Sauk Prairie Recreation Area Trails Master Plan


September 08, 2015, 09:05 AM

The Sauk Prairie Recreation Area master plan has added the burden of linking the start of development of any mountain bike trails within the Sauk Prairie Recreation Area to the updating of the master plan of Devils Lake.  This could be a long process and could yield no mountain bike trails at all. Allowing the development sooner than later would fill a need for mountain bike trails in the area. This would benefit locals, tourists and also Sauk Prairie's new youth mountain biking team. The earlier development of primitive mountain bike trails would be an asset to SPRA as a whole because they are the least costly and could be the quickest form of trail to develop. This would allow people on bikes to use the property and potentially drive donations, excitement and volunteers for the future and more family oriented trails.  The idea that only having 5 miles of mountain bike trails wouldn't provide a quality experience is far from true.  Although more would be better, mountain bikers could use a combination of the family friendly trails and mountain bike trails, before any development into Devils Lake, to explore the property and still have an excellent experience.  Our current local choices are ride on a .5 mile loop or drive 1 hour to get to single track trails.

Please comment on the Sauk Prairie Recreation Area Master Plan to allow development of mountain bike trails before the Devils Lake Master Plan is changed.  Build trails now, don't kick the can down the road.

Comment online
http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/Lands/masterplanning/SaukPrairie/

Or at the open house this week.

Thursday, September 10
River Arts Center
105 Ninth Street
Prairie du Sac, WI
Public Open House: 4:00 - 5:00 p.m.
DNR presentation: 5:00 p.m.
Public Hearing: 5:15 - 8:00 p.m.


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augs
President
Board Member

September 23, 2015, 10:09 PM

Comment period ends September 25; get yours in.

http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/Lands/masterplanning/SaukPrairie/

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TheMayor1
Trail Steward - CamRock
Trail Steward
608-772-7833

September 25, 2015, 10:02 AM

Today is the last day! Get it done please. We have shown we are an amazing group at getting our voice heard. Lets not stop now!
It took me only about 5 minutes. Heck you even get to check a box for Fat Bikes! When else have you done that?


~ Chuck Hutchens


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XXX

September 25, 2015, 03:02 PM

Done. Thanks for the reminder!

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XXX

December 03, 2016, 09:41 AM

DNR has released a revised draft master plan, and it looks like these concerns were addressed.  The new plan calls for 10 miles of mountain bike trails instead of 5.  And now there is passing mention that these trails would link to Devil's Lake State Park if trails are built on that property at some future date; as opposed to the previous draft which would have made trail development at Sauk Prairie Recreation Area dependent on trails being built in Devil's Lake.

I'm intrigued that this plan allows for up to 6 days per year where horse and bike trails are repurposed for dual sport motorcycles.  As somebody who is curious about off-road motorcycling (I've never done it, but it looks interesting), it seems to me like a really good way for those guys to get more access to public land in the southern part of the state.  It will be interesting to see if this works out.  Will the bikers and equestrians develop a strong sense of ownership over "their" trails and resent sharing them with the motos? Or will they appreciate the possibility that activist motorcycle clubs might be able to help drive more and better trail development.  For what it's worth, the plan contains lots of restrictions on the motorcycles: riding is only allowed as part of club-sponsored special event and only 50% of the trails could be repurposed at any one time.  Further, the the sponsoring motorcycle club must: decibel test participating bikes, limit the number of registrants, and repair any damage to trails.

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TheMayor1
Trail Steward - CamRock
Trail Steward
608-772-7833

December 11, 2016, 09:50 PM

Great developments here for sure. Really interesting on the motorcycle use. Obviously the current administration is trying any angle to get more motors into and onto State lands. The key here is the "repair damages caused" clause. That could save a catastrophe. Though I fear that would be awful hard to enforce over five miles of trail. A trail could easily be destroyed by a motorcycle event over a weekend. You would be hard pressed to get the major damage repaired. And a lot of damage would not be easy to spot to anyone but a trail builder, but make the trail unsustainable in the long term.


~ Chuck Hutchens


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Nate W.
Club Raconteur

December 12, 2016, 01:37 PM

I agree on the '"repair damages" clause.  What is perceived as "trail damage" isn't the same for the motorized crowd as it is for the human-powered crowd.  Off-road motos and 4 wheelers can get through/over ruts that will stop a MTB  in it's tracks.  Trail damage is potentially subjective, I'm afraid.

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XXX

December 12, 2016, 10:55 PM

Great developments here for sure. Really interesting on the motorcycle use. Obviously the current administration is trying any angle to get more motors into and onto State lands. The key here is the "repair damages caused" clause. That could save a catastrophe. Though I fear that would be awful hard to enforce over five miles of trail. A trail could easily be destroyed by a motorcycle event over a weekend. You would be hard pressed to get the major damage repaired. And a lot of damage would not be easy to spot to anyone but a trail builder, but make the trail unsustainable in the long term.

