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Old June 14th, 2009, 10:19 PM   #1
mudford
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Default State land 4x4 vehicle rules

I have been hearing that there is nowhere to wheel in Michigan anymore. I just wondered when it all changed. I used to wheel on state land all the time in the 90's. I wheeled in northern Gladwin County(Meredith) up to Houghton Lake. I saw CO's on many occasions. I usually always stopped and talked to them even when we were on the power lines, and running in 4wd. They were always friendly, never told us we were doing anything wrong. They asked us if we had seen a certain vehicle because they thought he was poaching. They asked us if we had good recovery gear incase we got stuck.

Now it looks like if they see anyone they are ticketed. Is this all because of the 1994 Public Act 451 and the redefining of the term "Forest Road"? It looks like the redefining of one word in a 1200 page Bill keeps the public off public land. None of the forest roads can be traveled by a 2wd car in the winter so I guess we can't use them then. Most are sandy and not "hardpacked" so a car couldn't drive it so they must be off limits also.

Is this what the lawmakers intended with that rewording? To shutdown most state land to trucks, and give the DNR more power? I was up in the Meredith area last fall and there were locked gates and dirt hills blocking trails everywhere. If they changed the law in 1994 why did they wait so long before starting to enforce it?
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Old June 16th, 2009, 12:53 PM   #2
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Is this what the lawmakers intended with that rewording? To shutdown most state land to trucks, and give the DNR more power?
Yes, I think it was what they intended.
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Old June 16th, 2009, 04:36 PM   #3
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well I think you will find it started before `91. the fact Gov. Engler gave the DNR director executive power is beyond stupid. the fact he closed all the rec areas to offroad use of any kind was another stupid move. but the reality is the treehuggers have this state lock stock & barrel. the majority of tax payers don't have a clue how this state is tweeked by the DNR. the fact theres almost nothing in a 3 hour ride of Detroit is just the first barrier. the people who have been leaving the state when they lost their jobs and homes is just the first step to the DNR having total control. if theres nobody to bitch about what they're doing they can close it all.

gee I wonder who is going to pay when we're all gone?

by the way the state past a law in `94 saying it would provide a south east michigan offroad area which they have yet to deliver on.
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Old June 20th, 2009, 12:02 AM   #4
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Maybe this is a down state thing but up here in Mecosta / Osceola / Manistee counties we have miles upon miles of powerline trails that traverse the state lands. Just last week I saw a whole convoy of 4x4's crossing US 10 from the powerline trails heading south into the Manistee National Forest. I see some of the areas I used to wheel in as a kid are gated off now but that seems to be to property owners doing not the DNR. This is a good discussion and I hope somebody has an answer...it was always my understanding that if you had an ORV sticker you were considered good. Then again laws change and I haven't lived in this state since 97' so possibly I have no idea what I'm talking about!
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Old June 20th, 2009, 02:11 PM   #5
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It seems like this power grab was done under the radar. They waited before enforcing it. It appears that they didn't want anyone to notice a big change. They would just slowly start ticketing more people and putting up more gates on state land. Try not to do too much at once to upset people, just do it slow enough so that before we knew it most everything was shut down, and what is open they can ticket you for driving on "at their discretion"

Its like the story of the frog in pot of water. Turn the heat up really slowly and he will just sit there until he's dead. If you turn it up too fast he will jump out. The DNR didn't want us to rally and make a big deal so they slowly snuck all this stuff through, and now we wake up and go what happened?!?!?

This state sucks!

We should plan a day and go to Lansing and fill the streets up with 4x4's in protest. Not that anyone in govt would care. They would just give everyone tickets for stupid things like tires sticking out of fenders and make a bunch more money off us.
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Old June 20th, 2009, 02:29 PM   #6
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We should plan a day and go to Lansing and fill the streets up with 4x4's in protest.
I would be down for this, and I'm sure a lot of other people would be too.

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They would just give everyone tickets for stupid things like tires sticking out of fenders and make a bunch more money off us.
Although this is probably very true
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 02:35 PM   #7
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Old June 22nd, 2009, 04:28 PM   #8
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i know in the alpena area the DNR is not allowing anyone on the trails saying that we are tearing them up but from what i have seen they arent that bad and i know now that they are watching the trails like hawks to keep the public off of them
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Old November 11th, 2010, 06:45 PM   #9
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you think it was bad last year? Now you can't even get down the power lines. Gates EVERYWHERE! Even on the main trail going in from M-18.
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Old November 11th, 2010, 09:28 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by shamus275 View Post
Maybe this is a down state thing but up here in Mecosta / Osceola / Manistee counties we have miles upon miles of powerline trails that traverse the state lands. Just last week I saw a whole convoy of 4x4's crossing US 10 from the powerline trails heading south into the Manistee National Forest. I see some of the areas I used to wheel in as a kid are gated off now but that seems to be to property owners doing not the DNR. This is a good discussion and I hope somebody has an answer...it was always my understanding that if you had an ORV sticker you were considered good. Then again laws change and I haven't lived in this state since 97' so possibly I have no idea what I'm talking about!
Unless the powerline is designated and signed, they were breaking the law.

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Originally Posted by mudford View Post
It seems like this power grab was done under the radar. They waited before enforcing it. It appears that they didn't want anyone to notice a big change. They would just slowly start ticketing more people and putting up more gates on state land. Try not to do too much at once to upset people, just do it slow enough so that before we knew it most everything was shut down, and what is open they can ticket you for driving on "at their discretion"

Its like the story of the frog in pot of water. Turn the heat up really slowly and he will just sit there until he's dead. If you turn it up too fast he will jump out. The DNR didn't want us to rally and make a big deal so they slowly snuck all this stuff through, and now we wake up and go what happened?!?!?

This state sucks!

We should plan a day and go to Lansing and fill the streets up with 4x4's in protest. Not that anyone in govt would care. They would just give everyone tickets for stupid things like tires sticking out of fenders and make a bunch more money off us.
You've pretty much hit the nail on the head.
The biggest 2 issues with showing up at he Capitol are:
1) The Permit process is NOT easy or friendly
2) It MUST be done during business hours. How many people would take a day off work to do this? The numbers drop off significantly.

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Old November 11th, 2010, 09:34 PM   #11
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AMEN!
This is the ONLY group actively working to improve our situation, the only group openly lobbying. Yet EXTREMELY few wheelers support them by joining so that the Association can use the dues money for the cause and count each wheeler in their lobbying efforts. You need BIG numbers and the money to back it up to get what you want out of government. Wheelers seem to expect GLFWDA to do it while the very people they represent tie one hand behind their backs, yet somehow GLFWDA is still able to accomplish great things. Imagine what they could do if everyone joined! (The NFS estimates that there are over a million of us in Michigan alone).

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Old April 19th, 2011, 08:30 PM   #12
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it makes me so angry that we can wheel anywhere with out getting a trespassing ticket or anything else. all the gates everywhere and everyone screwing up everything for everyone else.
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Old April 19th, 2011, 09:02 PM   #13
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I know how it goes about the trespassing ticket. I was told a couple years ago by a county cop that where I was driving was a horse trail and no motor vehicles where aloud back there but the sign at one end said it was a seasonal road but that didnt matter.
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