how to keep 4 wheelers off singletrack?!- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    how to keep 4 wheelers off singletrack?!

    Here in Jim Thorpe we have seen a number of great singletrack trails turn into 6' wide rutted, rocky (even by PA. standards), messes from 4 wheelers taking them over. I was leading a group on one of my favorite rides today, on the Pisgah ridge, and spotted 2 fourwheelers coming out of one of the best singletrack sections. I was a little susprised since this is a technical, narrow trail though some tight trees with lots of rocks. As we rode it we saw that they had just plowed through the undergrowth off trail to get around any of the sections they couldn't make it through! I ride this trail once a week and if they kill this one too I'll cry, really. I don't know what to do, the trail already has a number of down logs we leave there and it must not be too much fun, but there they were. Of course being in PA. there is no trail use enforcement, signage, respect for the land, etc. No point in putting up signs because they will get shot up and ripped down in days or hours. I don't care if the 4 wheeler crowd rips up the coal mine strippings, I just want them to leave a little singletrack for us too enjoy too! Any ideas and strategies are welcomed, thank you.
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  2. #2
    I need skills
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    feel your pain.

    I'm working with some guys building trails in Nicolet national forest of W isconsin and we have the same fears. Our trail is not finished, not yet grooved in, ATVs are not allowed anywhere in the Nicolet, and yet we have already seen tracks on our trail.

    We did anticipate this. Often routed the trail through trees less than 4 feet apart and piled brush nearby to eliminate drive arounds.....but who knows. The ground is fragile, one twist of the throttle could rip 6 inches off the forest floor. We did like to think that ATVers like to ride fast and wouldn't like our tight twisty trail, but reading your post contradicts that.

    I'm gonna watch this thread for productive ideas.
    Charlie

  3. #3
    Log off and go ride!
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    Boulders. Lots of big boulders spaced about 1 foot apart at the beginning of the trail and key chokepoints. Large log barriers may work too, but the industrious OHV rider can work around those with an effort.

    You need some heavy equipment and access to a rock quarry, though. If you can move the boulders without heavy equipment they are too small. Need to put the squeeze on a well-heeled sponsor (construction company?) or the local county road crew. Sometimes National Guard engineering units are looking for projects they can tackle on a drill weekend (if they are not already deployed to the Middle East).

  4. #4
    Gravity Rides Everything
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    that sucks man. some of my favorite single track from back home was destroyed by 4 wheelers. good luck.

  5. #5
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    That seems to be typical in many parts of the country. I know it was a major issue in Fruita,CO, and with a little research, you might find some answers as to what they did.
    I grew up in PA and am a former 4wheeler and can remember some of the "search and destroy" missions we would go on. I finally got sick of the bulk of the crowd and it's mentality and switched to non-moto. But here in SoCal we have a "mountain bike" club whose leader is a supporter and sponsor of the Blue Ribbon Coalition, the largest ATV/4wheeler/Moto advocacy group. Kind of a dichotomy as it helps to associate the non-moto to the moto/low impact vs high. It doesn't help to win friends with the eco-crowd either.
    Good luck and keep us posted on your progress
    Last edited by BobL; 07-31-2005 at 11:01 PM.

  6. #6
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    Everytime a big tree fallls across the trail, either build a log ramp over it, or cut out a section about 1' wide. Routing the trail through lots of tight gaps between trees helps too. At Shindagin Hollow, the best riding spot in my area, there are several fire roads throughout the woods, ans the four wheelers usually stick to those. Even though they are illegal, if they stick to the fire roads there isn't much of a problem. They ride their trails, we ride ours. Good luck with the quads.

  7. #7
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    good...but

    Lots of smaller rocks already, in PA we call them trails No larger rocks around and the only way to bring them in would be by 4wheeler! Same with trees, all are 6-8" at the biggest. I like the idea of blocking the off trail action with brush and the blow downs, I'll try that. Keep the idea coming. Thanks.




    Quote Originally Posted by dave54
    Boulders. Lots of big boulders spaced about 1 foot apart at the beginning of the trail and key chokepoints. Large log barriers may work too, but the industrious OHV rider can work around those with an effort.

    You need some heavy equipment and access to a rock quarry, though. If you can move the boulders without heavy equipment they are too small. Need to put the squeeze on a well-heeled sponsor (construction company?) or the local county road crew. Sometimes National Guard engineering units are looking for projects they can tackle on a drill weekend (if they are not already deployed to the Middle East).
    Jim Thorpe Trail Coalition
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  8. #8
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    If.

    Same thing here, lots of fireroads in the old mine strippings that they are welcome to blast around, and we do to. I just wish they wouldn't kill what singletrack we have left. We have a trail called the Rim Trail that used to be 6" and has a 200'+ sheer dropoff into the mine site on the side. Now it's 6' wide and not terrifing at all, a real shame. The big problem is that all of these trails are in a unregulated, quasi-legal area that is on, and around, what was one of the countries largest coal mines. The only option looks to be making the trails even harder to get onto, maybe we should dynomite pits and build log rides at the ends of each trail?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hardtails Are Better
    Everytime a big tree fallls across the trail, either build a log ramp over it, or cut out a section about 1' wide. Routing the trail through lots of tight gaps between trees helps too. At Shindagin Hollow, the best riding spot in my area, there are several fire roads throughout the woods, ans the four wheelers usually stick to those. Even though they are illegal, if they stick to the fire roads there isn't much of a problem. They ride their trails, we ride ours. Good luck with the quads.
    Jim Thorpe Trail Coalition
    http://jttrails.wordpress.com/

  9. #9
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    tank traps / bollards?