I agree on the '"repair damages" clause.  What is perceived as "trail damage" isn't the same for the motorized crowd as it is for the human-powered crowd.  Off-road motos and 4 wheelers can get through/over ruts that will stop a MTB  in it's tracks.  Trail damage is potentially subjective, I'm afraid.
Wow, almost word-for-word, the anti MTB groups in the 80's and 90's.

The OHM community has experienced trail closures, in the past, due to poorly designed and maintained trails as have the MTB crowd. OHM groups have certified trail builders and are actively training more. Many events are run on private land and have to be carefully routed and often repaired post-ride.

I believe there is much more to be gained for all of us with an inclusive mindset, rather than a closed-minded, exclusive, elitist attitude.

I hear a lot about the great opportunities for more MTB trails, and not enough involvement. I can say for sure, that many comments like these and more that were made regarding other trail users, have kept many hands from helping and pocketbooks closed.

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XXX

December 13, 2016, 10:46 AM

Amen claybuster.

I'm really hopeful that the Sauk Prairie plan will proceed (despite the pending litigation) and the MTB and OHM groups will be able to work together to develop a great trail system that benefits both user bases. There are a lot of OHM riders who really want this to work and will work as hard as anyone to make this successful.

I also have very little concern about trail damage caused by motorcycles--in my first hand experience, damage to motorcycle trails (like mountain bike trails) is most influenced by unsustainable trail design. Water moves way more dirt than tires do. 

I'm a longtime mountain biker and more recently, an enduro motorcycle racer. I was up in the UP this fall on my enduro motorcycle, and ran into a group of mountain bikers enjoying the Bass Lake motorcycle singletrack trail. They were having a blast on the 25 mile singletrack loop. I thought it was cool to see them out having an adventure, and they thought my moto was cool.

MTB and OHM riders are really cut from the same cloth (and are often the same people!) so I hope that CORP and the MTB community is supportive of plans like Sauk Prairie and work openly with other user groups to make it successful.

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Nate W.
Club Raconteur

December 13, 2016, 11:01 AM

I hope my post wasn't interpreted as hoping things don't progress with the Sauk Prairie plan...more trails is a great use for that huge parcel of land.  I'm optimistic that things progress and we  have more riding opportunities in this area.

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XXX

December 14, 2016, 12:56 PM

Amen claybuster.

I'm really hopeful that the Sauk Prairie plan will proceed (despite the pending litigation) and the MTB and OHM groups will be able to work together to develop a great trail system that benefits both user bases. There are a lot of OHM riders who really want this to work and will work as hard as anyone to make this successful.

I also have very little concern about trail damage caused by motorcycles--in my first hand experience, damage to motorcycle trails (like mountain bike trails) is most influenced by unsustainable trail design. Water moves way more dirt than tires do. 

I'm a longtime mountain biker and more recently, an enduro motorcycle racer. I was up in the UP this fall on my enduro motorcycle, and ran into a group of mountain bikers enjoying the Bass Lake motorcycle singletrack trail. They were having a blast on the 25 mile singletrack loop. I thought it was cool to see them out having an adventure, and they thought my moto was cool.

MTB and OHM riders are really cut from the same cloth (and are often the same people!) so I hope that CORP and the MTB community is supportive of plans like Sauk Prairie and work openly with other user groups to make it successful.
Very well said!

I have experienced the same thing on MTB and moto in the U.P. as well as CO. and UT. Almost like a mutual respect for a passion for two wheels and the outdoors.

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XXX

December 14, 2016, 01:02 PM

Sounds like it passed with moto use included.

I'm really looking forward to working together on this trail to make it a reality. Probably more excited to ride my MTB there;)

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XXX

October 31, 2020, 09:39 AM

I thought I’d resurrect this thread.

Does anyone know the status of trail building at Sauk Prairie? My understanding is that the litigation for motos has been resolved and so they’ll be holding events there next year (pending COVID restrictions). So, if they’re going to be burning in the trail then hopefully we can have some input from the mtb perspective along the way. Is anybody from CORP or another mtb club involved in the planning? I’d like to get involved if I can. 

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augs
President
Board Member

October 31, 2020, 08:06 PM

There are riders out that way who are involved and keeping an eye on things.  I haven't heard anything about the master plan issues being resolved, but that's not to say it hasn't happened. I can rach out to some of those folks.  Where did you see that things are moving ahead?

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XXX

November 02, 2020, 10:34 AM

I'm a member of the Wisconsin Off-Highway Motorcycle Association, and on their facebook page they mentioned that the litigation was resolved and they have begun to map out trails for their events next year. I'm not exactly sure when the issue was Ok'd.

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