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Old February 27th, 2008, 06:05 AM   #61
kb8ymf
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Originally Posted by 0llllll0 View Post
Thanks Jim excellent explanation! It makes sense now, If the trail meets the forest road definition “can be traveled by a conventional 2-wheel-drive vehicle designed for highway use” but has the Designated ORV Trail signage VS. the sign shown in the attachment, it is o.k. for quads and such that are 50” or less to travel on (with an ORV sticker) but vehicles wider than 50” require a SOS license.
Slight clarification, if the 'trail' you are on has those orange triangle shaped confidence markers you DO NOT need SOS licensing. That orange sign negates any need to have street licensing.

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Where as a “ROUTE” allows any vehicle size with a SOS license or without SOS providing it has an ORV sticker, and 4 wheel-drive may be used.
Exactly

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I have been down many forest roads and found myself on “ORV Trails”, that continued to meet the forest road definition, and have generally got off them as fast as I could to avoid a possible ticket. Now with this new information, and respectfully treating them like other forest roads, its o.k..
Now you see just what I'm saying about the inconstiency of the marking.
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Old February 27th, 2008, 11:20 AM   #62
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Slight clarification, if the 'trail' you are on has those orange triangle shaped confidence markers you DO NOT need SOS licensing. That orange sign negates any need to have street licensing.


Jim,

By no means am I disagreeing with you but why is that? I can see if it meets the forest road critera you are allowed on it with SOS licensing. But everything I see regarding the "TRAIL" triangles (attached) talk about the 50" maximum except the triangles that specificly say "ROUTE". So how is it that a vehicle over 50" can be on a forest road that is marked with a triangle that says "TRAIL" (and not "ROUTE") without having a SOS plate?

Thanks.
Ken
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Old February 27th, 2008, 11:58 AM   #63
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Jim,

By no means am I disagreeing with you but why is that? I can see if it meets the forest road critera you are allowed on it with SOS licensing. But everything I see regarding the "TRAIL" triangles (attached) talk about the 50" maximum except the triangles that specificly say "ROUTE". So how is it that a vehicle over 50" can be on a forest road that is marked with a triangle that says "TRAIL" (and not "ROUTE") without having a SOS plate?

Thanks.
Ken
Simple answer, the Department is f'ed up. Plain and simple. The DNR marked 'TRAILS' so that <50" could have a place to ride, BUT when a 'TRAIL' pops out on to a forest road, they continue to mark it as TRAIL....Does this mean you can't be on it? NO it does not.
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Old February 27th, 2008, 12:22 PM   #64
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Let me add to the cofusion. Sometimes the "trail" comes out to a "forest road" and is labled with the Route triangle for a short distance and then tucks back into the woods as a 50" trail again. Sounds good in theory, however, you now have a short (sometimes no more than .25 miles) "Route" that is included in the Route inventory that is essentially unusable to all but SOS licensed vehicles. That is unless your using it for it's unwritten purpose, which is to circumvent or cut short a longer "Trail", a shortcut so to speak.
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Old February 28th, 2008, 10:24 AM   #65
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ORV Trail marker and ORV Trail marker ???What's the difference?
Ken, You showed two ORV Trail markers with each having a different logo, i.e Motorcycle and Quad.
He's another situation where the DNR is doing something that is NOT in the law. Paul M has been raising this issue for years. The DNR 'invented' a 24" trail for motorcycles that is NOT defined in the orv law. So who can go on these? Their almost always too narrow for us BUT Quads can usually fit down them much the same fashion as we fit down trails that are wide enough for Quads.
What really needs to be done is the DNR needs to recognize full size vechicle as a legitimate user group, and that is starting to happen. THEN they need to reinventory the entire system and mark the trails according to their real vehicle capability. After that is done, and the Trails and Routes are not lying on top on one another, with two groups getting paid for maintaining the same section of Route/Trail, we'll free up thousands of more dollars to develop the additional miles of trails the Legislature mandated they create a few years back. That whole 'new trail initiative' has really been forgotten about because of HB 4232 (road shoulder bill) that is winding it's way through Lansing now.
The DNR has been crying 'woah is me', we don't have enough money to make the new trails we are being asked to create. AND some of the money could be used for St. Helen and The Mounds Rock Crawl which the DNR is also a decimal place off in the cost to do it right.
So does your head hurt even more now?:tonka:
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Old February 28th, 2008, 10:55 AM   #66
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Ha. I was thinking about this after I logged off. Another question to pose is, "is it legal to use 4 wheel drive in slippery conditions on a paved road? Our laws seem to be written otherwise. And if it is the case that we can't use 4 wheel drive on a paved road, then why in the hell is it even legal in Michigan to purchase a vehicle equipped with it?
Thats what I was wondering, my "family vehicle" is a ZJ that is full time 4 wheel drive, so if this is true I can never drive my ZJ on paved roads or otherwise??
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Old February 28th, 2008, 12:19 PM   #67
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So does your head hurt even more now?:tonka:
jim-kb8ymf
YES !

So, if I have it straight now, the "TRAIL" signage is just messed up, and regardless of what orange triangle, it is still part of the "ORV" system and as long as you fit down the trail and don't drive in an manner that causes an erosive condition - it's O.K. with an ORV sticker or SOS.

Right ?
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Old February 28th, 2008, 08:09 PM   #68
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YES !

