What's New in the ASA
August, 2008

In this Issue:

OCATV Association Donates to the ASA
On June 14th, the Orange County ATV Association presented a check for $1,500.00 to ASA Chairman Bill Jones. The donation came as a result of the OCATVA's Poker Run held at Glamis last November.

The ASA thanks the Orange County ATV Association for their generous donation and continued support over the years. They are a wonderful and concerned group of people that continually step up to make it happen.

Off-road Enthusiasts at Imperial Sand Dunes Disappointed over Federal Decision to Not Delist Peirson's Milk Vetch
CANYON COUNTRY, CA- After nearly three years since the American Sand Association (ASA) first petitioned the Secretary of the Interior that the Peirson's Milk Vetch be removed from the Endangered Species List, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced today that the plant warrants continued protection and will remain on the list of endangered species.

The battle encompassing the 49,300 acres of land temporarily closed to off-highway vehicles (OHVs) at the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (ISDRA), which is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), has inarguably been one of the highest profile cases involving U.S. public lands and the differing interests between off-road enthusiasts and extreme environmental organizations. Environmentalists were able to get the plant listed under the Endangered Species Act without first conducting any scientific studies or providing data that the plant warranted protection in the first place. Off-road enthusiasts contend the plant was simply a tool used by environmental extremists to have the dunes temporarily closed, and off-roaders have spent
millions of dollars and countless volunteer hours trying to prove the plant is flourishing in the dunes and does not qualify as a species that deserves federal protection.

Off-road recreationists who have been battling the environmental consortium in federal courts for several years believe the scientific data the FWS and BLM have collected over the last few years should have verified the PMV was doing well and did not require continued federal protection. The anti-access advocates and environmental extremists continue to use every avenue available to them to further their agenda to close public lands. "Their weapon of choice during the past several years at the Imperial Sand Dunes has been the Endangered Species Act"; said Jim Bramham, a member of the ASA Board of Directors. Bramham and the other Board of Directors with the ASA have chosen to work closely with the land management agencies, and support the method of gathering scientific data to make logical decisions whether public lands are closed for environmental protection or remain open for recreational access.

Many off-road enthusiasts are understandably outraged over the decision by the USFWS to keep the PMV on the Endangered Species List. They believe this is a politically-charged ruling, rather than a decision based on what is best for both the environment and the economic impact to both the private and public sectors. Off-road recreation is a hobby that has become a way of life for many generations of people living in the western United States, and losing valuable riding areas because of a blatant misuse of the Endangered Species Act is a sad situation that impacts many Americans, not just those who ride off-road vehicles.

The members of the American Sand Association urge fellow Americans, whether they're enthusiasts of off-road vehicles or other types of outdoor recreational activities, to take a hard look at the science behind this 8-year battle. The fact remains that the Peirson's Milk Vetch plant ranks as the most studied plant in the entire California desert. The studies conducted by Dr. Art Phillips, as well as the Bureau of Land Management, clearly conclude this plant is not deserving of a "Threatened" status by the USFWS.

In 2006 ( a wet season), a count of 1,800,000 (1.8 million) PMV plants were found at the ISDRA - by the BLM. In addition, notable data indicates that less than 0.5% (less than half of 1 percent - or less than 5 out of a thousand) of the plants are affected by offroad vehicles.

What many people do not realize is that 26,202 acres of land situated within the ISDRA, north of Highway 78, have already been designated as Wilderness area: closed to OHV use. As a reference, San Francisco is 31,360 acres. Manhattan Island is 14,528 acres. These facts are never publicized.

This area, and 8 year's worth of independent and government studies, demonstrate that it is virtually impossible for OHV activity to damage or threaten the PMV plant's survivability, much less to bring it the the "brink of extinction" as claimed by anti access groups. The science shows the plant is thriving in the barren desert environment.

There is no conclusive evidence that OHV use negatively affects the continued viability of the PMV. The plant has been the subject of many extensive and costly studies, and all the reports draw the same conclusion: the plant is very hardy and its numbers fluctuate according to rainfall.

The American Sand Association stands fast to its resolution that the PMV does not deserve a Federally protected status.

However, the ASA urges its members and other OHV enthusiasts to continue to honor the temporary closures that are in place.

Back to Top

NEW LOCATION! Help us get the word out. This is an opportunity for you and your duning friends to learn what's legal and what's not directly from the officers involved.
Dune Info Meeting
"Dune Talk, Everything You Need to Know"
August 9th 2008
10:00 am 'til 3:00 PM
Extreme Performance
5486 Industrial Pkwy San Bernardino, Ca, 92407
909 887-8000
Click Here for Directions
Speakers on hand from BLM, U.S. Border Patrol, Imperial County Sheriff, CA State Parks Dept. and Dune Safe
Q & A session: "What's Legal --What's Not"
This event brought to you by the ASA and Extreme Performance
Supported by GlamisDunes.com and DuneSafe.com

Back to Top

Worked Like A Grant MULE!!
By Bill Alexander, BLM Park Ranger, Yuma Field Office
      The summer of 2008 has started out as a hot and busy one for staff and volunteers utilizing the Kawasaki MULE made available by the partnership between the United Desert Gateway and the Bureau of Land Management, Yuma Field Office. The Kawasaki MULE is provided through a grant facilitated by the American Sand Association and sponsored by our good friends at Kawasaki and Weekend Warrior.

