Consumnes and Mokelumne Rivers. These lands provide many ecological, economic, and recreational benefits.

 

Joe holds a master's degree in Public Administration (Environmental Policy, Management and Law) from the University of Colorado in Denver. His undergraduate work was in sociology and environmental studies at the State University of New York at Fredonia. Along with his wife and two boys, Joe loves spending time in the outdoors, including backpacking, fly fishing, and skiing.

 

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The U.S.D.A Forest Service is an equal opportunity employer. The mission of the Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

Sunday, January 15, 2023

OP-ED for MLK DAY - MY DREAM COMING TRUE


                                                        Don Amador is The Quiet Warrior


OP-ED

By Don Amador

Contact: damador@cwo.com

Phone: 925-783-1834

1/15/23

 

MY DREAM COMING TRUE

 

In 2001, I wrote an op-ed entitled; I Have a [Trail] Dream.   My dream back then was that someday all trail users would respect each other's personal choice of recreational activity and work in a collaborative manner on important trail stewardship projects, travel planning, and forest health efforts.

 Shortly after that missive was written, a number of stakeholder meetings were convened by the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) Division in an effort to bring diverse outdoor recreation interests together.  The theme for those meetings was based on the new concept of collaboration. 

 OHMVR Division’s collaborative process was a strategy to bring OHV groups, conservation organizations, and the non-motorized trail community together to discuss how they can work together to provide high-quality outdoor recreation opportunities for the public while protecting cultural and natural resources.

 Embracing that collaborative spirit, OHV worked with conservation groups and Congressman Mike Thompson in 2005 on a final version of the legislation that became the North Coast Wilderness Bill (HR233).  After a lot of hard work by both sides, the bill recognized OHV and mountain-bike use as legitimate recreational activities on federal lands and also codified OHV use in statute on designated routes.

 Collaboration between conservation groups and OHV continued in a process that led to the 2016 Dedication Ceremony of the Berryessa -Snow Mountain National Monument held at a popular BLM recreation site just a few miles east of Clearlake, California.

 The dedication event was unique because OHV recreation was featured as a key partner in development of the plan to enhance both conservation efforts and existing/ future non-motorized and motorized recreational opportunities within the Monument boundary. 

 Another stellar example of collaboration is being carried out by the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship in their Connected Communities Project where their vision is to partner with the Forest Service, local communities, and other motorized and non-motorized trail groups to connect 15 mountain communities via a 600-mile route.  

 As the country celebrates Martin Luther King Day this year, I believe the outdoor recreation and conservation groups should continue to participate in solution-oriented collaborative efforts where finding common ground is the goal so our public lands can be enjoyed by current and future generations.

 

# # #

 

Don Amador has been in the trail advocacy and recreation management profession for 30 years. Don is President of Quiet Warrior Racing/Consulting. Don served as a chairman and member on the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission from 1994-2000. He has won numerous awards including being a 2016 Inductee into the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame and the 2018 Friend of the AMA Award. Don currently serves as the government affairs lead for AMA District 36 in Northern California. Don writes on recreation and conservation issues from his office near Cottonwood, CA.  

Sunday, December 11, 2022

SXS SAFETY TRAINING - "Make-it-Home" with Spare Tire/Tools



Student on Exercise 4 - Backing and Turning
Fouts Springs - Mendocino NF


SXS SAFETY TRAINING - "Make-it-Home" with Spare Tire/Tools


QWR wants to congratulate members of the Mendocino National Forest’s recreation and resource team who completed the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (ROHVA) ROV Basic DriverCourse (RBDC) taught at the Fouts Springs OHV Area near Stonyford, California on December 7 and 8, 2022.  Fouts Springs is on the Grindstone Ranger District of the Mendocino National Forest.


Sign Up Area for ROHVA RBDC

These ROHVA classes were offered in recognition of the long-standing partnership between OHV stakeholders and the Mendocino National Forest and in support of the CA Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division’s work to improve/update important safety measures to address the rapid growth of ROV/UTV/SxS use on public lands.

 

Search, Evaluate, and Execute (SEE) remains one of the many important themes stressed by ROHVA in both the online E-Course and field training.   SEE is a common sense yet powerful decision-making process where a driver looks for various factors such as trail difficulty then evaluates the risk level of the situation and subsequently executes an action such as turning around and taking another route.

Student on Exercise 4 - Backing and Turning 
Fouts Springs - Mendocino National Forest


Protective safety gear is also another area that is highlighted during online and field education process.  Wearing a helmet, using eye protection, gloves, long sleeved shirt/jersey, and over-the-ankle-boots with non-slip soles can help the driver have a safe and fun trail experience.

