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I am a 5 year veteran of the Marine Corps and very proud of it. I support the Marines in everything they do. But while I fully understand the need for training I disagree with taking Johnson Valley.

I have never been to the Hammers but have a strong desire to make the trip from Texas with some of the members of my club, Lone Star Jeeps. I would ask that you do all you can to change the plan and not take the Hammers OHV Area away. It is truely one of the offroad wonders in this country.

Please reconsider.
 

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Johnson Valley and the Hammer trails are just one of my favorite places to be! Our club makes our annual trek to Johnson Valley in the early Spring and we spend the better part of the week enjoying the scenery, tough trails and generally enjoying the experience only Johnson Valley allows. I would encourage the USMC to reconsider the expansion of 29 Palms into the Johnson Valley OHV area.
 

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I have only been to Johnson Valley one time. I was on a business trip last year that was to begin at about the same time as the Tin Benders cleanup ended, so I drove down a day early. When I arrived everyone was packing up and heading home. Since I made the smart decision to not drive my rockcrawler all the way from Yreka, Ca., and was alone, I decided that I would just try and find some folks to hitch a trail-ride with. I found a group from Redding known as the "Bloody Stump Wheelers" and instantly made friends with them.
They told me that they come down every year for the cleanup and always have a great time. Although they didn't have their kids this time around, usually it is a family trip. We sat around and talked for a long time that Sunday morning about all things offroad and its unfortunate future of trail closures. At that moment I didn't think in as short of a time as a year, that we could be losing that very spot that we were sitting.
After talking with them for some time I had them convinced to stay an extra day (it wasn't hard to do) and show me some of the amazing trails that had provided them with so much enjoyment. I loaded up into Aaron's (PBB Trailerguy) freshly completed buggy and headed off in search of great rock 'wheeling, which was not hard to find. We spent the day driving the trails of Johnson Valley, which to me stand out as a jewel of southern California and off highway recreation in general. It would be a sad day if these trails were lost.
All in all, I had a wonderful time that day and brought home many great stories and pictures for my friends, and our club now has Johnson Valley on the top of our destination list. Please oh please don't let these trails disappear. Thank you, Jeff
 

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I hope to make it down that some day in the future, and I would very much enjoy being able to go for ride on this trail I have read about so many times and seen pictures of.

Please keep it open for the wheelers.
 

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Johnson Valley more then a recreation area has become a place in peoples hearts. Its a lifesyle for many Off road enthusiasts. Friends have skipped family gatherings to spend weekends in JV with great friends. Others choose to have their family gatherings in JV like Thanksgiving. Taking the hammers away from us would be one of the worst problems the off road community can face. Wheelers from across the country spend days on the road and tow their junk in to CA to wheel the hammers. Ive got friends out of state who wont even look at CA on the map if it wasnt for the hammers. Please, re think your decision.

Thank you.
:D
 

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To whom it may concern,

I'm lucky enough to live close to this wonderful spot that we call the HAMMERS. While I fully support the proper training of the USMC and the US Armed Forces in general. I believe that there has to be a better option than locking the public out of the lands which it cares for so dearly. The Hammers area of Johnson Valley are a one of a kind trail system, one which has been cared for and respected by the people using it. As a family we I have participated in several environmental clean ups at the Hammers, it's an awesome site to see people come out and take care of the land that we care so much about.

Thank you,
Joe Varga
Santa Ana, CA.

 

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To Whom it May Concern, I have recreationally driven most of the offroad trails in Northern California over the last 15 years. This is one of the reasons I love this State I live in. Johnson Valley has always been number 1 on my family's list of "to do" offroad areas. As you can see from this rally we are not alone in this feeling. Please do not close Johnson Valley. While we realize the military needs to train our brave troops, surely there must be alternative sites in this vast State we live in. Johnson Valley is a well known and well used recreational area and should remain so.
 

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To whom it may concern,

I have been traveling to Johnson Valley for the last 21 years of my life and it would be a trajedy to have this beautiful piece of OHV area taken away from us. These day's it's hard to see your family with everyone being so busy but we are always able to get together out in Johnson Valley and see each other. This peice of desert is part of my life and many others and it should not be taken away from us.

Trevor Unruh
 

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I've not been to the Hammers, nor do i plan to in the near future. However, i feel strongly that areas such as these should remain open to users. It's great for family events, and good for local economy as well. I enjoy my 4 wheeling time in and around southern Utah mainly, but will be headed to new destinations as time and money allow. Any hit to ANY OHV area is a big deal to all of us, because it's an all too familiar trend with environmentalist extremist groups to barracade us from our trails. The more land that goes, the less areas we have to go which will cause over crowding of areas left open. Which in turn will only look worse to public eye and will be easily twisted by media.

Land like this should stay open for the users, and users be allowed to continually volunteer their time to maintain it.

-Jason Goates
SLC, Utah
 

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To whom it may concern;
I drive over 900 miles at least once a year just to get down to Johnson Valley OHV area. The Hammer trails are worth the drive time, the gas and the money I spend on each trip. I spend thousands of dollars, for food, gas, camping and parts for the jeep, just to be able to camp in the Johnson Valley OHV area. Closing this area will end my trips to the southern California desert area, as there is no other place on earth like Johnson Valley OHV and the Hammer Trails.