To date, the MULE has been involved in several different aspects of recreation management and providing service to the recreating public. The MULE is an invaluable tool for contacting folks who are enjoying some of the various routes and trails leading to and from the Colorado River. For other public contact, the MULE has been a great tool for spreading the word about seasonal fire restrictions, providing environmental education, dealing with site management issues, and in just having a BLM Staff presence for the public to contact with their needs, thoughts, or concerns.

Project work times have also been shortened by allowing staff members to work longer while getting into and out of rough areas carrying tools and equipment.  Together with the tools and equipment, the MULE can also bring a helper to get the work done quicker and safer.  Without the MULE during the summer months, some project work would be limited to a few hours at the beginning of the workday when temperatures are cooler.

The MULE has been a true asset for accomplishing the BLM's goals and duties this summer, with the biggest benefits going to the recreating public.  A great thanks goes out to our partners and volunteers!

Back to Top

 Homeland Security is a Shared Responsibility - Message From the USBP
The Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (ISDRA) is without a doubt a terrific venue for wholesome family fun and exciting off-roading recreation adventure. Unfortunately, due to this recreation site's close proximity to the United States / Mexico International Border, it is also very appealing to violent and dangerous criminal organizations that engage in cross-border illegal activities. Make no mistake about it, human smuggling and narcotic trafficking is a big money business and the unscrupulous individuals involved will stop at nothing to satisfy their greed.

The priority mission objective of the United States Border Patrol is to prevent those who would do harm to America and its' citizens from effecting an illegal entry into the United States. Along with sharing in the responsibility of ensuring the safety and well-being of the off-roading community who frequent the ISDRA, we also have operational oversight for securing this vulnerable portion of the Southwest Border.

With the erratic variations in terrain features inherent to the landscape of the ISDRA and the seasonal increase in the number of off-roading recreational enthusiasts, our ability to secure this problematic portion of the border has represented a significant challenge. In response, we are in the process of erecting vehicle and pedestrian barriers directly adjacent to the International Border. These barriers, which are oftentimes referred to as tactical infrastructure, serve as persistent impediments to the criminal cartels who will exploit any perceived vulnerability along our 1,993 mile long southern border.

It is anticipated that this particular tactical infrastructure project will be completed by the end of the calendar year. In the interim, we are asking that the off-roading community observe a 100 foot easement along the entire length of the construction zone. In doing so, you are ensuring your safety and also enabling us to better detect and prevent cross-border criminal activity.

Recognizing that the actual border is oftentimes barely discernible and to avoid inadvertently violating federal law, we ask that you request guidance from a Border Patrol Agent before venturing too far south or into unknown territory. Should you observe or suspect cross-border criminal activity, notify a Border Patrol Agent. For clarification, we are asking that you only be a good witness and at no time should any attempt be made to stop or engage one of these dangerous criminals.

ASA Giveaway Raffle Car
This year, the ASA Giveaway buggy is a custom built Extreme Performance Eco II. This is the second car that Extreme Performance has built for the ASA Giveaway Raffle. Tickets are $20 each and the winner will be drawn at the 2008 Sand Sports Super Show, September 21, 2008. You do NOT have to be present to win.

Click here to purchase tickets

If you would like to help sell tickets for our annual fundraiser please send an email to:volunteers@americansandassociation.org

Back to Top

Effective October 2008, permits purchased at the dunes will cost $120.00 for a season and $40.00 for a week. Save yourself time and money by purchasing your permit before arriving. Pre-purchased permit fees remain unchanged, $90.00 for a season and $25.00 for a week. Permits can be purchased online, by phone, from a vendor on the way to the dunes or best of all, through the ASA! 

Back to Top

Mark Your Calendars! Volunteer for the Sand Sports Super Show in September
Start making your plans now to volunteer for the Sand Sports Super Show at the Orange County fairgrounds. This is the show where the ASA gives away our raffle car and it is one of the main sources of support for the ASA both financially and in signing up new members. It is a good place to get aquatinted with other ASA members and is a fun experience.

This year show will be September 19-21 and volunteers are needed for those days.

We will be sending out a request for volunteers as the time draws closer so just mark your calendars to help the ASA at this event.