QWR believes another important safety axiom - that is also a key motto within the Forest Service - is having staff ensure they make it back home at the end of a work day by working in a safe manner.  One of the many safety discussions that occurred was about how to “make it home” and those talks centered on  outfitting your SxS with a spare tire, tire jack, portable 12v air compressor, and lug nut wrench per chance you get a flat tire. 

QWR Basic Spare Tire Kit - Used Many Times on Trail and Research Projects,
Post Fire Recovery, and Trail Rides


 Having a puncture flat is a fairly common occurrence in the West on routes with sharp rocks, old nails, or pointed branch stubs that have fallen off trees damaged by wildfires.  Being able to change a flat tire just might be the difference on making it home safely before dark or spending the night in the wild.

 

As a ROHVA-certified DriverCoach, QWR’s Don Amador, states, “It’s great to help train agency staff about how to safely operate a ROV/SxS on designated road, trails, and areas.  And, to have them learn about the import of outfitting their ROV with the proper tools to ensure they are able to drive home  at the end of the work day.”

 

Since many federal/state agencies, cooperators, and non-profit partners have increased the use of ROVs for recreation/resource management and fire suppression activities, QWR offers the RBDC course for agency or cooperator staff that need to get certified or recertified before operating a government or corporate SxS/ROV.

 

QWR is a strong supporter of the focused safety efforts by our partners at CA State Parks OHMVR Division, Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, ROHVA, Tread Lightly!, and the CA Outdoor Recreation Foundation to address the rapid growth of ROV/UTV/SxS use on public lands.

 

LINK TO ROHVA (Go ahead and take the free online ROHVA E-Course)

http://www.rohva.org/

 

*If you are interested in having Don teach a ROHVA ROV Basic DriverCourse, contact him at: damador@quietwarriorracing.com

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

SEE the FUTURE OF ROV/SXS RECREATION

 

ROHVA Basic DriverCourse - BLM Chappie Shasta OHV Area
BLM Redding Field Office


SEE the FUTURE OF ROV/SXS RECREATION

 

QWR is proud to announce that it is now offering the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (ROHVA) ROV Basic DriverCourse (RBDC) to agency, corporate, and private sectors in the Greater Redding Area in Northern California.

 

To kick-off our ROV training program in the North State, QWR taught the RBDC yesterday at the BLM’s Chappie Shasta OHV Area that has a long history of supporting OHV educational opportunities.

 

Exercise 4 - Backing and Turning

Search, Evaluate, and Execute (SEE) is one of the many important themes stressed by ROHVA in both the online E-Course and field training.   SEE is a common sense yet powerful decision-making process where a driver looks for various factors such as trail difficulty then evaluates the risk level of the situation and subsequently executes an action such as turning around and taking another route.

 

Protective safety gear is also another area that is highlighted during online and field education process.  Wearing a helmet, using eye protection, gloves, long sleeved shirt/jersey, and over-the-ankle-boots with non-slip soles can help the driver have a safe and fun trail experience.

 

As a ROHVA-certified DriverCoach, QWR’s Don Amador, states, “It was great to get back out in the field yesterday at the BLM’s Chappie Shasta OHV Recreation Area helping train outdoor recreationists about how to safely operate a ROV/SxS on designated road, trails, and areas.”   

Exercise 5 - Serpentine Forward and Reverse 

 

“I always enjoy seeing students taking pride in learning some of the basic skills such as two-feet throttle/brake control [Exercise 4]to cross an obstacle, back-up, or load the SxS into a tight area such as toy hauler.  At the post field training wrap up stated they could SEE just how important it is for drivers to get the proper training so they recreate in a safe and responsible manner,” Amador concludes.  

QWR's Don Amador - Preparing to an Exercise


 Also since many federal/state agencies and cooperators have increased the use of ROVs for recreation/resource management and fire suppression activities, QWR offers the RBDC course for agency or cooperator staff that need to get certified or recertified before operating a government or corporate SxS/ROV.

 

QWR is a strong supporter of the focused safety efforts by our partners at CA State Parks OHMVR Division, Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, ROHVA, Tread Lightly!, and the CA Outdoor Recreation Foundation to address the rapid growth of ROV/UTV/SxS use on public lands.

# # # 

Sunday, November 6, 2022

QWR PSA - DON’T HIT THAT DEER

Deer Whistle installed on Kawasaki KLR 650


QWR PSA - DON’T HIT THAT DEER

 Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, one learns at an early age to WATCH OUT for deer crossing the roads between dusk and dawn since they often decide to cross a road at the same time you are driving.  One also learns that it’s not the deer you see that gets you but the deer or two following them across your path.

Almost all of us have either hit or had a near miss with a deer or know a family member or friend who has hit or missed a deer.  It’s not just cars and trucks that deer fixate on … they also seem to take on motorcycle riders too.