    You've noted that there aren't big enough boulders in the area, and you would need to bring them in on a backhoe anyway. So boulders are really only a trailhead area solution most of the time.

    Here's three other possibilities:

    I've seen the USFS close dirt roads simply by using a loader or bulldozer to dig a pit 2 or 3 feet deep across the road at a choke point and pile the spoils into a moundon the road right at one edge of the pit. The resulting peak and trough is too deep and steep for even a high ground clearance jeep to pass over.

    Bollards: You know those posts at the edge of parks or parking lots or plazas that keep vehicles out? They are called bollards. You could make some. Cut some logs from down trees, say 6" inches in diameter and six or seven feet long. Bury one end two or three feet vertically in the ground. Space them so you can cycle but not drive between them.

    Downed logs: If you have enough downed timber, cover the problem trails with downed branches and logs (the bigger the better) leaving just a rideable single track. Use rebar driven through the logs into the ground to hold them in place. Heck, completely block the trail in places and do some log overs.

  10. #10
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    Fourwheelers make me mad.
    I was at Shindagin this moring, and my favorite trail, the Creek Trail, had been ridden by fourwheelers. Luckily, there wasn't much damage, except for one spot right next to the creek where they had gouged a big pit across the trail, which promptly filled with mud. I'm thinking about trying one of the ideas found here to thin out the fourwheeler population around here.... http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=114112 I just hope I don't run into El Juano on the quad he posted... that could get ugly. But if I can work out Jessep's design for the improved BOB trailer, I would definately have an edge..... And while you're there, check out Built4Speed's avatar. It's hilarious.
    Last edited by Hardtails Are Better; 08-02-2005 at 03:17 PM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarryCallahan
    I've seen the USFS close dirt roads simply by using a loader or bulldozer to dig a pit 2 or 3 feet deep across the road at a choke point and pile the spoils into a moundon the road right at one edge of the pit. The resulting peak and trough is too deep and steep for even a high ground clearance jeep to pass over..

    Here in Oregon, those are called Tank Traps, and I assume the name, and concept have military roots.
    I love mankind - it's people I can't stand. ~Charles M. Schulz

  12. #12
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    Thanks.

    Some good ideas....I'll try to scout it out and round up some troops.



    Quote Originally Posted by HarryCallahan
    You've noted that there aren't big enough boulders in the area, and you would need to bring them in on a backhoe anyway. So boulders are really only a trailhead area solution most of the time.

    Here's three other possibilities:

    I've seen the USFS close dirt roads simply by using a loader or bulldozer to dig a pit 2 or 3 feet deep across the road at a choke point and pile the spoils into a moundon the road right at one edge of the pit. The resulting peak and trough is too deep and steep for even a high ground clearance jeep to pass over.

    Bollards: You know those posts at the edge of parks or parking lots or plazas that keep vehicles out? They are called bollards. You could make some. Cut some logs from down trees, say 6" inches in diameter and six or seven feet long. Bury one end two or three feet vertically in the ground. Space them so you can cycle but not drive between them.

    Downed logs: If you have enough downed timber, cover the problem trails with downed branches and logs (the bigger the better) leaving just a rideable single track. Use rebar driven through the logs into the ground to hold them in place. Heck, completely block the trail in places and do some log overs.
    Jim Thorpe Trail Coalition
    http://jttrails.wordpress.com/

  13. #13
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    One of my fave trails years ago got torn up by ATV's. Thankfully it was on park property, and the park cracked down hard core on the ATV'ers. The ATV folks didn't use the trailheads...they accessed the trail by cutting in off some railroad tracks.

    The park blocked their access by cutting big sections of logs and tying them together with baling wire. I suggest putting a nasty plant around it as added tamper protection. Anything thorny or otherwise nasty will work (nettles, poison ivy, hawthorn, even multiflora rose). Rebar anchors are a good idea, too...and tie it off to living trees. The IMBA website has some info about making sturdy log barriers. Keep in mind that their solutions are geared towards keeping mtb riders on the trails, so for ATV's, it'll have to be beefed up pretty seriously. Combine it with pits and bollards and you should have a system in place. The problem will be keeping them from going around it all. You've already mentioned that they don't shy away from running through the underbrush. You may want to transplant some native shrubs to your trailhead access points and place them out wider than your constructed barrier.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Thorpe Trails
    Some good ideas....I'll try to scout it out and round up some troops.
    Good luck.

  15. #15
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    Makes sense

    Quote Originally Posted by Sasquatch
    Here in Oregon, those are called Tank Traps, and I assume the name, and concept have military roots.
    Yeah, now that you mention it, I think I've heard that, too.

  16. #16

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    it depends if there is a way to cut around it but if not you could always build north shore skinnies over somthing such as a fallentree / log or a bunch of rocks

  17. #17

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    a teeter-todder over a fallen log is also a good idea

  18. #18
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    Why not make weight sensitive boogie traps? If something over a couple hundred pounds rides over a certain trap, a 1000lb tree trunk comes swinging down from above and knocks the rider off his atv. That's gotta stop them for a while.
    Quote Originally Posted by Luuane
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by NYPD
    Why not make weight sensitive boogie traps? If something over a couple hundred pounds rides over a certain trap, a 1000lb tree trunk comes swinging down from above and knocks the rider off his atv. That's gotta stop them for a while.
    Not a bad idea, but the addition of two foot long steel spiks woud be an improvement. Combine that with my suggetion, which can be seen in several forms here: http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=114112, and that shold take care of the fourwheelers in the area.

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