Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Water Quality Management Key to OHV Future

Hillside Stabilization at Carnegie SVRA
The future of OHV recreation depends on our collective ability to successfully address motorized recreation-related water quality issues on state and federal lands.  Recently, QWR had the opportunity to tour and document various water quality/soil erosion mitigation measures that have been implemented at Carnegie State Vehicular Recreation Area.  This unit is managed by the Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division at California State Parks and is located near Tracy, California.
Designated Routes/Signs are Key Management Tools
Sometimes these management prescriptions designed to keep riding areas open for future generations are overlooked and/or under appreciated by the casual rider.  QWR believes it is important for riders to appreciate the tremendous amount of work performed by land managers and volunteers to help ensure that OHV recreational opportunities remain viable on public lands.
Trail Delineators, Contour Trails, and Hillside Stabilization are all Water Quality Tools
Next time you go riding, keep your eyes on the lookout for the multitude of management tools (e.g. signs, catch basins, contour trails, hillside stabilization measures, etc.) that help keep our trails open.  Feel free when you get home to send the appropriate land manager and/or club that has been working on those projects a thank you.  They will appreciate it.
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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

New Smokey Bear Ad and OHV Spark Arresters

QWR Sound Check Station at Chappie-Shasta OHV Area
As you know, QWR promotes the use of sound compliant exhaust with a functioning spark arrester when riding an OHV on designated roads, trails, and areas on public lands.  Recently, the Ad Council started its new Smokey Bear campaign in time to remind various publics about how they can help prevent wildfires.
Smokey Bear Campaign
QWR also wants to commend the campaign for its positive message when it comes to the use of OHVs on public lands.  Several years ago, the Smokey Bear program had a less-than-positive message about the legal use of OHVs on federal lands. 
In addition, the Forest Service updated their Spark Arrestor Guide last year with a lot of good information including a detailed list of all OHV-related approved spark arrestors.
Spark Arrester Guide – OHV Vol. 3
According to the guide, Forest Service Standard 5100-1c requires that each arrester shall be permanently marked with the model number and the manufacturer’s name or trademark. The model number must match exactly. The identiļ¬cation must be stamped in the metal body or on an attached metal plate.
Many states have spark arrester laws.  For those if you in CA, you can find that law below:
QWR looks forward to seeing many of you out on the trail this year.  Let’s all work to help ensure that OHV recreationists are using sound compliant spark arrestor exhaust systems to help reduce the threat of wildfires on public lands.