Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Full or Half Culvert OHV Bridges Address Water Quality on System Trails

QWR on New Full Culvert OHV Bridge

As federal and state land management agencies throughout the country continue to add or improve environmental protections to their designated trail systems, QWR wants to highlight several newly constructed full and half culvert OHV water crossing structures.

Example One - Trail Before Install of Full Culvert OHV Bridge

These OHV “bridges” were noted on a recent field tour of various trail system improvement projects on the Eldorado National Forest, Georgetown Ranger District.  The Mace Mill OHV Area is a popular motorized and non-motorized trail-based recreation area located in the Sierra Nevada.  Dirt-bike enthusiasts share many of the trails with local equestrians.  Several motorcycle events are held each year including the Fools Gold Enduro and the Crazy Miner Family Enduro.

Example One - Trail After Install of Full Culvert OHV Bridge

Increasing regulations related to water quality and soil erosion means that land agencies, partners, and volunteers will need to employ the most current trail management techniques to address resource concerns.

QWR believes that both full and half culvert trail bridges are appropriate structures depending on site-specific details - such as soil composition, amount of water flow, type of vehicle using the trail, or topography - of each installment.

Example Two - Trail Before Install of Half Culvert OHV Bridge

One advantage the half culvert has over the full culvert is that it maintains the original creek bed and has fewer disturbances to the stream channel.

Example Two -Trail After Install of Half Culvert OHV Bridge

John Ward, OHV Manager for the Georgetown Ranger District, Eldorado National Forest, states, "Modern trail management strategies include armoring stream courses to protect water quality.  The Eldorado National Forest appreciates the partnership it has with the California Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Division (OHMVR). The OHMVR grant program provides critical resources that enable the Forest to provide an environmentally sound and high quality OHV trail experience to the public."

One of the Mixed-Use Trails at Mace Mill OHV Area

As QWR has stated before, the future of OHV depends on our collective ability to successfully address motorized recreation-related water quality issues on state and federal lands.

*QWR wants to thank John Ward for his contributions to this article and for his work on the unit.

1 comment:

  1. Very nice example of all parties working together.
    This is what will keep OHV open to all.
    D36 LAO Dave Pickett