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Old 08-22-2006, 09:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Arizona-Martinez Canyon closure

I received this message today from the AZOHVC about a possible closure of Martinez Canyon. Your help in writing letters is urgently needed.

Here's the message:

Just heard some bad news about Martinez. The Tucson BLM office which is in charge of that land is looking at possible closing it. We need help getting letters out to them, telling them why we want the trail open, what it means to us, include things like enjoying the historical meaning of the trail and cabin, etc... I will include a form letter, however encourage your members to alter it and include reasons why this is special to them, just plain form letters get lumped in to one pile and looked at as one voice. Just an example, if they receive 1000 form letters, with only differing signatures, they are looked at as one, if they receive 1000 letters that are all different and explain the significance of the trail from each persons perspective it is viewed as 1000 opinions. It has a much larger impact. Any help you could give us with this would be greatly appreciated.

Please keep in mind we need to be positive and polite,one thing I have learned is that they may use any anger in correspondence against us in representing us as bad for the environment and just as bad people in general. Since this will be going out to a lot of BLM folks it would be good to "kill them with kindness" so to speak.

I do know one item that the BLM is looking at is the destruction of the cabin which most of the OHV crowd agree is partiers that don't know the historical value of the cabin. In addition there are some bypasses being cut to get around things that the vehicles on the trails are not capable of getting over, so they cut new portions across the terrain. These are specifically the main two reasons they are looking at the emergency closure. I have included a picture the structure that is being destroyed.

I look forward to working with you as we band together in our efforts to keep this trail and area open.

Just as an FYI, some on the list are very open to working with the OHV crowd, so again the more positive the letter sounds about working with the BLM to keep the areas open and helping fix any issues the better they likes it.

Here is the notice I received:
Fellow OHV recreations........
Below is a sample letter to the Tucson BLM Field Office regarding their intended closure of Martinez Canyon. It's IMPORTANT we deliver HUNDREDS of letters on their desks in the next couple of days. Some at the office have had an agenda to close this canyon for several years so this has finally given them the ability to do so.

***** An EMERGENCY CLOSURE does not require public coping. *****

PLEASE use this letter or write your own and delete parts that don't apply to you, but if we want to keep Martinez Canyon open to our use we need to take the bull by the horns and send your letter NOW. Don't let "the other guy do it". YOUR letter will count! BE PRECISE BUT PLEASE BE
POLITE.

Please do not just "forward"............ Send as an independent letter. Cut and paste into another email but don't show "where you received the sample" or "who forwarded the information to you" etc.

We CAN make a difference. Please forward this to everyone you know??.


Please be sure to copy everyone listed here and if possible please include me (on at least one copy). I would like to take your letters to the AZOHVC and show them the positive response received by your club. My email is My1stJeep@excite.com

Francisco_Mendoza@blm.gov Tucson Planner
Patrick_Madigan@blm.gov Tucson Field Manager
Bill_Gibson@blm.gov State OHV Coordinator
Julie_Decker@blm.gov State Resources Coordinator
Mike_Taylor@blm.gov State Resources Deputy Director
Bill_Civish@blm.gov Tucson District Manager
Anna_Atkinson@blm.gov D.C. OHV Coordinator


Sample Letter
------------------------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------------------------
---
August _____, 2006



Bureau of Land Management
Tucson Field Office
12661 E. Broadway
Tucson, AZ 85748-7208

ATTENTION: Mr. Patrick Madigan, Field Manager

Dear Mr. Madigan,

I am a member of __________________________ (AZOHVC; TTORA; club; group etc) representing _______________ (number of members.. AZOHVC is now over 11,000.)

I have been recreating, hunting, camping and enjoying our backcountry for ______ years and the Martinez Canyon area is important to me and my family in both recreation opportunities and history of our state.

I am writing this in response to a recent notice involving Martinez Canyon. I was dismayed to hear of the damage done to the Cabins but was equally dismayed to hear BLM is strongly considering an ?emergency closure? as a result.

?Emergency Closures? tend to become permanent. I am requesting some mitigation steps be considered before closure.

The BLM Volunteer ?Red Shirts? have offered numerous solutions in the past and I would hope these steps be considered again. 5-6 Years ago BLM was offered the services, at no cost to BLM, of a structural engineer to
evaluate the stabilization of the cabin and the OHV community offered to supply the workers and materials to do what was needed. It was also felt that interpretative signs telling the history of the canyon would bring ?responsibility and ownership? from the users. None of this was ever accepted by BLM. We are now in a situation that OHV are paying the penalty for damage by other than OHV. Because of the intimation of the OHV being to blame for the destruction certainly doesn?t lend itself to partnerships between BLM and the OHV community. This area has been a
local party spot (RAVE parties and drugs) for several years. The defacing of the historical cabin was not done by OHV. The bold writing on every wall in the cabin was done by an environmental ?BLM Volunteer?. Your office staff know of this incident???? has he been banned?

