Land Use issues and You

Today we all have very limited time and many of us have a burning desire to get out of doors and commune with nature. This is in part why off-road and four wheel driving have become more popular. Using a four wheel drive vehicle is an inexpensive and efficient way to get out of major population centers (ie
cities!). They allow us to leave the high-way noises behind and get close to nature.

With more and more people on our planet, in our country, and in our state there is less and less room for each of us. Combine this with more and more land closures to protect animals and plants, you get over crowding and over use.

We all must take personal action to ensure that we care for the our lands better than most of us care for our homes and our personal health. Our natural resource need our protection. We all share the environment and as users and promoters of wilderness recreation, we have a responsibility to ensure that our actions are supportive of our desires for wonderful places to commune with nature. We must also be involved in the decisions about how our lands are best managed. There are many more arm chair environmentalist than true outdoor folks. These people think of city parks as being outdoors. While, being literate and well meaning, some environmentalist have been know to latch onto environmental issues that do not impact them like closing lands to the public.

As a group of active outdoor environmentalist Esprit De Four club members are actively involved in the preservation of our natural lands while still maintaining recreational access to these lands via designated environmentally sound trails in these lands. We live, teach, and follow the guidance of Tread Lightly!,

Despite this, and efforts by the California Association of 4-Wheel Drive Clubs, there are those who would deny our right to use public lands responsibly. There are many things which you as an outdoor environmentalist can do to help maintain responsible management of our public lands.

The following information is posted to help distribute information about land use issues and what you can do to protect your rights to enjoy our public lands.

Adopt-a-Trail Program

With trail closures too often becoming unfortunate news, Esprit de Four is doing its part to reverse that trend.

In partnering with the US Forest Service , Esprit de Four adopted the Mattley Loop and Ridge Trail in the Stanislaus National Forest east of Arnold on Hwy 4.

One weekend in June/July after the snow melt, we are taking time out from the Bay Area and work on the trails: Clearing downed trees, cutting branches, shoveling snow drifts, blocking off volunteer trails and filling in washed out areas before going off to play and enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Adopt-a-Trail is a great family event with a Saturday night cookout, always entertaining campfire, socializing and lots of fun.

As a free benefit you'll enjoy a good workout using snow shovels, small saws, hatchets, axes, machetes or chains for hauling trees. The more experienced among us have fun working their chain saws.

Camping is free, so grab your family, bring your tent, RV, truck camper or travel trailer and join the spirit of volunteering, knowing the 4x4 Off-road community will thank you.

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