Should some trails be permit use only?

rusty_tlc

New member
The subject of who is doing the most damage to trails came up in another thread.
I got thinking, if the trail users were better educated a lot of damage could be avoided. But how do you make sure the people using the trails are educated? It could be done by requiring permits to run trails, with a trail usage class as a requisite to getting a permit.

Before you break out the flamethrowers, I am not advocating this. I hate to see more controls.

I would like to hear what everyone else thinks.

Is it going to happen like it or not?

Would it improve the experience?
 

Dennis

Administrator
Staff member
Public lands should remain free, once any sort of regulation is in place, it's only going to get worse. I don't mind paying for the use of someone's private property though.
 

rusty_tlc

New member
<rusty plays devils advocate>
The counter argument to that might be;
Why would there be a cost for the permit? As an example,
National Park Service web site said:
Wilderness Permits
Free wilderness permits are required year-round for all overnight trips into Yosemite's wilderness. They are not required for day hikes. Yosemite uses a trailhead quota system which limits the number of people who may begin overnight hikes from each trailhead, each day.
There might be a one time fee for the trail use education class, or not. Think about the hunter safety programs which are required to get a hunting lic.
 

Sierra Valley

Active member
Like Dennis said, we do not need anymore regulations in place. We do not want to give the enviromentalist anymore ground. Police ourselves, discuss these issues in chat rooms, confront those in person if you see something that shouldnt be going on etc. No way should we support any more regulations, if and anything there should be more deregulation. If more roads, trails, forest are closed the end result is that I would just be 4wheeling where ever the hell I want, I'd rather it not come to that.
 

EricsXJ

Member
I'd like to see public lands remain free also. But the idea of a permit is not that unreasonable.

The problem I see is enforcement. If you don't have someone physically there that has authority, 100% of the time, I don't see how it would be possible. Signage won't work because most signs get shot at or vandalized anyway. This kind of reminds me of the gun debate - make guns illegal and the criminals will still own guns. The people that destroy our trails are typically the same people that wouldn't care about needing a permit or not.

This idea was actually mentioned somewhere else too. I forget if it was Pirate or here but the comment was about Moonrocks being restricted to entry with a fee or season pass. I'm not actually opposed to this idea because I think it is too popular of a spot and easy access for midnight partiers and vandals. This area is small and might be easier to enforce than others.
 

Dirty Harry

Moderator
Staff member
Sierra Valley said:
Police ourselves, discuss these issues in chat rooms, confront those in person if you see something that shouldnt be going on etc.

People have been saying this for years but it hasn't happened, things just keep getting worse. Personally I am not opposed to use permits, if you look at Barrett or Dusy the Forest Service has gates on those trails and they have not become problematic and honestly those trails are cleaner and in better condition that most.

That said, I still agree that we should police our own and permits are not going to make actions like driving off the trail legal, ideally people who damage trails would be "educated" and if that doesn't work they would be cited, but I rarely see any enforcement on the trail and right now it looks like the other option is losing trails all together.
 

rusty_tlc

New member
Dirty Harry said:
People have been saying this for years but it hasn't happened, things just keep getting worse. Personally I am not opposed to use permits, if you look at Barrett or Dusy the Forest Service has gates on those trails and they have not become problematic and honestly those trails are cleaner and in better condition that most.

That said, I still agree that we should police our own and permits are not going to make actions like driving off the trail legal, ideally people who damage trails would be "educated" and if that doesn't work they would be cited, but I rarely see any enforcement on the trail and right now it looks like the other option is losing trails all together.
Are things getting worse because there are more SUV's on the market?
 

JOE THE TOE

New member
I think things are getting worse just because 4wheeling has gotten much more popular in the last 10 years so know you have twice as many people,not to mention alot of them are kids getting 4wheel drives & having no respect for the trail or anyone on it especially the non-marked trails in our back yard.As far as the actual"4WHEELERS"I think we as a whole have grown 100% as compared to our forefathers who used to BURY what you brought in,instead of haul it in-haul it out....Know we have clean-up runs,trail maintenence runs,etc.I don't know about the rest of you but I think it's pretty impessive to see 2000 vehicles in one weekend on the 'con &not see any trash but maybe a can or two!! :thumbsup: Good job fella's! :D
 

Dirty Harry

Moderator
Staff member
JOE THE TOE said:
I think things are getting worse just because 4wheeling has gotten much more popular in the last 10 years so know you have twice as many people,not to mention alot of them are kids getting 4wheel drives & having no respect for the trail or anyone on it especially the non-marked trails in our back yard.

I agree that the amount of people is part of the problem. So even if only 1% of the people are the problem, if you have twice as many people you have twice as many "problems". Plus, we have less and less land on which to wheel so the density of use goes up even further.
 

JOE THE TOE

New member
One more thing,I think alot of the damage as far as our local trails"'cause all the major trails already have rules set in place" happens at night when kids get together on a friday night & have bonfires and plainly just don't give a ****,I don't think we'll ever stop that....All we can do is hope to catch them & if not then we'll just have to keep cleaning up after them,luckily for you guy's some of us still wheel at night...Those little bastards better hope I don't catch them 'cause I'll spank their ***'s,let Pizza-jeep suck them off, then send them home cry'in! HOW 'BOUT IT!!! :eek: :D
 

rusty_tlc

New member
Our group filled one black trash bag per rig on the last Rubicon run. My point is that clubs and groups like Reno 4X4 are doing a lot to keep trails clean and open. The work FOTR did around Rubicon springs was impressive.

