Sunday, July 29, 2018

OHV ON FIRE - Gear Up to Support Post-Wildfire Recovery Efforts

Don Amador on Past Tour at BLM's Cow Mountain OHV Area
*Unit on Fire Now - Mendocino Complex Fire*

Don Amador
July 29, 2018


Many in the OHV community are being directly or indirectly impacted by the horrific and deadly wildfires burning throughout the West including those fires raging out-of-control in the BLM’s Chappie-Shasta OHV Area near Redding and the BLM’s Cow Mountain OHV Area near Ukiah/Lakeport in Northern California. 

BLM's Chappie-Shasta OHV Area
*On Fire Now - Carr Fire*

One of the lessons I have learned over the last 10-20 years working on numerous volunteer post-fire recovery projects at OHV recreation sites and serving on a regional forest-health/fuels management collaborative is the important role that OHV stakeholders (i.e. clubs, volunteers, grant partners such as the CA OHV Division, and OHV Industry grants, federal disaster relief aid, etc.) have in the delivery and implementation of post-fire mitigation efforts.

Post-Wildfire Hazards

Intense wildfires can destroy important OHV management tools such as trail delineators, signs, kiosks, and campground facilities.  Costly soil erosion and water quality trail structures can often be obliterated by dozers creating access routes for firefighters or blading fire lines around the blaze.

2012 Mill Fire - Post-Wildfire Trail Clearing
Mendocino National Forest

With winter rains coming in a relatively short period of time, a lot of the post-fire recovery projects will be centered on soil stabilization.  Here are some of those site-specific project areas.
  • Restoring drainage
  • Clean the ditches and culverts
  • Pull floatable debris from uphill of the culverts
  • Water bars/Rolling Dips

  • Erosion control measures
  • Trail stabilization
  • Hazard tree mitigation
  • Install route markers
  • Install public warning signs gates and barricades

  • Hazard tree mitigation
  • Cultural resource protection

Let’s continue to keep our family, friends, and firefighters in our thoughts and prayers and gear up to support important post-fire recovery efforts.

# # # 

Friday, July 13, 2018

SHARE THE ROAD – Slow Down on Blind Corners!

Share the Road Sign
Shasta-Trinity National Forest

As the popularity of summer motorized recreation continues to grow on public lands in the USA, QWR wants to remind new owners of SxSs, ATVs, Dirt-Bikes, and Dual-Sport Motorcycles to be aware of oncoming traffic you may encounter when touring on backcountry Forest Service and BLM roads.

What is coming around that corner?

It is important for newcomers to OHV to be aware that two-way traffic occurs on federal dirt roads.  During the summer it is not uncommon for OHVers to encounter oncoming traffic when riding on native dirt or gravel roads.

Oncoming traffic and vehicles that you need to watch for include hunters in pickups or jeep-type vehicles, other OHVs, emergency vehicles such as Forest Service crew buggies or fire engines, logging trucks, or the general public just out enjoying scenic vistas.

QWR encourages OHV club leaders to discuss the topic of two-way traffic with their riding networks to help them understand an old driving rule that many rural OHVers embrace and that is: SLOW DOWN when riding or driving your OHV on public land dirt roads.  When approaching a blind corner or bend in the road ALWAYS assume there is a vehicle coming towards you and reduce your speed accordingly.”

Drive safe and have a great summer!

Friday, July 6, 2018


The intense wildfires currently burning in Northern California and elsewhere in the West remind everyone of both the immediate and long-term impacts of said events to people, private property, wildlife, and access to public land recreation.

Post Fire View from Multi-Use Trail - 2013 Rim Fire
Stanislaus NF

QWR believes the recreation community has a responsibility to do their part in helping prevent the accidental start of a wildfire.

As you know, extreme wildfires can have an immediate impact on OHV recreation with implementation of public access bans in the burn area for periods of one year or longer.  They also destroy management tools such as trail delineators, signs, kiosks, and campground facilities.  Costly soil erosion and water quality trail structures can often be obliterated in the initial attack by dozers blading fire lines around the blaze.

