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To whom it may concern,

I can understand that the Armed Services need area to practice there skills to keep our freedom and keep us safe, But I would ask that you re-consider the area that you choose.

Being that I live in Australia it will take some before I can organise a trip to see this place that is like no where else in the world, and I do not want to lose the chance to do this.

Ever since I saw the first photo of JV in 2001 I have said I will go there one day, and I will as long as it isn't closed.

Please reconsider the land you wish to use for the sake of the people who use the land, The people who dream about going there and most importantly the younger generation and generations to come who will be keep out of trouble because of OHV's and places like JV.

I thank you for your time.

Nick Wright

Coldys 4X4

McGraths Hill, New South Wales
Australia.
 

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I have yet to visit the hammers, mostly because it is 3,000 miles away from me. The hammers is on my list of places to go wheel. Please keep it open.
 

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I have so many wonderful memories and great friends from my time in Johnson Valley over the last 5 years. Some of the best times are when I am on a trail with my friends, and people I just met. We stop to watch everyone try a difficult obstacle, and when everyone is up, we swap stories for a while. Sometimes 5 minutes, sometimes 2 hours. Either way, I always make new friends and have new stories to tell.

The last time I was out there, I met a group of friends that traveled all the way from Maryland just to go to the Hammers. I have also met several people that drive down from Canada EVERY YEAR just to wheel at the Hammers. Last year, I was honored to sit down and have dinner with a large group of 4 wheelers from Australia that I had just met in Johnson Valley.

If the Hammers are lost, it would not only be a HUGE impact (loss) on the rocksports community, but the offroad community as a whole, AND the surrounding towns and businesses that thrive from visiting offroaders. Besides the wordclass rockcrawling terrain, there are some great sand dunes, plenty of great dirt bike and ATV terrain, and of course many miles of great offroad racing courses.

Just a couple recent pics of good times on some Hammer trails that would be lost...
 

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I must say that I support the USMC 100% and the entire US military. I understand their needs and respect that. But please, please look North and or East for expansion opportunities. The Hammers and Johnson Valley are the Mecca of hardcore rock crawling. The loss of this OHV area would be a devastating blow to the Off-road community. There would be hundreds of thousands of dollars missing from the surrounding communities from this loss. There would also be many business that would suffer greatly around the nation from this loss. Thank you for hearing our voice, it means the world to us!
 

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I Think The Government Should Stop Wasting Time On Trying To Close Off Land The Public Can Use And Start Opening More Land Useage All Over So We Have More Places To Go And Keep Busy Especially If You Have Kids And I Know Most Of You Guys And Gals Have Kids...we Want To Keep Them Out Of Trouble,get Them Involved With 4xin And Give Them An Ave. To Take And I Think This Is The Best Way To Do It...the Stupid Gov Keeps Wanting To Take Everything Away From There Own People And Give Everything We Dont Have To Other Countries!...retarded!!!!!
Sorry Gov. P Ss Me Off!

So Keep The Trails Open As They Are Good For Families Having Fun!
 

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i have never been to johnson valley but have wanted to for the last couple years. i would love to see it kept open as it may not be my backyard recreation area but it is somebodys and that shouldnt be taken from them. i plan on wheeling johnson valley in the near future.
chris kredit
 

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Hi my name is Tony Robinson. I live in Brisbane Australia.

In November 2006 i had the pleasure of visiting the Johnson Valley with 10 other Australians that were in the US representing Australia in the W.E.Rock World Rock Crawling Championships in Las Vegas. We were shown around the trails by a group of Americans that new the area well. We spent a total of 4 days out on Means Lake camping in a few RVs.

What you guys have over there is amazing. We have nothing like this in Australia. We all had the times of our lives out there and i dont think there was one of us that came away without knowing that one day we will return to again have fun enjoying the Hammers.

It really would be a great loss if this area were closed to the general public. And even more of a loss if it were destroyed by the military so that there is no chance of future generations ever enjoying this area.
 

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For the past 8 years my family has enjoyed many frequent visits to Johnson Valley, to enjoy the many trails the Hammers have to offer. Our children have so much fun and so many memories, of us packing up the truck and going to what they have grown to call "Bounce Bounce"!My husband and I have enjoyed so many weekends going on trail rides, and have met some of our closest friends out there. My brother is in the Military, when he visits the one place he also looks forward to, spending the day out in Johnson Valley. There is not a place in the world that can compare to the trails out there, nor is there a place in the world that I would trade for the times we have spent out in Johnson Valley. Last year my husband was involved in the first King of the Hammers, in which he had the time of his life running several trails he had never experienced prior to, and since then has taken me on many more. I can recall the many times returning back to camp and hearing our son say, "Can we go out on a night run?" or me asking my Husband "when can I drive?" only to enjoy watching him light up with a sense of happy accomplishment after completing a tuff line. There have been many opportunities in the past years for our family to vacation else where, however, where else can you take out the bikes for the kids, the truck for us bigger kids at heart, have awesome weather, and still be so close to home? The answer is simply no where, these are just a few reasons as to why my family enjoys the times we travel out there, I couldn't ask for more memorable times with my children and my husband.
 

