The Imperial Sand Dune Recreations Area (ISDRA) is a victim of abuse of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) where 49,300 acres were temporarily closed as part of a March 2000 lawsuit settlement pending a Recreation Area Management Plan (RAMP). The plan and its components were challenged several times by the anti-access groups and it took approximately 14 years for the new plan to be implemented.
In 2014 the new plan re-opened the 49,300 acres. However, the Bureau of Land Management(BLM) wanted a plan that would withstand further legal challenges and so closed approximately 9,000 acres of land deemed critical habitat (CH) that were open before the initial lawsuit. This closure included the Patton Valley Travel Corridor (PVTC): a section of dunes that heretofore had never been closed.
In addition to the ongoing lawsuit seeking to end open riding at Ocotillo Wells State Vehicular Recreation Area (OWSVRA), the Center for Biological Diversity filed a petition on June 9th seeking the Flat Tailed Horned Lizard be listed as an endangered species. They claim that habitat loss, off-road vehicles and global warming are pushing the species towards extinction.
The petition specifically lists areas such as OWSVRA, Superstition Mountain Open Area, Plaster City Open Area and the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (ISDRA) as habitat areas that have had cumulative impacts due to off-road vehicle use. Furthermore, illegal ORV (Off Road Vehicle) use has been closely monitored. The petition contains several pictures of illegal route proliferation and requests ORV use be prohibited within some or all of the Management Areas. Some of the pictures that were included in the petition have been included below.
The aSa is pleased to announce the winner of the RideNow Special Edition Polaris RZR - Ticket #12033 belonging to James Arviso from Romoland, CA and winner of the 2nd prize Polaris RZR is Ticket #11149 belonging to Dustin O'Con from Veneta, OR.
Here's what's been happening:
Effective January 1, 2013
- CVC 38600: Less than 16 years of age must be SUPERVISED.
- CVC 38601: HELMETS required for all operators and passengers.
- CVC 38601: Seat/shoulder belt or SAFETY HARNESS required when in motion.
- CVC 38604: Requires passengers to be able to grasp the HANDHOLD while properly restrained with back against the seat back.
Effective July 1, 2013*
- CVC 38603: Passengers must be seated in location designed and provided by manufacturer.
The BLM is looking for dedicated individuals to be campground hosts in several of the Imperial Sand Dunes' popular areas.