Trails Preservation Alliance 2012 End of Year Report


December 20, 2012

  Trails Preservation Alliance (TPA) 2012 End of Year Report

The Board of Directors (BoD) is pleased to present the 2012 End of Year report summarizing TPA activities over the last twelve months. Before providing the year’s operations details we want to remind you that we are still a 100% volunteer organization. There are no paid employees in the TPA. We do incur expenditures for technical support from our lawyers; CPA; web site support and subject matter experts (SME’s). TPA SME’s provide the technical knowledge used to respond to Forest Services (FS) and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) travel plans and other Federal regulations affecting our sport. Be assured that your TPA works hard to relevantly, consistently and professionally present our position as it relates to public access for recreation on public property.

All documents produced by the TPA are available on our web page in the news section. This provides easy member access to documents to be used at personal discretion in dealing with the local Federal Land managers. The TPA overall plan is to provide resources and technical expertise to the motorcycle community of Colorado and to further our collective work in protecting the sport of motorcycle trail riding.

2012 was a difficult year for motorized recreation on public lands – the recent federal election result means there are even greater challenges ahead. We can expect to see more wilderness designation and other types of restrictive land designations to reduce or eliminate the majority of public access to public property. One might think that the public would see that more wilderness areas are only going to put more recreation pressure on the few remaining areas that are left open. Unfortunately, logic does not always prevail in land use issues of this type. Regardless, TPA and your BoD continue to work relentlessly on protecting the trail riding sport.
There were some positive occurrences in Colorado this year with the advent of several new Federal Land Managers in the FS and BLM. With continued TPA input and guidance, the Colorado FS and BLM are realizing that the Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) sport is a growing part of public recreation and that the restrictive plans of the past that seek to close OHV routes are not the best way to manage the sport. Also being realized is the positive economic impact OHV recreation has on local towns in Colorado.

In light of these positive indicators, TPA continues to take a proactive stance on issues, rather than being reactive. Although easier said than done, this remains an ongoing goal for 2013.

TPA had a significant number of projects/actions that were worked during 2012. While we continue to be confident, most are works in progress and require our continuing vigilance and effort.

1. Gunnison National Forest (GNF)
The GNF Travel Management Plan (TMP) and subsequent record of decision (ROD) closed a lot of historical motorized trails. TPA continues to work with GNF staff to provide more motorized routes.

2. White River (WR)
The WR TMP and ROD did the same thing as the GNF. WR is one of the biggest national forests in the state and has an abundance of user-built trails (mountain bike and other). TPA and local motorcycle clubs work with WR staff to provide more motorized recreation. The WR has the smallest number of motorcycle trails of any National Forest in Colorado – we are working to expand that number.

3. Grand Junction BLM
Grand Junction (GJ) BLM office has several major ongoing projects being worked by the TPA and local motorcycle clubs:

  • The Bang Canyon Project has been ongoing for several years, with some unforeseen delays it is nearing completion of planning, and could represent a significant increase in OHV recreation.
  • GJ BLM is in the final stages of releasing their draft Resource Management Plan (RMP); covering the entire GJ BLM area, of which the Gateway area is a major portion. The TPA and its associated clubs provide input into this draft plan. We hope GJ BLM uses this vast area to provide significant OHV recreation opportunities. There is an abundant amount of old mining roads and trails that can easily be inventoried for OHV recreation.

4. Wilderness Plan Input

  •  TPA provided input and analysis into the BLM Draft RMP for the Colorado River and Kremling area.
  • We provided analysis and input into the BLM and Colorado State Sage Grouse Plan. Unfortunately this plan caused closure of many OHV recreation areas throughout the state.
  • TPA continues to provide input and analysis into several proposed new Wilderness Plans presented by various environmental groups. Examples are Hidden Gem and numerous Wilderness Study Area (WSA) plans being considered for wilderness designation.

Affiliated Organization Support

TPA supported numerous local motorcycle clubs in their work throughout Colorado this year. Some of our major support activities were:

  • In the SW corner of the state San Juan Trail Riders for their work on the Rico Dolores trails in the Turkey Springs area
  • Tenderfoot Trails system developed by the Summit County Off Road Riders (SCORR)
  • Sports Riders of Colorado work in the Holy Cross and WR area
  • Colorado Motorcycle Trail Riders Association (CMTRA) efforts to preserve Captain Jack’s trail system near Colorado Springs, and their work on the Woodland Park Trail #717
  • Joint actions with the Colorado Off-Highway Vehicle Coalition (COHVCO) in many areas. These include plans to build several OHV recreation areas in conjunction with western countries and towns in Colorado.
  • COHVCO annual rendezvous
  • Support to the Ride with Respect Club in Moab Utah. While small in member number, this club does a significant amount of work with the Utah BLM, protecting OHV riding areas in eastern Utah. It deserves major Colorado support.
  • TPA continues to interact with Trout Unlimited, trying to find mutual ground for OHV support by TU. This includes work groups in the Silverton and Lake City area.