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To whom ever is listening:

First let me say that I support and appreciate the military in it's efforts to protect our freedom. This is one of the aspects that makes America great. However, another aspect that makes American great is our access to public land for family recreation, specifically OHV recreation. When the value for these 2 things collide we are faced with a situation of conflicting values.

I've made my decision and I would like to urge the military to look beyond Johnson Valley for expansion of training areas. Thousands of people enjoy the opportunity to recreate in the JV area each year, which brings a healthy economic stimulus to the region as well as, providing recreation and lasting memories.

Personally, I haven't made it to Johnson Valley...yet. It is something I plan to do as my budget allows. I have made it to the following Federally Managed locations on several occasions:
  • Moab, UT
  • Florence Junction, AZ
  • Table Mesa, AZ
  • Farmington, NM
  • Rio Puerco, NM
  • Cedro Peak, NM
  • Santa Fe, NM
  • Buena Vista, CO
  • Socorro, NM
Let me close by saying, I realize that the OHV community hasn't always acted responsibly while we recreate. To our defense, just as in other recreations we are learning about the impact we have on the land and we are evolving into a community that cares for and cherishes our public lands. We want to see them available for generations to come. Please support us.

Thank You for your time :D.
 

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To those in a position to make a difference:

I'm from the East Coast and have never visited the Johnson Valley OHV area. Where I'm from there is nothing that compares. Here we pay to recreate on private land and small commercial off road parks.

I've only experienced the barren, rocky splendor of Johnson Valley through pictures, stories, and Pirate4x4 coverage of events such as the very recent King of the Hammers competition. Someday I hope and pray for the opportunity to visit in person.

It's not apparent to those on the outside, but 4-wheeling is more than just a sport, hobby, or fantastic way to funnel disposable income. For many it's a way of life. The Johnson Valley OHV area is one of the few places that can be considered home to the the heart and soul of this sport and the community that is defined by it.

I fully support the military and it's needs, but hope you'll consider that Johnson Valley is more than meets the eye. Please find an alternative and leave the Johnson Valley OHV area intact.

Regards,

Tom Mahoney
 

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Keep places like Johnson Valley open to the public! Because of places like Johnson Valley it gives lots of people somthing to look forward to. It's a way to relax, have fun, meet people, to some its recreation but to some its a lifestyle.

There are thousands of us who enjoy trail riding, rock crawlin and just plain old "off roading" Taking land away may lead to lots of trespassing violations in other areas or JV it self. and i know many will not be very happy.
 

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I am building my jeep and was hoping to go to the hammer trails this summer with my family.It is a shame that they can not find land some place else to do there training.We are losing our trails one by one.My family goes wheeling every weekend.We are trying to go out west this summer.This is just one of the trails we are hoping to hit.Please don't close it.thank you
 

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To whom it may concern:

First off, I have the utmost respect for our military and the needs of our military. My grandfather served,and became a local police officer. I understand the need for training grounds and as such am asking you to please consider another area. Surely in this vast country of ours, there are plenty of unused areas to consider.

As an avid automobile enthusiast, race driver,and car builder, land issues are a concern of mine. I am in the middle of building my 2nd rig, as are THOUSANDS of other enthusiasts. We need places to off road,to camp, and to enjoy nature with family and friends.

Did you know there are no longer ANY PUBLIC LAND AVAILABLE for Fullsize offroad vehicles(ie: anything other than an atv/snowmobile) in the state of IOWA? This has affected thousands of vehicle owners, enthusiasts,and business owners. This means we have to travel to neighboring states, costing our local economy money,as well as more out of our pocket to travel.

Public land closures have the same affect nationwide. It is also negative for all of the companies invloved in the hobby/sport. These companies have employees,needs. I myself almost thought of not building another rig simply because there is no place to go locally. But my love for ofroading,camping,and being in nature are to strong,and thus am continuing my build. My build gives money to offroad manufactures nationwide and local shops. Just multiply that by hundreds of thousand of other enthusiasts and the economic impact is quite clear.

I honestly feel that more land closure will lead to a decreased interest in the sport. Not everyone can afford to drive thousands of miles,or build a rig only to use it a couple times a year. I myself love being in the great outdoors. Not everyone likes to be in the city all the time. As citiizens of this great country are we not entitled to use and share the PUBLIC LAND? The proposed closing of the Johnson area is a prime example. I had hoped to travel there,as do many others. It is one of the most popular destinations of outdoor enthusiasts. And as outdoor entusiasts, we also are responsible. We keep areas clean of trash and debris.

