A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT OF THE A.U.R.S.
In the last two years there have been many changes. Changes in the areas we use and enjoy. A lot of those changes have not looked favorably on the ohv community. Changes in the groups and organizations that represent the various users. Some have lost support, while others have gained. There have also been many changes in the way we, as users, look at other user groups and the government that dictates our use of public lands. More importantly, I feel that there have been some changes in the way that the government looks at us, the users.
There have been many meetings throughout the year with stakeholders and gov. officials. They have even gone so far as to attend a trail run. Recently, I had the ability to attend the Fall Recreation work shop. This was held by SRD at the Elbow ranger station. It was a very well run event, with speakers from the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council. They did a wonderful job of discussing concerns from both sides of the table and provided a very good understanding of what ohv users are looking for in their experiences off road. Their trail management and building practices will be put to use here in the future.
BUT, that future also depends on YOU. A lot of users are upset. A lot of users feel that there is no point in participating in any more trail projects. A lot of users feel that it is all in vain. GET OVER IT! WE, are the only ones that can change the future. The past is gone. Yes, it was very good for a very long time, and a lot of us seen the changes happening. Now we need to start over. All of the user groups will lose in the end if we do not work together. Some of this is already taking place. Various projects have been completed throughout the year by the different users, working together. Their actions have made great progress in helping our image and relationship with the general public and SRD. For the first time ever we are getting funding for projects from SRD. There are also members of the volunteer community that are deemed qualified and are using SRD’s equipment on trail projects. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not supporting all the changes that have happened, nor am I pleased with a lot of them. However, I am NOT ready to quit! I will not give up on a very important part of my life. No one who cares about the use of our public lands or the joy that we get from them, should ever give up.
So, what can YOU do? How can you help to ensure the continuation of user access to the areas we love? VOLUNTEER! Make your presence known. Make your actions count. All the different users must stick together, and work together. The AURS needs your help as well. We need more people to get involved with board positions to allow us to help the users plan projects together that will move us towards a sustainable trail system. We need your help to promote education of the users, both present and future. What steps can we take to ensure that our public lands are not being abused? How can we get support from the general public? How can we work better together and with the government to preserve and even increase our access? You hold the answers. You have the power to change things. Get involved.
Thank you for your support,