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Vilas may change forest plan to allow ATV trails in county
By Gary Ridderbusch
News-Review Editor

The Vilas County Board will consider a resolution to amend the 15-year Vilas County Forest Comprehensive Land Use Plan to allow all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) on some public roadways and designated trails on the county forest at its meeting next Tuesday, July 22.

Supporters of the proposal believe developing ATV trails in Vilas County would boost the tourism industry and help local businesses, while opponents say the county is one

Tuesday, July 15, 2014 2:13 PM
Last Updated on Tuesday, July 22, 2014 2:57 PM


0 #13 2014-08-04 15:43
You have the privilege by permission to ATV in surrounding counties while silent sports enthusiasts pretty much have just one. Are you greedy?

Not greedy are you? You can ride your bike in ALL of the surrounding counties including Vilas.. ATV'rs are the ones limited... Quit being greedy...
+5 #12 2014-07-22 14:22
Mark, My licensed enduro motorcycle isn't allowed either but I understand that Vilas is doing better on tourism than the other counties with ATV trails and the people who live here are against them. All snowmobile trails in vilas cross lakes which means atvs would have to also use roads which is dangerous to all.
+5 #11 Jeff Laadt 2014-07-22 14:14
Well said. I agree completely. Yours is a well reasoned opinion on a local issue that does not depend on some greater "ideological drama."

Jeff Laadt
+8 #10 2014-07-22 13:19
5000 opposed ATV/UTV's and 3000 in favor. They just keep coming back to the table year after year. Even though it was a non-binding referendum, it seems to me in a Republic that touts majority rule.....5000 wins. Put any spin you want on it ATV riders and small business owners you incorrectly say Vilas County needs them......the truth is the County just out performed every county in the state for tourism dollars in 2013 without ATV's/UTV's. Go ride in the other 71 counties or buy your own land to ride on. The Spin Stops Here!
-9 #9 2014-07-22 10:54
It is time to wake up and smell the coffee people. I believe that the "correct" math will show that majority of taxpayers WANT Atv trails throughout Vilas County. I can almost guarantee that if they decided to do a trial period allowing Atvs for a given period with a sunset clause.... the Atv'ers will prove themselves to be responsible and the Atv's will be here to stay.
Fact is that allowing licensed snowmobiles on much of the government owned land and not allowing licensed Atv's especially when all of the surrounding counties have these provisions might be opening up Vilas County to serious legal issues. I think the atv opposers in all fairness to this issue, should take the time to get educated about Atv'ers and their impact on an area. Communicate with the surrounding communities that do allow Atv's and get the facts.
+14 #8 Frank Gabl 2014-07-21 21:25

You stated, “It is about a right to recreate on lands we own as taxpayers!”

You are confusing “privileges” with “rights.”

You have the right to walk but not the right to trespass unless you are given permission to do so, in which case, your right to walk on someone’s property becomes a privilege.

You have the right to travel but not a right to operate a motorized vehicle, airplane, etc., unless you meet certain requirements, at which time permission is granted. Therefore, your right to travel, via those means, is a privilege.

You have the “right to recreate," but not by means that requires permission, at which time, hunting, fishing, boating, snowmobiling, ATVing, drinking, smoking, gambling, attending a Packer’s game, etc., becomes a privilege.

You have the privilege by permission to ATV in surrounding counties while silent sports enthusiasts pretty much have just one. Are you greedy?
+11 #7 2014-07-21 17:00
Greg, Just for your info Vilas county is doing very well with tourism! Atv's are not what people want here. They should put it to a binding vote this time. Atv's would have to use roadways ( Crazy) and would be around all year unlike snowmobiles. Nobody said atv riders are uneducated. I think you meant opposed though.
-19 #6 2014-07-21 10:16
I really think most of you that are apposed are blind to what bringing ATV's into the county is all about. It is about a right to recreate on lands we own as taxpayers!
I really am not sure how you all rationalize your bitter disregard for the ATV'er. We are not un-educated, ill mannered hooligans that will run rampart around the county. We are recreationalist s as you are! We can co-exist as has been proven nationwide including ATV / Mountain Bike / Hiking parks!
If all apposed can come up with another plan to help fix the economic downfalls of Vilas County that is based on return of investment I am all ears! However for the last 10 years you have not done so! Your plan is not working and it is time we offer a fair solution to an aging county!
+15 #5 2014-07-21 09:17
Mike Our family camps in vilas 2 weeks every year. And one of the reasons IS no Atvs. Vilas promotes itself as silent sports county and we hope it stays that way!
-23 #4 Michael Kunstman 2014-07-21 07:55
Only those registered to vote in Vilas county received information to vote on the original referendum. Totally unfair to the season residents who are registered to vote where they live full time. We have property in the county and provide a signicant inflow of cash to the county. If our voices were heard in the initial vote, the outcome surely would have been different. Those aginst ATV's do not understand what a small footprint the propsed ATV trails cover. They will will not distract from the beauty of Vilas county. I have never heard a person say they go to Vilas becuase they don't allow ATV's. That statement is absolutely ridiculous.

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