Recreation area sees increase in misuse


         The BLM is encouraging recreationists to be mindful of rules and regulations and to act responsibly when using the Glendive Short Pine Off-Highway Vehicle Area located six miles south of Glendive.

The OHV area, situated just off Dawson County Road 335, consists of 3.5 sections or 2,240 acres of federal lands and is seeing an increase in use from both U.S. and international off-road enthusiasts.  
“We would like to keep this area open to OHV use and riders who respect adjacent private property, clean up after themselves and operate safely will allow us to do that,” said Elaine Raper, field manager for the Miles City Field Office.
According to Raper, the BLM has had several requests to close the area due to off-road vehicles trespassing onto adjacent private property. Lately, the area has seen an uptick in littering, dumping and sign vandalism; things BLM staff have limited time to address. 
“The BLM would rather send staff out to improve access and recreation opportunities,” said Raper. “Having to clean up trash and replace destroyed signs takes away personnel, time and resources that could be better used elsewhere.”
Short Pine is classified by the BLM as an "open" area; which means it is open for off-road and trail use by motorcycles, three wheelers, four wheelers and four-wheel drive trucks and sport-utility vehicles. Safety is of particular concern; both for the vehicle operator and for others in the area. According to BLM Law Enforcement Ranger Lori Harbaugh, the tendency by some riders to ride up and down the county road is an issue.
“Vehicles need to be plated and street legal when operating on the county road,” said Harbaugh. “Both motorists and recreational vehicle operators need to use caution when driving the county road where it bisects the OHV area.”
When using the Glendive Short Pine Recreation Area, recreationists are reminded that the following rules apply:
All vehicles must be legally registered, either with a license plate or off-road sticker and properly equipped, including an unmodified spark arrester
OHVs that are not street legal (license plated) are not allowed to travel on County Road #335 - also  known as the Marsh Road
All motorists and passengers 18 years-old or under must wear a helmet 
This is a “Pack in, Pack out” area; dumping is prohibited. Take your garbage with you 
Shooting is allowed in the designated shooting area only 
Operate within OHV area boundary markers; do not trespass on private property
Use or possession of fireworks is prohibited
For more information or to report violations call the BLM Miles City Field Office at (406)233-2800. Violations may also be reported by calling 1-800-826-3023 or 1-800-TIP-MONT.
Additional information regarding OHV use on Montana public lands can be found on the web at: http://www.blm.gov/mt/st/en/prog/recreation/ohv.html.  

Published June 24, 2009

Article Type: 
News

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