So, if I have it straight now, the "TRAIL" signage is just messed up, and regardless of what orange triangle, it is still part of the "ORV" system and as long as you fit down the trail and don't drive in an manner that causes an erosive condition - it's O.K. with an ORV sticker or SOS.

Right ?
You got it!
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Old February 29th, 2008, 02:06 PM   #69
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YES !

So, if I have it straight now, the "TRAIL" signage is just messed up, and regardless of what orange triangle, it is still part of the "ORV" system and as long as you fit down the trail and don't drive in an manner that causes an erosive condition - it's O.K. with an ORV sticker or SOS.

Right ?
I don't spend time on State trails or know any DNR CO's personally, so I don't know if any of them would agree with this argument/interpretation/justification. BUT, I'm thinking that if someone took the time to put up confidence markers with a motorcylce or quad or whatever on it, there was probably a reason for it. But I dunno, I didn't put them there. Instead of asking here, why don't you ask one of them? I do know people with the Forest Service, and I can tell you that if you are on a National Forest trail in the lower peninsula, a trail marked with quad or motorcyle confidence markers is, fer sure, for quads or motorcycles. For Example...It doesn't matter if the trail is 30' wide-if it is marked as a motorcycle trail, then the only legal vehicle to take down that trail is a motorcycle. Don't wanna see anyone get fined or worse 'cause they got bad info or thought rules were the same from place to place.
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Old February 29th, 2008, 02:33 PM   #70
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I don't spend time on State trails or know any DNR CO's personally, so I don't know if any of them would agree with this argument/interpretation/justification. BUT, I'm thinking that if someone took the time to put up confidence markers with a motorcylce or quad or whatever on it, there was probably a reason for it. But I dunno, I didn't put them there. Instead of asking here, why don't you ask one of them? I do know people with the Forest Service, and I can tell you that if you are on a National Forest trail in the lower peninsula, a trail marked with quad or motorcyle confidence markers is, fer sure, for quads or motorcycles. For Example...It doesn't matter if the trail is 30' wide-if it is marked as a motorcycle trail, then the only legal vehicle to take down that trail is a motorcycle. Don't wanna see anyone get fined or worse 'cause they got bad info or thought rules were the same from place to place.
"WE" as in GLFWDA are the ones putting up the confidence markers. We follow the guidelines of the DNR as per their instructions. We have a fellow in the organization that is a state certified sign installer and we also have these discussions with the ORV advisory board.
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Old February 29th, 2008, 03:30 PM   #71
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"WE" as in GLFWDA are the ones putting up the confidence markers. We follow the guidelines of the DNR as per their instructions. We have a fellow in the organization that is a state certified sign installer and we also have these discussions with the ORV advisory board.
And when he says "we" he means kb8ymf, myself, and several others on this board. This is what makes it even more of an issue, we instal the signage on these trails and we cant even get a straight answer on some of these questions. Rest assured, kb8ymf will not lead anyone astray!

GLFWDA has been involved with the ORV program from it's inception in the early 90's wit the same folks still involved today. The problem is the folks in the DNR side of the program come and go. Some policies within the department are subject to change with the changing of personel.

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Old February 29th, 2008, 03:58 PM   #72
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For Example...It doesn't matter if the trail is 30' wide-if it is marked as a motorcycle trail, then the only legal vehicle to take down that trail is a motorcycle. Don't wanna see anyone get fined or worse 'cause they got bad info or thought rules were the same from place to place.
This discussion about signage pertains to State Forests NOT Federal. If you want to talk Feds, their a bunch of thief's in my book. Here's why. The USFS 'sort of' followed the state guidelines on their trails, after all if your a user of the trails/routes on public land the last thing you need to to try and figure out two different trail markings as the systems intermigle in some places. So they keep them the same as the state in most parts.
Here's the thief part. The Feds take a perfectly good full size vehicle route, they berm off the entrance where it comes in contact with the major county road. Then they go down 30-40 feet and post a Motorcycle sign saying this is a motorcycle trail. They wind that little single track trail back to the wide forest road and now it's motorcycle trail and we lose our full size opportunity.
Bull*&^% is my opinion of this management practice. This is all over the Mio area as I used to put on the Jeep Cup 20 years ago and dam near everything I used back then is all motorcycle now.
I've also come in on the backside of one of the bermed off trails as the Fed's knew so little about their trails and had less than the state does for maps, they overlooked the fact the trail they bermed off at the county road was still open at the other end!
As proof, just look at the 'M' triangle mapping project that Trail Fanatic put together with the Two Tracker/GLFWDA. The Feds had literally no documentation of the trails in that area, or anywhere in Michigan for that matter, which is by choice in my opinion. The Fed's are just like any other management agency, the less there is out on the ground, the less there is that they have to manage/patrol. Their management practice consist of tree harvesting just like the state. $$$$$$ says it all. The loggers don't need no stinking roads. They make them when they need them, then they scariff the land and replant right over everything that was ever there. Just look at what happens when a logging permit get's issued where ORV trails are located. You can't find any remains of the two track if you tried.
The condition of the forest after a ONE logging operation contains more damage to the environment than we as off-roaders have EVER done to the land in Michigan in the last 20 years all put together. But guess what, it's OK for them.
Sorry about the soapbox.............
jim-kb8ymf

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