MTRA Fall 2015 Newsletter

pdficon_large.gifFall 2015 newsletter from MTRA – reprinted with permission.

Note: See the highlighted area – TPA is proud to have worked with other volunteers to re-route Poll Hill.

Motorcycle Trail Riding Association of Grand Junction
PO Box 3204
Grand Junction, CO 81502

Fall 2015

Installation of Club Officers for 2016: 
James Solomon, President
Marc Baker, VP
Monte Potter, Treasurer, GVTA Roundtable Representative
Lee Cooper, Secretary and Membership
Tony Gurule, Face Book and Social Chairperson
Cap Kuney, Trail Work Coordinator
James Cooper, Dozer Work and Trail planner
Millard Atkins, Director at large

Message from the president:
It is hard to believe that this year is winding down already and we are rapidly approaching the Winter season in Western Colorado.  The weather has been perfect for enjoying the lower elevation riding areas however.

We tried some new things this Summer like having a open BBQ for all off-road motorcycle riders.  We felt this was a good way for people with similar interests to meet each other and maybe find some new riding mates.  Much thanks to the motorcycle dealers who helped sponsor these events.  We are also planning to have a club ride each month in a different riding area.  We will have these rides on a weekend so that folks who are working can participate.  It looks like our next club ride will be late this month so watch for a flyer that we will email soon.  We are also planning some club events this Winter to help pass the time and keep the social aspect of the club alive and well.  Watch for further announcements.


We have MTRA T-shirts available in all sizes for the affordable price of $10 ea.  This is another way to let others know who we are.  Contact Lee Cooper for T-shirt purchase.

Trail Work Progress:
The biggest challenge and trail re-route that we did this year was the Poll Hill re-route.  Thanks to TPA ( Trails Preservation Alliance, Don Riggle), BRMC and MTRA volunteers who contributed funding and man-hours to complete this work.  Cap Kuney and Dan Gourley volunteered to operate the trail dozer and performed most of the heavy mechanical work.  Other club members helped on the ground as well:  Monte Potter, Jim Cooper, Ruxton Noble, Monte Potter, Stan Sammons and others spent some pretty grueling hours moving dirt and helping as much as possible.  The re-route was completed in a timely manner and the rider comments thus far seem to be pretty positive.  It would appear that even a “B” rider could make it up the hill now.


Cap Kuney working on Poll Hill


We are still trying to move the Forest Service to complete the Leonard’s ridge re-route.  Currently, the plan is to complete this section this Fall prior to Winter weather.  I have my fingers crossed as this will be a major challenge because of the steep grade and not much maneuvering room.  If we need additional man power I will let you know.  Hopefully, we can accomplish this with the dozer.

Tabeguache Connector:
This is finally a reality after a prolonged period of being dormant for any number of reasons.  On Saturday October 17, the Grand Mesa Jeep Club along with numerous other trail user volunteers took the first steps to create a route that will connect the Tabeguache Trail, which begins in Bangs Canyon and will now allow passage across Hwy 141 at Whitewater.  The official opening will be as soon as the DOT approves the crossing for unlicensed OHV’s.  Mesa County will help in making the crossing appropriate and legal.  Best guess for official opening will be this Fall or early Spring 2016.

Upcoming Trail Projects:
Now that we have a Final Record of Decision on the GJ Resource Management Plan we can begin the process of new trail development.  MTRA BOD met with the GJ BLM recreation staff to discuss opportunity in the Field Office area.  The following areas were suggested by the BLM as meeting their criteria for motorized recreation:

  • North Fruita Desert area (connecting Sarlaac Trial) to the desert area for a loop ride.
  • GV Open area accessible from 27 1/4 Road
  • Bangs Canyon SRMA
  • Horse Mountain area South of Palisade
  • Gateway below the Uncompahgre
  • Cactus Park
  • De Beque

The MTRA BOD is suggesting North Fruita Desert trail completion and Bangs Canyon trail completion as the first trail projects that we should focus on.  The club is mimicking what the mountain bikers have done, as they have been very successful in new trail development.  We are following the same process that they developed.

Membership and Social:
This year we managed to grow the membership substantially.  We are now at 52 paid members who have stepped up to support what we are trying to do for our form of recreation.  I don’t need to remind everyone how difficult it is when we are opposed by so many other land users as well as environmentalists who don’t even live in our area.  Believe me when I say we cannot let up for a moment.  We have made great strides in working with the land managers and the county.  We need to keep the momentum.  There is something additional you can do and that is to Like us on facebook  This will further enhance our visibility and exposure to more riders in and around the Grand Valley.

This commitment by MTRA is something we all benefit from but very few riders actually participate through membership or on the ground work.  This club and its objective can only continue to be successful if riders will step up and show support through joining MTRA and be willing to get more involved.   The $25.00 annual membership to MTRA is a very small contribution but it does show support for what we are doing on the ground, and numbers do count!

Have a great Holiday season and a safe Winter.

Included is a member application for your consideration.
Thank you for your support, faith, trust and confidence.

James Solomon, President