Please reconsider,and keep the Hammers/Johnson area open for future generations to enjoy. Thank you , Nathan Smart
 

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I, Josh Witherspoon, am in total opposition to the closing of any land granted to me and my future family and there off spring. We as a nation were guaranteed the use of the natural forests of the lands of the United States by not only presidential decree but by our God given right as citizens. I understand that with this responsibility comes all that will come from it and I do take on the challenge of its ecological survival. Myself, I practice what is called “tread lightly” which is a program I highly support and feel is needed with the growing hobby of off road driving. I personally travel on marked trails, clean said trails and repair at my own cost said trails. I think of the future of off roading and I am very concerned about the closures, not being selfish, but for the next generation, the look in a child’s eyes as they bond with the family is priceless, and the rewards are countless as they grow into responsible adults. It would seriously be to the detriment of the country to close down lands to off road use in ways we cannot imagine at this point, for the outlet for the youth is huge, and this is a true American outlet for them. Keep the lands open for the future generations, so they have a place to go, to have clean fun and for them to pass on what Dad and Grandpa passed on to them, to enjoy but respect the land that their forefathers, like us now, have passed onto them.

Sincerely, Josh Witherspoon, an off-road enthusiast from Washington State.

I hope to visit California and spend my many thousands of recreation dollars on parts, food, and other services from the surrounding area. Please don't take my opportunity to do this away. Thank You.
 

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To whom it may concern:

Let me start by saying that I am in total support of our military and the Marine Corps.

Still, I am very worried about the Johnson Valley expansion by the Marine Corps, especially the “additional area of interest”. If the Marine Corps expand into this area, it will take away a very important area from the OHV (Off Highway Vehicle) community.

The Hammer Trails, which are located in this area, are a main destination for OHV enthusiasts to bring their families to recreate in California. Competitions such as the recent, highly publicized “King of the Hammers” have also been held in this area.

I have two young sons, aged 4 and 5, who love to camp and four-wheel with me and my wife. My family normally attends 10-12 OHV functions and camping trips each year. As Johnson Valley is seen as a “Mecca” by many OHV enthusiasts in the west, it has always been a dream of mine to take my family down there to recreate responsibly. Many OHV enthusiasts that live miles away visit the Hammers on a regular basis.

While I understand that the Marines need space to train, you need to understand that our motor-sport is constantly under attack. Because of many different factors, the areas in which we can four-wheel in have been shrinking at an alarming rate. In Eldorado National Forest alone, for example, we stand to lose 1,800 MILES of trails. For us to lose such an important area as the Hammers to our sport would be like Baseball losing Wrigley field or Golf losing Augusta.

We also have an undeserved reputation for “ruining” the environment. The OHV community is growing by leaps and bounds, while our trails are closing left and right. This results in more users in a smaller area, which results in damage to the trail from condensed use by a greater number of OHV’s. Closing this area to OHV use will create damage to other trails that are already overcrowded, which in turn will give the “other” side more ammunition to lock us out of our public lands.

Whatever you do, please understand that you are not just taking an area of desert; you are effecting the lives of thousands of people who recreate in the Johnson Valley area.

I would like to end this letter by pledging $50.00 to the Blue Ribbon Coalition and $50.00 to Cal4Wheel for their continued efforts in saving our trails on public lands. I challenge others to out-do me!

Kurt Schneider

Proud Member of:

The Friends of Eldorado National Forest
Blue Ribbon Coalition
Cal4Wheel
California Off Road Vehicle Association
Kyburz Krawlerz
The Friends of the Rubicon
The Friends of Greenhorn
Friends of Fordyce
Friends of Tahoe Access
Friends of High Lakes
Friends of Coy Hill
Stewards of the Sequoia
Pirate4x4.com
E Clampus Vitus: Chapter 13[/B]
I couldn't have said it better Kurt. I too have yet to make it down there but would love to make it someday. As soon as I'm done putting braces on my kids teeth maybe I can afford the axles to handle it.:D

I have already donated to BRC legal fund this year and donated my entry fee from the cancelled Sierra Trek to CA4WDC but I will see what I can do to meet your challenge.
 

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While I live in Oklahoma City, I have trips planned over the next few years to several locations on the west coast. Johnson Valley and the Hammers trails are first on my list for 2009. I will be driving long distances across the state of California. I will be purchasing lodging, food, fuel, souvenirs, and gifts while I am there. I fully expect to spend over $1000 while visiting the area.

I would have to cancel my trip if the main area of interest were closed to civilian access. It is obvious, reading the other replies in this thread, that the Hammers area is a popular destination for people from across the country.

Please keep public access to the Hammers trails open to the public!

Thank you,

Aaron Peters
 

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I support the US Military completely and more than appreciate the sacrifices our soldiers have made for the freedom of this country.
However, the closure of the Johnson Valley OHV area (Hammer Trails) is a sacrifice the citizens of this great country shouldn't have to endure. There has got to be a better area for our military to be looking at for training purposes. A place where thousands of people a year don't enjoy taking time off from everyday life like they do at the Hammer's.
I emplore you to keep this area open to the public!

thank you!
Jeff Wilson
[email protected]
 
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