The ?BLM Red Shirt Volunteers? are those that do clean-ups; install kiosks and signs; obtain and offer these materials to BLM at no cost; we offer to Adopt trails and help with monitoring and maintenance; many of our OHV folks are now Site Stewards??? we do this and still are the only recreationists denied access to a beautiful canyon because of our choice of transportation or recreation?

I believe gating and permits for access to this canyon was recommended some time ago. I?m assuming if this canyon is closed to motorized use it will be gated at the entrance. Why could this not be a gate allowing for permitted access only. This would give BLM knowledge of who and when there is access to the canyon; it would turn the party crowd away and allow time to join together and evaluate the cabins and hopefully do stabilization work and put together a ?history story? of the area. Closing access to OHV is certainly not a way to build collaborative partnerships nor trust between BLM and the OHV Community.

It is respectfully requested BLM meet with the OHV Community leaders to discuss reaching an acceptable approach to this problem before decision of closure is made.

Thank you for your consideration.

*Name
*Address
Phone
Email
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Old 08-23-2006, 08:16 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Done.

thanks for the heads up.
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Old 08-23-2006, 10:26 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Don't ever let someone tell you that your time sending a letter is wasted!

Newly posted on message board by from Jim Florence - Vice President of AZOHVC:

Sandee (Mccullen - Treasurer of AZOHVC) just called me after leaving a meeting at Tucson BLM. Per Patrick (Madigan), Martinez Canyon will not be closed to OHV use. We will need volunteers in the near future to help stabilize the Cabins and fence them off. We will also set up a kiosk of sorts to show the history of the area. Bottom line is the trail will stay open.
Good work to everyone that got invovled and sent letters.
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Old 08-23-2006, 10:48 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Good news. Thanks for the update Mark.

I've seen a few pics recently of one of the cabins. Not good.

Maybe a 'gatekeeper' obstacle should be put in place, although I'm sure that wouldnt go over well, altering the landscape and restricting access to the average wheeler. Though it would no doubt help to LIMIT damage to the cabins and help to stop creating bypasses.
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Old 08-23-2006, 11:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westy
Good news. Thanks for the update Mark.

I've seen a few pics recently of one of the cabins. Not good.

Maybe a 'gatekeeper' obstacle should be put in place, although I'm sure that wouldnt go over well, altering the landscape and restricting access to the average wheeler. Though it would no doubt help to LIMIT damage to the cabins and help to stop creating bypasses.
Westy, the idea of a gatekeeper obstacle has been tossed around as well as other options of letting people know the history of the area out there.

Thanks for all of Pirate's help on this one. Patrick received over 50 letters in a very short period of time. He was not even aware of the emails that Francisco of the Tucson BLM office had been sending out in regards to closing this trail. Next week BLM will be sending out an official letter stating that this trail will not be closed. Again thank you to all of you that were proactive in helping us keep this trail open.
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Old 08-23-2006, 11:11 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westy
Good news. Thanks for the update Mark.

I've seen a few pics recently of one of the cabins. Not good.

Maybe a 'gatekeeper' obstacle should be put in place, although I'm sure that wouldnt go over well, altering the landscape and restricting access to the average wheeler. Though it would no doubt help to LIMIT damage to the cabins and help to stop creating bypasses.
Westy, the idea of a gatekeeper obstacle has been tossed around as well as other options of letting people know the history of the area out there.

Thanks for all of Pirate's help on this one. Patrick received over 50 letters in a very short period of time. He was not even aware of the emails that Francisco of the Tucson BLM office had been sending out in regards to closing this trail. Next week BLM will be sending out an official letter stating that this trail will not be closed. Again thank you to all of you that were proactive in helping us keep this trail open.
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Old 08-23-2006, 11:11 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westy
Good news. Thanks for the update Mark.

I've seen a few pics recently of one of the cabins. Not good.

Maybe a 'gatekeeper' obstacle should be put in place, although I'm sure that wouldnt go over well, altering the landscape and restricting access to the average wheeler. Though it would no doubt help to LIMIT damage to the cabins and help to stop creating bypasses.
Westy, the idea of a gatekeeper obstacle has been tossed around as well as other options of letting people know the history of the area out there.

Thanks for all of Pirate's help on this one. Patrick received over 50 letters in a very short period of time. He was not even aware of the emails that Francisco of the Tucson BLM office had been sending out in regards to closing this trail. Next week BLM will be sending out an official letter stating that this trail will not be closed. Again thank you to all of you that were proactive in helping us keep this trail open.
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Old 08-23-2006, 07:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I sent them all a personal email. Martinez is the embodiment of AZ.
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Old 08-23-2006, 08:07 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmurf1
Martinez is the embodiment of AZ.
So true!
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Old 08-24-2006, 07:56 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Some signs detailing the importance and history of the cabins, mine, wildlife and the area in general would also serve as a means to educate and show the importance of this area to everyone, even those commiting these acts, similiar to those in Animas Forks/San Juan Mtns of Colorado.
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Old 08-25-2006, 10:20 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmurf1
I sent them all a personal email. Martinez is the embodiment of AZ.
I hope you didn't send them glamor shots again E-mail sent.
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Old 08-25-2006, 10:44 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Email sent
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