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Does ATV belong to the road?The town is crowded with benefits and shortcomings

Morristown, Vermont (AP)

Tom and Cynthia Croutier’s treasures spend time on the porch, have dinner on the deck with views of the mountains, and generally live in the countryside of Vermont in a home purchased in 2018 after retirement. I am enjoying

It all changed the following year when some of the roads adjacent to their property were opened to all-terrain vehicles that were not previously allowed on the road. He said that in many cases, noisy ATVs would come down the road when they went out.

“Overnight our Silver Ridge (road) became ATV’s Super Highway,” said Tom Croutier. “I could hear the sounds of these machines inside the house, but when I went out I couldn’t talk, and I could sit quietly at the front door with a cup of coffee, have dinner on the deck, or watch the sunset. I could not do it.”

What started as a test run in Morristown in 2019 ended in response to complaints last year, according to town officials. The ATV group is now reopening some roads and other parts of the road to allow riders to get gas, stay or park at local motels, and dine at local restaurants. I am asking the town to do so. Access connects them to nearby communities where ATVs are legal on the road.

Their towns are on a small but ever-growing list of rural communities across the country looking to take advantage of the economic benefits of outdoor tourism to pave the way for or open the way to ATVs.

As more people go outdoors during a pandemic, interest in ATVs grows. However, their popularity sometimes forces riders to compete with residents, and the community struggles to balance perks and loss of tranquility.

“Our vision for our town must be for everyone,” ATV rider Lisa Desjardin said at a public conference in July about Morristown’s proposal. .. “It’s not just for cyclists, runners. It should be suitable for everyone, whether they like ATVs or not.”

Last year, ATV sales increased by more than 33%, said Scott Schlegel, senior vice president of government for the Recreation Off-Highway Vehicle Association. The surge in sales has increased interest in access to the public land where the trails are located, creating additional demand for new trails and trail maintenance, he said.

According to Governor Jim Justice’s office, the 1,000-mile Hatfield-McCoy Trail in West Virginia is the largest number of trail permits per year, despite being closed for two months during last year’s pandemic. Sold nearly 65,000. ATV permits for residents of Maine surged 6%, officials said.

Schlegel describes the Hatfield-McCoy Trail Network as a major economic impetus for these communities: They crossed the state. “

Officials in the Open Space & Trail division of Summit County, Colorado have noticed an increase in the use of trails by off-highway vehicles in recent years. The ATV Trail also has access to hikers, bikers and horseback riding, the agency said.

In northern New Hampshire, Gorham opened several roads to ATV about eight years ago, and on summer weekends, less than 3,000 towns are mechanically crowded.

On Friday, July, a rider far from North Carolina rented a car and toured the trail. Others leading ATVs in Connecticut and Rhode Island were staying at local motels.

Frequently visited by John Bates Jr., who has no trail near his home in Epsom, New Hampshire. He drove for two and a half hours and stayed at the motel. My friends were renting a machine the next day and planned to work with them to access the Ride the Wilds Trail Network for over 1,000 miles. This is “absolutely wonderful,” he said.

Some people who live near the road leading to the ATV are frustrated.

“This little town was a cute little town, quiet and friendly to everyone. It’s a nightmare now,” said Sandy Remia, a longtime resident of Goham on the edge of White Mountain. She complained about the noise and smell of the exhaust.

“The outside is incredible,” she said. “I can’t hear my thoughts. Sometimes I can’t hear the lawn mower, especially if there’s a festival and everyone is moving this way.”

Residents of Morristown, Vermont will vote for ATV’s proposal this fall. In July, riders testified that opening parts of certain roads would revitalize the economy and make food and fuel available, while other residents expressed concern about safety, noise and the environment. ..

“We don’t want to drive in town or all other roads right now. Probably not,” said rider Mike Patvan. “Have you ever paid for an all-terrain vehicle? I don’t want to ride a black top. We rather want to be on dirt roads and paths, and hopefully we can get more.”

Does ATV belong to the road?The town is crowded with benefits and shortcomings

Source link Does ATV belong to the road?The town is crowded with benefits and shortcomings

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