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Potato Salad Hill *PLEASE READ*

Discussion in 'Land Use' started by ChevyCaGal, Jan 31, 2002.

  1. ChevyCaGal

    ChevyCaGal 3/4 ton status

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    TTT

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.chevycagal.homestead.com/steph.html>Steph's Webpage</a>
    "Grace is knowing when to be a lady and when to say "Ah, bite me, outta my way!"
     
  2. greg83k5

    greg83k5 1/2 ton status

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    uh huh....

    well, it's nice to see that somewhere 4 wheeling interests are held as just that, an interest of the people, and not just as a nuisance to landowners and environmentalists.....

    there's no voice here in texas in government that speaks for the four wheeling community.

    no commercial viability??

    greg

    * keep the greasy side down *
     
  3. muddin4fun

    muddin4fun 3/4 ton status

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    Potato Salad Hill: A political hot potato among four-wheelers, nearby residents

    by Franklin Seal
    Thursday, January 10, 2002
    Moab Time-Independent

    A Mill Creek citizens group closely tied to the Moab Bureau of
    Land Management (BLM) Field Office is trying to figure out what
    to recommend to the BLM regarding Potato Salad Hill near the mouth of Mill Creek. But with Jeep Safari now only three months away, the clock is ticking. Some members say there may not be enough time to work out a solution to the politically complex problem prior to the start of this year’s event.

    The hill, located between the old Moab landfill and the Power Dam area, has attracted large gatherings of four-wheel drive enthusiasts during the annual jeep festival that occurs in Moab each April. The short stretch of steep rock is close to town and easily accessed from the Sand Flats Road.

    Last year the unofficial four-wheel event there—an event Jeep Safari organizers repudiate—grew into the thousands. Numerous arrests occurred at the party, many of them alcohol related. And together with its sister gathering at the nearby Dump Bump, the four-wheeling party at Potato Salad Hill created traffic control headaches for local law enforcement.

    Of even greater concern for at least some members of the Mill Creek Partnership (MCP) is the damage the event is doing to the land. The hill sits immediately above Mill Creek, a sensitive riparian area.

    A subcommittee of the Partnership met Dec. 11 at the BLM’s Moab Field Office specifically to consider making a set of recommendations based on a plan put forward last spring by Partnership member and Powerhouse Lane homeowner Tom Johnson.

    "We’ve been talking about the issues of how people enter Mill Creek Canyon for years," Johnson said. "What we’re doing is we’re watching a rapid disintegration of the Potato Salad Hill area. Every year it gets progressively more denuded of vegetation. It’s stunning if you watch it. There’s two new routes up there that weren’t there a year ago." He also said that the fact that he owns land close to the site was not the driving force behind his involvement in the issue. "I don’t think it affects me any more than it affects anyone else in Moab. I don’t think that’s the issue that’s driving this."

    Personally, his vision for the long-term solution to the problem focuses on the creation of a parking lot. "I would hope that there would be a parking area at the dump and that there would be no longer any vehicles going beyond the parking area."

    BLM hydrologist Ann Marie Aubry, who acts as the agency’s official liaison to the Partnership, says all those who participated in the subcommittee meeting agreed that Potato Salad Hill is a problem. "Not everybody agreed that it’s a problem year round," she added, "but everybody agreed that it’s a problem during jeep week."

    The Dec. 11 meeting was called to consider Johnson’s plan that he formulated last spring and formally presented to the Partnership Sept. 15.

    An unofficial tally of crowds at Potato Salad Hill taken by Johnson during last year’s event showed a 50 percent increase in spectators and vehicles over previous years. Pictures taken before and after last year’s jeep week showed a marked increase in the barren, traffic-scarred area below the main hill climb. They also showed two new hill climb routes on the slope next to it.

    Johnson’s original plan included closing Potato Salad Hill to vehicle traffic and installing a parking lot on part of the old Moab City landfill. It also included pushing back the Power Dam trailhead to a point near the end of the Power House Lane neighborhood and closing the road beyond that point to non-emergency motorized traffic.

    At the beginning of the Dec. 11 subcommittee meeting, Aubry held a copy of Johnson’s plan in the air and asked the group, What do you want to do with this? "But no one wanted to look at the whole thing—the Mill Creek entryway," she said. "The topic was too big. It’s overwhelming. Maybe that’s because not everyone agrees that it’s a problem the whole year."

    One idea, among a variety discussed during the Dec. 11 meeting, is for the BLM to find a "concessionaire," Aubry said—someone who might take out an event permit for the BLM property during Jeep Week.

    BLM Resource Administrator for Recreation Russ von Koch said he introduced the concessionaire idea. But he added, "no conclusive decision has been made on what to do about this."

    One version of the idea, according to Aubry, is that the permittee would control access to the site, limiting the number of vehicles allowed down the old dump road at any one time. The permittee might operate a parking lot and perhaps a shuttle service. "I think it’s premature, at this point, to try to decide what might be done," von Koch said. And there may not be enough time left, he added. "It may not be do-able this year."

    One complicating factor is that most scenarios involving a concessionaire utilize an off-site parking lot that would probably sit on land belonging to Grand County. At this point, it’s unclear what position the county is taking on the idea.

    Grand County Administrator Judy Bane, who also attended the Dec. 11 MCP meeting, said the county is exploring ideas about what to do about Potato Salad Hill. "We’re just talking," she said. But she agreed something should be done. "It’s just so chaotic—we’ve got to do something. I just think we need more opinions from people because there are lots of opinions on it." She was working to set up a meeting Jan. 15 between county officials, BLM employees and leaders in the local four-wheel drive community.

