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“Renaturalizing” OHV Forest Trails

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Tuolumne County, CA — Illegally made off-highway vehicle (OHV) trails are not uncommon in the Stanislaus National Forest, and to deal with them, crews perform a “renaturalizing” of the area.

That is what crews with the Mik-Wok/Summit Ranger District, along with members from the Tuolumne River Trust, Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership, and AmeriCorps were recently out doing on a section of trail near Duckwall Road/FS Road 2N11. Forest officials explain, “When forest OHV crews identify a section of illegal trail, they get to work falling dead trees for barriers and utilizing duff from the forest floor to cover the section of illegal trail. Over the course of a couple of seasons, the illegal trail begins to look more and more like the natural forest floor and thus is renaturalized.”

Illegal trails are a major problem in the forest, added forest officials, noting, “Illegal trail use is a leading cause of ecosystem destruction and takes valuable time and resources from forest staff that could be used in a more productive fashion.”

A photo album of the work can be viewed here. And as reported earlier this week, forest officials sent out a reminder to all OHV enthusiasts to stick to the designated trails and gave some tips on responsible ATV riding in the forest.

Information on local trails is in our Recreation Guide here.

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