Thursday, August 29, 2013
By Del Albright
Labor Day is a federal holiday that celebrates the economic and social contributions of workers; but nowadays with the decline in union memberships, it is more of an "end of summer" time to BBQ and hang out with friends.
Oh, and let's not forget if you're being fashionable, it's the last day of the year to wear white. But while we're at it, let's tip our hats to the workers who made America strong and are still out there pounding steel, shaping wood, generating power, making stuff, fixing stuff, and taking care of the US economy.
My Dad, Elmer Ward Albright (1917 - 2013) was a union man after he finished diesel engineering school after WWII. He became a master mechanic and worked for the shipyards of southern CA when I was growing up in LA and San Diego areas. The unions were good to him and our family. It was a time that was right for labor to be organized.
Sunday, August 25, 2013
By Del Albright
So with all the access threats, lawsuits, complicated politics, who do we trust and believe when it comes to social networks, organizations and forums?
I will start this blog by saying, you have got to find someone you can believe in and support, or this ROAD CLOSED sign is about all we'll see the future. Roads and trails are being closed at an alarming rate, inspite of the best efforts of some of our biggest OHV groups. That is not to say we don't win a few.
However, I am convinced, based on my decades of doing this landuse stuff, that we must join and support organized recreation groups if we expect to have a sport in the future. We must support groups like the NRA if we expect to have guns in our possession as well. So who do we join?
If you read my stuff, you know I always say, JOIN everything you can afford to join. Spend $100 a year on memberships (at least). And make at least one good donation a year if you can swing it.
JOIN your local club, or at least your local/regional virtual club. Learn from them; wheel with them; support landuse with them; and have some fun for sure.
JOIN your state/regional associations -- good or bad -- join them. At least read their junk; know what is going on; see for yourself what makes the political world turn in your sport.
JOIN national groups that make sense to you -- and start with the BlueRibbon Coalition which represents ALL sports and ALL trails. JOIN your sport-specific group so you know what they are doing nationally, where we all need to have a say (but can't afford to travel to DC to make a speech). Let your national group speak for you in DC. But help them with letters. Write letters when asked.
There you have it -- JOIN everything you can afford to join. It's about membership; its about us; because big business like Exxon Oil, Google, and IBM sure aren't saving your trails.
PICS NEEDED OF CLOSED AREAS FOR NATIONAL VISUAL CAMPAIGN FOR ALL OFF-ROADERS TO USE AND SEE
By Del Albright and Olaf Kilthau, AreaBFE
Olaf Kilthau, Owner/Managing Member of Area BFE Adventure Park in Moab, UT, is asking for pics from us – of CLOSED trails/areas from all over the country! Yes, trails and riding areas that have been closed to us (no matter how far back), with signs showing the closure or a gate or other barrier showing the trail/road/riding area CLOSED.
Olaf plans to initiate a visual campaign (hopefully with enough pics to post daily messages and closed trail signs) for all of us to see what has really happened to our outdoor backcountry access. This will also give us a database/inventory of at least some of the losses we have incurred.
Pics should be internet sized (less than 1 meg; preferably jpeg).
Pics can be emailed directly to Olaf, using firstname.lastname@example.org
Please add a short description of the pics you send. Your note to Olaf might look like this:
“This pic is of the closure sign at the mouth of Surprise Canyon in Panamint Valley, near Death Valley, CA, closed in May 2001. Before that we used to winch up 5 waterfalls to get to Panamint City, about 10 miles away. Now we have to walk to see this part of our desert history.”
There is no immediate deadline for submitting pics, but we’d like to get this database/project underway as soon as possible. However, if you come across a closed sign in the future, send it along as well. Olaf will keep a list of the closures and pics that go with them, for our future use.
Thanks for any help,
Del (and Olaf)
Questions may be addressed to Olaf using email: email@example.com
Ambassador, BlueRibbon Coalition www.sharetrails.org
Founding Trail Boss, Friends of the Rubicon www.rubiconfriends.com
Environmental Affairs, CA4WDC www.cal4wheel.com
Find us on Facebook here
Friday, August 23, 2013
I use RAM Mounting Systems products in my boat, RV, Jeep and other vehicles. They make a bracket and mount for about anything you can think of, and the reason I use them is that they work, they're tough, and they do what is promised in their marketing.
This pic shows the Ram-Rod Light Speed holder that is in my video below. Wow, this baby is sweet and works great -- trolling, stationary fishing, or just temporary set your rod down where it's secure, yet easy to grab.
Also pictured (besides the leaf litter in my boat) are the RAM cell phone/Spot holder and the RAM GPS holder for my Garmin. And yes, that is a custom, Del-Built, Roll Bar over the console -- smile -- not really a roll bar, but it's a great grab handle and brace (leaning post).
Now enjoy my short video of the Ram-Rod Light Speed Rod Holder.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
By Del Albright
Allow them to run freely forever by giving our kids the tools, education, opportunities and good examples they need in their growth. Don't let unnecessary and silly bureaucratic baloney mess up their chances for fun in life.
Yes, some rules are always necessary, but this society of ours has gotten screwy in some areas when it comes to trying to regulate us and our children. I've seen freedom of choice battered down to near nothing in some cases. We should always be able to choose and allow (choose our way of life and allow what we want to happen to us, within reason).
Mis-guided politicians, influenced by well-funded exclusionary elitist groups are taking away chunks of our land, piece by piece (Wilderness, etc.), and chopping away at our freedoms (guns, helmets, choice of schools, riding gear, etc.). We have to talk to, teach, and guide our kids to grow up to be sensible, thinking adults. Don't expect your public schools to do that.
What can we do to help our kids maintain our OHV way of life? First off, make sure you are a member of those groups that are involved in your form of recreation. Read their literature and share it with your kids. Get involved in kids programs in your state or regional association. Be active in getting them involved early.
Secondly, always set a good example. That means to show the "right way" in driving, camping, attitude, trail ethics, gun use, drinking, campfires, you name it. Be the example that will help save the future.
And third, correct bad situations on the spot! Don't let things get worse by hoping they'll go away. Fix it!
OHV recreation should always be a "kids zone" where they have fun, learn to experience the great outdoors, and grow up doing something besides couch activities.
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
OFFICIAL STATEMENT OF THE TIERRA DEL SOL 4X4 CLUB REGARDING OCOTILLO WELLS SVRA STATE PARKS LAWSUIT
From: Joseph Smith
Sent: Tuesday, August 06, 2013 8:15 PM
Subject: TDS Statement and PDF of State Parks Demurrer
California State Parks has filed a response to the lawsuit that wants to limit open riding in the Ocotillo Wells SVRA (OWSVRA). The State has a filed what is called a demurrer. The basic thrust of the demurrer is that Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) and The Desert Protective Council (DPC) have improperly invited the court to intervene and tell State Parks how to run the OWSVRA, something the law does not allow. In order to pursue this lawsuit, PEER/DPC must identify a particular ministerial (non-discretionary) task, required by law, that State Parks has failed to perform; and PEER/DPC has not done so.
The hearing regarding the demurrer is scheduled for December 13, 2013. If the demurrer is granted, the entire case would be dismissed. Tierra Del Sol's attorney has decided to wait until the results of the hearing are known before moving forward. Keep in mind that we lose nothing by waiting. If the court denies the demurrer and allows the case to move forward we are still able to intervene. This is simply a matter of a couple anti-public access groups wanting to tell State Parks how to do its job. No need to muddy the waters further. Thank you for your continued support and interest! Stay tuned to the TDS website and Facebook page for updates.