    Grand County Sheriff Jim Nyland, another county official at the Dec. 11 MCP meeting, said he wasn’t taking a position on what to do about Potato Salad Hill. "I’m just leaving it up to the BLM to make that decision," he said. One of his concerns was that closing the site might simply push the four-wheelers to go somewhere else. "Last year I had the idea to keep the Dump Bump and Potato Salad Hill open to keep it confined to two locations because I know that when people come here with a four-wheel drive vehicle they’re going to climb something."

    He said law enforcement efforts at Potato Salad Hill went smoothly last year and that he does not perceive doing anything especially different this year. He also expressed the opinion that there was probably not enough time to close the hill prior to this year’s jeep week.

    Organizers of the official Jeep Safari event, Red Rock 4-Wheelers (RR4W), so far, have not taken a stand on the issue. "We’ve just kind of washed our hands of that [Potato Salad Hill] and the Dump Bump," said former RR4W president and public information officer Ber Knight who has represented the group at several MCP meetings. He sees a need for someplace where that kind of activity can happen. "In terms of four-wheeling, it comes down to the fact that you need play areas. It’s contrary to a lot of my feelings, but just because of the sheer mass of the thing, maybe we do."

    Red Rock 4-wheelers President Doug McElhaney said he expects the group to eventually take a position on the issue following official discussions just now getting underway. He points out the group is against creating new trails to get around worn-out or difficult sections on a trail. "We don’t promote multiple-trailing," he said. But he added that the group has also worked to retain access to existing trails. Speaking for himself, he shared Nyland’s concern that if Potato Salad Hill is shut down the party may just move somewhere else. "The people that do those kinds of things at Potato Salad Hill are going to do those kinds of things somewhere. Why destroy another place?"

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.moabtimes.com>www.moabtimes.com</a>

    <font color=green>Can't sleep...the clown will get me</font color=green>

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  4. k5king

    k5king 1/2 ton status

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    "The people that do those kinds of things at Potato Salad Hill are going to do those kinds of things somewhere. Why destroy another place?"

    I'm not so sure that was the smartest thing to say either. He's just made it a lot easier for people to say " look,,he said so himself " that all 4 wheeling does it destroy the land.This is not true if everyone abides by the laws of " tread lightly" and doesn't go out to just destroy something for the hell of it.I have ridden on many trails around my area,,and about 90% of them were either 1) made by the land owner 2) made by logging crew's or 3) made by the township or state as an acces road or an abondoned one.
    What i am wondering is,, where are these areas ? are they on private land or are they open to the public from the city and state ? Or do we just all congregate there in such force that noone could ever make all of them leave ? Does someone actually get a permit for these event's or what ?
    i've not been to anything like that out in the open land or where have you, but are all these rides actually legal,,like tellico,moab and the sort ? I'm sure they would have to be for so many to attend this and the mag's to do articles.
    I'm just looking for some input here on how these event's are actually run,,i never thought to ask before as i don't know anything about them.


    <font color=purple>ANYBODY LOSE THEIR JEEP????????[​IMG]
    I JUST FOUND ONE UNDER MY BLAZER!!!![​IMG]
    [​IMG][​IMG]</font color=green>
     
  5. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    Sticky. Thanks Muddin. I hope to make the treck out to Moab one day and this is one of the places I wanted to ride.
    Any more information about this please attach to this thread.

    Women dig dents and flat paint!
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  6. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    The land is owned by us, er, the United States of America. It is administered by the Bureau of Land Management.

    <font color=black>HarryH3 - '75 K5</font color=black>
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  7. riz

    riz 3/4 ton status

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    <font color=purple> Good info .

    L8r,
    . Riz . <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/rizmonkey>www.geocities.com/rizmonkey</a>

    <font color=purple> monkeys steal my underwear at night
     
  8. Storm Trooper

    Storm Trooper 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    It figures they would want to close the area. People do get out of control there and it's the kind of place that people push there trucks till they break just because the crowd is yelling "Go for it!". (dumb)
    It's a lot of fun also. As for hurting the enviroment, come on!, it's right next to the local dump[​IMG]. With the money that EJS brings into the town, they could all chip in to repair any damage if need and restrict parking or even charge admission. (make MORE money). I'd like to know just how much money they bring in during EJS. For those of you that have never seen it, here is a picture.......nothing fancy-
    <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/scripts/editPhotos.fcgi?action=showMyPhoto&amp;albumID=16757936&amp;photoID=30471618&amp;security=nXZlUWfikt>http://community.webshots.com/scripts/editPhotos.fcgi?action=showMyPhoto&amp;albumID=16757936&amp;photoID=30471618&amp;security=nXZlUWfikt</a>
    .
    There is a lot of things they can do to protect the area and control it without making much changes to it. As for a event? not really, just a gathering.[​IMG]

    [​IMG]<font color=red>[/b]"Rid'in HigH in my K5"[​IMG]
    ....[​IMG]<font color=blue>[/b]"8" Lift -<font color=purple>38.5's"[​IMG]....
     
  9. newyorkin

    newyorkin 1 ton status

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    Dang, that sucks. I doubt I'll ever ride there, but I've seen some cool videos of it. Whether I ever would or not, it would be nice to see the option stay available...

    Ratch
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  10. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    Moving to land use.

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