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  1. #1
    featherweight clydesdale
    Reputation: Fattirewilly's Avatar
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    Lease price for trails on private land??? x-post

    x-posted to "save the trails", but not getting enough views...

    I have a private land owner wanting to lease property to a local club/other entity exclusively for mt bike use. It's about 600 acres of land, approximately half wooded.

    I need examples of other leases, preferably bike club/trail related. Here's what I already have.

    I've researched agricultural lease rates in the area. Actively cultivated crop land is $30 to $50 per acre per year, pastureland for grazing cattle is about $6-$15 per acre (cheaper because its a less intense use)....Woods/trails would be less intense and cheaper...no???

    I also have an example in a neighboring county where a landowner has leased approximately 350 acres to a bike club (a mix of woods and field) for about $2,500 ($7.14/acre). This lease is based on the annual land tax bill rather that a $/acre amount.

    Any info out there??

  2. #2
    mtbr member
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    I don't have any info first hand, but I think private land owners leasing to mountain bikers is a great concept. Especially when we are losing many of our trails.

  3. #3
    We want... a shrubbery!
    Reputation: ickyickyptngzutboing's Avatar
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    I would try to see if you can find out what the taxes are for the property, any landowner would be happy to release themselves of having to use their money to pay for the land tax.
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  4. #4
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    Reputation: airwreck's Avatar
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    Curious as to how the insurance and or liability will be worked out.

  5. #5
    Not dead yet, just playin
    Reputation: ohpossum's Avatar
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    This is exactly how our local club works..

    Quote Originally Posted by airwreck
    Curious as to how the insurance and or liability will be worked out.
    Surprisingly, Mississippi doesn't have much public open space for trail development close to the major metro areas. The local mountain bike club leases land, in their case, from a city government, to use for trails. For liability reasons, riders have to sign a waiver before riding on the land. The club has tried to make the waiver process as simple as possible.

    Though leasing land does get space for trails, my personal opinion is that it is a band-aid fix. I'm working to lobby local governments to try to allocate land for public open spaces. In this way, a club could still maintain trails, but the burden of the lease can be removed.

    Land prices will always increase, and the budget of most clubs is very limited. Eventually, the land the club is leasing will be worth more than the club can pay and most land-owners will go to the highest bidder. I speak from experience when I say its very painful to see trails you've spent years working on destroyed to develop a strip-mall.

    So, the short story is, yes, it can be done. Our lease is about $9/acre/year. That $9/acre also goes towards an insurance policy that was required by the land-owner. This lease is not going to be renewed since the land is now valued at $2500/acre/year and a developer will be getting it.

    Our new lease is for less land at a higher price ($20-$30/acre/year). Eventually, this new land will be worth more and we'll have to move on..

    As I said, leasing land will work, but in my opinion, public open spaces are the answer.


    whew..I'll stop ranting now

    op
    www.msmtb.org - Mississippi Mountain Biking

  6. #6
    just along for the ride
    Reputation: Brown_Teeth's Avatar
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    Key here is make sure you pay for the liability you get. If you are paying rates like this, double make sure you get some liability protection or else do like most do and scalp or stick to the good graces of state trails

  7. #7
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    That is exactly what our club is doing here in upstate NY. We lease about 500 acres from a paper company. The price is based on the property tax they pay.

  8. #8
    No Justice = No Peace
    Reputation: Lutarious's Avatar
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    motorcycles

    there's a dirt bke club in Marin that leases a nice piece of land from a private owner. He only lets them ride when the weather is dry. Seasonally, that is, andthey do a lot of maintenance, but, man, what a nice spread.
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  9. #9
    featherweight clydesdale
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    Quote Originally Posted by airwreck
    Curious as to how the insurance and or liability will be worked out.
    The cheap route is to get insurance as an IMBA affiliate club, and require everyone who rides to be a club member.

    Another way is a private policy costing several thousand per year, and everyone buys day passes or annual passes.

  10. #10
    featherweight clydesdale
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    Quote Originally Posted by ohpossum

    So, the short story is, yes, it can be done. Our lease is about $9/acre/year. That $9/acre also goes towards an insurance policy that was required by the land-owner. This lease is not going to be renewed since the land is now valued at $2500/acre/year and a developer will be getting it.

    Our new lease is for less land at a higher price ($20-$30/acre/year). Eventually, this new land will be worth more and we'll have to move on..

    As I said, leasing land will work, but in my opinion, public open spaces are the answer.


    whew..I'll stop ranting now

    op
    Couldn't you negotiate a longer lease or renewal options? Lease for one year with options to renew for the next 10 years? Building real trails takes to much time to loose them in a few short years.

  11. #11
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    Caution... I am not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV. I would highly recommend that you review any lease you plan on entering into with a lawyer.
    What state are you in, because differences in state laws can impact the liability issue. Here in Michigan, it is quite common for sportsmen to lease hunting rights from landowners. I do believe that most hunting leases have text that would make the landowner not liable for any injuries sustained by the leassee(s).
    If the land is leased by a small group of people (you and a few riding buddies), then I believe that you would be on your own regarding injuries. If the land is leased by an organization, than liability would be transferred to the organization.
    I would highly recommend that you review any lease with a lawyer.
    Another thing you may want to check into is your state's laws regarding accepted risk, ie a ski hill operater not being liable for most injuries (not as a result of defective/neglected equipment), due to the inherent risk of the activity, and the participant accepting this risk by participating in the activity.
    As for pricing, I would recommend seeing what hunters in your area are paying for hunting leases, and start from there.

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