And I'm sure Teens do a lot of damage, I know I sure as He11 did when I was their age. The desert outside Vegas was the best place to have a kegger, the cops were happy as long as we stayed off the street so it was a win win situation. And I really don't mind cleaning up after the kids once in a while as a kind of payback.

Getting back on topic, I think we all agree that education would solve most of the issues, teen parting aside. I think the majority of people would follow the rules if they knew them. So what about personel permits to use the trails? Like a hunting licence. You take a class, like the hunter safety course, get your licence. Fees would be used to educate the public and perserve the trails.
 

Styx

New member
I'd have to agree with Rusty. Although the idea of regulation is against my better judgement, the idea of having a license ala hunting would at least make it easier to keep alot of people who weren't interested in learning the finer points of resource management off the trails.
 

Fish Sticks

New member
I kind of lean towards permits as a bad idea. Once you lay rules to ink the greenies will eat you up and your trails will be further restricted or even closed entirely. I bet the people buying/using the permits are good people to start with and the people who don't buy permits would just make the permitted people look like they are the ones out of control. Paranoid? :disagree:
 

JOE THE TOE

New member
Permits sound good,But,getting people to get one is another story....First of all you've got all the old timers that are very set in there ways,then you've got your average every day guy that's been going the last 10 or so years & their not going to buy permits,they'll just wing it and before you know it you'll have the biggest battle on your hands you've ever seen.....Not to mention you've got to talk the higher authority into wanting to spend the money on extra employees,paperwork,stickers,advertising,etc., rather than just closing the damn trails down 'cause honestly most of them "city mayors,etc" don't even wheel let alone give a crap, if they have to go that far out of their way.I don't know if your aware of it or not but right now there's a big battle going on about making the 'con a one-way trail! I had a little debate with a higher up authority about how that's even possible...think about this,if your coming in from tahoe side & you camp at rubicon springs,say you want to go to buck island for the day......HOW IN THE HELL DO YOU GET BACK TO YOUR CAMP?Do you drive all the way through & hit the freeway just to drive all the way back to tahoe so you can wheel into camp,that would take 15 friggen hours... :disagree:
 

EricsXJ

Member
throttleboy said:
i agree with Denis and...i hate to say it...EricsXJ,he makes some good points!!
:thumbsup:

Everyone is making very good points so far. I think permits used as a tool for education would work for most people who are going out to wheel certain trails or areas. Where this wouldn't work is the areas very close to the city like much of Peavine. Thats usually where you see the most damage done, like idiots who dump loads of trash, etc. One good example is Steve's Loop... You see a lot of graffiti and trash down by Pig Rock, its closer to the road and a very "good" party spot. Further up the trail, especially after the waterfalls, there is no graffiti that I can remember and very little trash other than the stolen Cherokee that someone trashed and burned. I don't think permits will keep people from going to Pig Rock for parties without enforcement, but if the wheelers are all educated, we won't see much damage done to the rest of the trail. The bad part about all this, is it is us wheelers that will take most of the blame for the damage at Pig Rock, and we'll be the ones paying the price if it closes the trail.

I don't know if any of you caught the article in the RGJ a day or two ago but it was very good (good read, but bad situation) about increasing criminal activities happening on public lands. The article is A million acres, a single cop: Crimes rampant on forest service land from Reno to Mono Lake
 

JOE THE TOE

New member
I've come up with the answer....................................................................................................................................................................................................... Everybody just needs to WHEEL more,that way there's always someone on the trail to catch perpritrators"don't know if I spelled that right" or clean up after them before TREE HUGG'IN HIPPY MO-FO'S SEE THE FUNK-SHIZZLE ON OUR TRAIL-DIZZLE, HOW 'BOUT IT MO-FO'S! :fro: :slap:
 

JOE THE TOE

New member
Another answer would be to put up a big-azz gate with a key-card swiper,so your either have a card 'cause you payed or you don't :woot2: :rolleyes:
 

PizzaJeep

Active member
EricsXJ said:
:thumbsup:

Everyone is making very good points so far. I think permits used as a tool for education would work for most people who are going out to wheel certain trails or areas. Where this wouldn't work is the areas very close to the city like much of Peavine. Thats usually where you see the most damage done, like idiots who dump loads of trash, etc. One good example is Steve's Loop... You see a lot of graffiti and trash down by Pig Rock, its closer to the road and a very "good" party spot. Further up the trail, especially after the waterfalls, there is no graffiti that I can remember and very little trash other than the stolen Cherokee that someone trashed and burned. I don't think permits will keep people from going to Pig Rock for parties without enforcement, but if the wheelers are all educated, we won't see much damage done to the rest of the trail. The bad part about all this, is it is us wheelers that will take most of the blame for the damage at Pig Rock, and we'll be the ones paying the price if it closes the trail.

I don't know if any of you caught the article in the RGJ a day or two ago but it was very good (good read, but bad situation) about increasing criminal activities happening on public lands. The article is A million acres, a single cop: Crimes rampant on forest service land from Reno to Mono Lake
i was wondering when someone was going to add in the front page article of the RGJ from just the other day.. thats the first thing i thought of when i heard the word enforcement
 
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