Saving the Daniel Boone Byway – Off-Road Business Magazine

Please take the time to check out this magazine, and their article about the Daniel Boone Byway. It is a very strong example why organizations like ours exist, and why we continue to need your support. If you have ever thought about becoming a board member, there is no better time than now. Getting involved now helps create a legacy of cooperation that is paramount to our success.

Please consider joining, renewing or making a donation!

HB1143 Testimony

On March 9th 2022, at about 5:30PM, 4.5 hours after the committee hearing was scheduled to start, HB 1143 was finally heard. Delegate Buckel introduced the Bill on behalf of the Allegany County and Garrett County Delegations and did a wonderful job expressing their and the counties unanimous support. There was no opposition to the Bill, and only 1 delegate had questions as she was unfamiliar with the original Bill and was seeking clarification on which roads are eligible for riding, and what type of people this law would cater to.

Several members of this committee came to Wolf Den Run State Park when it first opened and have experienced this on road law as intended. One of them, Delegate David Fraser-Hidalg (Montgomery County), helped further clarify the simple nature of this Bill in a very positive light to the rest of the committee members. If anyone is interested in watching the 10 minute hearing on this Bill.  We run from the 3Hr 13 min – 3Hr 25min mark.

Thank you everyone for your support and submitting testimony,

James

We have a Bill! HB1143

Right now we have a Bill working its way through the legislation that we need your help getting out of committee.

Currently, in Allegany and Garrett counties, you can purchase a permit from the county to ride on the road with your Snowmobile, ATV, or SxS on county roads, up to 2 miles. This means riders at Wolf Den Run State Park, or Saint John’s Rock ORV trail, must pull off of the road and re-enter to reach their final destinations. And off-highway motorcycles, unless they have a license plate, need to be trailered between locations. This created a potentially confusing law for multi-OHV type groups to navigate. But HB 1143 will change that.

HB1143 will add Off-Highway Motorcycles to the definition of ATV’s for the on road ATV law of Allegany and Garrett counties. HB 1143 will also increase the mileage of onroad travel up to 5 miles from the current limit. This is a large step in the right direction for creating better and easier OHV access. This will allow WDRSP to function as designed and allow WDRSP riders and SJR riders access to their respective towns of Kitzmiller and Lonaconing and bring their business with them.

So, how do you helpTestify! The Transportation Committee hearing is 3/9 at 1pm. You can submit written testimony, or provide oral testimony virtually via ZOOM. You will need to create a “MY MGA” account. To do this, click on this link that gives Bill details, https://mgaleg.maryland.gov/mgawebsite/Legislation/Details/hb1143 and click on the “MY MGA” logo at the top right corner.

However, there is a limited window of opportunity to sign up to testify. You can create your account at any time, but you must sign up on Monday, March 7th between 8am and 3pm. Outside of that window, you will not be able to sign up.

Several members of this Committee have been to Wolf Den Run State Park, ridden the trails, and utilized this on road provision to access the different parcels, so they are familiar with how this law currently functions.

I want to thank everyone for their support to date, and thank you for your help on this legislation. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Sincerely,

James Ratino
President of Maryland OHV Alliance

Forestry Works Plan looking for Comments

Please take the time to share the following with any riders and groups you know. We would like you to read and provide comments to DNR’s 2023 forestry plans. https://dnr.maryland.gov/forests/Pages/workplans.aspx Take note Savage Forest’s St. John’s Rock will be receiving nearly 8% trail growth starting late spring with an additional mile of trail being added, which is huge. While Potomac-Garrett state forest will be receiving erosion repairs to their existing trails and bridges. With Green Ridge, and the Eastern Shore being left out for OHV use.
Compared to several years ago, before SB606 created specific funding for OHV trails, this is a massive improvement and there is still more to go. But in order for us to continue to get our money’s worth we need your help to demonstrate the user demand, and the direction in which it should go. And don’t think they do not read it, as comments end up in the final draft of their works plan.
Since we at MDOHVA have been working hard to advocate for OHV access, the State has added nearly 65 miles of trails with more growth slated and under review!

If you do not want to create your own email to Forestry, please copy the below and let them know where you are from.

“Thank you for investing in OHV trail development. SB606 was passed to not just maintain existing OHV trails, but to create new ones as well. Saint John’s Rock new trail development is exciting and will appeal to, and generate more users. This should be a trend to be continued at Savage Forest to further develop a desirable OHV trail system for its desired end users.

The repairs within Potomac-Garrett Forest to the bridges and erosion controls are important and necessary, but will be incomplete without expanding the OHV’s accessible to these existing trails, and growing them as well.

With trails returning to Western MD, it is time to create and reopen trails on the Eastern Shore as well. Please utilize SB 606 funding to fund a sustainability study for OHV recreation.
Thank you,”

2021 Coming To An End

With 2021 coming to an end, we would like to take the time to thank all our donors, members, and followers. It is your encouragement and support that helps fuel our fire to continue to advocate for OHV access. In 2021 we have continued to strengthen our partnership with Maryland’s Department of Natural Resource Parks and Forestry Divisions, we have also helped support the town and businesses of Kitzmiller who have been very supportive our work out at Wolf Den Run State Park. We have also worked to develop a network stakeholder outside of Maryland who may one day help realize the Southern Legislative Conference’s vision of an East Cost semi continuous trail system. This progress has led to sustained and long term growth of our access within the State.

