You are here:  Home  >  29 Palms  >  Current Article

A call to all OHV riders, put on your thinking caps

By   /   April 15, 2014  /   4 Comments

    Print       Email

Forget the cow for the moment. I respectfully request input on two issues.  Just these two issue mind you. I don’t want to make it too difficult for the thinking man like Ken.

Many times I’ve attempted in good faith to get a responses on two trail and staging issues. Namely, how are all those hundreds of motorcycles, OHV, ORV, dune  buggies and the likes — Ken tells us will come –  going to cross Lear Avenue? Maybe the City can lease a couple of those big transportation helicopters from the Base to hoover them across.

The next thing no one has addressed is the Indian Cove homes. My milage today indicates they are 1 1/2 from the Hilly Dunes (due North of 62 from the Indian Cove homes) riders want open. That’s pretty close proximity. At that distance, there will be noise.  This doesn’t take into account the Sugar Bowl. That’ll be a double-barrel shotgun.

My recommendation is to have a staging area in Harmony Hills, and make all the illegal trails in and around there, legal. Outgoing Mayor Klink lives up there but surely he wouldn’t mind. There’s an  expectation that’s a very good place up there because it has a view.  And there is plenty of room for staging, camping,  Mustard’s Last Stand, other vendors and partying down.  It’s also close to a paved road for beer runs and ice when necessary.

Postscript: I want to sincerely thank desertrider for offering his wisdom and serious input on this issue. He took the time.  He should tutor Ken. Nonetheless, thank you Mark for your time and important views.  All of are respected.

    Print       Email

About the author

Branson Hunter

(This story was posted by Cactus Thorn contributor Branson Hunter)

"The ends do not justify the means." If you use illegal mean to accomplish a legal and even desirable result, the good result does not make the bad means you used justifiable.


  1. Gee Branson the members of friends of 29 Palms trails http://www.friendsof29trails.com have been worried about that as well. It looks to be almost impassable. No matter how its done an OHV operator is going to accept all legal responsibility for injury or damage of any kind to the extent that the injury or damage results from risks inherent in crossing Lear. OHV operators are going to regulate their personal conduct at all times so that injury to self or other persons or property is avoided.

    The OHV operator crossing Lear will be responsible for:

    Judging his or her ability to navigate a particular route;
    Maintaining control of speed and course at all times while operating the vehicle;
    Heeding all posted warnings;
    Refraining from acting in a manner that may cause or contribute to the injury of anyone.

    Before we discuss how and where we cross Lear lets cover this first.

    The crossing must be made at an angle of approximately 90 degrees to the direction of traffic (in other words, in as straight a line as possible across the roadway). The crossing must be made at a place where no obstruction prevents a quick and safe crossing. The OHV must make a complete stop before entering upon any part of the roadway, and the operator shall yield the right-of-way to all oncoming traffic. Friends of 29 Trails will suggest to the city of 29 Palms that children ages 12 – 16 must possess a Safety Certificate issued by the City and be accompanied by a licensed operator.

    When crossing Lear:

    Bring your vehicle to a complete stop on the shoulder of the road;
    Look both ways, and yield to oncoming traffic;
    Drive forward slowly because your OHV may be difficult to maneuver on pavement;
    Drive straight across the road;
    When crossing in a group, have one rider dismount and act as a crossing guard until everyone else has passed safely;
    Stand up to give yourself maximum visibility;
    Remember that approaching automobile drivers are not expecting, or looking for, OHV riders/drivers.

    So how will we cross Lear? By remembering OHV are designed for off-road use. Cars are designed to be driven primarily on paved surfaces. Riding an OHV on pavement is legal only when the road is posted officially as an ATV route.

    The local authority may, by resolution or ordinance, designate the highway or portion of the highway for combined use and prescribe rules and regulations that shall have the force of law. Appropriate signs giving notice of the crossing are posted along the highway affected. I would like to see the highway painted like they do with those pesky golf cart crossings.

    What did you think they were going to do Branson?…. have Criss Angel the Mindfreak levitate them? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwB27PsCluY

    • You jumped right in and dealt with my concerns in a responsible manner. Thank you. I shall never again be able to allege no one has ever responded to the question I presented. You now have. Btw, is that picture of you? Just curious?

      You wrote: “No matter how its done an OHV operator is going to accept all legal responsibility for injury or damage of any kind to the extent that the injury or damage results from risks inherent in crossing Lear.”

      In law, that’s not the way it works.

      You wrote:“OHV operators are going to regulate their personal conduct at all times so that injury to self or other persons or property is avoided.”

      That’s a responsibility for the County, the Military, CHP and sheriffs and the City to deal with. It all sounds nice, KEN, but nice isn’t a plan.

      You write: “The OHV must make a complete stop before entering upon any part of the roadway.”