Deer Whistle installed on Ford F-250


A few months after moving up to Cottonwood near Redding, one of our relatives who is a long time resident of the area strongly suggested that we purchase some deer whistles to help reduce – but not eliminate – the chance of a collision with a deer.

So I took her advice and ordered a large set of deer whistles that had good reviews.  I ordered them from Amazon Prime and after they arrived, I installed them on all of my street legal cars, trucks, and motorcycles.

After I received my set of CITKOU 8Pcs Deer Whistles, I installed them on my vehicles and have been using them for about 8 months.  While some drivers may scoff at their effectiveness, I did notice that the deer I saw along the road did, in fact, react to the sound being emitted from the whistle.

Regardless of what brand you get, they are pretty inexpensive so what is the harm if they only work part of the time?  The only down side to getting what I think is pretty cheap deer collision insurance is they only work above 35 mph or so.

Now that the time has changed and we have more dark hours to drive in, it may be worth your while to purchase a set of deer whistles and install them on your vehicles.  

# # #  

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

SHOW ME THE SIGN – SxS SAFETY

FS Trail Marker with Vehicle Types Allowed - Mendocino NF


SHOW ME THE SIGN – SxS SAFETY

  

In August 2022, the CA State Parks OHMVR Division – in partnership with Tread Lightly! and the CA Outdoor Recreation Foundation -  hosted a safety summit at their McClellan Training Center in Sacramento.  For many it was their first in-person major conference in 2.5 years due to COVID restrictions.  It was attended by various key state and federal agency representatives, powersports industry leads, major OHV organizations, ROV/UTV trainers, motorized media outlets, law enforcement, competition event organizers, and educational non-profits.

FS Route Marker with Vehicle Types Allowed - Mendocino NF

 

The primary focus was on improving/updating safety efforts to address the rapid growth of ROV/UTV/SxS use on public lands.  The summit was successful since it planted the “safety standard” in the ground to mark this effort and to recognize the commitment by those in attendance to improve safety and reduce impacts to natural resources and other user groups.

August 2022 CA State Parks Safety Conference

 

What makes this SxS-related safety program important is that many owners of these vehicles have very little if any experience in motorized backcountry recreation on public lands.  Often they are not aware of the various land management agencies or their efforts to manage travel on legal routes.

End of Combined-Use County OHV Connector Route

 

Having just got back from doing a trail management survey at the Stonyford OHV Area on the Mendocino National Forest, I remain convinced one of the most important travel management tools is a quality trail signing program.

 

In my opinion, the most effective signing program uses a combination of positive and negative reinforcement strategies to inform the rider/driver on what routes are open or closed for their specific vehicle type.

OHV "50-inch" Trail for Motorcycles and ATVs - No SxSs Allowed

 

As this new safety initiative continues to build capacity to address SxS-related management needs, it is important for the greater OHV community to increase efforts to share our responsible use message and one good source comes from our friends at Tread Lightly!  and their RESPECTED ACCESS campaign.

 

https://treadlightly.org/campaigns/respected-access/

 

 Thanks for your interest in managed OHV recreation!

 

 

 

Thursday, October 20, 2022

ATTEND OHV Meetings in Nor Cal to Improve BLM OHV Opportunities

 



Our friends at the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council (NOHVCC)  are working in partnership with the CA Bureau of Land Management (BLM), to create a California Statewide OHV Action Plan. They are holding a series of meeting in northern CA in November and need your assistance in learning how the BLM can better provide access to high quality OHV recreation experiences in the state of California.

 

As a NOHVCC CA State Partner, QWR is encouraging riders to attend the first round of listening sessions: All sessions will be held from 6pm - 9pm

 

• November 14: Milpitas, CA: Holiday Inn Express & Suites Silicon Valley, 1100 Cadillac Ct, Milpitas, CA 95035,

• November 15: Ukiah, CA, Ukiah Valley Conference Center, 200 S School Street, Ukiah, CA 95482

• November 16: Eureka, CA, Red Lion Eureka, 1929 4th Street, Eureka, CA 95501

• November 17: Redding, CA, Win River Resort & Casino, 2100 Redding Rancheria Road, Redding, CA 96001

• November 18: Susanville, CA, The Historic Susanville Rail Depot, 601 Richmond Road, Susanville, CA 96130

• November 21, Sacramento, CA, Hilton Sacramento Arden West, 2200 Harvard Street, Sacramento, CA 95815

 

Here is a link for more information on these upcoming events.

https://nohvcc.org/event/northern-california-blm-listening-sessions-november-14-2022-milpitas-ca/

RSVP - https://nohvcc.org/engagement/attend-a-nohvcc-event/

Thanks for your review and please feel free to share with your OHV network.