I don't know how accurate the maps that I made are, considering the maps on the USMC document are practically unreadable, but I scaled them to about the same size. Here is the "Johnson Valley Expansion" area near the Johnson Valley OHV area that is so valuable to off-road enthusiast from around the world:



The "additional area of interest" that would take away even more of the precious Johnson Valley OHV land:




Please reconsider the closure of this area, as I hope to look forward at the long drive for years to come.



Thank you for your time,


David LeDrew
 

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SAVE THE HAMMERS!!

Althought I have never been to Johnson Valley, I still don't want to see this OHV mecca closed. I hope to get to visit JV soon!

Thanks,
Chris
 

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To whom it may concern,

I have been an avid 4 wheeler since 2000. In 2003 I spent the Christmas at the Johnson Valley OHV area. I didn't have my own Jeep as I flew out to spend the week with my then current boyfriend.

It was an honor that he let me wheel his Jeep through some of Sledge and Jack (even signed the book). I liked the technical nature of those trails and at that time I had never done anything that "hardcore" before.

I was so impressed with the remoteness and the quality of the people we ran into out there. The land is beautiful and the scenery prominent.

The land is so diverse that everyone from mild to wild can find enjoyment with their friends and family and I look forward to one day making the now 4 hour trek to the west with my Jeep that is ready to hit some of these trails.

I know all here hope that these words we've placed here will allow those to see there are people extremely passionate about their hobby's and the ability to share them with their friends and family while respecting the lands and passing along those qualities to the ones they love.

I hope that these special trails, that really cannot be replaced, are kept available to us that are:

1. Finally ready to test their driving skills and rig limits on them.
2. Able to be passed along to their children as a place where they can learn to respect the land and others on the trails around them.
3. Able to spend the quality of time with their families.

A few generations have been able to, hopefully more will have the ability to do the same.

Thanks for your time.

Jamie Lynn McClay - Phoenix, AZ
1999 Jeep Wrangler
 

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I am new to Southern California, new to off-road recreation and new to the desert, but have learned very quickly to love it all. Johnson Valley is a really magical place and I would hate to see it lost to off road activities.

I fully support our military but feel there are other places that would fit the needs of the training they need without the loss of this area for those who use and enjoy it so often and in such enormous numbers.
 

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To Whom it may concern,

I am a novice 4Wheel drive enthusiast who has recently become active in a local 4 Wheel Drive club in Santa Cruz, California. The club has had a scheduled run to Johnson Valley for a number of years and it has been described as absolutely the "highlight wheeling trip" of the year by many of the club members. I have personally not yet had the privilege to visit Johnson Valley OHV, but sincerely and whole heartily wish to be able to make that yearly trip with my local club for many years to come, and share these trails and experiences with my children. Since first hearing tales and seeing video and photos of Johnson Valley and specifically the Hammers trail, it has been my sincere desire...no, dream, to be able to one day be able enjoy, and test the limits of my vehicle and driving ability!

I also come from a military family and understand the needs for proper training facilities for those brave men and women that protect our country and the freedoms that we enjoy today. Having lived near the region in question and talking with current and ex-military personnel who trained in the area, I firmly believe there are other alternatives to removing public land from those of us to cherish every little bit of that space we can still utilize.

With utmost respect,

Wade Leishman
Scotts Valley, CA

Santa Cruz 4 Wheel Drive Club (prospective member)
CAL4WD
BlueRibbon Coalition
 

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Please don't take the hammer's away from the off road community. :usa:
 

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My Back Yard

I have been using the Johnson Valley OHV area even before it was designated. My dad homesteaded in the valley and we visited on weekends until I moved here in 1978. Our family has established a reunion and we meet annually for 4 days of catching up and off roading in the JV area from our cabins, 6 of them, which are ½ a mile away from the boundary. This year we celebrated our 30th annual reunion. I don’t rock crawl but I love to watch, and I watch MDR and MORE off road race events and AMA motorcycle races. Our family recreates, explores, camps out, ride our home built dune buggies and quads, and teach our kids how to safely ride. These activities are enjoyed by thousands of families each year. All of this could be lost due to an expansion of the base. I also feel that the US Military should have what ever they need to prepare for our national defense. The legislatures of our country need to realize the value of this family sport and provide opportunities equal to any lost in Johnson Valley even if it means opening current wilderness areas. I am environmentally conscious as well. In the Morongo Basin where I live there is little enough opportunities for our youth to grow and develop, I hate to think that this natural past time for them will be lost.
Ray Pessa – Yucca Valley, Ca
Member: Friends of Giant Rock, CORVA, ASA
 

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I hope to make it down that some day in the future, and I would very much enjoy being able to go for ride on this trail I have read about so many times and seen pictures of.

Please keep it open for the wheelers.
the hammers should be left open to the 4x4 comunity
 

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Reading this thread brings back SO MANY MEMORIES!!!!

Below is a shot of Becca (my wife) followed by Chaplain Steve Hanson driving my crawler, who is being followed by Becca's father Ed, in his crawler, up Chocolate Thunder Canyon at Johnson Valley. These are only three of our SEVEN recreation rockcrawlers/Jeeps!
 

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