Post Fire Closure to All User Groups - 2012 Mill Fire
Mendocino NF

In the link below, the U.S. Forest Service has some excellent advice on how the recreation community can follow simple steps to help reduce the accidental start of a wildfire.


QWR is also engaged with the FireScape Mendocino (part of the Fire Learning Network) which supports managed or prescribed fire as an important tool to reduce the potential for larger more intense wildfires and/or to improve forest health.




QWR wants to remind OHV enthusiasts to follow the recommendations from the BLM and other land management agencies to… “Never park a vehicle over dead grass; the catalytic converter can ignite the vegetation…”

QWR also strongly supports the proper use of a well-maintained USDA Forest Service Approved spark arrestor when operating an OHV on public lands.

Link to Forest Service Spark Arrestor Guide

Another suggestion for operating an OHV during the fire season is for the operator to remove any vegetation that has gotten trapped in the vehicle frame or body.  Our land management friends in Canada produced a short and informative video about the need to rid our vehicles from any buildup of dead grass or other vegetative debris when out on the trail.

ESRD Alberta Canada PSA

QWR believes that OHVs can be operated safely during the summer months if riders and operators follow many of the common sense regulations and guidelines that will help prevent wildfires and allow us to continue our recreational activities on public lands.

Again, QWR believes that trail enthusiasts have an increasingly important role in regards to prevention of large/intense wildfires and support for increased fuel reduction/forest health programs and projects on private and public lands.

Monday, July 2, 2018


The 4th of July/Independence Day Holiday is when millions of Americans celebrate their freedom, history, and traditions. One of our cherished pastimes is using off-highway vehicles (OHVs) to recreate on public and private lands with family and friends. 

Since the fight to preserve our OHV heritage is never ending,  QWR is launching our STRATEGIC TRAIL FORCE (STF) campaign to build support for the ongoing efforts of the 6% (that means 94% of OHVers are not members of a club or otherwise engaged in advocacy efforts) of OHVers who are members of motorized organizations, who volunteer for trail stewardship projects, write letters to decision-makers, and donate to special efforts.

Dave Pickett (AMA D36) Northern California OHV Champion
and STF's 1st Official Member

QWR has created its STF program as a fun way to inspire OHVers who are not members of motorized organizations to consider joining one or more organizations, becoming a trail volunteer, and donating to special trail access projects. 

STF Window Decal

If you would like a set of our newly minted STF (5 inch x 4.5 inch) decals to display on your OHV or tow rig and a membership certificate, please consider a donation/sponsorship of $10 dollars or more to help cover shipping, etc.,  and our ongoing outreach efforts in 2018 to those OHVers who are not engaged with an organization or project.  *Note that it is for the STF initiative in the donation instruction box and give your mailing address.


For those of you who are not members yet of any organizations, QWR wants to give you a short list of the national organizations that we belong to or partner with (there are many others). Feel free to google up names of local and state OHV organizations where you recreate and join them as well.

AMERICANS FOR RESPONSIBLE RECREATION ACCESS (ARRA)- ARRA is a national organization that was formed to ensure that Americans are not arbitrarily denied the right to responsibly experience and enjoy the public lands that belong to the citizens of the United States. Be sure and sign up for their Action Alerts.


AMERICAN MOTORCYCLIST ASSOCIATION (AMA) – AMA’s mission is to promote the motorcycle lifestyle and protect the future of motorcycling.  Don Amador was recently presented with the Friend of the AMA Award.  Sign up for AMA Alerts too!


TREAD LIGHTLY! (TL) – TL’s Mission is to promote responsible recreation through stewardship, education and communication.  They publish and produce a lot of trail ethic-related materials.


OFF ROAD MOTORSPORTS HALL OF FAME (ORMHOF) – ORMHOF was established to recognize and honor those individuals and organizations whose lifelong contributions to off-road motorsports have set a standard for others to follow.  Don Amador was inducted into the ORMHOF in 2016.


QWR wants to thank the OHVers who are already part of STF via your many years of service in being champions of our sport and favorite pastime.  But we especially want to thank those new STF members that have made the decision to JOIN, volunteer, or donate to help protect and defend access to high quality OHV recreation on public and private lands.