Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Has the story of Zinke lifting the ban on ATVs in Recapture Canyon been debunked?

Yesterday I posted an AP article which began:

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke lifted a ban Monday on motorized vehicles in some parts of a Utah canyon that was the setting of a 2014 ATV protest ride that was a flashpoint in the Western struggle over government land management. The decision opens nearly 7 miles of trails for motorized vehicles at the north end of Recapture Canyon and the canyon’s west rim.

The folks at The PetroGlyph say this is bull hockey. They will walk you through each trail segment and show that those areas where the ban is claimed to be lifted were never closed in the first place.They conclude:

The sad thing is that it appears that some BLM officials or someone else intentionally lied to our newly appointed Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke about this area being closed. Secretary Ryan Zinke wouldn’t know any better because he hasn’t taken the time to come to San Juan County and see firsthand what is going on. Neither he nor his staff have even taken the time to talk to any of the citizens in San Juan County that have been dealing with this for years about the lands issues or Recapture. I’m not even sure they talked with Commissioner Phil Lyman who knows more about Recapture than any other politician in San Juan County or the State of Utah.
No this is just a PR smoke screen.
Having served in those confines, I find an elaborate scheme like this hard to believe. The Petroglyph does mention, "It was only later that a new manager questioned if the proper process had been followed in approving the trails." Perhaps a better explanation is the Secretary was just making sure those segments were open and the correct process was being utilized. If so, then BLM's spin that this "expanded" recreational opportunities is certainly misleading.

Be sure to checkout The PetroGlyph for this and other interesting posts.

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