TPA helped with several new OHV organizations in 2012.

  • Rocky Mountain Adventure Riders (RMAR) is an ongoing organization and is now a member of the TPA. RMAR hosts A significant annual 7-day ride in Colorado called the Colorado Adventure Motorcycle ride (CAM 1000).
  • The other organizations were 2 new ATV clubs working in the NW section of Colorado. With the political environment of today, the TPA embraces all forms of OHV recreation. There is strength in the number of members and organizations, all of which can help the cause for more public access to public lands.

TPA is a member of Region Recreation Advisory Council (RRAC), Region #2 (Denver).

Legal Actions

TPA continues to be involved in Colorado legal litigation actions actively preserving our sport on public lands. Due to their complexity and ongoing current issues, exact details of the current status of each legal action are not available in this year-end report. The legal actions listed below all involve the Colorado Forest Service:

  • Pike San Isabel lawsuit
  • Rico Delores lawsuit
  • Bear Creek, Green Back Trout lawsuit

In each of these lawsuits the TPA, in conjunction with COHVCO and local motorcycle organizations, have filed for and been approved by the court for intervening status on each issue. In the case of the Rico Delores action, TPA and COHVCO were joined by the Blue Ribbon Coalition (BRC).

We will keep you posted on our progress in all of these important issues. Please check our web site for updates.

3rd Annual Trails Awareness Symposium
The TPA conducted the 3rd annual Trails Awareness Symposium (TAS) this past summer. Reviews of this event were reported in the AMA magazine; COHVCO News and Dirt Rider magazine. (All articles are available in the TPA web page news section). This event is a major fund raiser for the TPA, but also focuses on helping riders plan and work with Federal Land managers with the ultimate goal of increasing OHV recreation opportunities for everyone.

Grant Projects

The TPA continued our work with the Colorado State Parks OHV grant program. TPA applied for and was awarded a large grant to build and install OHV barriers throughout the state for FS and BLM areas. The main project, Barrier #2, is designated to build various sizes of trail barriers to ensure proper use of the OHV route. This includes single track, 2-track (ATV), and 4WD. Barriers are built to the FS/BLM specifications and are installed by TPA crews or local organizations. This project continues through 2014.

The TPA received a second grant from Polaris Industries to be used in conjunction with the Barrier Grant #2.


The TPA continued its mission of providing resources/donations to local clubs and organizations to help ensure the continuation of OHV recreation in their area. These include:

  • Alpine Loop Patrol
  • American Motorcyclist Association (AMA)*
  • Boot Hill Motorcycle Club
  • Colorado Motorized Trail Riders association (CMTRA)
  • Colorado Off-Highway Vehicle Coalition (COHVCO)*
  • Creede OHV Club
  • Creede Search and Rescue
  • Motorized Trail Riders Association, Grand Junction (MTRA)
  • New Mexico Off-Highway Vehicle Association (NMOHVA)
  • Public Access Preservation Association (PAPA), Telluride Colorado.
  • Ride with Respect (MOAB)
  • Rio Grande National Forest (RGNF)
  • Rocky Mountain Adventure Riders (RMAR)
  • San Juan County Trail Patrol
  • San Juan National Forest (SJNF)
  • Silver Thread ATV Club, Del Norte

* TPA works very closely with COHVCO and the AMA on all Colorado OHV issues.

The TPA has received tremendous support and donations this year. The TPA BoD wants to recognize two organizations that hold annual motorcycle events that provide important contributions to the TPA. The RMAR/CAM 1000 and the Gold Rush Ride are both great supporters of our sport. Thank you!

The BoD also greatly appreciates support from our private donors and motorcycle industry companies. Without these supporters we would not be able to do the work with which we have been challenged. During the Trails Awareness Symposium, one rider asked a very pertinent question, “Who is going to carry our cause into the next years?” Every motorcycle rider that wants to ensure the future of public access and motorized recreation needs to answer this question. If we don’t protect the future, then who will?

The TPA thanks all of our supporters, and solicits comments and suggestions to help in our work.

The TPA Board of Directors

See images/graphics in the full PDF download.