March 21, 2010
|Combining Work and Play with the AMA
by Tim Nixon/SCORR
|It’s been a rumor for years that joining the American Motorcycle Association ($39) does more for on-road than for off-road motorcyclists. Supporting our local Summit County Off-Road Riders (free or $25), Colorado State Parks OHV registration ($25.25) Colorado Off-Highway Vehicle Coalition ($25) and the Blue Ribbon Coalition ($29) may get you more bang for your buck. That’s a total of $139.95; that much further away from finally owning heated hand grips.
It’s an outdated rumor because for the last four years, the AMA has been accused of just the opposite. “We’ve been primarily fighting trail closures and it’s mostly happening in Colorado, with campaigns like H.R. 4289, the Colorado Wilderness Act of 2009 and the Hidden Gems Wilderness Proposal”, AMA President Rob Dingham said.
Former SCORR president and current webmaster Tim Nixon spent a few days in the Moab, Utah desert riding with AMA President Rob Dingham, AMA Vice President Ed Moreland, AMA Chairman Stan Simpson and a host of others.
This “Ride with Respect” tour was hosted by the Trails Preservation Alliance and attended by Don Riggle, Director of Operations. For a bit of history, TPA gave SCORR a grant a few years ago to help us to become incorporated. “One of our missions is to enable clubs like SCORR to get organized and help us in the on-going battle to keep our trails open”, TPA Director Don Riggle said.
We were guided by Dale Parriott of Elite Motorcycle Tours and shown several possible trail closures in the Moab area. These areas are north of Moab, on both sides of State Highway 191. The riding in Moab was spectacular and Dale kept a diverse group of riders safe, including those on KTM 960’s and a 990 in places where a trials bike was more appropriate.
But what about Colorado? “The AMA is monitoring the situation in Colorado and we are lobbying Congress to keep these bills from passing. It’s still early in the game, but when it comes down to a vote, we’ll be ready”, AMA Vice President Ed Moreland said.
What can we do as SCORR members? First, money helps. Become a member of all of the above organizations and renew every year to help pay for the staff, lobbyists and the lawyers that help our fight for our right to ride.
Second, write letters. The AMA has a wealth of information, including a Rapid Response Center with details needed to compose your factual and convincing masterpiece.
Besides, you don’t need those heated hand grips!