Back to Top

EcoLogic Partners, Inc Raffle
EcoLogic Partners fund legal counsel to protect the rights of OHV recreationists.
They are raffling off a 2008 KTM 50 SX Mini. Tickets are $5 each.
If you would like to buy tickets please call or e-mail Meg Grossglass  951-415-1869 / meg@orba.biz or Jerry Grabow 714-747-1211 / plumrdy@aol.com  

The motorcycle will be given away at the Sand Sports Super Show on Sunday September 21, 2008 at the Orange County Fairgrounds in Costa Mesa, CA. Winner need not be present to win. Winner pays all taxes and registration fees. 

The bike was donated in part by Z Racing of Orange. Z Racing has been a KTM Dealer in Orange County for over 25 years. They are a full service, parts and accessory dealer. They are located at 608 W. Katella Ave. Orange, CA 92867, phone 714-633-3115.

EcoLogic Partners was formed to advance land use policies that conserve natural resources while providing responsible outdoor recreation for American families. Currently ASA, AMA D37, SDORC and ORBA are the organizations supporting EcoLogic Partners, Inc.  
We are currently involved in the following issues:

  • Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Management Plan
  • Delisting of the Peirson's Milk Vetch
  • Critical Habitat Designation for the Peirson's Milk Vetch
  • Western Mojave Management Plan Litigation
  • Renewable Energy Projects proposed on BLM lands in the California Desert District

Back to Top

New ASA Address
The ASA has relocated its main mailing address due to the closure of the original mailbox location.
The new mailing address for the ASA is:
American Sand Association
P.O. Box 1872
Canyon Country, CA 91386-1872

If you need to talk to someone about an ASA issue you can call our toll free telephone number at 888-540- SAND or 888-540-7263. If no one is available please leave a message and someone will get back to you.

Back to Top

United States Border Fence Construction
Approximately 6.3 miles of fence will be constructed on the US and Mexico International border south of Interstate 8 within the US Border Patrol Yuma Sector Area of Operations. This 6.3 miles is in the dunes: another 4 miles lies outside the dune field for a total of 10.3 miles of fence.

The Yuma Sector anticipates fence construction to commence in June of 2008 and be completed by December 31, 2008. An additional 4 miles of Pedestrian Fence will be built from the Andrade Port of Entry west to the Imperial Sand Dunes. The USBP has requested the "Duning Community" observe a voluntary enforcement zone 100 feet north of the new fence. The fence poses no negative impact to the recreational community since there is more than 11 square miles of off-road recreation area south of Interstate 8. This will enable the USBP to provide better border security and a safer Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area.

Back to Top

ADSB - Andrews Dune Scarab Beetle
AMA - Adaptive Management Area
ARA = Arizona Public Records Act
ASMAP - Peirson's Milk Vetch (technical)
BLM - Bureau of Land Management
BLM ECFO - BLM El Centro Field Office
BO - Biological Opinion
BOD - Board of Directors
CA PRA = California Public Records Act
CBD - Center for Biological Diversity
CCC - California Coastal Commission
CDCA - California Desert Conservation Area
CDPA - California Desert Protection Act
CEQA = California Environmental Quality Act
CNPS - California Native Plant Society
CORVA - California Off Road Vehicle Association
CVC - California Vehicle Code
DOJ - Department of Justice
DOI - Department of the Interior
EIR - Environmental Impact Report
EIS - Environmental Impact Study
ECFO - BLM El Centro Field Office
ESA - Endangered Species Act
FLPMA - Federal Land Policy & Management Act
FOIA - Freedom of Information Act
FoOD - Friends of Oceano Dunes (Pismo)
FoDD - Friends of Dumont Dunes
ICBoS - Imperial County Board of Supervisors
SDCSO - San Diego County Sheriff's Office
FTHL - Flat Tail Horned Lizard
GOL - GlamisOnLine.org
IC - Incident Command
ICSO - Imperial County Sheriff Office
ISDRA - Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area
LEO - Law Enforcement Officer
MA - Management Area
NECO - North Eastern Colorado Desert Plan
NEPA - National Environmental Policy Act
NEQA = National Environmental Quality Act
ODSVRA - Oceano Dunes State Vehicle Recreation Area
OHMVR - Off Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation
OHV - Off Highway Vehicle
OHVEST - Off Highway Vehicle Enforcement Safety Team
ORBA - Off Road Business Association
ORV = Off Road Vehicle
PA - Planning Area
PH SO - Sand food
PMV - Peirson's Milk Vetch
RAMP - Recreation Area Management Plan
ROD - Record of Decision
SDORC - San Diego Off-Road Coalition
SSSS - Sand Sports Super Show
SVRA - State Vehicle Recreation Area
TRT - Technical Review Team
UA - Unlawful Assembly
UDG - United Desert Gateway Communities (local to ISDRA)
USFWS - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
WECO - Western Colorado Desert Plan
WSA - Wilderness Study Area

Back to Top

Please direct questions or comments to: asaboard@americansandassociation.org

Thank you,

The American Sand Association
Unite, Inform, and Mobilize


To change your preferences, go to