      This doesn’t seem to be working very well in California with all the tickets and accidents.”
      There only one safe way to cross Lear (many maverick riders will cross where they damn well please) is with a stop light. Good luck with that: I’m sure the Military, commerce traffic, the CHP, sheriffs and county officials aren’t much in favor of a stop light.

      You wrote: “Look both ways.”

      What planet are you from, Ken. Trafamador?

      Your comments are proffered in earnest. Thank you for that.

      Now… What about Indian Cove residents, homeowners and property values? The Hilly Dunes (directly West of the Sugar Bowl across Lear) most certainly are going to be dusty and noisy, as well as the Sugar Bowl. Bad idea all the way around. No one has ever dealt with my many questions on this important issue. No one. Desertrider touched on it when he wrote something about the Nat. Park being too far away to be impacted. Although I take issue with that belief since I am and avid user of Indian Cove Nat. Park.

      Take the Group Camp Sites to the West (and many others too), for example, they always have a clear panoramic view of the Sugar Bowl and Hilly Dunes to the North. Not anything very pleasant for users of the World Heritage at Joshua Tree National Park to be stuck with. Good God man. You want two ORV staging area and trails all around there so close to one of America’s nations treasures. Surrendering and sacrificing those two areas over to OHV users just wouldn’t work. If they were to fall, the authority for granting staging areas and trails in and around there would have to be rescinded.


      What about the significant wildlife corridor?

      What about the endangered tortoises? Are you going to dig ‘em out for grandma’s soup?

      Is the City going to spring for Environmental Studies in both areas?

      The benefit of leaving things alone are clearly outweighed by the infinite and intrinsic destruction to wildlife, the peace and enjoyment of residents, the risks and dangers to commercial, Military, residential traffic and motorist — and the World Heritage at Joshua Tree National Park. It’s a bad deal all the way around. It is not good for visitors, residents, the Military, the CHP, the sheriffs, travelers and visitors to the Nat. Park. Fact is, it would be a complete disaster for the entire Morongo Basin and future generations of native plants, wildlife and humans.

      Best plan is to reconnoiter a year-around plan to use the motor-cross area in the city limits East of town, South of 62.

      • Branson you keep bringing up Joshua Tree National Park when we are talking about this world heritage OHV area. Remember the old joke “who is buried in Grants tomb?” The answer is Grant of course. Now lets ask “Where is the entrance to Joshua Tree National Park? Most peoples answer will be in the City of Joshua Tree of course.

        Don’t get me wrong I realize we also have an entrance in 29 Palms but I think most people save the 20 minute drive and hang out in the City of Joshua Tree. We all know the 3rd entrance is off Interstate 10.

        I am from the planet of Suzuki Motorsports. I moved there because in my opinion they sell the best dualsport motorcycle today. The wildlife will cross Lear as they have done for years and the ones that don’t look in both directions before crossing will be considered roadkill.

        Property values will go up in 29 palms because people will want to purchase homes in an OHV tourism area. Heck Branson thats the only reason I purchased property here. Beach front homes sell for Millions of dollars because there is only so much beach front. There is only so much OHV area and that area is shrinking everyday. This is what will drive our home prices skyward.

        Just think of it Branson…29 palms a City of World Heritage Off Highway Vehicle Areas

        • Do you realize that Joshua Tree National Park/World Heritage Site is directly to the North of the Hilly Dunes. The Sugar Bowl is just to the East of there across Lear Avenue. We are not talking about the two main entrances of the Park, but the popular National Park’s Indian Cove area, one of the favorite hiking, camping and rock climbing areas in the entire park. The Group camp sites overlook the two areas you demand for usurpation of staging and trails. As call it — “Competition Hill.” The noise would be heard all-day-long at those Indian Cove camping areas. Not the mention the dust when the prevailing winds are suitable for carrying dust Particulates into the park area. The dust, visual pollution and noise are the main concerns.

          Neither you or anyone else have addressed the close proximity of the Indian Cove Housing development. What is that? Not everyone up there shares your love for noise pollution, a dust bowl so near their lovely homes, interference with their quiet peace and enjoyment and the visual ugliness of scores and scores of trailers, OHV, OHV, dune buggies, motorcycles, trailers, campers, fifth wheels and the likes so near their homes.

          They would be severely impacted in an extreme manner. It’s illogical to argue otherwise. What about them, Ken?

          As far as must of your post is concerned, it’s the best argument for having staging and trails east of downtown 29 at the motor cross area. That is private property, but something worthwhile to look into.

          Your smugness is noted.

          So it seems your answer to the salient wildlife corridor is it makes good road kill. Smart argument.

          So it seems your answer to homeowners and property values is that if they don’t like it they can just kiss your backside. Smart argument

          As to the National Park/World Heritage Site, Indian Cove’s camping, hiking, rock climbing, America’s users can just kiss your backside. Smart argument.

Social Media Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com
UA-9539515-1 e0a5d0bb00574423a5afb96d6b854248