All this work takes a dedicate board of volunteers, and over time these members come and go, each leaving a unique and lasting impact. However, sometimes these impacts are so grand they require special recognition when that person steps down for new leaders to come forward. On that note, we would like to give special recognition, and a lifetime achievement award, to retiring board member, Chris Borger.

Chris Borger has been a pivotal member for OHV advocacy in and around Maryland for nearly 20 years. Chris has helped organize and run enduros through the Green Marble Enduro Riders, secure access to lands for the Frederick R&T motorcycle club and ran an annual charity trail ride that has raised nearly One hundred thousand dollars for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. He has been a true statesman for the industry, helping change the way the public perceives our sport. We only hope his new home in the Sunshine State does not convince him to trade in his dirtbike for a golf cart.

Please join us in thanking Chris for his many years of service!

WDRSP and MDOHVA on MPT

Did you see us on Maryland Public Television?

That’s right. MPT had a segment on Maryland Department of Natural Resources only OHV catered park. We were there to help explain the benefits and the usage of the park that we have worked hard to assist in creating. Not only was the recreational opportunities explored, but the ecological habitat conservation for the native wood rat was highlighted as well.

This was an excellent opportunity to show how our community supports sustainable trails, environmental conversation, and habitat restoration.
And when out visiting, don’t forget to support the ATV friendly town that supports you by visiting The Coal Bucket Restaurant, The Miners Vault convenience store, or the towns atv repair shop – Off Road Repair.

The segment on WDRSP runs from minute mark 1:20-9:30

https://video.mpt.tv/video/episode-3303-fvanke/

MDOHVA Board member becomes first Exec Dir of the Office of Outdoor Recreation

The MDOHVA is proud that one of our board members is becoming the first Executive Director of the newly created Office of Outdoor Recreation within the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR). We are sad to lose Daryl from the board but are extremely happy that he will continue to support and advocate for outdoor recreation within Maryland.

Podcast with Maryland Off Highway Vehicle Alliance President James Ratino

James Ratino, (MDOHVA President) was recently invited to sit down with Shane Eastman of Send It ATV to do a podcast interview. Shane is looking to fill a niche in the off-road podcast community. There are many podcasts about the latest gear, newest machines, and fastest guys (yes, he does that too) but in this Podcast, Shane focuses a lot of time talking to the movers and shakers keeping and growing OHV access throughout the country. In this episode we talk to Shane about who we are, what we are doing, where we hope to go, while letting you get to know our leadership a little better. So have a listen, learn something new, and let Shane know if you like it by hitting those buttons. You guys know the drill!
Enjoy!

WOLF DEN RUN STATE PARK UPDATE 12/15/2020

Wolf Den Run State Park is now fully open, WITH CAMPING!!! All three parcels are now available to be ridden! So like this post, share this posts, tell your buddies, and go ride! Wolf Den now consists of approximately 40 miles of trail, and most are full size vehicle rated. One of the best trails is 2103 on Potomac due to the scenery, as well as 1102 on North Hills where you can get a good view of a waterfall.

Here is how it works. You need to call Herrington Manor State Park for your reservation. Your reservation allows you to park at any of the 3 parcels Huckleberry Rocks, North Hills, or Potomac. You can change riding locations as you please within the park as you please. You will also need to call Herrington Manor for camping reservations. Please keep parking lot crowding and social distance in mind given the current times. Also note, the North Hills parking lot does not allow trailers due to its size limitations. If you have a trailer you will need to park at Huckleberry Rocks or the Potomac River lots. Camping is extremely primitive at the moment with NO HOOKUPS, just a port-a-jon. Sites are limited to 6 people, with 6 sites currently available (don’t worry, plan for further development are in the works.)

To travel between the parcels on the road with your atv/sxs, you need a county permit https://www.garrettcounty.org/ride. Please make sure you follow all the rules! And if you get hungry and want a hot meal?! Head on down into the ATV friendly town of Kitzmiller and stop by the “Coal Bucket Restaurant.”

We want to stress how grateful we are of DNR’s hard work and dedication to this project. This project presented many challenges throughout development that are new to Maryland’s Park Services, and yet they used each challenge as an opportunity to excel! We at MDOHVA look forward our bright future working together!

Wolf Den State Park work day volunteers wanted 2.29.2020

This offer is only extended to paying MDOHVA members only. We are looking for volunteers to come and help clear the trails of winter deadfall for a day at the end of February. We will be on the existing open parcel, and heading into new not yet open sections as well. Spots are first come first go basis and only available to paying members. Come prepared to WORK for most of the day. If you know someone else interested in coming, they can join and send an email to president@mdohvalliance.org to request all the final information and reserve your spot! Sign up today at http://mdohvalliance.org/join/